View Full Version : Concorde Grounding.

13th Mar 2008, 07:19
Anyone seen this, have any comment?


13th Mar 2008, 08:57
Some valid points are made. If the Airbus deal is true, 10 out of 10 to BA for make the best out of a bad situation.

The 'SP' is that AF wanted and needed to stop flying Concorde. With declining passengers numbers and rising costs, coupled with aircraft hours getting critical towards big checks, BA had to stop too.

THe BA PR machine would say Concorde was young in flying hours, but the reality was she was 27 years old, and a nightmare for the engineering teams. They BA engineers would tell you that 2007 was the best you could have expected.

13th Mar 2008, 08:59
Hi Retired BA/BY...Thank YOU so much for this insight on Concorde.

I have read the Book "Betrayal of Concorde" Brings out a lot of emotions. I fly for a major US airline, one of our training captain's flew Concorde for Braniff, he has some great stories. You can certainly see the excitement; and sadness as he speaks of that beautiful lady.

It's really sad that it was EGO and POLITICS that took Concorde out of the sky. As far as I know, she didn't let anyone down; her creators to a certain extint did. Of course,being an aircraft, she had her problems...I fly 737's we have our share as well....but everyone I talked to that flew her, never had an unkind word.:ok:

"Concorde, Gone But Not Forgotten"....cept......

If you own flightsim 2004, check out www.sstsim.com, you can relive the experinence as close to an actual Concorde crew.

I have the ITVV DVD Which is a 2 DVD presentaion of Concorde from London Heathrow-JFK and back. Mostly from the cockpit. This is as close to a "Concorde" experinence as you will likley ever have.

Flying in SSTSIM, it almost follows the real life DVD's exactly.

My biggest regret, being a pilot for a major airline; I had a chance to jumpseat on Concorde. I didn't take the opportunity. I had a I'll do it next year attitude. Now she's...GONE.

Thank You again, for keeping the beautiful ladies story alive.


13th Mar 2008, 09:11
Concorde was grounded because Branson was sniffing at Air France's fleet.

I wrote to Branson in 1987 suggesting that he acquire some underutilised Air France Concordes. British Airways would not tolerate Concorde in Virgin colours so I believe they took steps to ensure all Concordes went to museums and never reached the used aircraft market.

13th Mar 2008, 11:06
Of course, while enthusiasts may continue to mutter darkly about conspiracies between shady business types to ground the grand old lady for filthy lucre, the fact remains that she was barely capable of turning a profit even during happier times in aviation and with the body-blow to air travel that was inflicted with the WTC terrorist attacks, her days were numbered anyway.

I'm now just waiting for a conspiracy site to crop up saying that the WTC attacks were a CIA/Al Qaeda plot to ground Concorde. :E

Shaggy Sheep Driver
13th Mar 2008, 17:32
I don't think Air France would take any notice of anything BA said re Concorde and Branson. The beardy one is a great opportunist and a great marketing guy - I run technical tours on one of the BA Concordes and the number of visitors who mutter darkly that "they should have given 'em to Branson - he'd have kept 'em flying" is amazing. Virgin Trains seems to have done nothing to blunt the British public's faith in the guy.:hmm:

I did jump seat G-BOAD for an entire flight, push back to landing including mach 2.02 at 60,000 feet, and it was an amazing experience.

Interesting comment from Gordon in this thread that 2007 would have been tops. Anyone who has been on a Concorde flight deck will see how old these birds are now. I'm amazed the engineers managed to keep them going as long as they did. But Gordon knows his Concorde stuff, so I expect he is correct.


