Since the first wood-and-canvass biplanes started carrying passengers across continents and speeds never before imagined, aviation has been inextricably linked with new ways of seeing the world.

Airline advertising has reflected this. The posters which Imperial Airways used to promote its modern aircraft and the exotic destinations in the 1920s and 30s were as cutting edge then as today’s interactive billboards on which a digitised child points out an actual British Airways flight passing overhead.

Now, with the help of Hollywood star and Oscar nominee, Naomi Watts, British Airways has taken a trip down memory lane, re-creating one of its posters from 80 years ago.

The actress donned a vintage swimsuit for the modern version of the classic image used decades ago to promote the flights which British Airways predecessor, Imperial Airways’, operated to Australia in conjunction with Qantas Empire Airways.

“It has been great to go back in time with British Airways and recreate an iconic poster from such a glamorous era. I love the vintage style from the golden age of travel,” the actress said.

Naomi Watts recreates British Airways retro poster (c Jeff Vespa_Getty Images)Heritage poster image

To see the interactive billboard visit


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