The Concorde Model (G-CONC)
G-CONC is a 40% scale model of Concorde in British Airways livery that for nearly 20 years sat on the roundabout at the entrance to the tunnel which passes under the northern runway at Heathrow Airport. It was built in 4 main parts; an 80ft long central fuselage section, to which the wings and tail fin were attached. The completed model was placed on the roundabout in September 1990 and was monitored by CCTV and surrounded by an infra-red perimeter alarm that was connected to the local Heathrow police station to ensure it was not vandalised.
When the lease for this prime advertising spot was due for renewal in early 2007 the cost had risen to over £1.5M per year. British Airways did not feel that another 6 year deal suited their marketing requirements - especially with their move to the new Terminal 5 due imminently. They could also not justify keeping a model of an aircraft that they no longer flew. Ultimately this meant that a decision had to be made as to what to do with G-CONC. BA had two options available to them - donate it to a museum, or scrap it.
When it was announced that British Airways were looking for a new home for G-CONC, Brooklands Museum began negotiations with the airline to have the model donated to them. In early March 2007 it was officially announced that Brooklands had been succesful in their bid for the model and that it was to be dismantled and transported to the museum at the end of that month. The logistics of the task were carefully worked out by Fab Signs and Structures UK who are a company that specialises in building and transporting large exhibition structures. During the nights of 29th and 30th March G-CONC was dismantled and in the early hours of Friday 30th the model was transported the short journey to Brooklands. Once the model had arrived at Brooklands work began on some much needed restoration. This was carried out by some of the same volunteers who worked on the Delta Golf rebuild and restoration. G-CONC was then re-assembled at the museum site and went on display as part of the Brooklands Centennary celebrations over the weekend of June 16th-17th.
Since arriving at Brooklands, volunteers have completed extensive restoration work on the model. This consisted of fibreglass repairs, repairs to the metal framework inside the model, sanding down the paintwork and finally repainting G-CONC into the same livery as G-BBDG. On 29th September 2012 the model was moved to a new permanent location at the entrance to the museum and Mercedes-Benz World. Here it serves not only as a museum gate guardian, but also as a tribute to the hundreds of local people who worked on the design and construction of Concorde at the BAC factories in Weybridge during the 60s and 70s.