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UPDATED WITH VIDEO: The British have arrived!

Excitement and anticipation filled the air today as Virgin Atlantic Airways' inaugural flight from London Heathrow touched down at YVR.

Virgin’s special guests were welcomed by Sir Richard Branson, Larry Berg, President and CEO Vancouver Airport Authority, The Honourable Christy Clark. Both local and international UK media were also on hand to capture the aircraft’s arrival. Guests were also treated to a special hockey salute, representing a small, but important, part of Canadian culture.

Once all the passengers disembarked, Virgin Founder Sir Richard Branson appeared and posed for photos next to the aircraft along with U.K. Olympic Athlete Amy Williams, who won a gold medal in Skeleton at the 2010 Winter Olympic Games held in Vancouver.
Virgin Atlantic’s new service, which marks the first time in a decade that Virgin Atlantic has flown to Canada, will operate four times a week throughout the summer period until the end of October. Did you know that the U.K. is B.C.’s single greatest source of oversea visitors? The new flight will increase that number, bringing approximatly $21.5 million in tourism revenue and creating 127 direct jobs within the local community, including 35 direct jobs at YVR.

Following the landing and official welcome, Sir Richard Branson, Larry Berg and Premier Clark spoke with media at a press conference held inside the airport.

To celebrate and build anticipation for Virgin’s arrival, YVR merchants have been celebrating all things British during the month of May with special deals, promotions and a Virgin Atlantic Airways contest. For more details visit

For more information about Virgin Atlantics service, which will operate on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays, visit Virgin Atlantic’s website




Check out this video about all of the day's events!

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