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Current State of British Airways Concordes
The British Airways Concorde Story
This page outlines the location and current status of all the British Airways Concorde aircraft that were built.
British Airways's (BA) last Concorde revenue departure took place on 23rd October 2003 from London Heathrow to New York. Earlier BA had conducted a mini North American tour, followed by a series of farewell flights around the United Kingdom which included Manchester, Cardiff and Edinburgh.
On 22 October, British air traffic control arranged for a flight from Manchester, and one from New York to land simultaneously on the left and right runways at Heathrow Airport.
That last flight from New York was carried out by G-BOAG to a fanfare similar to that given for Air France's F-BTSD. At the same time 2 more aircraft made special round trips from London: G-BOAF over the Bay of Biscay and G-BOAE to Edinburgh. The three British planes then circled over London, having received special permission to fly at low altitude, before landing in sequence at Heathrow.
After BA's Concorde fleet was grounded all the aircraft had their certificates which permits them to fly withdrawn. They were also drained of hydraulic fluid, effectively grounding them for good. While BA maintain ownership of the fleet they have stated that they will not fly again, as Airbus ended support of the aircraft in 2003.
G-BOAA - Museum of Flight
Concorde 206 was the first to be delivered to British Airways on Jan 14th 1976. It flew the inaugural service to Bahrain on the 21st January 1976, before starting regular services to New York from 1977. On the 2nd of June 1996 Captain Mike Bannister flew her in formation with the RAF Red Arrows over Heathrow Airport the celebrate the 50th anniversary of the airport, which had been Concorde's base since the late 1970s.
In 2004 the aircraft was dismantled and transported by road and sea to East Fortune airfield in Scotland, where she was fully re-assembled and put on public display in a hangar at the National Museum of Flight.
G-BOAB - Heathrow Airport, London
G-BOAB was the third Concorde to be delivered to British Airways in 1976.
The most notable events during her career include: setting a distance record for an airliner with a flight from Washington to Nice, flying the inaugural charter service from London to Seattle via New York and carried the 1998 England World Cup squad from Nantes in France.
Her last duty was a positioning flight back to Heathrow, on the evening before the fleet's certificates of air-worthiness were to be officially withdrawn.
She is currently located in the Concorde engine test bay at Heathrow airport but there is a possibility she may be moved to a public display near the London Eye in central London or sold to a consortium in Bahrain. It has been reported that her interior has been stripped down to the bare metal, that stacks of old magazine are stored at the front of the aircraft (to prevent her from tipping onto her tail due to the lack of weight) and that rats and other vermin are free to roam around her. Access to this aircraft is restricted so it is not possible to substantiate these rumours.
Have you ever flown on the Concorde?
G-BOAC - Manchester Airport
G-BOAC was one of the oldest Concorde in the BA fleet and was also the heaviest. The older aircraft in the series benefited from changes in technology which reduced their weight as production went along. British Airways considerered her as the flagship of their fleet as the acronym BOAC refers to the British Overseas Airways Corporation, the forerunner to British Airways. G-BOAC was the aircraft chosen to launch the Washington service on the 26th of May 1976 and was retired in 2003.
This airframe is located in a purpose-built facility at Manchester Airport. The building has biomass heating fuelled by willow grown on the airport site, a rainwater harvesting system and solar panels. The facility further includes a corporate hospitality suite, an education centre for local schools and a glass-walled visitor restaurant alongside Concorde, with views of the runways.
During the course of 2011 a team of volunteers worked in secret to restore this aircraft's hydraulic and electric systems. The purpose was to allow for the nose to be dropped so that maintenance work could be carried out on the cockpit windows. The full story and a photo account of the work achieved can be seen on the Heritage Concorde Website.
G-BOAD - Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum
New York, USA
In July 2008, defunct British Airways Concorde G-BOAD, which was being stored at Floyd Bennett Field during the restoration of the Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum, was damaged by a passing truck.
NYC Aviation members arranged to anonymously inspect the state of the aircraft regularly until its return to the old aircraft carrier, reporting back its findings to the Intrepid organisation. The aircraft has been repaired.
G-BOAE - Grantley Adams Airport
This aircraft first flew in 1977, entered service with BA in 1979 and was retired in 2004. In 1999 she flew in formation with the Red Arrows over Glasgow and Edinburgh as part of the ceremony at the opening of the Scottish Parliament. Some minor cracks were found in a wing in 2000, causing her to be grounded. She remained in that state after the Paris crash in that year.
She took to the skies once more in 2001 after extensive safety modification and as the first post-Paris revenue flight from Heathrow to New York. In 2003 she took part in the final day of Concorde services with a return trip to Edinburgh which included a low circuit over London with G-BOAF and G-BOAG.
On November 17th 2003 she made her final trip to Granley Adams Airport Barbados where she is stored in a purpose-built facility known as the Barbados Concorde Experience.
