Today, G-BYGC has arrived back for the paint shop in Dublin, in a special livery to celebrate 100 years of British Airways.
This plane will feature the colours of the British Overseas Airways Corporation – or BOAC
A short BOAC History
BOAC was formed in 1939 as a merger of Imperial Airways and British Airways Limited (1935-1939). It contained through the war years until 1946, where European services were split off (forming British European Airways (BEA)), and. British South American Airways (BSAA).
BOAC absorbed BSAA in 1949. with BEA containing to operate as is.
The end of the airline was marked by a 1971 Act of Parliament – which in effect merged BOAC and BEA.
On the 31st March 1974, this turned into the beginnings of the airline we know today as British Airways.
The airline ran many different types of aircraft as it entered the jet age including
- de Havilland Comet
- Boeing 707
- Vickers VC10
- Boeing 747-100
The airline would have introduced Concorde too, except by the time Concorde entered service, it was as a British Airways aircraft (and the first Concorde delivered was of course – G-BOAC)
The paintwork used represents the paintwork of BOAC between 1964 and 1974.
As BOAC’s later life was tied to the Boeing 747 family (and in the end, British Airways itself became a big 747 customer), it seems only fitting that a Boeing 747-400 is painted as part of British Airways 100th Anniversary.
BOAC’s legacy with British Airways
The legacy of BOAC can be seen – even today on British Airways aircraft. If we look at the logo, we can see a Speedbird on the end of it (the originator of the SPEEDBIRD callsign).
The went through to the Negus Livery worn between 1974-1985 which moved the Speedbird to the front of the plane.
This was superseded by the Speedwing introduced with the Landor livery in 1984, and finally, the Speedmarque that was introduced in 1997 as part of the “Utopia tails” project.
The Speedmarque lives on today aboard British Airways fleet, with the Chatham Dockyard tail that flies today.
Welcoming G-BYCG to Heathrow
G-BYCG arrived at Heathrow today after a visit to Dublin to get its new coat of paint.
And the inside?
G-BYCG will retain a Super-Hi J configuration, configured with
- 14 First Class open suites (first class)
- 86 Club World Seats (business class)
- 30 World Traveller Plus seats (premium economy)
- 145 World Traveller Seats (economy)
The plane is configured with a Gogo 2Ku dome, and Panasonic ex3 In-Flight Entertainment System.
In addition, G-BYCG will have something in every seat pocket – one of these, that explains why the plane is in this colour scheme.
To fly, To serve
The plane will retain its paintwork until 2023 – when it is expected that the plane will be retired. As we all know, the Boeing 747 family is in its sunset years, as airlines choose the efficient twin-engined aircraft over four-engined variants.
And it’s a rather nice send off for this Boeing 747-400.
In the short-term, this aircraft will be heading to New York tomorrow (19th February), and Chicago. (20th February).
Keep an eye out for it when you travel!
Economy Class and Beyond was a media guest of British Airways.
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