I had a lot of mixed emotions I was extremely happy to see Concorde take off and the take off was the best I had ever seen at night, it brilliant. I was very happy that I was hear to witness it in real life and not see it on a tv screen……..But at the same time I was also very sad that this was the last ever BA001 Concorde flight to New York.
While standing outside Heathrow on a very cold winter’s night watching it take off, it was very hard to think and imagine that after now there would be no more BA001 Concorde flights to New York…….that this was it.
You couldn’t imagine the BA001 flights not happening as every day for 27 years Concorde had flown to New York as a BA001.
27 years is a very long time and for people born since 1976 Concorde had been flying for all their lives. For people like me who’d been born in 1968-69 Concorde had been flying for roughly 80% of our lives so it was difficult to comprehend at what had actually happened……what I had actually seen, heard and smelled........ It just didn’t sink in.
During the take off - Machtoo - was airside and watched the take off he said
The take-off was spectacular (I'm sure Mike H left the reheats on longer than normal??).
It was truly a bitter sweet moment.
I feel privileged to have been associated with Concorde for a number of years and deeply saddened by its demise at the hands of accountants - to take a step back (to subsonic flight) is probably unique in the world we live in.
The Last BA001 Heathrow – JFK
7.30pm in BA staff carpark outside runway 27L
As she flew low over the crowds countless thousands of people cheered, clapped and whistled loudly (their noise was louder than Concorde’s), flash guns from their cameras where rapidly flashing and all it lit up Concorde’s under side…….It was a spectacular site, it showed how much people really loved her, but it was also a sad sight as for all of us we knew this was the last “official“ BA001 Concorde from Heathrow JFK we would ever see in our lives.
The take off the most beautiful take off I had ever seen and Concorde looked lovelier than ever, she was glowing with happiness as she was doing what she loved doing the most…….You could feel how she wanted her last take off to be the best in world and it was.
You could feel how she didn’t want to let her sister Concorde’s down and how she wanted to show the world Concorde was some thing special and she achieved all her objectives...............
Only A list Hollywood superstars get a similar reception, to the people waiting to see her at Heathrow she was an A list superstar.
As she flew over my head I knew that 2 days earlier I was sitting inside her sister G-BOAD in seat 26D on the 2nd to last BA001 Concorde flight to New York. I knew what those passengers where experiencing as I had experienced the same thrilling, fast and ultra smooth take off.
I knew that in half an hour’s time today’s BA001 would be the last Concorde in history to chase the sun, to see the sunrise off the south west coast of Ireland and see the midday sun half way across the Atlantic ocean as she flew from Heathrow to New York at mach 2.
Rough map of BA001 last supersonic flight
(Press F5 to see animation again)
= Night time in Europe
= Sun’s rough position showing
“ Midday” sun over the