June 10, 2010
We Are Cunard
Posted in: Queen Mary 2
Countdown to Queen Elizabeth – 123 days
As Queen Victoria comes to the end of her first stunning Baltic Voyage of the season, our flagship, Queen Mary 2 is continuing her transatlantic season, making her way to Southampton, where both Queens will be on Monday 14 June. Meanwhile Queen Elizabeth will be joining the fleet in just over four months time, so I hope to get some new pictures from the ship yard in Monfalcone posted soon, along with some more news.
This week I have two guest Blogs from Queen Mary 2, but that’s after this week in Cunard’s history from 11 to 17 June
|10 June 2007||QE2 hosts 100 Southampton veterans at a special lunch, in conjunction with the City of Southampton, to commemorate the 25th Anniversary of the Falklands Campaign|
|11 June 1982||Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother welcomes QE2 home after the ship’s longest non – stop voyage, having sailed for 6,976 miles from South Georgia and the Falkands confict|
|13 June 1912||The Imperator begins her maiden voyage. She becomes the Berengaria in 1921 after brief service as the USS Imperator|
|14 June 1995||QE2 Leaves New York for Southampton on her 1,000th voyage|
|15 June 1867||The Russia begins her maiden voyage from Liverpool. Dickens made note on how much better it was than the Britannia that he sailed on in 1842. She won the Blue Ribband 5 months later (but only on the Eastbound Crossing) with an average speed of 14.5 knots|
|15 June 2008||Queen Victoria makes her maiden call at Honningsvag on Norway’s North Cape|
You may wonder where someone working for Cunard would think of going on holiday, well for many of our shore side team, it’s an opportunity to sail on one of the Cunard Queens and experience the ships, so it’s a great pleasure to introduce my first guest Blogger; Richard Curtis.
Head Of Marketing, Cunard Line
On Friday 28 May whilst most of the UK was getting ready for a soggy bank holiday weekend, I was lucky enough to be joining Queen Mary 2 in Southampton for a short break on her 4 night voyage to Belgium, Holland and France. Travelling on board our magnificent ships is always such a pleasure for so many reasons, including the fact that there are so often little surprises along the way which reflect Cunard’s very special and unique history. And Queen Mary 2′s Summer Getaway Voyage was no exception in this respect!
On the morning of the holiday Monday Hotel Manager David Stephenson called me to explain that a very special guest was on board.
Inez Smith was a pupil at Queen Mary’s school in Lytham, Lancashire in the 1930′s when the school was commissioned to produce the original Blue Ensign for Queen Mary. 89 year old Inez was part of a team of girls, which included her 2 sisters, who made the ensign which was later presented to Commodore Edgar Britten at a small ceremony in 1935.
For me to meet someone who contributed towards making something for Queen Mary was a unique honour. Not only is she such an iconic ship, but my earliest holiday memory is of walking Queen Mary’s promenade deck on her last ever Christmas Voyage in 1966 when I was just 3 years old. I remember holding my father’s hand very tightly as we walked into the incredibly strong wind.
This was Inez’s first ever Cunard Voyage and Commodore Warner took the opportunity to invite Inez to the Bridge for sailaway from Cherbourg. Here is Inez on the Bridge enjoying the magnificent sunny views over Cherbourg.
Inez explained to me just how much she was enjoying her time on board with her family and how she would like to return again one day. Whilst on the Bridge, the Commodore invited Inez to blow the ship’s whistles, one of which as many of you will know, is the original whistle from Queen Mary and can be heard up to 10 miles away. Inez soon got the hang of this and after a slightly timid first blast she gave the whistle an almighty blast which would surely have been heard across the Normandy beaches and in the peaceful country valleys many miles away. And here is Inez sounding the whistle.
So thank you Inez for joining us on Queen Mary 2 and telling us about your unique part in Cunard’s long history. Hopefully you enjoyed your voyage as much as I and hopefully we will see you on board again soon.
Thank you Richard for bringing us that great story and as you say it’s this kind of association which makes Cunard so special. Richard mentioned Queen Mary 2’s Hotel Manager, David Stephenson, who coincidentally also sent me a message of a new development on our flagship.
Hotel Manager, Queen Mary 2<BR>
Vicky Lane and Chris Edwards from R.Twining & Co Ltd sailed on Queen Mary 2 between 28 May and 1 June, to introduce a whole new concept of preparing and enjoying the experience of drinking Tea for our Grills guests on board Cunard Liners. The newly introduced Rituals Collection brings six different varieties of British Afternoon Tea uniquely blended for the British Experience, six varieties of Tisane or herbal infusions and finally seven varieties of Oriental Teas bringing the long established traditions Tea drinking in the Far East to our ships.
While onboard Vicky & Chris conducted staff awareness training of the many benefits of fine Teas. This included tasting sessions in the Todd English restaurant, which were well received by the Staff, who were eager to try the new varieties and appreciate the different taste notes of the new range. Live trials were also done in the Queens Grill with Guests, and the results were extremely encouraging.
Vicky & Chris enjoy a fine cup of 2nd Flush Darjeeling with Hotel Manager David Stephenson outside the Queen’s Room on Queen Mary 2.
Vicky will be sailing onboard Queen Victoria in the in the next couple of weeks to introduce Twinings Rituals to the Queen Victoria Team.
Thanks David for an interesting article; in fact we look forward to welcoming Vicky at the beginning of our next voyage. That’s it for this week, but I’ll be back on Monday with Queen Victoria’s latest Star Of The Month as well as some more news around the fleet. Cheers, Alastair.