Author Topic: The QE2 Story 4th Anniversary 25 January 2013  (Read 2474 times)

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Offline Lynda Bradford

The QE2 Story 4th Anniversary 25 January 2013
« on: Apr 23, 2013, 07:15 PM »
The QE2 Story 4th Anniversary 25 January 2013

Quote from Rob (24 January 2013)

In January 2009, QE2 had just retired, but lots of people were still talking about her on cruise ship forums.  These forums were understandably focused firmly on current cruise ships, so QE2 and her fans were rapidly left with nowhere to chat, without being told to get over it and move on!  This is what spurred me into action and into setting up the forum.  The initial setup took a couple of hours, and I fired off emails to my many existing QE2 contacts to see what would happen...  and at 6:50 pm on 25 January 2009 one of our first members Singlemalt posted:

“It feels like I've arrived a bit too early for a party and am standing around awkwardly with a glass in my hand   although am sure there are others on their way soon!”

….. and there certainly was many others waiting in the wings to join The QE2 Story party.   Members’ introductions give us a fascinating insight into new members QE2 Story and why they wanted to join the Forum.,95.0.html

The Forum started with a few who had one common interest – the QE2 – but it has grown into a recognised information resource about the ship and that is because of the input of our members.

What a party it has been! Here are just some of the highlights:

The QE2 Story - One Stop Shop for QE2 Information

The QE2 Story (TQS) Discussion Forum is truly the only QE2 One Stop Shop where queries and mysteries are solved and information is freely shared in an open and friendly, respectful manner.  If you Google anything QE2 on the Internet TQS is likely to be one of the top information choices. 

The well organised topic boards give Forum members the opportunity to comment on any aspects of QE2’s career from her launch in John Brown’s Clydebank, to news about the ship in Dubai. 

Forum members have shared memories or added links to photos, videos and web sites that have contributed to "keeping the legend alive".  Almost every nook and cranny of the QE2 has been explored and there are many photos and facts that you will only find on this Forum. 

Flagship listed information on how the external profile and look of QE2 in 2008 differed greatly from the external profile when she entered service in 1969.  Did you know that her maiden appearance only lasted three short years and that the first of many changes were made in 1972?  Read more here:,4684.msg49266.html#msg49266

The topic board on QE2’s Service life (1969 to 2008) was further enhanced by the contribution of members to build the two QE2 Timeline topics the QE2 maiden calls, final calls and The QE2 Timeline - month by month,1.0.html

But Rob took this a step further by using a web tool to display the timeline facts and by doing so further enhanced the information collected by Forum members.

The contribution of by TQS members has resulted in a QE2 archive of accurate information that is frequently used by researchers.  Admin often receive requests for information, which we are happy to answer and we are always pleased to help students researching QE2 projects, particularly when they achieve good exam results.

In the four years since the forum was created we have seen the rise and further rise of Facebook. 

But we set ourselves apart by being:
(a) free with no adverts
(b) not owned by a company
(c) carefully and gently moderated
(d) totally open and searchable by Google
(e) neatly organised in sections to keep the story intact for the future
(f) run by, and for, QE2 Enthusiasts

The fun side to the Forum!

The decommissioning of QE2 in 2008 galvanised the crew of into organising a QE2 World Cruise the like of which has never been experienced before or again.  Captain Rob and his crew had forum members laughing from February to June and if you have not read this topic please be prepared for something completely different.,88.0.html,89.0.html

There were adventures galore -- Singlemalt was captured by pirates, and Isabelle needed to be rescued, but best of all were the drawings by Waverley, which had us all in stitches.

Another topic that will keep you in stiches is the “embarrassing” moments topic. Why is Isabelle lying on the floor of the Queens Room? Why did Rob think that every surface on QE2 was sticky? Read and enjoy!,15.msg359.html#msg359

The first Forum poll asked members to vote on their favourite room onboard QE2.  This generated discussion on not only the rooms nominated for the poll but other areas of QE2 that were firm favourites of our members, including the “bit beneath the bridge” a favourite place for Twynkle.  This is an ongoing poll so if you have not voted have a look and let us know your favourite place onboard QE2.,47.0.html

“Songs that make you think and dream about QE2 “ started in February 2009 was such a popular topic that 3 pages later in December 2010 members were still happy to reminisce about songs that remind us of our favourite ship.  Have a look there are lots of memories in this topic:,157.msg1413.html#msg1413

Reunions and lasting friendships:

We have been pleased to see that many firm lasting friendships have been formed on the forum between people who had not previously met. Not only have members attended events we organized such as sailing down the Clyde on the Waverley but we have also been pleased to see that members are keen to meet with other members onboard cruises to share their QE2 memories.   