14th Mar 2008, 07:01
I knew it wouldn't be around for ever. Flew on it round about it's 10th in service anniversary. Ended up on the flight deck in flight with my video camera whilst in the cruise. Priceless experience, gone forever, but I did it!!!!!!!!!!! SO glad I can tell my grandchildren about it.

old,not bold
14th Mar 2008, 10:43
One of my proudest possessions is a certificate signed by Brian Trubshaw, for a flight in Concorde G-BBDG on 29th August 1974, M 2.05, Max Altitude 57,500 ft, supersonic 46 minutes out of 76. We flew from AUH to the East, out over the Indian Ocean, level turn at M2.05 and back, decelerating over DXB and down to AUH. All guests were given a few minutes on the Flight Deck; my turn came on the way back. The contrail from the outward leg was a few hundred metres to starboard, and showed what M2.05 at 57,500 ft looks like.

I had two more jump seat rides on local joy-ride flights in the 80's; sub-sonic to the acceleration point in the Bristol Channel, watching the westbound schedule from LHR reach the point, nose up, afterburners on, disappear in a cloud of smoke. "Hmmm, never seen that before", said the Captain. Supersonic round Land's End, up the English Channel and back.

Hand landing by the FO on a shortish runway had me rigid with fright as we appeared to be far too high, heading for the middle of the runway and a ball of flame at the end, when the MLG touched down precisely on the TDZ. What impressed me is that he seemed to be using stick and throttle to control speed and descent rate pretty much as you would in a Tiger Moth, but perhaps I got that wrong.

I was sad to see the aircraft grounded, but even sadder that her career ended as it did, and not in safe retirement when she reached retirement age as it should have done.

14th Mar 2008, 18:17
The BA engineers won't tell you 2007 was the best they could have expected. They will tell you that without the crown modifications the fleet could not survive commercially beyond that. The funding for such modifications was withdrawn for obvious reasons.
As you are the project manager of the Delta Golf "restoration" which is heavily funded by parts from OAB I can understand your reluctance to upset BA.

14th Mar 2008, 18:37
OAB is 'my' aircraft, re my previous post. I hope what's left of it goes outside T.5 as planned.

Shaggy Sheep Driver
14th Mar 2008, 19:54
BOAC73 - instead of rubbishing Gordon, why not tell us what you think the situation was? Why would crown mods affect the commercial viability (as opposed to structural life) of the fleet, for instance? Your post dont add up , sir! Please explain what you mean.


15th Mar 2008, 15:28
Jem; the only place that is going is to Gilette unless someone wants to buy it and take the wings off for removal. There are no plans for it to move to T5. Futhermore another reason for its demise is that the Uk / USA could not garantee its airbone security from hijack etc. It had reached the stage that the USA would have stopped it flying on security grounds and BA were stuck with a massive insuarance to cover the hull from an illegal act. As many others have also said it did not make a bean. I sat behind the Spurs / England player Darren Anderton to Barbados, what ever happened to him?

Shaggy Sheep Driver
15th Mar 2008, 21:15
If it's not going on T5 (no surprise there - aircraft parking space will be at a premium and it would need to be maintained, being outdoors) assuming it could be moved by road with the wing outer sections removed, then Duxford would be good. It could sit alongside the pre-production prototype Concorde already there, so visitors could compare the two.


16th Mar 2008, 11:04
Duxford would the best place for AB. people can go inside XDN, but also see AB.

My "2007" comment was based around what the fleet planning engineers told me. BA only had 5 aircraft post Paris crash; 3 of these were high hours aircraft and would be pushing 24,000 hours for the 2nd major check, which was not going to happen for numerous reasons. The CAA might have given a concession for some hours.

The re-life 2 project was pretty much dead in the water after the Paris crash, the revenue streams in a changed world (mainly the global economic ground turn), would never have supported it.

I don't have a problem upsetting BA, but do think they got a lot of things right as a business. AB could have come to Brooklands and that would have been a nice easy project for us! But saving the historically significant DG with BA's support, back home at the main design and construction site in the UK for Concorde components was something that everyone is proud of.

The fact that BA have been let down by the now spanish owned BAA, with regards to a proper location for OAB is a very bad situation and Both companies need their backsides kicked to either sort it out, or find the best part of 500K to move OAB to Duxford, before it is too late. (The funding that BA found to dismantle AA and DG was from the Dovebid auction.)