Author Topic: My first Experience on a Cunard Ship (QE)  (Read 2567 times)

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Offline Tom Kirrage

My first Experience on a Cunard Ship (QE)
« on: Jan 18, 2014, 10:19 PM »
Hello Members of the QE2 Story Forum

I thought I would share some exciting news. I had my first experience on board on of Cunard's ships on January 2nd 2014. It was just a day visit, but still extremely enjoyable. I went on board the Queen Elizabeth, whilst she was in the port of Gibraltar.


•   My Visit on the M/S Queen Elizabeth, in GIBRLATAR
•   Date: Thursday 2nd January 2014

•   Trip Organized by: Michael Gallagher

•   Trip Authorized by: Michael Gallagher of Cunard & MH Bland, Gibraltar

•   Shown around the ship by: The Ship’s Social Hostess, Janice.

•   Master of the Vessel at the time: Captain Christopher Wells.

This was a day that I will always remember and it was a great way to start off the New Year.

For a long long time, I had really wanted to go onboard on a cruise ship or a liner that belongs to Cunard Line. This has been a passion and a dream ever since I started my A-Level Extended Project Qualification on the QE2, Cunard’s most famous liner. At the end of my project I set myself a goal and said that I would try to get onboard one of the existing Cunard vessels. I can now say that my goal has been accomplished and what an experience it was, even though it was only a 3-hour time gap and not a whole cruise, which can last up to 16 days.

When my grandfather and I arrived at Gibraltar’s port security office, the officers were very helpful; they had been given the all clear to let us through with authorized visitor, restricted area badges. Once we were passed the security, we went inside the port’s cruise terminal, where we had to go through another security, just like you would do at an airport. We met our wonderful tour guide, Janice, the ship’s Social Hostess at the gangway and we had to exchange our passports for official Cunard visitor badges. We then went onboard the great ship and this is where the magic began.

Both my grandfather and I were shown some of the most elegant areas of the ship. We had never seen a ship that looked so grand and so well cared for. The more I saw of the Queen Elizabeth and what she had inside her, made my enthusiasm and my dream more wanting to one day end up onboard the ship itself or either on the Queen Mary 2 or the Queen Victoria.
Both Janice and the bookshop manager, Kathleen said to me that they had never met someone like me who was so young, keen, enthusiastic and interested in Cunard and were even more amazed at how much I already knew about the ship and the company’s history.
When I told them that I had written a project on the QE2, and it had gone up to the Cunard archives at the University of Liverpool, and that I had never even seen the ship, they were even more amazed.
Whilst we were on board, Janice took my grandfather and me to see the two things that I really wanted to see that were originally on the QE2 and were now onboard the Queen Elizabeth. One of these things was the silver model of the QE2, which is in the Yacht Club on board the ship and then the QE2’s famous bell, which was located, not far from Churchill’s Cigar room.

After our amazing tour, of the many different areas of the ship, Janice took us back down to the bookshop, where I bought a poster of all 6 Cunard Queens and a special Queen Elizabeth pen. She then took my grandfather and me to the LIDO Buffet where we could have a complimentary meal, before we disembarked the ship.
When we said goodbye to Janice, I said to her, first thank you ever so much for an amazing and enjoyable tour. You are very lucky to be working for Cunard and you are a real credit to them. I look forward to seeing you again, whether I come on as just a visitor, or maybe even as a passenger or for filling my dream of become a member of the theatre technical crew on board.

My grandfather and I had a delicious meal in the LIDO buffet, the staff was really helpful and kind and we said that they are all a credit to Cunard. We then disembarked the ship, swapped our Cunard visitor badges for our passports and then walked back to the port’s security office and handed back our authorized visitor, restricted area badges. As we got in the car, we both agreed that, that trip had been especially good, really magical and that we would definitely be doing it again some time.[/i]

Here are some photographs from that day.

The first photo is of my in my favourite room in the whole ship, The reason it is my favourite room is because it is my dream to work for Cunard doing that particular job. To help setup and run the lights and sound in the theatres and dance floors.
« Last Edit: Jan 20, 2014, 07:52 PM by Tom Kirrage »

Online Isabelle Prondzynski

Re: My first Experience on a Cunard Ship (QE)
« Reply #1 on: Jan 18, 2014, 10:33 PM »
What a wonderful report, Tom! It looks like you had a fabulous day, and thank you for sharing the story with us.

I am glad that you went to seek out the QE2 treasures on board the QE -- although I am sad that they are not on QE2 at this time, it is good that they are preserved and well looked after.

You know what you want to do -- and I am sure that with your commitment and enthusiasm, you will get there. Your grandfather must be very proud of you.

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: My first Experience on a Cunard Ship (QE)
« Reply #2 on: Jan 18, 2014, 11:07 PM »
Hello Tom, good to hear your story about your day onboard Queen Elizabeth.  Hope you can join us on a future QE2 Story event.

Are you going to meet up with us at the Liverpool event?,5819.0.html
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank

Online Rob Lightbody

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Re: My first Experience on a Cunard Ship (QE)
« Reply #3 on: Jan 19, 2014, 09:57 AM »
Hi Tom,

Glad you made it aboard, that's fantastic!

The next one you have to get aboard is QM2, then the original Queen Mary!  (Assuming QE2 is unavailable that is!)

Thanks for doing the write up for us.

Passionate about QE2's service life for 37 years and creator of this website.  Worked in IT for 27 years and created my personal QE2 website in 1994.

Offline Alan Snelson

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Re: My first Experience on a Cunard Ship (QE)
« Reply #4 on: Jan 19, 2014, 11:40 AM »
Hi Tom'

Thanks for letting us know about the fantastic time you had on QE, It sounds as though you had a brilliant visit.

It gives those of us heading to Liverpool in May, a little taste of what we have got to look forward to.
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Offline Tom Kirrage

Re: My first Experience on a Cunard Ship (QE)
« Reply #5 on: Jan 20, 2014, 08:15 AM »
Hello there everyone

I am glad that you all thought that my report was good and I hope that you liked the photographs.

Both me and my grandfather had a really enjoyable day.

Noticing from what Lynda said about joining you all on May 31st to go onboard the Queen Victoria, I would love to come but I don't know yet if it is the right timing for me. We shall have to see.


Offline Cunarder Man

Re: My first Experience on a Cunard Ship (QE)
« Reply #6 on: Jan 22, 2014, 07:45 PM »
Hello Tom,
I enjoyed reading your report of the visit to QE. She is a wonderful ship and Rosemary and I spent 10 nights on board in December. It was great looking at the memorabilia from QE2. Your pictures are great too. Hope to meet again someday, perhaps on board a great vessel! All the best, and regards to you father. John & Rosemary.

Offline Hank Hargrove

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Re: My first Experience on a Cunard Ship (QE)
« Reply #7 on: Apr 07, 2014, 04:02 PM »
How wonderful Tom! That is very cool!
« Last Edit: Apr 07, 2014, 04:03 PM by Hank Hargrove »
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