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BA reveals latest retro design to mark centenary

26 February 2019 08:32

British Airways is marking its 100th year of operation

British Airways is marking its 100th year of operation

British Airways has revealed the second of its series of retro liveries being recreated as part of the airline's 100th birthday celebrations.

The carrier has announced an Airbus 319 will be painted in the colours of the airline's short-haul predecessor, British European Airways (BEA).

The plane will get the makeover at Shannon Airport in the Republic of Ireland this weekend, where it will be repainted with the BEA livery used by the airline between 1959 and 1968.

It won't be an exact replica, however, as modern aviation safety standards for reflecting heat mean the wings will be repainted grey rather than the traditional red colour.

Retro liveries

The plane will return to Heathrow Airport and enter service next month, with the design remaining on the aircraft until it retires next year.

On Monday a British Airways Boeing 747 arrived at the London hub after being repainted in the colours of British Overseas Airways Corporation (BOAC).

Details of two more planes to be painted in retro liveries have yet to be disclosed.

British Airways chief executive Alex Cruz said: "There's been plenty of speculation about our next heritage livery, so it's great to finally be able to make this exciting announcement.

"BEA is an important part of our history, and many customers and colleagues will have fond memories flying on its aircraft."

'Celebrate our past'

Mr Cruz added: "We're sure this latest livery will bring back a flood of emotions and pride in not only British Airways, but the UK's impressive aviation history - and what better time to do that than in our centenary year as we celebrate our past and look to the future.

"I can't wait to see this classic design taking back to the skies."

Aircraft Transport and Travel Limited (AT and T) launched the world's first daily international scheduled flight between London and Paris in August 1919.

British Airways describes the airline as its "forerunner company".

AT and T was incorporated into airlines with various names on multiple occasions - including BOAC and BEA - culminating in the creation of British Airways in 1974.

If you're heading off for a short-haul break in Europe this year, make sure you have the right cover by checking out our range of European travel insurance options.