Leelaw From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Posted (8 years 4 months 2 weeks 4 days ago) and read 2091 times:
The UK was involved in the Airbus programme at a national level from day one as a leading proponent in the efforts to set up a pan-European collaborative civil airliner venture. So why did the UK end up as a minority stakeholder in today’s Airbus as the country’s national aerospace company prepares to extinguish the last embers of a nation’s once proud involvement in the civil aircraft business?
VirginFlyer From New Zealand, joined Sep 2000, 4575 posts, RR: 41
Reply 3, posted (8 years 4 months 2 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 1891 times:
Thanks for posting this Leelaw. While there will still be an Airbus operation in the UK after the sale of the BAE stake, I think it is quite sad that this effectively spells the end of British involvement in airliner production.
I guess it was inevitable - aircraft manufacturing was always going to be a cottage industry in the UK compared to what was possible in the USA, or in a wider pan-European effort. But years of political interference did nothing to help the situation - promising projects such as the VC-10 and the Trident were crippled by being tied to the specifications of airlines who didn't even really want the aircraft. Projects like the BAe 146/Avro RJ and the Jetstream 61 were left to whither and die.
After the great hope that was offered by the Comet, 60 years later there is nothing. Geoffrey de Havilland and his contemporaries would be spinning in their graves.
I do wonder whether things would have been different had the UK not withdrawn from the A300 project in 1969...
"So powerful is the light of unity that it can illuminate the whole earth." - Bahá'u'lláh