Pictured: Cunard President Peter Shanks symbolically holds the keys to Queen Elizabeth, which he handed over to
Captain Christopher Wells
The Handover Ceremony took place today on board the new 92,400-ton vessel at the Fincantieri Monfalcone shipyard. The event included a speech by Cunard President Peter Shanks. The Italian flag was ceremonially lowered and the Blue Ensign was raised, marking the entry of another magnificent Cunard liner into the Register of British Shipping.
“This ceremony to mark the completion of the Queen Elizabeth and our acceptance of delivery, is just the first of a number of significant events over the next few weeks – including the ship’s official naming by Her Majesty The Queen in Southampton on Monday 11 October,” said Shanks. “I’m certain the British will take this truly magnificent ship to their hearts, as they have all the Cunard Queens.”
Queen Elizabeth is due to leave the shipyard on 30 September and sail to Southampton, where she will berth at the Ocean Cruise Terminal on Friday 8 October.
Queen Elizabeth will depart on her Maiden Voyage at 5:00pm on Tuesday 12 October. She is s one of the largest panamax vessels, i.e. capable of passing through the Panama canal. Mini and luxury suites abound on board the superbly finished “Queen Elizabeth” whose 1,046 cabins can accommodate over 2,500 guests assisted by a crew of 1,097.