BBC4 - 29 August 2012
2 programmes which celebrate an unlikely story of outstanding British aviation achievement at a time of national austerity, the breathtaking planes that were built and the remarkable men who flew them.
2/2 - The Shape of Things to Come
In the heady years following World War Two, Britain was a nation in love with aviation. Having developed the jet engine in war-time, British engineers were now harnessing its power to propel the world's first passenger jets. By 1960 the UK's passenger airline industry was the largest in the world, with routes stretching to the furthest-flung remnants of Empire. And the aircraft carrying these New Elizabethans around the globe were also British - the Vickers Viscount, the Bristol Britannia and the world's first pure jet-liner, the sleek, silver De Havilland Comet, which could fly twice as high and twice as fast as its American competitors. It seemed the entire nation was reaching for the skies to create the shape of things to come for air travel worldwide. But would their reach exceed their grasp?
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