Published on Monday, October 26, 2020

Retired BA 747 to become events venue

British Airways will permanently retire one of its Boeing 747s at Cotswold Airport, near Kemble in Gloucestershire.

The airport plans to convert an area of its interior to be used as a unique business, conferencing and private hire venue, as well as a cinema for locals and an educational facility for school trips.

The aircraft is painted in the unique Negus livery which adorned British Airways planes in the 1970s and 1980s.

The aircraft was one of four painted in heritage liveries to mark the airline's centenary last year. It was also one of the final two British Airways 747s to leave Heathrow last month.

The aircraft will be open to the public from spring 2021.

Suzannah Harvey, CEO of Cotswold Airport, said: "Locals and visitors will be able to see and experience one of the most iconic passenger aircraft of its time."

Sean Doyle, CEO of British Airways, said: "It was with great sadness that we retired our two final 747s based at Heathrow earlier this month, so we're glad Cotswold Airport is able to give one of these aircraft a new home and a new lease of life.

"The 747, and the Negus livery, are iconic in British Airways' past, and we hope locals and visitors will enjoy seeing this slice of history for years to come."

A large percentage of all money raised from events on the aircraft will be used to support Cotswold Airport's scholarship programme and charities.

Every year the scholarship helps 10 students who have an interest in aviation related sectors or careers to undertake instructional flight time or experience various aviation career environments.

Many students have gone on to careers in the Navy and RAF.

By Lisa James, Deputy Editor (UK)

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    At least a couple of 747s should be kept in full airworthiness for the future generations. Just think of all the Lancaster bombers and Spitfires that were scrapped after WW2 and in the 50s! Now we're down to just one bomber, (I think), flying and a handful of Spitfires. Otherwise in 50 years time everyone will be searching old barns looking for iconic 747s to restore and, surprisingly, there won't be any!!

    By Keith Standen, Monday, October 26, 2020

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