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Author Topic: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship  (Read 14694 times)

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Offline June Ingram

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Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #80 on: Feb 14, 2018, 03:38 AM »
It is very disappointing because there was a great deal of communication going on between the producers of the program and many Forum members, especially those of us connected with the PR work regarding the conference. They were supplied with abundant factual material about QE2 and were for awhile in contact several times a day to arrange interviews with a number of persons with various QE2 connections. It is disheartening but not surprising the media in general can't seem to get it right.  Channel 5 were certainly supplied with more than sufficient material to get it right.
« Last Edit: Feb 14, 2018, 03:51 AM by June Ingram »
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Offline Clydebuilt1971

Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #81 on: Feb 14, 2018, 08:54 AM »
I watched both parts back to back last night - whilst I am also disappointed with the inaccuracies and also the fact that there was no mention of the 50th Anniversary etc I still enjoyed the overall programme.

I wish they had included more content on the propulsion system replacement but I was happy to see some footage of her original turbines and ECR.

Its been nearly 10yrs since she arrived in Dubai so I think it was a very appropriate time to bring her back into the public focus with this programme.

Ch5 were always going to focus on what they wanted - effectively only hearing what they wanted to hear. I guess that's the media for you!

The footage of the ship was excellent - she is just such a beautiful looking ship and I also very much enjoyed seeing some weel kent faces (You know who you are) :)

I also thought Capt Bates and Dr Payne were excellent.

I didn't know they had interviewed Ronnie Kier down at Ferguson Marine - I thought that was a nice touch and a bit of focus (albeit brief) on the fact that commercial shipbuilding still exists on the Clyde.

All in all? I'm glad they did it and I went to sleep last night a wee bit sad because "shes not doin it anymore" but also with the thought (and as I said in my closing remarks at the conference) that WE DID THAT - Great Britain ruled the waves through QE2 - nobody can take that away from us - of that I will always be very very proud.

So theres only one way to end this post.......

Clydebuilt and proud  ;)

Cheers

Gav
« Last Edit: Feb 14, 2018, 09:20 AM by Clydebuilt1971 »

Offline dellboy

Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #82 on: Feb 14, 2018, 10:05 AM »
 Wishful thinking,  they did say season 1 episode 2 so perhaps they're planning to show a second season if and when the flotel opens.

It's normal for TV crews to spend days at a location and only show minutes of filming. When a crew came to my place of work they interrupted everything and interviewed dozens of employees. We were all excited about getting our 15 sec of fame we were lucky if they showed 15sec in total. Makes me wonder how much filming they do for a one-hour episode.       
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Online Andy Holloway

Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #83 on: Feb 14, 2018, 10:55 AM »
Cramming 50 years of history into 2 x 45/50 minute programmes - 1 hour programme including adverts - is a very difficult task, it's not what to include but what to leave out.
This means that you have only 2 minutes to cover each year in QE2's life, impossible, especially when you need to spend at least 2 or 3 minutes just on her participation in the Falklands campaign, and almost 5 minutes on the bomb threat.

Personally i'm not surprised that they left out the footage they shot at Clydebank, yes it was important to us who know and love QE2, but to your average punter watching the programme, it would just be a load of weirdos living in the past!

Having spent nearly 20 year at sea, 16 with Cunard and 5 on QE2, i enjoyed the programme, and thought that the contributions from people truly involved with QE2, Capt McN, Maureen Ryan, Ronnie, Terry Kearney, Eric Flounders, even Johnny 'Two Jags' Prescott spoke well, was good.
Every TV programme makes mistakes, i'm sure the producer is screaming at whoever made the ones in this programme even as we type our comments, that's the nature of human fallibility.

