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October 30, 2008

We Are Cunard

Posted in: Updates

Firstly, another big thank you to Warren Smith for his report on QE2’s final Transatlantic Crossing in Tandem with Queen Mary 2. Despite being quite an emotional time it’s great to hear your comments celebrating our grand lady. There are lots more to come as we keep you updated with her farewell season and of course we look forward to sharing more of your memories. So on to this week and: “This week in Cunard’s History” for the week of the 24th   October to the 30th October:


October 27 1986


QE2 arrives in Bremerhaven for a six-month £110 million re-engineering and refurbishment programme, the largest such refit in the history of the merchant marine. Steam turbines replaced by a diesel electric power plant. The funnel is widened and repainted red (from white). HRH the Princess of Wales boards on the ship’s return to Southampton.


October 29 1970


QE2 offers medical assistance to the ‘Cerinthus’ in the Atlantic


October 30 1949


Caronia II is launched is launched by Princess Elizabeth (H.M. Queen) at John Brown Shipyard, Clydebank. She becomes known as the ‘Green Goddess’ because of the colour of her hull.


I would also like to thank another guest blogger, Caroline Mathieson. It’s great to hear things from a different perspective. Caroline works incredibly hard with her team (especially Julia Young) back in Southampton with Cunard Insights which is our on board enrichment programme and thanks to her I have been able to introduce some amazing speakers, most recently Melvyn Bragg, Joan Syms and Roy Hattersley. In her last blog Caroline wrote about the departure on Queen Mary 2 from New York. This week I am handing back to her to talk more about her Transatlantic Crossing experience.


Queen Victoria continues her autumn season in the Mediterranean, as Queen Mary 2 continues her Transatlantic season and QE2 enjoys her last few voyages in the Mediterranean. Coming soon we have an interview with the master of Queen Mary 2, Commodore Bernard Warner and of course more from QE2’s farewell season, so as usual please keep logging on and write if you get a chance.


Cheers for now – Alastair

  1. The funnel didn’t change to red in 1987! it changed in 1983 when they replaced the disastrous grey hull back to the original shade. It was red for quite a few years before it was reconstructed into a wider version in Bremerhaven.

  2. Hello Alastair,

    Permit me to correct you on the launch of the “Green Goddess”. By October 1949 she’d already made her maiden voyage, a couple of cruises and several transats..! Indeed, in October 1949, she lost an anchor in Le Havre, due to very bad weather. Her launch was on the 30th October, but 2 years earlier.

    Coming in up on December 18th this year will be the 60th Aniversary of Caronia’s Commissioning Run, where the Guest of Honour was HRH Prince Philip. HRH Princess Elizabeth wasn’t there because, as the Duke pointed out in his speech, “She’d had a launching of her own”. This was of course the birth of Prince Charles.

    Around 30 former Caronia crew members will be celebrating the Commissioning Run on December 18th at the “Old House at Home” in Romsey, Hants., from 11.30am. A couple of guys who were on that voyage will be there.

    Steve (Peter S.)
    Caronia Timeline Webmaster

  3. Just a quick note…
    The former Caronia Crew gathering planned for December has been brought forward by a day and will now be held on Wednesday 17th December 2008. My apologies for this change, I don’t organise these events, I only help publicise them.

    Steve (Peter S.)
    Caronia Timeline Webmaster

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