Author Topic: The QE2 Story 2013 year-end newsletter  (Read 2336 times)

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Online Lynda Bradford

The QE2 Story 2013 year-end newsletter
« on: Feb 01, 2014, 08:54 AM »
The QE2 Story 2013 year-end newsletter

Year-end message from Rob:

With nothing happening to QE2 in Dubai for most of the year (except for announcements), the Forum this year was able to focus on what it was originally intended for - to keep the memories of her crew and passengers alive from her long service life.  This is why we coined the phrase 'Keeping the Legend Alive'.

With the photo competition and calendar, and many new members sharing their stories, as well as consistently high number of 'guests' reading the forum, I think it's safe to say we've succeeded again this year thanks firstly to the members, and also to moderators Isabelle, Lynda and Alan.  No matter what happens with QE2 in 2014, we'll be here to share and capture all your memories and friendships.

As another year is drawing to an end it is an ideal time to look back at some of what has been happening in the Forum during 2013. 

QE2 News

Annus Horribilis was a phrase chosen by Queen Elizabeth II to describe the events of 1992 but it is a phrase that could equally be used by Queen Elizabeth 2 to describe what has happened to her in the past year. 

Photo by Andy Liney

At the end of 2012 we were very concerned with QE2's fate, when the V-ships crew were abruptly given notice to leave the ship, after looking after the ship since 2008.

Ultimate ownership of the QE2 remains with Dubai World, as it has done since 2008, but a new consortium called QE2 Holdings was formed, with a QE2 Hotels website launched  QE2 was dry docked briefly in January, and then docked within the industrial dry docks facility (another part of QE2 Holdings), tied up between oil tankers.  The ship was in cold layup throughout 2013 - meaning that her engines, air-conditioning etc. are no longer running.  She's also been seen recently to be rather dirty looking.,4817.msg58509.html#msg58509

News released in April by the Oceanic Group, another part of the consortium, suggested that QE2 would leave Dubai for Singapore in August or September and that the ship’s engines were being refurbished to allow her to make this journey without assistance.  We were sceptical when we heard this news and these deadlines have indeed passed with QE2 remaining in Dubai with no departure date stated. 
In October we heard that COSCO's Zhoushan Shipyard had been selected for QE2's conversion, although it is unclear what sort of contract has been signed, if any.  Later that month the design proposals were released, giving the public the opportunity to comment on their website.  Some of the designs were more complete than others, and in different formats, making direct comparisons impossible.   The verdict on the winning design was scheduled to be released by 15 December, but to date there has been no further information.   Although the designs stirred up interest, without knowing exactly where QE2 will be located, or when, and who will operate her, and who's paying for all of this, it is impossible to be too hopeful just now.

The QE2 Story provides up to date information on QE2 news and gives Forum members the opportunity to give their valuable views, which this year have been more important than ever. 

Keep watching for more QE2 news:,53.0.html

One page Summary, kept up to date, with QE2's Dubai story.

Your stories are important to the QE2 Story

It is your stories that have built a wonderful resource of information and personal memories that are an everlasting tribute to the QE2. 

This year we enjoyed reading many new topics but one that really caught our eye was Alan Hughes’ story about having the opportunity as a three-and-a-half-year-old, to sail with his family on QE2 on the pre-maiden voyage cruise from Southampton to the Canaries in April 1969. Although Alan never managed to sail on the QE2 again as an adult, he has been part of a special time in QE2’s history.

Photo from Alan Hughes

But this story gets even more interesting.  Jane Crosthwaite responded to this topic to say that she had also been on the same voyage with her family when she was about the same age.  Jane posted the children’s daily programs that mention all the activities for the children, which were supervised by “Uncle Reg” and “Auntie Jane” (I wonder where they are now?).  It was fantastic to see the wonderful photos that Jane posted showing her as a young child onboard QE2 and some amazing early photos of QE2.

Thank-you Alan and Jane for sharing your memories. Have a look at the topic to read the full story and see their treasured photos.,5697.0.html

The QE2 Story Jigsaw

The QE2 Jigsaw is continuing its travels around the world and so far it has travelled approximately10,983 miles:

From Rob in Scotland, to
Isabelle in Ireland, from there to
Lynda in Scotland, and then on to
Louis in Germany, from where the jigsaw made its first transatlantic crossing to
Rod in the USA and then
June in the USA, then the second transatlantic crossing to
Pete in England...  Where it will go next is up to you! 

Photo from Lynda Bradford

Please add your name to the list to have a try, so as to make sure that the “QE2 Story” Jigsaw is the most travelled jigsaw (apart from the one onboard QE2),3838.120.html

Photo Competition and Calendar

Despite a slow start sales of the 2014 wall calendar gained pace and by 26 December a total of 83 had been ordered by members from eight different countries. The calendar is of course still available in premium and standard sizes and can be ordered by following the links on this page.

Thanks to all of you who placed orders and who are continuing to keep the spirit of QE2 alive by supporting

Can we ask you all to please have a good search through your image files to see if we can find even more stunning photos for the 2015 calendar!  Naturally you will have to enter them in the Photo of the Month competitions to get the opportunity of having your photos of QE2 included in next year’s calendar.

