Majestic sight as Cunard’s three Queens line up to mark the Jubilee

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As final preparations were being made for the Diamond Jubilee service of thanksgiving in St Paul’s Cathedral and the Queen’s return to Buckingham Palace by stately procession, three rather different queens were making their own way in procession into port.
The three ships of the Cunard fleet arrived in Southampton soon after dawn this morning and lined up to pay their own special tribute to the monarch.
The Queen herself had named Queen Mary 2 in 2004 and Queen Elizabeth in 2010; sister ship Queen Victoria was christened by the Duchess of Cornwall in 2007.
Dozens of small craft, many festooned in bunting and with patriotic music blasting out from loudspeakers, gathered in Southampton Water to welcome the majestic vessels. From QM2 the rather less appropriate sounds of Abba’s Dancing Queen and Robbie Williams’ Angel drifted across the water before being drowned out by the three ships’ horns sounding in unison.
Just beneath QM2’s funnel, a giant banner read: “Congratulations Ma’am.”
A firetug sent powerful jets of water in a graceful arc across the bows as passengers and crew lined up on the foredecks to wave Union Jacks and cheer, while some guests chose to watch from their balconies, still dressed in white bathrobes.
There will be a party spirit in Southampton today as the three ships take on a full complement of almost 7,000 passengers to set out on Jubilee cruises. Weather permitting, the Red Arrows will perform an aerial display this evening, and there will be a firework send-off as the vessels line up together one more time.
IMG_9113.jpgQueen Mary 2 leads the way up Southampton Water.
IMG_9182.jpg… followed by Queen Victoria and firetug escort.
IMG_9275.jpg… and Queen Elizabeth brings up the rear.
IMG_9402.jpgA few of the flotilla of pleasure craft which came to greet the 3 Queens.
IMG_9702.jpgJust to prove that “I was there.”

By | 2017-06-15T15:59:48+00:00 5 June 2012|Cruise Ships|0 Comments

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.

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