It has been seven years since the passing of Concorde – yet this legendary supersonic jet is still remembered as much more than a prima donna with a pouty snout.
It represented self-indulgence: looping around London or New York at twice the speed of sound with a glass of champagne in-hand was just one of its many appeals.
On the ground, Concorde was probably one of the most photographed jets – if you were quick enough to catch her in your camera viewfinder.
Jetinder Sira, a keen photographer and devoted Concorde fan was so committed to Concorde that he has captured her whirlwind career in thousands of photographs.
It was an appearance on BBC News in the early 70s that sparked his love-affair with Concorde, at the tender age of six – and then there was no stopping him. Between 1988 and 2003 when Concorde was forced into retirement, Jetinder made the-two hour journey from his home town of Romford in Essex to London Heathrow as often as he could to see her off and capture the special moment on camera.
TERMINAL U shares five of Jetinder’s best photos and asks: what did Concorde really mean to him?
Extracts from the interview with Jetinder:
“Concorde, without tree huggers to block its existence, showed how far mankind could push the limits of 1960s technology. She looked like something out of the future, but was designed and made when mobile phones, flat screen TVs, MP3 players and laptops never existed. If we made a “son of Concorde”, imagine how far we could be pushing technology in 2011? It is an awe-inspiring thought.
“Concorde made supersonic flight look as routine as jumping on a bus to work, but Concorde was the fastest bus in the world. In tests it was proven not even supersonic fighter planes could keep up with Concorde at long-range supersonic flight.”
“She was not a rich man’s toy. In a natural disaster, Concorde could have been used to send vital rescue crews from London to where they where needed in half the time [of conventional flight]. Or she could have been used as a high-speed ambulance to transport the injured – her uses were limitless.”
“In 27 years of flight, considering how fast she flew, Concorde had one accident (the Paris crash in 2000) – and that wasn’t her fault. It blows your mind at what this plane could really do. Even today I still love Concorde with all of my heart.”
Do you have fond memories of Concorde? Or photographs that you would like to share with us? Leave a comment below or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org