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Queen Elizabeth

I may have been bit ungracious the other day when I posted my ‘New cruise ship – not many excited‘ entry. While not the epochal event that the Cunard marketing department would have us believe it was, it was nonetheless a significant moment. First, the Cunard fleet is back up to three – it had dropped to two following the retirement of QEII at the end of 2008. Secondly, they’re all significantly-sized ships: on previous times in recent decades when Cunard has expended its fleet, the additions have often not been of the quality you’d expect. For example, Fred Olsen’s Braemar spent some time in the 90’s as a part of the Cunard fleet, sort-of. Braemar is a pefectly good smaller ship, but she isn’t what you would think of as a Cunarder. And thirdly, from a technical point of view it is interesting to see the continued evolution of the Spirit/Vista class. So I do indeed welcome Queen Elizabeth.

Andrew Sassoli-Walker was at Southampton to see her leave on her maiden voyage, and took some of his usual excellent pictures. The pictures included with this post are his as you can see from his copyright notice, and are used with his permission. He has very kindly allowed me to use his pictures in the past – this one of Ventura was his – and I’m very grateful to him for letting me do so. It looks like it was a gorgeous day, and I’ve read a number of reports that suggest that a good time was had by all. So let’s wish the Queen Elizabeth maiden cruisers ‘bon voyage’.


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