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British Airways 747 to be transformed into a CINEMA and a private hire venue at Cotswold Airport


A retired British Airways 747 is to be given a new lease of life – as a cinema and a private hire venue.

The Boeing jumbo jet, registration G-CIVB, will be permanently stationed at Cotswold Airport, near Kemble in Gloucestershire.

The aircraft is painted in the unique Negus livery, which adorned BA planes in the 1970s and 1980s.

This retired British Airways 747, registration G-CIVB, is to be transformed into a cinema and private hire venue at Cotswold Airport near Kemble in Gloucestershire

This retired British Airways 747, registration G-CIVB, is to be transformed into a cinema and private hire venue at Cotswold Airport near Kemble in Gloucestershire 

It was one of four painted in heritage liveries to mark the airline’s centenary last year and was also one of the final two BA 747s to leave Heathrow last month following the retirement of the flag carrier’s 747 fleet.

Cotswold Airport, formerly known as RAF Kemble, will maintain the aircraft and plans to convert an area of its interior into a ‘unique business, conferencing and private hire venue’, as well as a cinema for locals and an educational facility for school trips.

It is planned that the aircraft will be open to the public from Spring 2021.

In addition, a large percentage of the money raised from events on the aircraft will be used to support Cotswold Airport’s scholarship programme and charities.

Every year, the scholarship helps 10 students who have an interest in aviation-related sectors or careers to undertake instructional flight time or experience various aviation career environments. The airport says this programme gives the students a ‘fabulous insight, and many have gone on to careers in the Navy and RAF’.

After entering the BA fleet on February 15, 1994, G-CIVB operated 13,398 flights and flew for 118,445 hours over nearly 60million miles.

G-CIVB, pictured, operated 13,398 flights after entering service for BA on February 15, 1994. Its last passenger flight was from Miami to Heathrow in April

G-CIVB, pictured, operated 13,398 flights after entering service for BA on February 15, 1994. Its last passenger flight was from Miami to Heathrow in April 

Its last passenger flight was from Miami to Heathrow on April 6, 2020.

Suzannah Harvey, CEO of Cotswold Airport, said: ‘It is great news for locals and visitors who will be able to see and experience one of the most iconic passenger aircraft of its time.

‘We’re absolutely delighted to make this happen following its final flight from London Heathrow to Cotswold Airport on October 8.’

Sean Doyle, CEO of British Airways, added: ‘It was with great sadness that we retired our two final 747s based at Heathrow earlier this month, so we’re glad Cotswold Airport is able to give one of these aircraft a new home and a new lease of life.

Cotswold Airport will maintain the aircraft. It is planned that it will be open to the public from Spring 2021

Cotswold Airport will maintain the aircraft. It is planned that it will be open to the public from Spring 2021

‘The 747, and the Negus livery, are iconic in British Airways’ past, and we hope locals and visitors will enjoy seeing this slice of history for years to come.’

Last week, it was revealed that another retired BA 747 had been saved from the scrapheap and had found a new role as a film set.

The aircraft, registration G-CIVW, will be stationed at Dunsfold Aerodrome in Surrey, which will preserve it for use as a commercial film set and a training facility.

The plane, which will keep its Chatham Dockyard livery, will be stored in public view on the airfield.

In July BA announced that it was to scrap its entire fleet of jumbo jets with immediate effect

In July BA announced that it was to scrap its entire fleet of jumbo jets with immediate effect

With its humped fuselage, four engines and 16 main wheels, the 747, known as the ‘Queen of the Skies, is the world’s most easily recognised jetliner and it democratised global air travel in the 1970s.

It was announced in July that BA was to scrap its entire fleet of jumbo jets with immediate effect.

The nation’s flag carrier was the world’s last major operator of the iconic 747 aircraft, which had been in service with the airline since 1971.

It had 31 jumbo jets in use before the coronavirus crisis forced bosses to park the entire fleet at airports across the country.

BA had originally planned to retire them by 2024 and gradually replace them with newer, more fuel-efficient jets such as the 787 Dreamliner and Airbus A350. 

But plummeting passenger numbers forced the airline to bring forward its plans.

The pandemic has brought financial ruin to the travel industry. BA’s owner International Airlines Group (IAG) reported a £1.2billion loss recently and warned on future demand.

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