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End of an era: BA 747s to depart LHR for the final time

written by Hannah Dowling | October 7, 2020

British Airways Boeing 747-400 in retro BOAC livery enters the hangar. (British Airways/Stuart Bailey)
British Airways Boeing 747-400 in retro BOAC livery enters the hangar. (British Airways/Stuart Bailey)

The final two remaining British Airways Boeing 747 aircraft are reportedly due to depart London Heathrow Airport for the last time on Thursday.

The two 747-400s – registrations G-CIVB and G-CIVY – are set to receive a special send off to mark the end of an era, more than 50 years after British Airways welcomed its first jumbo jet. 

The two aircraft are planned to depart simultaneously, utilising both runways at LHR.

Then, one of the two will circle back around for a missed approach, to say a final farewell to the airport that it has called home for over two decades.

Currently, the departure is expected to take place at 7am GMT on Thursday, 8 October, however weather or operational issues may see this change.

British Airways was forced to accelerate the retirement of its Boeing 747s in light of the global COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent near total shutdown of international travel demand.

The airline announced in July that it would be immediately retiring all of its 31 remaining jumbo jets.

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The accelerated retirement has meant that unfortunately no formal retirement celebrations could be organised to mark this end of an era, and properly farewell the Queen of the Skies. 

More to come

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