By James Field, airwaysmag.com
British Airways (BA) retired ‘Victor Foxtrot’, also known as G-CIVF on October 25 this year, as part of the airline’s program of retiring the 747 family from the fleet.
The aircraft itself entered service in March 1995, offering 14 seats in First Class, 86 in Business 30 in Premium Economy and 145 in Economy. It was originally configured with 14 in First, 70 in Business, 30 in Premium Economy and 185 in Economy.
‘Victor Foxtrot’ was withdrawn from use on April 6 of this year before being transported over to Cardiff (CWL) on June 6 until it was later stored at Newquay Airport (NQY) for scrap. Its last commercial flight was to London Heathrow (LHR) from Dallas Fort-Worth (DFW).
Retired BA Boeing 747 Aircraft
This now means that 16 of the 31 total -400s in the BA fleet have now been retired, bringing the total retirements to the halfway mark.
Some, not all of the Boeing 747-400s in the BA fleet will be sent to its final demise at the scrapheap. However, some of the aircraft will be saved.
G-CIVW will be kept for preservation purposes for use in the TV/film and training industries, whereas G-CIVB, formally known as the Negus 747, will be preserved at the Cotswold Airport (GBA).
On a more comical level, there was a joke about an airline-start up wanting some of the retired aircraft, but with it being satirical, it unfortunately won’t become a reality.
That being said, at least some of the aircraft are being preserved so then they are not forgotten out of the history books as we progress with this new decade.
Making Way for the 777
BA has been receiving new Boeing 777-300ERs from Novus Aviation Capital as part of a deal signed at the 2018 Farnborough Air Show.
Additionally, in February 2019, the British company signed an agreement for 42 Boeing 777-9xs, with 18 to begin with and an option for 24 more.
British Airways currently has:
- Boeing 777-200 (early retired)
- Boeing 777-200ER (powered by GE90 and Rolls Royce Trent 870)
- Boeing 777-300ER
- Boeing 777-9x (in delivery from 2022, replacing the 747-400s along with the Airbus A350-1000, already operational).
The British carrier is one of the largest operators of the Boeing 777.
It remains clear that whilst the 777 will be at the forefront of BA’s fleet strategy, alongside with the likes of the Airbus A350, at least the 747 will remain very traditional in the eyes of many BA staff who worked on the aircraft.