Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Concorde to Bow out with Bubbly

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Concorde to Bow out with Bubbly

Article excerpt

Concorde will bow out in style today with celebrity guests enjoying a champagne breakfast on board the supersonic passenger plane's last flight.

Actress Joan Collins, TV celebrity Jeremy Clarkson and one of Concorde's most-frequent fliers, Sir David Frost, will be among the privileged 100 on the final British Airways flight from New York to Heathrow Airport.

Tucking into smoked salmon and caviar as well as lobster fishcakes, the guests will also have the chance to sample a 1986 Pol Roger Cuvee champagne named after Sir Winston Churchill.

Just before the last passenger flight touches down, two more Concordes will also land at the west London airport. One will arrive with competition winners on board from Edinburgh. The other, with invited guests, will have taken off from Heathrow and completed a trip out into the Atlantic.

BA is saying goodbye to nearly 28 years of supersonic flights as Concorde is now considered uneconomic to run in terms of passenger levels and costs.

Hosting the New York-London swansong of the 1,350mph plane will be BA chairman Lord Marshall. He said yesterday: "Concorde is a wonderful aircraft and her last day is one of mixed emotions. Everyone has enormous pride in all that she has achieved but there is inevitable sadness that we have to move on and say farewell."

Lord Marshall added: "Concorde's magic has attracted millions of loyal fans who enjoy her unique blend of speed, grace and beauty. The decision to retire Concorde was a tough one, but it is the right thing to do at the right time.

"Concorde will always be part of BA and will always hold a special place in the hearts of our staff and customers around the world."

Heathrow Airport operator BAA has created a grandstand for 1,000 people to watch the final moments of the passenger life of the supersonic jet which first carried customers in January 1976. …

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