I had booked a shuttle from MAN-LHR-MAN with BA a few months ago, and to cut a long story short I wasn’t going to be able to make use the outbound flight , but could manage the inbound flight . So I got myself onto a Virgin Train down to London on Friday the 22nd (incidentally, the name of the train was ‘Virgin Atlantic’ ).
I checked in online on Saturday evening and allocated myself seat 08A – believing I would be on an A319, how wrong I was to be
Anyway, the next day my cousin dropped me off at the drop off area outside T1 at Heathrow and I made my way inside to a self-service check in machine to be issued a boarding card.
Here’s the coupon:
I dropped my bag off at the bag drop, which is conveniently placed right next to the machines, and check in was complete.
T1 is a fairly boring terminal really so I decided to just go through security and to the gate to see if I could get any decent views outside. The walk from the security checkpoint to gate 76 was fairly short and only took a couple of minutes. I saw a BA A319 parked up at the gate and realised this must be my plane; however I got closer and realised this was parked at gate 74.
This was when I had to look twice outside at what was parked at gate 76 It was non-other than G-ZAPM, a Titan Airways 737-300 which today would be operating BA1392!
Well this was quite a pleasant surprise indeed! I was at the gate for around 5-10 minutes or so, and a call was made that the flight was ready for boarding. Everyone boarded in good time and it looked as though we were ready for an on-time departure. Our Captain confirmed this, and we were also told that our flight time today would be 28 minutes and we would be cruising at 18,000ft.
The cabin seemed quite spacious and airy, although legroom wasn’t something to shout about:
The seats were grey leather, and quite comfortable, probably because they were so worn down . There was a ‘business’ class section for the first 2 rows, although these seats were identical to the rest of the cabin, and in the same formation of 3-3.
We pushed back at 11:45
Runway 27L was in use for departures so we set off on a taxi that would take us towards the east side of the airport. Here we are seen to be racing against a BA 767 (we won )
Taxiing past G-BOAB and the BA maintenance area:
Looking a bit lonely sat there on its own:
Here's the fire brigade’s specially built plane they use for training:
I thought this looked a bit funny hehe, also note the paintwork on the rudder doesn’t match up with the rest of the tail:
We got to the threshold of 27L and had to hold for around 5 minutes, as we were 5th in the queue to depart. At 12:02 we turned onto the runway and waited for clearance, at 12:03 we started rolling:
Overview of terminal 4, full of BA heavies and a Qantas 747:
Soon after rotation, and the BA 744 ‘Dreamflight’ can be seen parked on a remote stand (at the end our wing)
After climbing to 5,000 feet or so the in-flight service started. It consisted of an All Day Deli box and a hot or cold drink. The service was executed quickly to start with, but when it came to the drinks, one of the 2 cabin crew on the trolley was always having to run back to the galley to get a new bottle of water, or to fill up the teapot, or to get more milk. This slowed down the service quite a lot, and by the time they were finished we were already descending and they hadn’t even collected the rubbish yet.
Well we had started descending, and the weather started looking pretty bad compared to what we had left behind in London:
Making a left turn to establish us onto runway 24R at MAN:
Well it was starting to look worse as we came out from under the clouds:
But it soon brightened up, and it seemed as though the unlucky folk north of the Pennines had all those clouds above them and we in Manchester had nice blue skies
Here we are above the A34 bypass, and Sainsburys/John Lewis looking very busy as to be expected on a Sunday lunchtime:
We touched down at MAN early, at 12:31, so a total flight time of 28 minutes, good approximation on the Captain’s part
Braking didn’t seem too harsh, but we still managed to take the fast exit off 24R:
Taxiing past the Viewing Park, and G-BOAC on the 1st anniversary of Concorde’s retirement:
Jsnww81 From United States of America, joined Jan 2002, 2330 posts, RR: 14
Reply 3, posted (11 years 3 months 2 weeks 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 15392 times:
Great report - I miss flying into MAN (my parents used to live in the UK). I never got to sit on the left side of the cabin while landing at MAN, however - I was always on the right. I loved seeing the Morrisons store in Cheadle Heath on short final, with MORRISONS painted in giant letters on the roof. Didn't know there was a Sainsburys on the other side!
A340600 From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2003, 4108 posts, RR: 49
Reply 4, posted (11 years 3 months 2 weeks 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 15216 times:
Cool report, and great pics!
At last someone got a picture of an aircraft being painted from the old union flag into the current one. The original lower one was when BA planned to paint 50% of their fleet in it. Originally designed fror concorde it was so low. The new design is much better!
Dazultra From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2003, 689 posts, RR: 37
Reply 8, posted (11 years 3 months 2 weeks 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 14049 times:
I hope you'll be writing some more after our wee trip next Tuesday.
il leave that to the cripple - your typing ability obviously hasnt been affected
The Titan cabin looks very nice. Was it all economy, or did they have Business class as well like the BA mainline fleet?
rows 1 and 2 were sectioned off from the rest of the cabin by a divider/curtain, although the curtain wasnt drawn during the flight. the seats however are identical to the rest of the cabin and in the same arrangement of 3-3.