• Short Summary

    Britain's first scheduled supersonic airline operations are due to start on Wednesday, January 21. At?

  • Description

    Britain's first scheduled supersonic airline operations are due to start on Wednesday, January 21. At 1130 London time that day British Airways first Concorde service, Flight BA 300, will leave Heathrow Airport, London for Bahrain. At the same time the first Air France Concorde scheduled service will leave Paris for Rio.

    Commanding the British Airways inaugural flight will be 51-year--old Captain Norman Todd, with Captain Brian Calvert, 42, as his co-pilot, and Senior Engineer Officer John Lidiard as flight engineer.

    On the return inaugural service form Bahrain to London the following day, Thursday, January 22, the pilots will reverse roles: Captain Calvert will fly a s commander and Captain Todd as co-pilot.

    The accompanying footage is supplied for incorporation in television news coverage of the London-Bahrain outward and homebound inaugural flights. It shows the two captains making their pre-engine start-up checks.

    For use with coverage of the outbound flight Captain Todd is seen in the commander's left-hand seat. For the return Bahrain-London flight, Captain Clavert is seen in the commander's position.

    British Airways Concorde Captain Norman Todd is to command the worlds first-ever scheduled supersonic passenger service - the BA 300 to Bahrain.

    His co-pilot on the historic flight form London will be Captain Brian Calvert with Senior Engineer Officer, John Lidiard completing the flight deck trio.

    Captain Todd who has already logged more than 100,000 supersonic flying miles in the new British Airways Flagship, will take civil aviation through the supersonic doorway shortly before noon on January 21, 1976.

    It will be another memorable milestone in the career of the 51 year-old London born pilot.

    Since joining BOAC in 1946 he has flown Constellations, Stratocruisers and Britannias and was the first pilot to fly a VCIO across the Atlantic.

    After the VCIO fleet it was the huge 747 jet which held Norman Todd, but in 1974 he exchanged the space of the jumbo for the pace of the supersonic and became Flight Training Manager Concorde.

    Captain Todd now lives in Walton-on-Thames with his wife and two daughters - and 21-year-old Deborah, like dad, loves the airlines. She is a stewardess with British Airways 747 fleet.

    Number two on January 21, 42 year-old Brian Calvert, is the airline's Flight Manager (Technical) Concorde.

    Captain Calvert, who has also logged over 100,000 Concorde miles will in fact command the aircraft when it turns round in Bahrain and becomes the London bound BA 301 on January 22.

    He joined BOAC in 1975 and graduated to the super-jet through Stratocruisers, Britannias, Comets and the VCIO.

    Captain Calvert is married to author Mary Danby, great, great grand-daughter of Charles Dickens and lives in London.

    Naturally his hobbies list books, but a spell in the Merchant Navy in 1955 is reflected in his retained interest in sailing.

    John Lidiard, who completes the team is 44 years old and a Senior Engineer Officer who joined BOAC IN 1954 as an engineer cadet.

    A former RAF man he also flew with the Constellation, Britannia and VCIO fleets before he joined the Concorde team.

    John Lidiard is married and lives in Andover, Hampshire.

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    Film ID:
    Media URN:
    Reuters - Source to be Verified
    Issue Date:
    HD Format:
    Available on request
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