British Airways birthday celebrations continue apace, with the BEA retro jet breaking cover. The 1959-1968 colours, colloquially referred to as the “red squares” livery, is in the sky again on an Airbus A319.

BEA, or British European Airways, merged with BOAC in 1974 to create British Airways. As the European airline for Great Britain, it is fitting that this appears on one of the European fleet.

BEA Retro Jet

Painted in Shannon, Ireland, the first service for the new aircraft will be on a domestic route from London Heathrow to Manchester. Unlike the BOAC Boeing 747 which will operate for several years to come, the BEA jet is due for retirement next year.

I quite like the picture above with the cabin crew in period uniforms. That bold red is certainly a far cry from the elegant blue uniforms worn by current BA cabin crew.

Overall Thoughts

The new BEA retro jet looks mighty fine in her new old colour scheme. As the second one to break cover, it is great to see that such attention to detail has been taken.

Looking at the press release from British Airways, it does give the reason for the one variation from original. Upper wings were originally red, but new requirements meant that was not possible. The lower wings do have their red colour and it certainly looks striking.

What do you think of the new BEA retro jet? Did you ever fly on BEA back in the day? Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.

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Featured image by Nick Morrish via British Airways.
Crew image by Stuart Bailey via British Airways.