BA100: 11. A BA Miscellany

100 Years Of British Airways: A miscellany of aircraft, airports and more from BA’s 100 year history.

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Joanna Lumley and Chabuddy G - BA Safety Video July 2018 (Image Credit: British Airways)
Joanna Lumley and Chabuddy G – BA Safety Video July 2018 (Image Credit: British Airways)

Welcome to our 100 part series on the history of BA and its predecessor airlines.

As we’re just outside the Top 10, here’s a miscellany of things that didn’t quite make it into 100 list.

Boeing 707 Aircraft – The successor to the VC10 aircraft and predecessor to the Boeing 747 at BOAC. Whilst the VC10 was much loved by passengers the 707 had a much better range and operating performance for longer range routes than the VC10. It was a substantially smaller aircraft than the 747, which heralded the era of mass travel.

British Airways Helicopters – This was originally formed by BEA in 1947. By the 1980s British Airways Helicopters had a fleet of 40 helicopters, operating principally in the North Sea. It was sold by BA in 1986.

British Asia Airways – A former wholly owned operating division of BA that used to operate flights to Taipei.

Croydon Airport – A former base for Imperial Airways, BOAC and BEA, Croydon Airport long ceased operations but its visitors centre is open to visitors on the first Sunday of the month.

Flying Start – BA’s charity partnership with Comic Relief. Since 2010 it has raised over £20million for the charity. It is also the subject BA’s somewhat marmite safety videos.

High Life Magazine – BA’s in flight magazine has survived the digital age. Occasionally containing a few howlers and out of date route maps, nearly 200,000 copies are published each month with a readership of around 825,000. A dedicated version of the magazine is produced for routes to China.

Northolt Airport – This was a major base for British European Airways during the construction of Heathrow. It is now a Royal Air Force station and is used for civil and military aircraft.

The BA Heritage Centre – Based at BA’s Head Office at Heathrow and curated by the late Paul Jarvis, the BA Heritage Centre contains a huge range of original materials from BA’s history and is available to visit by appointment.

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