The December Photo of the month theme is “QE2’s Wake” and there is still time to enter before the closing date on 31 December 2013.,5768.0.html

Plus you can still vote for your three favourite photos in the November Photo of the Month Competition.  We know it is a busy time of year but we hope you can find time to enjoy looking at these fantastic photos and vote.,5766.0.html

The QE2 Story Computer Wallpaper

New for 2014, we are making available to members a series of computer wallpaper calendars using images from the 2014 wall calendars. The results of our poll showed that over 60% of members who voted preferred a new image each month, so a new image will be released monthly, which will include two months of dates on it. The initial size available will be 1360 x 768 pixels, which should suit the majority of modern monitor screens. If this size is not suitable for you please let Alan Snelson know, and he will do his best to provide a more suitable size for you. 

Follow the link to download the January/February 2014 computer wallpaper Calendar.

If you have any problems downloading please let us know by posting in the Computer Wallpaper topic and we will do our best to help.,5783

Photo Gallery

As a project for 2014 we are planning to add a lot more tags to images already in our gallery. This should mean that images will be available in multiple locations and searching for specific features or criteria should become easier. This is likely to be a fairly large task so please be patient. It would also be a great help if you could add as much of your own tag information as possible when loading new images into the gallery.  We will be providing more guidance on this soon, so look out for more information. 

Photographs in General

Earlier in the year Rob raised the question “Where are all the photos?”,5470.msg55462.html#msg55462

Photo from Lynda Bradford

He was referring to all the early build, launch, publicity and promotional photos that were taken of the brand new QE2. Alan has been hunting for these very early images over the past year and has also been trying to locate the Ocean Pictures archive. Ocean Pictures were the on board photography concessionaires and had photos going right back to the very start of QE2’s working life.

All the very early photography of QE2 was in the hands of a man called John Jochimsen. He documented the progress of keel 736 right through the build, launch, sea trials and maiden voyages of the newly named QE2. By his own account he took thousands of photographs of every aspect of her construction as well as all the finished public rooms, lots of passenger accommodation and just about anywhere else he could get his photographic equipment. Having spoken to John, it seems he was obliged to hand over all his work to Trafalgar Holdings when they assumed ownership of Cunard in the early 1970’s. Sadly, from there no one seems to know where all those photographs went. It really would be incredible to locate these images as there is so much history there. Alan will continue turning stones throughout the coming year in the hope that something comes to light. On the plus side Alan has had some success in the hunt for both sets of photographs in that he has found at least ten places where they are not!!

If there is anyone out there who might be able to shed any light on where these images are it would be great to hear from you at

Ask the Captain

We were delighted when Captain Bill Cooper, QE2’s Captain in Dubai, between 2009 and 2012 agreed to participate in an “Ask the Captain” session. Then as an added bonus, Scott Clegg, Project Manager for QE2 in Dubai also agreed to take part in this session to answer any question that we had about the ship’s time in Dubai. Some interesting questions and answers:

Best Wishes

Best wishes to all our members for 2014 and thank-you for continuing to support the QE2 Story Forum.

Rob Lightbody, Lynda Bradford, Isabelle Prondzynski and Alan Snelson
Working on behalf of all the QE2 Story members

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January 2014 Newsletter
We hope you are continuing to enjoy visiting the QE2 Story Forum and reading some of the wonderful topics that have been posted by members. 

Here are a few examples of recent topics that have created a lot of interest:

George Griffiths has given us an insight into the QE2 Penthouse Suite, which is especially interesting as his story is brought to life with the addition of videos,5893.0.html

Have you had a look at the details of the QE2 Story get together in Liverpool, on 31 May 2014?  Our get together includes the opportunity for a short visit and drinks reception onboard Queen Victoria, but as there are a limited number of places for this event you need to read the conditions and let us know if you are interested in joining us. 
Read more here:,5819.0.html

Gary Baltao treated us to a rare insight, from a member of crew’s perspective, of the QE2 maiden around the world voyage in 1975,3241.0.html

Have you noticed that the QE2 Story Front Page has had a wee update?  Rob likes to keep the QE2 Story looking smart.

Photo of the Month Competition
We find it hard to believe that a month has passed since we welcomed in the New Year.  But as January comes to a close, the deadline is approaching for casting your vote for your 3 favourite photos of “QE2’s Wake”

The poll closes on 1 February 2014 so we hope that you will have a look and cast your votes:,5809.0.html

A big thank-you to everyone who uploaded their pictures and to members who have voted and posted messages to say how much they enjoyed seeing this collection of photos. 

January photo competition:  there is still time to submit photos for the January Photo of the Month ”Beauty”, a topic that has resulted in a range of photos that demonstrate the beauty of QE2

If you have a winning photo we would love to see it in the competition but remember that the deadline is midnight on 31 January 2014. 

See here for instruction:,5815.0.html

Lynda Bradford
Working on behalf of the QE2 Story Forum

« Last Edit: Feb 26, 2014, 10:38 AM by Lynda Bradford »
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