British European Airways, or BEA was formed in 1946 by a Act of Parliament. The airline operated European and North African routes from a variety of airports around the United Kingdom. BEA was also the largest domestic airline within Britain at the time, operating flights to major British cities, including Manchester, London, Edinburgh, Belfast and Glasgow.
The airline was also the first customer for many British short and medium haul airliners of the 1950s and 1960s including the Vickers Viscount, Vickers Vanguard, BAC 1-11 and the Hawker-Siddeley Trident. BEA ceased operations in 1971 when it was merged with British Overseas Airways Corporation to form British Airways.