The Last BA001 Heathrow – JFK



Preface

In Oct 2003 I had my 15 mins fame and was on BBC tv and in the press because (as far as I know) I am Concorde’s biggest fan……My friends raised enough money to get me on the penultimate  Concorde flight which flew from Heathrow to New York on  21 Oct 2003, on 22 Oct 2003 I flew home on Boeing 747.


I got home on 23 Oct 2003 and realised I was still famous, the BBC and press did more interviews and I was on tv.


The following are my memories of the last BA001 Concorde to fly from Heathrow to New York and of what also happened to me at that point in time, for info in my flight please visit

:-

    concorde35mm-trip-report


Thursday 23rd Oct 2003

Sparky and I landed at Heathrow at 7am after flying home from New York on over night 747, we waited to see the 10am Concorde to leave Heathrow to fly to Cardiff in Wales….After that take off I went home and was looking forward to seeing mum…..1 hr later I got back on train and came back to Heathrow, stood near the Reanasonce Hotel to see 2 Concorde’s land and I was looking forward to seeing the final BA001 Concorde flight to New York (which was going to take off at around 7.30-ish pm).


After both Concordes landed at 6-ish pm I was extremely tired but I still wanted to see the last BA001 Concorde take off so I slowly walked towards Hatton Cross tube and on my way walked past the Concorde crossing area.


On my way to Hatton Cross lots of people recognised me, They said

:-

        You’re the guy who was on TV and who flew on Concorde.


        We saw you on TV.


They  came up to me and asked

:-  


They were all very very happy for me……They all congratulated me and said well done, this really really lifted my spirits and energised me to keep walking to Hatton Cross.


I tried to answer their questions the best I could but there where so many people asking me these questions that I didn’t have time to speak to them all.


I didn’t know what was shown about me on tv…....I didn’t know what happened in the UK as at the times things where being broadcast about me I was either chasing Concorde (3 Oct 2003 - 20 Oct 2003)…..on Concorde (21 Oct 2003) or in New York (22 Oct 2003).




Last BA001


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I never knew I was on BBC teletext (until a few weeks after I came home when people told me and showed me photos of it).


At the time of my flight I was focused 100% on making sure I enjoyed my flight and that I didn’t miss the  last  few  days of Concorde's life….but I never really knew how big things where for me.

I heard that most people in London and Essex may have seen me on TV and newspapers……I heard that people in Filton (Bristol) and in the midlands had heard about me on their local TV and radio……I heard that big bosses from British Airways, BBC and every one else had seen me on TV.


But to me it didn’t feel “real" I never really knew how big things in the “outside world” where as I was to busy either going to Heathrow everyday to see Concorde or on 21 Oct 2003 I was to busy flying on Concorde.


Its like in October 2003 I "missed" the whole thing about me being on TV and in the press….it sounds strange but this is what really happened…… I missed all this as in Oct 2003 I WAS the guy being film for TV and I WAS part of Concorde's news.


Only way to describe it was like being on Apollo 11……I remember on Apollo 11’s 20th Anniversary I watched TV interviews with Buzz Aldrin (2nd man on the moon)…… I also read many books about the Apollo moon landings in them Buzz said

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Neil and I didn’t know what was happening back home as we where all concentrating on landing on the moon, but we where ones who where on TV and newspapers but we didn’t see all the TV and newspaper coverage of people watching them.

 

Its like we where all out of town and had missed the whole show, yet we where the whole show and we where the ones who made history. We only found out how big and exciting things where when we got home and saw newspapers and TV coverage around the world about us.


To me my flight and the TV coverage about me felt exactly the same…..(Even now I don’t know how big I was, I don’t know how excited my friends and finally must have been to suddenly see  me on TV).


As I walked past the British Airways staff car park near Hatton Cross I saw huge crowds of people bigger than ever before, more people started to recognise me, more people happily said

:-

Hey you’re the guy who was on TV and who flew on Concorde


We saw you on TV


More people congratulated me ……….  it was a really great, warm lovely and loving  feeling, I felt like a pop star, I felt extremely happy.


But there where a few times when I was a bit scared of all the attention I was getting.