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Last Updated: Monday, 26 March 2007, 09:18 GMT 10:18 UK
Crowds watch A380 land at Filton
Airbus A380
The Airbus A380 flew past Broughton en route for Filton

The world's largest commercial airliner, the A380, has flown into Filton near Bristol where its giant wings were designed and part-built.

The aircraft touched down at 1230 BST and was welcomed by thousands of workers from Airbus UK.

It will undergo a series of tests related to fuel performance and will fly from the airfield during the week.

The A380 made its British debut on 18 May 2006 with fly-pasts at Broughton, north Wales and at Filton.

The 555-seat super jumbo, powered by four Rolls Royce engines, went on to make its first landing at Heathrow where compatibility checks were carried out.

Strike action

It left Toulouse on Monday morning and en route to Filton it flew past East Midlands Airport, the Rolls-Royce factory in Derby where workers produce its four Trent 900 engines, and Airbus UK's site in Broughton, Flintshire, where its wings are assembled - with crowds of public and workers turning out at each stage to watch.

On Friday two thirds of the 7,000 staff at the factory in north Wales took unofficial strike action in protest at the company's restructuring plans, which include cutting 10,000 jobs.

Airbus has been struggling in the wake of production delays to its flagship A380 passenger jet project, which has cost the firm about 3.4bn.

The company has announced it was suspending work on a freight version of the A380 super-jumbo.

Unions at Airbus's UK factories in Flintshire and Bristol have met with managers to discuss the proposed 1,600 job losses across the two sites.

Redundancy packages are expected to be drawn up over the next three months.




SEE ALSO
'Chain of events' led to walk out
24 Mar 07 |  North East Wales
A380 prepares for tour around US
20 Mar 07 |  Business
Airbus A380 completes test flight
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