The Photo Gallery

When the Photo Gallery was set up we could never have imagined the number or range of QE2 photos that would be posted by members.  To date you have posted over 2000 photos that have let us see photos of areas of the ship, plus an insight into passenger and crew QE2 memories.

However we should not forget the photos that have been submitted to the Photo Competitions.  The Photo Gallery has been an important resource to hold the Photo Competition photos.  Members have been able to participate by either entering photos, voting for their favourite photo or both.  But it did not end there as the winning photos were used to produce QE2 Story Calendars for 2012 and 2013.  As far as we know this is unique to TQS Forum and no other QE2 website have Calendars produced by their members’ photos.  Well done to everyone who has participated!,75.0.html

Special features and members' stories

We are very proud of the range of members from across the world and with different interests in QE2.  Our members include former crew, QE2 enthusiasts, fans, passengers, historians, researchers, experts and 'celebrities' from the world of the QE2 who contribute together in discovering and remembering the Story of the QE2.

We have been particularly pleased to give members the opportunity to participate in the “Ask the Captain” sessions and delighted that three former QE2 Captains had agreed to take part. 

Captain Robin Woodall (who sadly passed away last year) was the first Captain who agreed to answer your questions in August/September 2009.

A year later in 2010 Captain McNaught was only too happy to be the second Captain to participate and members were enthusiastic about having the opportunity to ask their questions.

Photo (c) Ken MacLeod

In 2011 Ronald Warwick was the featured Captain who delighted us with his interesting answers to your questions.

But it is not just Captains and celebrities who have the opportunity to be included in the special features.  We have also had “Ask the Engineer” when Forum member Rod agreed to answer your questions about the engineering side of the QE2. 

The QE2 Story also gives members the opportunity to tell their story and to have it featured on the front page of the QE2 Story.

QE2 Officers Crew and Workers Memories

A popular area of the Forum is the Officer Crew and Workers memories where we have been given an insight into life in the crew areas.  We have had the opportunity to read about crew parties, engine room memories, the wardroom and much more.  Thank-you to the crew for sharing your memories.,10.0.html

Photo courtesy of and (c) Cunard

Forum Statistics

As at the time of writing this newsletter we have almost 1,000 members, who have contributed to 45,689 posts in 2,639 topics.  Excluding the moderator team the member who has posted on the Forum the most is Twynkle with 4,484 posts. 

On 17 January 2013 the “Most Online Today” figure was 266. This compared to the Most Online Ever figure of 276 on 8 April 2012. 

When looking at Forum statistics you can clearly see that there is an increase in the number of members whenever there is news about QE2. 

An example of this was at the start of January when Rob reported that in the first 7-and-a-bit days of January 2013 – “Our server has served 2 million pages in the (2.4 million hits) to 6000 unique visitors, on 10340 visits composed of over 8 gigabytes of data”

4 Years of the Forum - 4 tumultuous years for QE2

When we started the forum, we thought QE2 was about to go into dry dock to be utterly transformed and become unrecognisable.  4 years later, there she is, with her funnel still smoking, almost entirely intact.  Nobody would have guessed this.  Plans have come and gone, some were rumours, some weren't, but none worked out.  What is to come?  Well, we're simply not sure.

We set out to be as honest and fair as possible - including towards her new Dubai owners.  The forum rapidly gained a very good reputation amongst observers both within her former owners Cunard and her new owners in Dubai.  Because of our excellent reputation, we were approached with information about her 2009 dry docking, and communication channels were opened... facts became clear, and daft internet rumours were quashed, repeatedly!

The QE2 Story Exclusive in Dubai

Ultimately this reputation led to Rob's request to 'come aboard' being granted in 2011, and he became the first person to break down the secrecy barriers and document her condition in person through photos and video.  This quelled widespread rumours about her condition, and allowed the world to "meet" her excellent V-Ships crew who were caring for her so carefully.

The end of the 4 years has led to sudden changes for QE2.  V-Ships out, a Far East managed crew suddenly put aboard.  Stories about a trip to the Far East.  News about a plan for QE2 London. 

One thing's for sure, QE2 can still make the headlines, and we'll help keep her there.

Thank-you for joining the party!

The QE2 Story Team

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