Out of 10 i would give it 8, and has been said, 'must do better'. As we used to have inspections onboard called 'ATD', 'Attention To Detail', i would advise the production company to follow suite and employ Michael Gallagher as a consultant, you couldn't do better.
« Last Edit: Feb 14, 2018, 12:23 PM by Andy Holloway »

Online Willum

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Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #84 on: Feb 14, 2018, 11:23 AM »
Well said Andy, by the way a lot of the clips in the two films came from the Pond5 clip archive. If you go there and enter QE2 as a search there's lots of nostalgia.

https://www.pond5.com/stock-video-footage/1/qe2.html

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Online Michael Gallagher

Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #85 on: Feb 14, 2018, 11:25 AM »
Having dealt with dozens of film crews over the years I am a bit battle weary with them... it used to be a source of irritation to spend hours setting up a particular shot or arranging an interview - and disrupting the shipboard routine (as Andy will confirm) - only for it to not appear in the final programme. And then having to try and explain and placate those who went out of the way to make something happen only for it not to appear. But in the end it was not worth getting irritated as every Producer / Director had the final say in what was essentially their programme.

Film crews are a pain in the backside but I would volunteer to escort them as it would mean a chance to sail on the ships and those opportunities should never be turned down - even though many nights I'd go to bed mid-cruise wishing I was back home.

Overall the programme said some great things and made some great claims for QE2 and to those not as familiar with the ship as us it established and underlined her legacy. If I was running Cunard or Carnival I would be worried that nothing afloat today is going to achieve the sort of mythical status - whether deserved or not. QM2 is a great ship but she is not in people's hearts like QE2 is and there are all sorts of reasons for that - different times, French construction etc. Quite frankly she needs a Falklands...

As Andy says there is simply to much to put into the time they had.

The series continues with two episodes on Concorde and two on the Orient Express.

Offline Clydebuilt1971

Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #86 on: Feb 14, 2018, 11:39 AM »


The series continues with two episodes on Concorde and two on the Orient Express.

Looking fwd to the Concorde one - another amazing feat!

Gav

Offline Rob Lightbody

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Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #87 on: Feb 14, 2018, 11:57 AM »

Personally i'm not surprised that they left out the footage they shot at Clydebank, yes it was important to us who know and love QE2, but to your average punter watching the programme, it would just be a load of weirdos living in the past!


I'm not surprised either, but given the amount of disruption they caused at our events, and the amount of effort put in to helping them across many weeks, to have nothing to show at all is a bit rubbIsh. I know that they spent up to 6 hours filming participants who then had 30 seconds of screen time...

We aren't a business, but they treated us like one I think.

I expected a 20 second mention of how she still has many fans across the world, with a tiny shot of crowds at the conference, that's all. 20 seconds in 90 minutes of tv.
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Offline Rob Lightbody

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Online CasinoChris

Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #89 on: Feb 14, 2018, 01:07 PM »
Several of the QE2 books that I've read referred to the pilfering.
Apparently when Captain Bill Warwick arrived to take command he was quoted as saying
"They're stealing an ocean liner one piece at a time!"
Have seen several mentions of vandalism etc, they were slowing the job down as it was their
last one.........

Offline Rob Lightbody

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Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #90 on: Feb 14, 2018, 02:12 PM »
I'd be very interested to read source material, from no later than 1970, that describes it.
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Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #91 on: Feb 14, 2018, 03:13 PM »

I'd be very interested to read source material, from no later than 1970, that describes it.
I was thinking the same. I had a look at the Potter and Frost book, QE2 the authorised story this morning and could not see any reference to pilfering.

It is likely that pilfering went on at the yard, but it is the scale that I have doubt about and the story that someone unrolled a heavy roll of carper and had a template of a room to cut to size an exact fit of carpet, which is what I do not accept. 

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Online Andy Holloway

Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #92 on: Feb 14, 2018, 03:41 PM »
I was thinking the same. I had a look at the Potter and Frost book, QE2 the authorised story this morning and could not see any reference to pilfering.

It is likely that pilfering went on at the yard, but it is the scale that I have doubt about and the story that someone unrolled a heavy roll of carper and had a template of a room to cut to size an exact fit of carpet, which is what I do not accept.

Lynda believe me ANY THING is possible, the more bizarre the more believable it becomes.