G-BOAF - Filton Factory
Concorde 216 was purchased by BA as their 6th Concorde, allegedly for a token amount.
In 1989, while on a trip from Christchurch to Sydney, this aircraft suffered a rudder failure where a section was lost in flight. This problem re-occured on other aircraft leading to all Concordes being fitted with re-designed rudders. In 1995 her nose was damaged in a handling accident at Heathrow airport. British Airways swapped this nose with the nose of G-BBDG, the test Concorde which used to be stored at Filton.
G-BOAF was the first in the fleet to be painted into the Utopia livery which led it to be heavily featured in BA's marketing material. This airframe was also the first to be fitted with the Kevlar-lining in the fuel tanks as a result of the safety modifications required after the Paris crash.
The Concorde at Filton is in a temporary home while local organisations and companies get together to create a new aviation heritage centre, where 216 will be under cover as the centre-piece of displays and exhibits that detail the story of the region's long-standing role in the world of aerospace.
Public access to this aircraft was halted in November 2010 and there are currently no plans to place it back on display. According to the press it needs to be restored and repaired and there are reports that it is in "desperate need of repair and was starting to rust in several places" [source This is Bristol, 25th November 2010]. There are however no funds available to complete the project. On 30th May 2011 the Concorde Trust failed to obtain funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund, further delaying the start of the conservation project.
G-BOAG - Museum of Flight
Airframe 214 was first registered in 1978 as G-BFKW to British Aerospace, and took to the sky for the first time in the same year. . She was eventually delivered to British Airways in February 1980 when she was re-registered as G-BOAG.
She suffered a a serious engine problem in April of the same year, which resulted in an aborted flight to New York. She re-entered service in February 1981 after extensive and costly repairs. She was grounded once more between 1982 and 1984 for use as spares but was eventually returned to flight once more, to promote a new interior, a new external livery called Landor and had the honour of joining the Red Arrows for a fly past at the Royal International Air Tatto in 1985.
In 1996 was once more refurbished and, in 1999, repainted in the new Chatham livery. As part of the retirement farewell tour she visited Toronto, Washington and Manchester. Her penultimate flight was from New York to London Heathrow, where she landed in sequence with G-BOAE and G-BOAF after performing a low circuit over London.
In November 2003 she re-positioned to Seattle. During the trip she set a new record for the East to West crossing of North America, having been given permission to fly supersonic over land.
This aircraft is part of the outdoor exhibits of the Museum of Flight in Seattle, is the only Concorde on display on the West Coast of the USA, and one of only four outside Europe.
British Development Aircraft
Testing supersonic flight
G-BSST (002) - Yeovilton Fleet Air Arm Museum, UK
Concorde serial number 002 was the second prototype to be assembled (the first was built in France), and she made her maiden flight from the British Aircraft Corporation's plant at Filton, Bristol on the 9th April 1969. She was retired and preserved following seven years of extensive supersonic testing, This aircraft completed her last flight in July 1976 by landing at the Fleet Air Arm Museum in Yeovilton, where she is preserved in one the Museum's exhibition halls.
G-AXDN (101) - Imperial War Museum, Duxford, UK
Concorde number 101 (pictured below) is now located at the Imperial War Museum in Duxford and was the third to be built for test purposes before the world's first supersonic airliner went into production. During testing the aircraft carried 12 tons (12,209 kg) of test equipment as well as two escape hatches, to be used should things go wrong (they were never used, other than for crew training).
G-BBDG (202) - Brooklands Museum, Surrey
G-BBDG first flew in 1974 and was considered to be a pre-production model used to finalise the Concorde design before the other aircraft entered passenger service. This aircraft was painted in BA livery throughout the tests and spent a total of 1282hrs in the air. The last flight was in 1981 and the aircraft was then stored at Filton before being bought by BA in 1984. However, she never entered service but became an extremely useful source of spare parts. In 2001, the airframe was used to test reinforced cockpit doors required for all aircraft after the 9/11 terrorist attacks.
Brooklands Museum at Weybridge in Surrey was offered the aircraft, hence it was dismantled, cut into sections and transported by road to its' new home. A team of 100 volunteers from the museum, assisted by students from the University of Surrey, re-assembled and restored it to a high standard.
More Concorde Resources on the Web
- Brooklands Concorde Project
Everything you need to know about G-BBDG's move from Filton to Brooklands and subsequent restoration project.
- Concorde SST
A comprehensive guide covering all aspect of Concorde
- G-BOAB Move to London Project
Project to move G-BOAB from London Heathrow to a central London location. The rest of the site is also worth a visit. Extract from the site: "Club Concorde is a club for all things Concorde, run by ex-Captains and people passionate about Concorde".
- Heritage Concorde
The most technical and up to date Concorde website on the internet