Space Shuttle STS Enterprise at Stansted Airport Essex UK, Sunday June 5th 1983

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    The visit to Stansted airport in Essex (UK) by the space shuttle 'Enterprise' or its correct name the STS 'Enterprise' riding piggy back on a heavily modified Boeing 747-100 (B747-123) on a typically British overcast and chilly early summers day, Sunday June 5th 1983. It was either coming from or on its way to the Paris Airshow (can't remember which?)

    Don't forget that Stansted was a fairly minor regional airport then and the STS Columbia's maiden voyage into space was just over two years previously in April 1981. Stansted was probably chosen for the visit because of it's wide open spaces for spectators and it's very long runway.

    Apparently over 200,000 people made the trip to see it. (including me!) Considering the huge public interest at the time, very few photographs exist of this occasion on the internet, (that I can find anyway!)

    Incidentally the 'Enterprise' never went into space although it did fly unaided in the Earths atomosphere several times for develpoment purposes also it was named after its Star Trek starship namesake. The Enterprise now retired resides at the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia.

    Texas Flyer, Itinerant Wanderer, and 6 other people added this photo to their favorites.

    1. Paul Forsdick [deleted] 78 months ago | reply

      Very cool shots!

    2. 'John' 77 months ago | reply

      Hi, I'm an admin for a group called HISTORIC AIRCRAFT, and we'd love to have this added to the group!

    3. Texas Flyer 77 months ago | reply

      Wow..look how clean and new it looks! Very nice!

    4. Itinerant Wanderer 76 months ago | reply

      Awesome shot! Must have been exciting to see in person.

    5. Smartpatrol47 46 months ago | reply

      I was living in a student house in King's Heath, Birmingham at the time and was stunned when the Space Shuttle flew over on the back of a Jumbo Jet. I called my housemates to tell them, but by the time they got to the window, it had gone. Nobody has ever believed me since. I e-mailed NASA a few years ago to check it wasn't some student "altered state" but they never replied. I made one last check on Google now that the programme has ended. I was ecstatic to find absolute proof I was right. Even the year is right. Brilliant! I saw a Space Shuttle in flight, albeit on the back of a plane!

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