Aer Lingus has unveiled a new retro painted aircraft in the former 1960s ‘Irish International’ livery, to mark its 75th anniversary celebrations. The newest addition to the fleet, an Airbus A320- EI-DVM, MSN 4634 series, named ‘St Coleman’, was painted especially for the anniversary celebrations and unveiled at a ceremony at the iconic, Old Central Terminal Building Dublin airport - designed by the late Desmond FitzGerald.
Cabin crew modelled vintage uniforms, from each decade beginning 1945 through to the current Aer Lingus uniform by acclaimed designer, Louise Kennedy.
Speaking at the event, Aer Lingus CEO Christoph Mueller said: “2011 is a very special year for Aer Lingus as it marks the airline’s 75th anniversary. Since the early days of 1936, Aer Lingus has grown to become a flag carrier with a worldwide reputation for our friendly staff, our high quality of service, value for money and innovation. Throughout the 75 years we have carried out our mission of connecting Ireland with the world, transporting millions of customers annually. We look forward to continuing to fly the shamrock for the next 75 years.”
On May 27th 1936 Aer Lingus launched its first ever flight between Baldonnel and Bristol, with five passengers, on a six-seater De Havilland 84 Dragon named Iolar, - meaning ‘eagle’ in Irish. As part of the anniversary celebrations, the sister aircraft of the Iolar has undergone a restoration project, meaning it is once again airworthy and will partake at celebratory events throughout the year.
In its inaugural year Aer Lingus operated three routes, carrying 892 passengers and employed a total of 12 staff. In 2010, its 75th year of service, the airline carried 9.4 million passengers, flying to over 100 routes - to 75 destinations in 22 countries and providing employment to almost 4,000 staff.