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Heathrow Information

Today Heathrow is the world’s busiest international airport and the hub of the civil aviation world. Over 67 million passengers travel through the airport annually on services offered by 90 airlines travelling to over 180 destinations in over 90 countries.


By the time Heathrow celebrated its 60th anniversary in 2006 it had handled around 1.4 billion passengers on over 14 million flights.

The start of operations at Terminal 5 in March 2008 marked the beginning of an exciting new chapter for Heathrow. Future developments include the construction of Terminal 2A to replace Terminals 1 and 2 and the redevelopment of Terminals 3 and 4.

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Key milestones

1944: Construction of London Airport's runways begins.

1946: London Airport officially opens.

1955: Her Majesty The Queen opens the Central Terminal Area and Control Tower.

1957: The first non-stop flight to California sets a new record for distance and time.

1964: The Beatles are mobbed at London Airport.

1966: The British Airports Authority is created. London Airport is renamed 'Heathrow'.

1969: Terminal 1 is opened and existing buildings renamed Terminals 2 and 3.

1976: Concorde makes its first passenger flight.

1977: The London Underground link is opened.

1986: His Royal Highness Prince Charles and Princess Diana inaugurate Terminal 4.

1987: The British Airports Authority is privatised and renamed BAA plc.

1997: The Terminal 5 public planning inquiry ends – the longest in UK history.

1998: The Heathrow Express rail service is launched.

2003: Three Concordes make their final touchdown at Heathrow.

2006: The Airbus A380 makes its first UK landing into a newly built Pier 6 at Terminal 3.

2007: A new air traffic control tower is operational – the tallest in the UK.

2008: Terminal 5 is officially opened by Her Majesty The Queen in March; The first commercial A380 flight arrives at Heathrow.

2009: Terminal 4 underwent a major refurbishment to improve facilities.

2010: Demolition work started on Terminal 2 to make way for its £1 billion replacement.

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