Heathrow Turns 70! – a Happy Birthday from the RAeS Heathrow Branch

Heathrow70Heathrow Airport is celebrating its 70th anniversary and twitter erupted with happy birthday wishes – including a tweet from British astronaut Tim Peake in space! From airlines, to airports, celebrities, The Red Arrows and more. Visit yourHeathrow website for full details!

In addition to occasion of Heathrow’s Septuagennial anniversary, 2016 is also the Sesquicentennial anniversary of the Royal Aeronautical Society (RAeS) and the Sexagennial anniversary of RAeS Heathrow Branch.

RAeS HEATHROWFIRSTThe RAeS Heathrow Branch has proudly organised the “HEATHROW FIRST! 1866-2016” Exhibition at Spelthorne Museum to celebrate this magnificent year and honour the pioneering roles of Heathrow Airport in commercial aviation history. The Exhibition is scheduled to display between 22 April to 24 June!

A snapshot of some Heathrow First!

✈ 25 August 1919 – Aircraft Transport and Travel (AT&T) first airline to operate a commercial international scheduled flight (between London and Paris) from Hounslow Heath to Le Bourget.


London Airport (later to be re-named Heathrow), loading of British South American Airways Lancastrian aircraft, Star Light, 1940s.

✈ 25 November 1930 – First flight at Heathrow Site (known then as Great Western Aerodrome) was the maiden flight of the Fairey Hendon Night Bomber, K1695.

✈ 1935 ~ 1939 – the Royal Aeronautical Society hold Annual Garden Parties & Air Displays at Great Western Aerodrome (now Heathrow).

✈ 01 January 1946 – British South American Airways Avro Lancastrian Star Light flew to Buenos Aires from the newly opened Heathrow Airport. The first commercial flight followed ten weeks later as London Airport was officially opened on 31st May 1946.

firstcomet✈ 02 May 1952 – The world’s first ever jet airliner has begun its maiden flight from London  Heathrow to Johannesburg, the flight was operated by British Overseas Airways Corporation (BOAC)’s De Havilland Comet 1  Reg. G-ALYP.

✈ 10 June 1965 – a British European Airways (BEA) Trident 1C performed the world’s first automatic landing during a scheduled commercial air service.

Pan Am Boeing 747✈ 22 January 1970 – Heathrow received and handled its first commercial flight of a widebody airliner as the first ever Boeing 747 Pan Am flight arrived from New York.

✈ 09 October 1970 – Development of first carbon-fibre skinned floor panel fitted to a Super VC10 Reg. G-ASGF by BOAC.  This became the first carbon-fibre structural component to be fitted to a civil aircraft and flown in passenger service.

✈ 21 January 1976 – British Airways and Air France jointly start supersonic commercial air travel and BA flew the Concorde from Heathrow to Bahrain.

✈ MAY 2006 – Airbus A380, the world’s largest passenger jet landed at Heathrow Airport for the first time.

and many more of the #HeathrowFirst, come to visit the Exhibition at Spelthorne Museum before 24 JUN 2016.

William Li, 02 June 2016


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