Near where i used to work was an old garage with petrol pumps etc plus a quite large drive through car wash. One day two men turned up at 0700 with a flat bed lorry complete with HIAB crane and started dismantling it. They stopped for breakfast and went to a cafe opposite, got chatting to the owner, went back to work, back across for mid morning break and then again for lunch. Finally around 1500 they stuck their heads in the cafe to say good bye and thanks for everything.
The next morning the police were all over the forecourt as these two men had stolen the car wash, blatant and without any fear of being stopped!

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #93 on: Feb 14, 2018, 04:00 PM »
Lynda believe me ANY THING is possible, the more bizarre the more believable it becomes.

Near where i used to work was an old garage with petrol pumps etc plus a quite large drive through car wash. One day two men turned up at 0700 with a flat bed lorry complete with HIAB crane and started dismantling it. They stopped for breakfast and went to a cafe opposite, got chatting to the owner, went back to work, back across for mid morning break and then again for lunch. Finally around 1500 they stuck their heads in the cafe to say good bye and thanks for everything.
The next morning the police were all over the forecourt as these two men had stolen the car wash, blatant and without any fear of being stopped!


Andy, that made me laugh - I can just imagine the theft happening under the eyes of those around.  Yeah I suppose anything is possible. 
I was proud to be involved with planning QE2's 50 year conference in September 2017 in Clydebank
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Online Michael Gallagher

Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #94 on: Feb 14, 2018, 04:28 PM »
In August 1967 Bob Arnott, later to become QE2’s longest-serving Captain, was appointed Chief Officer, and his initial duties before the ship came into service were to oversee aspects of construction on Cunard’s behalf. He soon became aware of the practice of ‘squirrelling’, which was explained to him as just being a lucrative perk but, rather like some of the strikes, a means of keeping a good job going longer. That was not how he saw it, though, preferring as he did the epithet “larceny on a grand scale”.

I used to love to speak to him about his time at the yard and he was very entertaining when recalling stories of what he experienced personally when it came to ‘Squirrelling’.

No doubt QE2 was not the first ship to suffer from the practice, but it was so prevalent that Arnott later recalled that: “Some of the yard workers were stealing the ship faster than the others could build it!”

There was a thriving trade around Glasgow of materials removed from the ship, a trade that was so organised that items even had a fixed retail price including delivery. Paint was £1 a gallon, light fittings (including shades) from the cabins just 5 shillings (25 pence) and Formica sold at 10 shillings (50 pence) for 2.4 metres by 1.2 metres (8 foot by 4 foot) sections.

When rolls or carpet for the public rooms were laid out, they were found to have front room-shaped sections, complete with window bay, but out of them as if by a giant pastry-cutter. The main reception area, the Midships Lobby, had been fitted with a carpet that was in place at the end of the shift but a large square of it disappeared by the next morning. There were certainly some cosy and expensively carpeted living rooms in Clydebank that winter. One dismayed Cunard manager advised a steward “We won’t come here again.”

By way of example, Arnott cited one electrician whose home was raided  by the police, who was found to have removed from the ship 27 metres (30 yards) of carpet, two chests-of-drawers, a wall cabinet, three bookcases, three lounge stools, 55 metres (180 feet) of fiberglass, five lamps, 36 litres (8 gallons) of paint, plus crockery and soft furnishings. In mitigation the man’s solicitor implied such activity was the norm: “My client just walked off the ship with the stuff”.

It was regular practice for workers to walk out of the yard concealing items beneath their clothes – items ranging from copper piping to towels. Ironically, Bob Arnott noted, most of the stolen material had to be carried past the police station adjacent to the dock gates, but the prevailing attitude of the police was that although an ocean liner was being stolen piece by piece in from of them, there was little they could do about it.

And then there was wilful damage where petrol or paint would be found thrown over newly-laid carpets or cabins would flood thanks to piping that had been cut. The first Queen Elizabeth suffered hugely from this after she left Greenock after her major 1965 refit. QE2 suffered from this.

