To mark British Airways’ centenary this year, the airline has opened its archive collection publicly for the first time to serve patrons with rare memories of key moments throughout its 100-year history.
The British Airways Centenary Archive Collection explores moments from the very first international flight with its predecessor airline, Aircraft Transport and Travel Limited (AT&T), on August 25, 1919 carrying a journalist, Devonshire cream, leather and several brace of grouse to the latest images of its brand new Club Suite.
A release issued in Accra said the collection, which would be hosted on a special centenary hub – ba.com/100/centenary-collection – would showcase hundreds of historical photos and videos, as well as articles explaining how the British Airways had evolved from a single-engine De Havilland aircraft flying the world’s first daily international scheduled flight to Paris, to become a leading airline flying more than 45 million customers a year to more than 200 destinations across the world.
The digital collection, it said, included images and videos of aircraft throughout the decades, close-up photographs of uniforms worn by generations of cabin crew and pilots, behind-the-scenes memorabilia from Royal and Olympic flights, and artefacts from Concorde – the most famous aircraft that ever flew.
The exhibition of the Centenary Archive Collection comes just a day after British Airways had the honour of hosting a visit from Her Majesty the Queen at the airline’s headquarters at Heathrow to mark the centenary.
Improvements in the airline
British Airways will continue to develop and add to the site throughout its centenary year, including adding recollections written by current and retired colleagues and carefully preserved records, documents and images from its extensive archive.
The British Airways’ Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mr Alex Cruz, said travelling by air meant creating a network of people around the world.
He added that the centenary of the airlines showed the achievements that had been garnered for the past 100 years.
Mr Cruz said the airline was anticipating improvements in the next 100 years.
“Air travel has always been about connecting people around the world, and this website will share the stories, achievements and memories of 100 years of British Airways history.
“Since 1919, British Airways and its forerunners pioneered commercial air travel, and our Centenary Archive Collection will continue to evolve as we look forward to the next 100 years of aviation,” he noted.
The British Airways Heritage Collection
The British Airways Heritage Collection is managed by retired British Airways’ colleagues based at the airline’s head office near Heathrow.
It comprises hundreds of thousands of documents and pieces of memorabilia from British Airways and its predecessor companies: British
Overseas Airways Corporation (BOAC), British European Airways (BEA), British South American Airways (BSAA) and the pre-war Imperial Airways and British Airways Ltd.
Credit: Daily Graphic