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      Ken Miller


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      Post #65530, posted on 01-12-2017 GMT-5 hours    
      On the recent Air Canada new colors discussion Jennings mentioned he liked the British Airways World Colours schemes.

      I too thought them spectacular. Real art on planes. I have a small booklet chronicling the different works of art and the artists information.


      What do others think of the schemes? Great, bad, indifferent??

      Ken


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      LH707 :I quite liked that one too, but apparently few others did as well.


      Well, I liked the BA world colors scheme too. Apparently I was the only person on the planet who thought it was the most brilliant marketing scheme ever devised.

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      pa747sp


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      Post #65532, posted on 01-12-2017 GMT-5 hours    
      I'll second that. I thought that it was the best scheme since BOAC. The great thing was that there was such a lot of different schemes there was sure to be one that appealed.

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      dave6376


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      Post #65533, posted on 01-12-2017 GMT-5 hours    
      Margaret Thatcher hated the World Images and said so publicly which considerably increased their attractiveness for me.

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      waltmertins


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      Post #65534, posted on 01-12-2017 GMT-5 hours    
      I liked them very much and I have a collection of decals stashed somewhere
      Ready to be used........someday!

      Walter

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      pinky coffeeboat


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      Post #65536, posted on 01-12-2017 GMT-5 hours    
      I think they were nice schemes. Very clever to say that their passengers weren't all British and so acknowledge this by having World cultural designs and images on their aircraft.

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      LH707


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      Post #65541, posted on 01-12-2017 GMT-5 hours    
      I quite liked the world tails and was bummed when they went to the swoosh, IMHO that one's boring.

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      airlinerart1


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      Post #65542, posted on 01-12-2017 GMT-5 hours    
      Well they were actually a bit of a PR disaster in the end.

      Yes great idea (and great colour schemes) and well received at first with all the publicity hype but.... it was supposed to cement BA's world dominance as a global airline and strengthen it's overseas customers' affinity with the brand. The problem was nobody abroad cared or identified with the various schemes, most normal passengers (we aren't normal) never take much notice of the details of colour schemes and even if they happened to look up and see their 'home' colours' on the tail as they boarded they rarely identified with them. In addition so few aircraft would have been painted in your 'home' colours it was rare to see one.

      Of course advertising carried these 'home' colours but people were more interested in price, quality of service (now a thing of the past for many) and convenience rather than a foriegn airline giving them a brief (and very commercial) nod to their own cultural identity. So in the end everything got muddied and watered down in the eyes of the public and PR agencies therefore the idea morfed into a very British design.

      Side note: I remember visiting Heathrow and seeing a line of BA 747s from a distance and to be honest if you weren't an enthusiast you wouldn't have recognised the airline, they all seemed so nondescript against the grey sky. Pity because up close some were stunning.

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      Ken Miller


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      Post #65545, posted on 01-12-2017 GMT-5 hours    
      I could see if the airline was falling out of favor that the different tails could be a distraction and management could want to want to focus strictly on the Union Jack tail. I'm not a huge fan of Margaret Thatcher and her "getting involved" in the world colours was a low point for me.


      Former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher showed her displeasure at the designs by covering one of the new tailfins on a model 747 with a handkerchief. She declared, "We fly the British flag, not these awful things." Thatcher also indicated with these fins the airline would lose its identity.





      I guess that the headline would read: Margaret Thatcher is anti model airiners

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      Post #65546, posted on 01-12-2017 GMT-5 hours    
      The only time I got to see any of them was at SFO in 1999. After all the hype in the enthusiast press about them it was nice to see one or two of them in real life. I was disappointed when it ended, but as with so many things, airlines are run on numbers and not the feelings of enthusiasts.

      I do recall they inspired some neat decals, my favorite being the Liveries Unlimited "Blue Poole" set for the 737, which has become incredibly difficult to find in 1:144 (and, since I'd like a do-over with the Daco kit, would love to find one more of).

      Jodie Peeler

      In 1924 Wien was Alaska's first airline. In 1980 it still is.

