British Airways is today celebrating the first-ever commercial flight with its predecessor Air Transport & Travel (AT&T).
On 25 August 1919, the first customer flew from Hounslow Heath to Paris in a single-engine De Havilland DH4A aircraft with BA’s predecessor AT&T, according to chief executive Alex Cruz. Today, the airline operates more than 800 flights a day to 200 destinations around the world.
To mark the official centenary, BA has launched a new channel for its in-flight entertainment called Celebrate BA 100. It will feature a selection of British films, TV shows and music, including The Lost World – the first film ever shown on an Imperial Airways flight in 1925.
The channel will be available on board BA flights throughout August, September and October.
Earlier this year, the carrier painted four of its aircraft in historic liveries to celebrate its anniversary – three 747s in the British Overseas Airways Corporation (pictured with the Red Arrows), Landor and Negus liveries and an A319 in the British European Airways (BEA) livery. The 747s will be retired in 2023 and replaced with new A350s and B787s.
The aircraft painted in the BEA livery is today operating flight BA314 from Heathrow to Paris Charles de Gaulle in honour of AT&T’s first service and will continue flying around the airline’s network for the rest of the bank holiday weekend.
At the beginning of August, the carrier launched the BA 2119: Flight of the Future installation at the Saatchi Gallery in London, which coincided with a report on what passengers think aviation will look like over the next 100 years.
Cruz commented: “We have had a fabulous year so far marking our centenary and thanking our customers for making us the airline we are today – we wouldn’t be here without their pioneering spirits and sense of adventure.
“Our customers truly enable us to bring Britain to the world and the world to Britain and we look forward to serving them for the next 100 years.”