Historic first meeting in their home port

Tuesday 22 April 2008 promises to be one to remember for British maritime enthusiasts, when Cunard’s three Queens meet for the first and only time in Southampton.

The three liners met in New York for the first ever time earlier this year, and the QE2 and QM2 have met in Sydney since then, but the Southampton meet will be the more significant because it is the ships’ home port – and the QE2’s retirement year.

Queen Mary 2, Cunard’s flagship and the largest ocean liner in the world, and Queen Victoria, the newest Cunard Queen, will salute QE2, arguably the most famous and beloved liner in the world, on the day she celebrates the 39th anniversary of her official entry into service in 1969.

Carol Marlow, Cunard’s President and Managing Director, says: “We are delighted that this unexpected opportunity for Southampton to host our three ocean liners arose after we took the recent decision to have QE2’s scheduled 2008 refit in her homeport.

“We would like as many people as possible to witness this historic spectacle.”

Cunard advises those who wish to see the three Queens to use vantage points such as Mayflower Park and Town Quay car park (at the end of the pier).

Just after 1700 hours Queen Mary 2 will leave her berth at the Queen Elizabeth II Terminal and proceed up river to get as close as possible to Queen Victoria (at the City Cruise Terminal) and QE2 (alongside Berth 105).

All three ships will sound their whistles in salute before Queen Mary 2 departs on her first transatlantic crossing of 2008 (her 81st crossing) followed by Queen Victoria embarking on her first voyage to Iberia and the Canaries.