To all forum members and newsletter subscribers, wherever in the World you live, we want you to know that we are thinking about you in these unprecedented times. This is a time when restriction have been put on people's working and home lives, so as to control the spread of the virus. It is a time when the health and well-being of our QE2 Story community is in our thoughts.
If you are self isolating at home, we hope you will take time to visit The QE2 Story to enjoy readying some of the many topics and also take time to post even if only to say hello to everyone in the members Chat section (but you need to log in)
It is a time to be thinking of the crew onboard ships, whose lives and livelihood has been affected by this Worldwide pandemic and if you want to post your support then go to the forum's Sea Shanties topic area.
Information about coronavirus on ships was first posted on the forum on 30 January, which started discussion about the implications for passengers and crew, if the virus was diagnosed on a cruise ship…..and it was not long before reports emerged of two cruise ships affected with the virus: Diamond Princess, quarantined in Yokohama, Japan and World Dream in Hong Kong, then the Grand Princess, cruising from California.
Forum members questioned whether air conditioning could spread the virus, when it appeared that quarantined ship passengers on Diamond Princess, were infecting each other. Maybe you could enlightens us by posting if you have experience of air conditioning systems on ships!
News of Corovirus on ships resulted in countries banning cruise ships from ports, such as Holland America’s MS Westerdam, which was turned away from ports in Philippines and Japan, because the ship had docked in Hong Kong. There was concern when we learned that Reunion Islanders had threatened cruise passengers when the Sun Princess visited the island.
Changes were made to Queen Mary 2's World Cruise. Initially not calling at Hong Kong then avoiding Asian's ports and sailing for 14 days at sea to Fremantle for a 25 night cruise, circumnavigating Australia..
By the end of February cruise company shares were affected and by mid March there were reports of cruise companies pausing cruise operations, Princess Cruises, Viking and by 15 March even Cunard, announced that because of the virus World Cruise passengers would disembark in Fremantle and the ship would return to Southampton. Queen Victoria would also return to Southampton and Queen Elizabeth would disembark passengers and remain in Australian waters.
Day by day we hear of more ships returning to their home port or at anchor while ship companies consider options.
The QE2 Dubai, Senior Leadership Team posted on Facebook "In light of recent global events and taking into account the QE2’s position as an ongoing restoration project, the QE2 has announced plans to temporarily close the vessel and all of the on board facilities from 12pm on 19th March 2020 until 12pm 1st September 2020"
The forum has dedicated topic board areas for QE2 crew and workers, where there is a fantastic collection of stories, photos and memories. But we would love to read more of your memories! Please have a look at the crew topics on the forum and add your memories.
QE2 Officer & Crew and Workers IntroductionsIf you were a member of QE2's crew at any point in her long life, or if you helped build or maintain her, please say hello to everybody, and introduce yourself in this section.
Officer, Crew and Workers Memories This section is mostly for anyone employed on board, or by the builders or maintenance people involved with the upkeep of the ship. However ALL members of the forum can participate and ask our crew members questions about life on board QE2.
The Cabin Cavalcade gave passengers the opportunity view the range of QE2 cabins from the basic inside cabins to the luxury of the suites, such as theAquitania, Caledonia and Carinthia Suites. These suites were added in 1999 to create a new grade of stateroom - QS a grade that would fit between the luxurious Grand Suites and the Penthouse Suites.
This luxurious accommodation featured living area, separate dining area, bedroom, bar, separate master and guest bathrooms and walk-in wardrobes. Six large feature windows were cut to provide daylight. Luxury fittings and artwork were provided throughout.
The existing Hotel Managers and Cruise Directors cabins on the starboard side of Two Deck forward of the Midships Lobby were gutted and combined to provide space for the construction of the 777-square foot (73-square metres) Aquitania Suite, which was the suite used by Mrs. Thatcher, when she attended the Falkland's 20th Anniversary Event,
The existing 463-square foot Midships Suite located on the starboard side of Two Deck aft of the Midships Lobby was totally gutted and enlarged by incorporating the small Conference Room and locker facility off the Midships Lobby to become the location of the third new suite: the 700- square foot Carinthia Suite.
Photos and information from Michael Gallagher collection. Read more in the topic where Michael gives an insight into the luxury of these suites
Trivia: Did you know that in April 1972 the QE2 was nearly lost during a huge Atlantic storm. At a special service afterwards, Captain Hehir was given a standing ovation and he thanked the men of the Clyde, and John Brown's shipyard for their brilliant construction work that allowed them to survive such a gruelling test of her strength. Read Pete Dennett's first hand account of the 1972 Storm.
Q1: How far could QE2 tilt before she would capsize? Answer Q2: On 2 December 1976 QE2 when encountered storm conditions. What came adrift and damaged the bulbous bow? Answer Trivia: 11 September was the date QE2 encountered the 1978 storm, Hurricane Luis 1995 and an Atlantic Storm in 2008. Q3: Hurricane Luis - what was the estimated height of the highest wave that slammed QE2? Answer
"Out of adversity comes opportunity" Benjamin Franklin
We are going through unprecedented times at the moment when we are being asked to remain at home to save lives. Should you be looking to improve your knowledge about QE2, look no further than the QE2 Story, where you will find an amazing range of topics (5221) to quench your thirst for knowledge.
The QE2 Story Topic Boards waiting for you to delve into their topics:
The QE2 Story Shop has a range of books that can be ordered on Amazon, however, you would need to check if any delivery restrictions are in place while countries are in lockdown.
Check out the topics on Books, Videos and DVD's about QE2 where you can discuss the books and videos you have in your collection. You can also keep us updated on any new books that you think would be of interest to forum members
The competition album is open and ready for your three entries to the March photo competition "Famous faces on the most famous ship afloat". The prize for this month's winner is a QE2 Photo frame in walnut (perfect for your QE2 pictures) or a jigsaw of the winning photo. There are not a lot of entries so far, so if you could have a look at your QE2 photos and add your three best pictures that fit the theme, we would appreciate your support. Deadline for entries is 31 March 2020.
Photo Frame donated by Isabelle Prondzynski
VOTE: Have you voted for your three favourite photos for the January competition "Works of Art on Board QE2" ? Some excellent photos, so take time to view and enjoy before selecting the best photos you think fits the theme, but hurry you only have until 1 April to vote.
Photo: Pete Cain
Congratulations to Hamburger, the winner of the January competition "Ropes, cables and chains" with his photo "Complete chain" and to the runner up Cunarder Man with his picture "Tied up in Malaga"
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Thank-you for your continued support for the QE2 Story Forum. We know how special the ship is to everyone onboard the forum and we appreciate the contributions that are made to keep her memory alive.