icon - Concorde in its heyday|
There's a hole in our Concorde!
The Bristol Concorde is losing its battle with the elements.
Out West reveals that a hole has opened up on the leading edge of one of the aircraft's
It's already big enough to poke a finger into - and experts fear
it may get bigger as the plane continues to be buffeted by the wind and rain.
Concorde corrosion is now a real concern.
James Kingdon, from the
Concorde maintenance team says:
"There's nothing we can
do about it really apart from cut the corrosion out. It's like cancer of the aircraft
hole story - we investigate Concorde's state of repair|
are desperate for the aircraft to be put under cover to try to prevent any further
They're worried that Bristol's aviation heritage is literally being
allowed to crumble away.
Frank Nutbeen, a senior engineer with Concorde
throughout its history, says:
"I want to get this aircraft
under cover. Everybody does. Everybody is working to that end - to get this aircraft
under cover and stop it deteriorating."
well as the hole on the wing, there is a problem with the rubber seal around one
of the doors which has started to corrode.
Inside Out West guest reporter
Chris Serle flew on Concorde himself and is saddened that she's been left languishing
in the open air on the side of a runway:
"A big part of
it was being treated like royalty it was the best cabin service you could
have. And of course you felt, just for those three and a half hours across the
Atlantic surrounded by the jet set, like a fully paid up member of the rich and
Serle with Concorde|
The Bristol Concorde, 216 Alpha Foxtrot,
was the last one to fly.
When she landed at Filton more than two years
ago, the emotional crowds who welcomed her home assumed she would become a high
profile visitor attraction.
But progress on the plans for an aviation museum
has been less than supersonic.
| CONCORDE |
1969 - She flies!
1970 - PanAm launch the Jumbo, which
offers cheap transatlantic flight and proves to be Concorde's nemesis.
- Over a dozen airlines place orders for Concorde.
1976 - Of 16 Concorde's
built only nine have been sold. In the end planes are sold for £1 each.
- Concorde's first true commercial flight is a success
- All Concordes grounded after one crashes outside Paris, killing everyone aboard.
2002 - Concordes are back in service after bulletproof fuel tanks are fitted.
2003 - Last Concorde flights to take place after a 'rescue bid' by Richard
Branson's Virgin fails.
Chris Serle would like Concorde
to follow the example of the SS Great Britain, which secured lottery funding to
become a major tourist attraction in a prominent, highly visible location.
now attracts more than 100,000 visitors every year.
The plane is being
looked after by a dedicated band of volunteers.
Once a week, a small maintenance
team from Airbus come to give Concorde a look over.
They carry out a whole
series of checks throughout the plane.
But, as hard as they try, they can't
do anything about the constant battering Concorde gets from the salty winds which
blow in off the Bristol Channel.
They're disappointed there hasn't
been more momentum to get the great white bird under cover.
the Inside Out Concorde photo gallery
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