Glamour in the SkiesGLAMOUR IN THE SKIES is the first book to celebrate the stewardesses of British Airways and their predecessors from 1936 to 1980, widely agreed to be the golden age of air travel – a time which personified optimism, excitement and a feeling of boundless opportunity for both passengers and airline crew. The air hostess, as she was known initially, began her British career in a one engine propeller plane crossing the English Channel and ended up in Boeing 747 jets and the supersonic Concorde.

Ex-hostess Libbie Escolme-Schmidt combines history with hundreds of surveys and interviews from retired and current cabin crew, enabling the reader to follow the development of the role of the stewardess through the early years of discrimination to her present-day career equality. During this period flying evolved from a potentially dangerous adventure to a remarkably safe and comfortable means of international travel and through it all the air hostesses were there. Their appearance changed over the years, from the 1940s military look to the mini-skirts of the 1960s, and the caring mother figure to the sexy corporate product, as the role was glamorised to almost iconic status, becoming a dream career for millions of young women worldwide.

Glamour in the Skies is packed with many anecdotes, ranging from administering oxygen to passengers flying over the Andes, to serving French champagne on Concorde.

Covering training, sexual discrimination, disasters, passengers, glamorous stopovers and other temptations, this illustrated book presents the changing times in air travel through the eyes of the stewardess and offers the perfect tribute to the girls who walked the skies.

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  1. admin says:

    Hi, picked up your book by complete chance to discover that my mother Joan Piggott had made a contribution and forgotten to tell me! Loved the book and as I flew from Dec 1974 til March last year recognised so many of the people. But the best bit of all was seeing the photo on page 157. I’d seen the picture so many times on the aeroplane and always thought it looked very
    familiar but Ma and I are now sure, well almost!, that it’s us with her holding the teddy that I still have. We’re going to go to the BA museum next time I’m back in the Uk to see if they’ll let us use the photo. We’ve got another one with me wearing the same dress and I’d love to make a
    montage with other concurrent photos to give to my father on his 90th birthday. He was a captain, predictably! As was my husband and my brother who is still working out of Gatwick on 737’s. All for BA!. Ma probably didn’t mention that there are several publicity shots of her from that time as she did a talk on the radio about how the ovens worked. If your’re interested I’ll put the photos on Facebook when I’ve got as many as I can find. I was only on 747’s for about a year before I got “specially selected” for the Air New
    Zealand DC10’s but my maiden name was Davies just in case you kept a log book and we ever flew together!
    Hope you’re making loads of money from the book we both thought it was absolutely brilliant.
    Best wishes
    Susie Duguid

  2. Fran says:

    Dear Libby
    Just wanted to say that I loved reading your book and that I would recommend it to anyone who loves travelling or works in the industry. What a great read!

  3. Anita says:

    Finally got your book. It brought back so many memories! Wonderful reading. Congratulations! I wish you well! (Canada)

  4. admin says:

    Just read your book. What a wonderful insight into the old days of flying? As an ex stewardesse flyint for British Airways, what a great recolection of history. What a great read!!

  5. Juke says:

    Hello, I have read your book twice now! Its wonderful. I have just joined BA as cabin crew at Gatwick, your book made me want to do the job even more. I have a collection of BA and one BOAC dress and the pictures showed me how they should be displayed. I treasure them. Thank you for your wonderful book, its just superb.

    Best wishes Juke

  6. Dear Libbie
    Just discovered your book, so I ordered one immediately, and I cannot wait to read it. If I remember correctly I was on your very first training course, November 1967, and what a training course. It was amazing, you were a terrific training officer, you gave it your all. So if I never thanked you at that time I certainly do so now – my BOAC training has stood me in good stead the whole of my life – thank you!

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