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      aptivaboy


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      Post #65574, posted on 01-14-2017 GMT-5 hours    
      Personally, as a modeler and plane geek I loved them! However, I can also understand why management eventually came to dislike them, apart from the late PM's views. The plethora of markings certainly added to paint times and paint maintenance, plus it's been reported that ATC and other airlines hated it as they couldn't easily tell a BA plane when told to follow it since the tails were all different. I'm not sure I completely agree with that position, but it's been reported by pilots over the years so I'll reserve further judgment. Basically, I liked them and wished that they'd stayed.

      Bob

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      Post #65575, posted on 01-14-2017 GMT-5 hours    
      They were beautiful and great for modelers. However, and this is directly from BA employees, the main dislike is that the livery did not necessarily showcase British pride. They were very much in tune with Thatcher's idea that they were not British, and passengers abroad didn't care what livery was on the tail.

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      Rb277170


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      Post #67369, posted on 05-27-2017 GMT-5 hours    
      You have to wonder who was advising them at the time. Yes they were trying to appeal to a worldwide market and become a global airline. I remember there was some talk even of a change of name to further disassociate itself from Britishness. Of course it was misguided because although they were trying to attract a global audience they rather annoyed their core base customers which were British! Didn't really think that one through did they. It's what happens when organisations get too up themselves and marketing people are allowed to run away unchecked, filled with illusions of their organisations grandeur and dominance.

      I remember for the period immediately before aircraft flying around with the new blue fuselage but not the tail markings. Again lots of speculation of what was going to be announced.Expectations driven high , some fantastic new scheme.I have to say I felt somewhat deflated when it finally was revealed. There were some good images but lots appeared like they could have been drawn by a three year old.

      Branson jumped on the patriotic bandwagon by giving his scarlet ladies a Union Jack tunic .

      What we ended up with with the tail speed jack always felt like some sort of comprimise and not as good as the Landor Scheme that I bet they would have liked to have gone back to, if they could have done it without losing face.

      Of all airline rebranding I think this must rank only with Air India as being one of the least successful.

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      skippiebg


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      Post #67384, posted on 05-30-2017 GMT-5 hours    
      Nobody has mentioned the political aspect. BA came into being as a government-owned company under a Labour administration in 1974. Sure enough, the Negus & Negus livery was demotic in the extreme, with a lowercase 'a' for the second word in the title, and that second word's disappearance by the end of the Seventies, to leave just 'British.' The 1985 Landor scheme reversed things completely with an elitist cigarette-pack-cum-heraldry treatment -- and the replacement of the fin top red (Labour) with blue (Tory). BA was duly privatised...

      Coming with a Labour landslide in 1997, World Tails was another complete reversal in thrust. This time, we had not just a return to Negus' purely British demoticism, but a move way beyond it to an imagined world demoticism. At the time, BA was in protracted, though ultimately abortive, merger negotiations with KLM to form what might have been called Royal Global, so World tails in a sense set the tone for that globalising move.

      Public reception of the Negus & Negus colour was, as I subjectively recall it, great acclaim. The livery was contemporary, radical, and highly visible as befits an entirely new, yet to be established, brand. The only media fire was aimed at the 'airways' and engaged only the tiny grammarian end of the spectrum. Landor prompted mixed reactions, with the design community and 'chattering classes' universally mortified. It was seen as a huge backward slide to a long-discarded ethos of public and grammar school pride with overtones of Empire.

      World Tails won amazing press coverage; in those early internet days, it was the press that mattered. This I recall was entirely positive. The livery (liveries?) were seen as radically globalistic and entirely in keeping with the zeitgeist. Sure, there was targeted fire at some individual tails regarded as kitchy. Margaret Thatcher's famous reaction stood out as perhaps the sole negative one. It was, however, a hugely weighty one, and was delivered with a great sense of style and timing in the most damaging and visible manner. Worse, Richard Branson's hitherto outre Virgin took up the discarded flag, as mentioned above. As public approval of Tony Blair's administration moved into a mid-term plateau, BA quietly ditched the multiplicity of tails, retaining the current look.

      So in a sense, BA's colour over the decades has been like a public opinion poll -- however much the airline's management might wince at being accused of being politically linked to this party of that.