Trip Report



Preface


This trip report is a very personal account of

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Summer of 2003.


How I got my ticket.


The world wide press and media attention I got.


How I felt on the day I flew on Concorde and finally  “ lived “ the dream


How I felt after came back to the UK and tried to get back to “normal “ life.


This trip report not intended to be a “ short “ read as I’ve written how I really and honestly felt to remind me in countless years time of the day I flew at mach 2 (1,320 mph) and what happened to me a year after my flight.


I’ve also written about how my close friends and family felt about my flight and how others reacted towards me when they found out I got my ticket…… I’ve poured my heart in to this trip report and written some very personal things which where in some way all connected to my flight.


I don’t want people reading this report to laugh or make fun of my personal life or my friends, I don’t want things I’ve written in here to be used against me but I can’t lie about what happened and wrote how I honestly felt at the time.


In time memories fade and get clouded but the written word never fades.


The report has also been written to allow people who helped me live the dream experience what I experienced and to allow people who never flew on Concorde to some how see what my eyes saw, to some how experience what I felt and experienced……  I hope you enjoy reading this report.


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This trip report is now dedicated to the memory of my much much loved mum (Inderjit Kaur Sira) who very very sadly passed away in 2014…… All my life mum knew how much I loved Concorde and she did her best to support me in what ever way she could in my life….. I love mum with all my heart and soul and I will always miss her more than words can ever say.


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I’ve been a Concorde fan since I was 6 years old. I first saw both British Airways and Air France Concorde’s standing opposite each other at Dulles Airport in America on TV.


Ever since then I fell in love with her and as a 6 year old child I pestered my father to take me to Heathrow to see her……After many months of me constantly nagging him and pestering him (like all 6 years old when they want some thing) my father gave in and took me to Heathrow.


The second I saw her in “real” life I was mesmerised by her beauty, looks, the sound of her engines and sheer raw power, I was totally hooked on her and every summer I use to nag my father in to taking me to Heathrow, we went there almost every  summer school holiday to see her.


When  we got to Heathrow we use to go to the plane spotting area which stretched from the roof of Queens Building to the end Terminal 2’s roof. Eventually my father got fed up with me standing at Heathrow for ages waiting for Concorde so when I was teenager and old enough to look after my self my father gave the return train fare to Heathrow and I went on my own to see her.


At first I was nervous about going on my own to Heathrow but when I got there and heard her familiar sound and saw her taking off I knew I’d done the right thing in coming here after that I tried to come to Heathrow as many summer holidays as I could, apart from seeing her on Terminal 2  I also use to walk around the perimeter fence to North and South runways to see her.


As a 18th birthday present my parents got me my first SLR camera, it was a Canon AE 1 Program it had a 35-70mm standard zoom lens + 70-300mm telephoto zoom lens + a x 2 converter + a power winder and a flash gun.


















Canon EOS 3 my second SLR camera – with motor winder under the lens

 


The EOS 3 opened new doors and has allowed me to take the best photos I have ever taken of her, the motor winder on the EOS 3 allowed me take up to 6 pictures per second, it also made the camera’s auto focus a bit faster.


Even though I have seen Concorde countless times every time I see her I am utterly thrilled to see her.


She HAS a heart and soul, she IS a living breathing being, when you see her you fall in love with her looks and power there is NOTHING else like her out there.


She is the prettiest, most beautiful thing I have ever seen, she is a work of art, she fly's as good as she looks, when she is standing she still looks like she is flying at Mach 2


When she takes off with her afterburners light up there is nothing else like her she could be the J-Lo of the skies as her backend is as pretty as her front end…… Every single time I see her she makes my heart beat faster as its " Concorde " and not a fat porky 747.


Concorde represents the hopes and dreams of a generation of people for whom NOTHING was impossible the future was there for the taking.


The technology used in Concorde was decades a head of her time, believe me she is STILL decades a head of our time and needs to be saved.


Canon AE-1 Program my first SLR camera.


Since then I combined my interest in photography with my love for Concorde,  over the years I’ve taken countless photos of her some where good others where rubbish but through taking these pictures I learned how to use the camera and how to take photos of her.


Some times I left my camera at home and just came to Heathrow to see her as I wanted to experience the pure thrill of watching her take off or land without the worry of taking photos but most times I came to Heathrow with the camera as seeing her wasn’t enough capturing her on film and taking that image home with me was even better.


In spring 2001 after many years of faithful service the Canon AE 1 Program broke so I needed to buy a new camera…….I looked at many SLR cameras including the Nikon F100, Minolta, Pentax and early digital SLR cameras like the Canon EOS D30…….The Nikon did not meet my needs and the early digital SLR cameras like Canon D30 where not that good, at the time film cameras where still the best around.


On the internet I heard good things about the Canon EOS 3 which was a professional grade camera used by many professional sports photographers…..I had a look it and knew this camera would get me the photos I wanted of Concorde so in summer 2001 (while I still had a job) I bought a Canon EOS 3 with a motor drive + 28-105mm zoom lens + 80-400mm zoom lenses + x 1.4 teleconverter + x 2 teleconverter and flash gun.