It’s time for the British Airways retrojet I’ve been waiting for – and the final aircraft out of four to be repainted, celebrating British Airways 100.
And the livery? It’s the classic Negus livery.
This variant of the Negus design flew from 1974 to 1980. It will be flown aboard a Boeing 747 – this time G-CIVB will be doing the honours.
The livery is based on one that was born out of the BOAC and BEA merger – forming the beginnings of what know as British Airways today. The Landor livery followed this as the airline prepared for privatisation.
According to the airline
When it initially flew, the Negus livery was the first time an aircraft had carried “British Airways“ since 1939, when the original British Airways Limited merged with Imperial Airways to form BOAC. Interestingly, the Union Flag is not present on the side of the aircraft as, like the final BEA aircraft livery, the flag began to be fully celebrated on the aircraft’s tailfin instead.
G-CIVB is currently in the paint shop in Dublin and will return to Heathrow later this month, re-entering long haul operations.
It will remain in the Negus livery until it retires in 2022.
Of course, new deliveries will be delivered in British Airways current livery – Chatham Dockyard.
Alex Cruz, British Airways’ Chairman and CEO,
“Rumours have been circulating for quite some time about this final livery, so it’s exciting to confirm it is the Negus design. It’s particularly significant for us because it’s the first design worn by the British Airways that we all know today, with the distinctive lower case ‘a’ and the Union Flag on the tailfin.”
A historical foursome
With the Negus 747 painted up, it will be the last of the four aircraft that have received special paintwork celebrating BA100. The rest of the retroject fleet consists of
- BOAC (British Overseas Airline Corporation)
- BEA (British European Airways
- Landor (worn during the privatisation era until the World Tailfins appeared)
All the liveries have won fans on social media and the aviation community – as the airline embraces its past as well as its future.
Perhaps there’s more than a little “to fly, to serve” left in the airline.
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