Virgin Atlantic’s 744’s left Manchester yesterday for the last time, offering all of those at the wonderful Airport museum and observation area with a long set of moving wing waves. The aircraft were heading to Heathrow for pre-scrap interiors and reusables recovery.
There was quite a socially distanced crowd at Manchester for the event, which for all of us Virgin Atlantic fans (which I make no apologies for, they’re the best), was a sad moment.
British Airways also started the process of removing its last aircraft from Heathrow, with G-CIVD heading to the scrap yard, notably painted in her Oneworld livery.
I personally never flew on 747’s that many times, around 16 flights total. There speed and climb rate on the RB-211 especially was phenomenal, but in all fairness, they were noisy if you were behind, or just in front of the engines and not not especially comfortable the further back you went.
One thing I will never forget is sitting in the furthest left side rear window seat and being able to see the whole aircraft end to end pointing upward at about 45 degrees on a takeoff “inland” over the peninsula from San Francisco International, a relatively unusual occurrence. It was a strangely surreal experience!
On the other end if you’ve ever travelled in Upper Class or BA First and had the A1 seat in the nose – which I’ve managed a couple of times, its the only aircraft where the passengers are in front of the cockpit. Just in front of you is the radar and nothingness! If you bother to stop and think about it, its strangely surreal.