On board the Concorde: what was it really like?

With reports that the Concorde is hoped to fly again in 2019, we step inside the original for a look at what life used to be like on board the supersonic passenger jet.

From the mid-70s to 2003, the Concorde was the most prestigious way to fly between London and New York, a route which the streamlined aircraft conquered in barely three hours.

Supersonic return

London's Daily Telegraph reports that Club Concorde, a group of former pilots, charterers and frequent flyers, aims to buy one to place near the London Eye on the Thames for tourism purposes, and return another to active service by 2019 (the 50th anniversary of the first flight).

Today, one of 18 remaining Concordes is part of New York's Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, at the west side of Manhattan overlooking the Hudson River to New Jersey.

The 'Alpha Delta' Concorde – taken from the final two letters of the G-BOAD registration – is draped in history. Of the 14 Concordes built for commercial service, this one spent the most time in the sky, having notched up 23,397 flight hours.

For a time it also sported Singapore Airlines livery down one side of the plane – retaining BA livery on the other side – as part of a short-lived airline partnership on the London-Singapore route.

Trans-Atlantic records

Many years later in 1996, the aircraft would also set the world record for the fastest trans-Atlantic passenger flight from New York's JFK Airport to London Heathrow, accomplished in two hours, 52 minutes and 59 seconds under the supervision of Captain Leslie Scott.

Although now fading, Captain Scott's autograph remains in the cockpit, joined by autographs of the team responsible for G-BOAD's last-ever flight: from Heathrow to JFK on November 10, 2003.

From there, the aircraft was moved by barge along the Hudson River to Intrepid, where it now stands proudly at Pier 86.

Advertisement

See inside the surprisingly snug cabin and cockpit by scrolling through the gallery above.

A version of this article first appeared on the Australian Business Traveller website.