Throughout the Nineteenth Century aluminium remained one of the most expensive metals available to craftsmen and manufacturers. It was not until the development of the hydro-electric and aviation industries in the 1930's that manufacturing costs associated with the material dropped dramatically. The high strength and light weight of the material ensured that it evolved as a material ideally suited to the internal fixtures and furnishings of aircrafts. Since its early use for the 1935 furnishings of the airship Hindenberg, aluminium has remained a material emblematic of the romance and modernity of air travel.
Research for the airline began 1956 in Europe and resulted in the British and French Governments signing an international treaty for the joint design, development and manufacture of an airliner six years later. Since the first prototype was rolled out at Toulouse in 1967, there have been many signifcant dates in the history of this supersonic aircraft.
Since its last commercial flight on 24 October 2003, there has been a huge demand to obtain souvenirs from the aircraft, witnessed most notoriously in the two charity auctions, held by Christie's and Bonhams in Paris and London, respectively. Collectible items not only included decomissioned parts of the aircraft such as the distictive radome nosecone but unique onboard equipment and facilites as well.