Victoria comes out of the water

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qehamburg.jpgWhile I was sailing to the Canaries on board Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth during the last few days, sister ship Queen Victoria was in drydock in Hamburg, having a quick wash and brush-up.
The ship is three years old and has travelled more than 343,000 nautical miles, so it’s time to spruce up some of the interior furnishings and scrape the accumulated debris from her hull.
Standing in for entertainment director Alastair Greener, deputy captain Andrew Hall has been blogging from the yard, and describes how preparations got under way as soon as the ship arrived in Southampton last week.
” Once the guests were all ashore the whole ship swung into refit mode. The team from housekeeping, lead by executive housekeeper Roz Price-Evans, unrolled thousands of metres of plastic sheeting covering carpets (or at least those destined to remain), as well as putting protective covers on the furniture and artwork. Meanwhile, a team from the company Trimline were hard at work removing curtains and drapery, which were to be landed in Southampton for dry cleaning.
“The pace on the dockside was frenetic with cranes swinging on tools and equipment. Meanwhile, through the ship’s side doors, tens of pallets of materials and spare parts, required for all the planned upgrade work and in depth maintenance, were loaded.
“At 1.00pm, after only seven hours in port, mooring lines were let go and Queen Victoria sailed for Hamburg, with some 797 crew and 197 contractors. Sailing from Southampton we passed the Ocean Dock where our new sister Queen Elizabeth was about to embark upon her new voyage. This was the first meeting of the two ships and was, of course, celebrated by the usual sounding of the ship’s whistles as we passed. Sorry Southampton!”
Once in Hamburg, the ship was manoeuvred into Elbe 17 dock (above) and the pumps began to empty it of water. The ship settled onto carefully-placed blocks and work could begiin on the hull.
Survival craft – which is what we are now supposed to call the lifeboars – were removed for their own check-ups.
Hall continues: ” The Captain and I, along with the Chief Engineer and company technical superintendants made our own way into the dock bottom to conduct the initial assessment of the hull by torchlight. The initial assessment was good, just the usual build up of growth and slime, which was to be expected after three years of service. The thrusters, stabilisers, azipods, sea chests and so forth, all seemed to be in excellent condition.”
Work continues inside the ship, fitting new carpets and sprucing up worn areas.
The ship will be back in Southampton next Wednesday, with Captain Inger Olsen at the helm, to set out on a five-day Christmas markets cruise.

By | 2017-06-15T16:00:14+00:00 9 December 2010|Cruise News, Cruise Ships|1 Comment

About the Author:

John Honeywell is a travel writer specialising in cruise ships and cruise travel. Winner of CLIA UK's Contribution to Cruise award 2017.

One Comment

  1. Javier 9 June 2012 at 2:07 pm - Reply

    Its no exaggeration to say that this if one of the most tatefsully decorated ships in the world, far better than any of the princess or carnival ones and its better than a lot of the Royal Caribbean ones because the royal Caribbean ones have to many people on-board and the ships are a bit to big.

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