New indoor Concorde museum plan in Filton 'only solution'

Concorde at Filton Alpha Foxtrot was the last of the Concorde fleet to fly in 2003

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A campaign group says its proposal for a new home in Filton near Bristol, for the last Concorde to fly is the "only feasible solution" to save it.

Concorde 216 is currently parked next to the runway at Filton Airfield, which is due to close later this year.

It has been there since being withdrawn from service in 2003 and was part of an open-air exhibit which closed in 2010.

The Save Concorde Group (SCG) says there is an urgent need for the aircraft to be housed under cover.

SCG chairman Ben Lord said: "This airframe has been exposed to the elements for an unacceptable level of time.

"We believe that the only way this aircraft will be secured and not out in the open for another winter is if our plan is executed."

The group has submitted plans to Airbus UK and British Airways (BA) for the plane, known as Alpha-Foxtrot, to be housed in a £1.2m permanent indoor exhibition facility.

Science centre

The proposed centre would be just off a new link road between Filton and Cribbs Causeway - bordering the northern edge of Filton Airfield.

The plan includes a science and technology centre, which would train engineers from local universities.

A proposal by another group, The Concorde Trust, for a museum at Cribbs Causeway stalled after a £9m Heritage Lottery Fund bid was turned down in 2011.

Mr Lord added: "As soon as the news broke that the alternative £9m scheme had failed to secure funding, we immediately announced our low-cost plans and gave an outline proposal to BA that we believe is the only feasible solution to the future of Alpha-Foxtrot."

The SCG has held discussions with potential partners such as BAE Systems and De Boers Structures, and has also received support from the Save Filton Airfield Group.

"All of these organisations are brought together with one fundamental aim - to see Concorde preserved in this unique location in the quickest and best possible way," Mr Lord said.

He added that SCG expected to hear from Airbus and British Airways regarding the proposal in the next few weeks.

'Iconic status'

A BA spokeswoman said: "There is no doubt that Concorde Alpha Foxtrot deserves a permanent home and should be shown off to the public in a manner befitting her iconic status.

"In the last few months, British Airways and Airbus have invited interested parties to share their ideas for how best to do this. Two bids were received, and are now being considered.

"We hope that a successful outcome can be reached in the months ahead."

Concorde 216 was the last of the fleet to fly as the aircraft was decommissioned by British Airways in 2003.

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