Life aboard the fastest aircraft in history

Javea U3A members were treated to an excellent presentation on “What made the Concorde so special” by former Concorde flight engineer Pete Carrigan at the May general meeting at the Parador.

Pete, who flew for 28 years for British Airways and accumulated over 10,000 hours on 747s over 15 years and then over 3,500 hours over the next 12 years on Concorde including the very last flight of this amazing supersonic passenger aircraft, told the inside story of life in the cockpit.

He described the Concorde as “the most beautiful aircraft you will see in our lifetime” and detailed how it flew at twice the speed of sound at 1,350 mph at 60,000ft during its 27-year supersonic years.

He said: “We could take off in London at 10.30am and land in New York at 9.30am – an hour earlier, that’s faster than the average bullet!

“We can all be very proud of what we achieved in the ‘60s, designers and engineers building such a unique aircraft without the aid of computers.”

During its heyday, the rich and famous would pay £10,000 return to fly on Concorde, including Royalty, celebrities and business top brass – many of them anxious to sit with Pete Carrington in the cockpit to have their photos taken after their flight.

Pete’s talk was greeted with enthusiastic applause and sparked some interesting questions from his appreciative audience.

Our guest speaker was thanked by Javea U3A Vice-President Peter Allin and presented with a bottle of wine.