The point is such pilfering and damage would occur in any yard. If QE2 had been built on the Tyne or in Belfast the same would have happened. It happened countless times during Southampton refits.

A minority of people caused a major problem and the only reason Clyde shipyard workers are being highlighted is because the ship was built on the Clyde.

Online Lynda Bradford

Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #95 on: Feb 14, 2018, 05:15 PM »
 Forum member, Hugh Morrison, posted when the Channel 5 Producer first brought up the topic of pilfering and made a good response on the forum, which brings it into context.   

I was extremely sad to see that the only specific topic which you saw fit to suggest in the media coverage, with reference to the building of the vessel, was squirreling.
Of course there was pilfering of materials, but this was hardly specific to only the QE2. Pilfering took/takes place at all shipyards, building sites and works, not to mention distilleries. I do feel that the real amount of materials stolen is greatly exaggerated. 
Why do you feel it is necessary to make it a specific point for discussion for only the QE2?
I am sure that there is also pilfering takes place on cruise ships, both by the crew  and by souvenir searching passengers. If you really feel that it is a point for discussion it should be extended to crew and passengers.
The real problem is that in throwing such unsubstantiated mud around leads to a reputation which affects all concerned, most of whom, including myself, had no involvement in pilfering.
Media coverage of the conference would be a very good thing.
With respect to the building of the QE2, I feel that the vast majority of the correspondence on the media website reflects that most people involved have little or no knowledge or understanding of the huge amount of detail design and skilled construction which was performed by the shipyard in transforming the largely artistic external and interior design into a reality which has lasted so many years. The many aspects of construction seem to be largely forgotten such as the structural design of the hull - with much of the hull shaping work being performed using machinery which was over 60 years old. The design and installation of the systems which make the vessel comfortable and safe, such as the piping and sewage systems, electrical and lighting, ventilation and fire prevention and fire-fighting systems: these are only a few of the elements, mostly unseen, which made the ship what it was. Some may say that such systems are not really so special and are contained in most land based buildings. However the design of such systems becomes very much more complex if they have to work on board a vessel that is constantly moving, sometimes to fairly extreme degrees.
I feel that much more of the design and build aspects should be part of the conference to reflect what the title implies. Unfortunately there are relatively few of us left, both from the original Cunard and the shipyard teams, who were actually around at the time to relate now the stories of how things really were. Even if such aspects are minimal in the conference proceedings we should try and cover it them to some extent, in as positive manner as possible, in any media coverage.
I would therefore discourage any if not all references to squirreling in any media coverage and stick to celebrating the vessel itself.   


https://www.theqe2story.com/forum/index.php/topic,7776.msg87749.html#msg87749
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Offline dellboy

Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #96 on: Feb 14, 2018, 06:41 PM »
I wonder how much if at all, in percentage terms the cost of squirreling was/is factored into the cost of a ship or as part of general wastage. 
« Last Edit: Feb 14, 2018, 06:48 PM by dellboy »
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Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #97 on: Feb 14, 2018, 10:38 PM »
What I find highly unbelievable is the fact that it was stated that someone cut out a hole in the Double Room Carpet for a small cottage. If this is true..

Offline Rob Lightbody

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Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #98 on: Feb 14, 2018, 11:29 PM »
Thank you to Michael, Lynda and Hugh for the in-depth information posted above.

With regards to the pilfering, I need to choose my words carefully here ... I was trying to understand my indignant feelings a bit more.  It comes from being a local native, I feel a bit of the "them and us" thing, that must have been felt by the workers at the time.  The "them" is all the Cunard people from England.  The "Us" is the hard working ordinary people of the West of Scotland, especially Clydebank.  It made me feel really uncomfortable watching English (and yes Australian) people telling me how awful "we" had all been.

Also, since starting this site, I've regularly been told "facts" that have come from Officers and Crew on board Cunard ships, that are just completely incorrect.  I've spent quite a lot of time trying to correct them, and it was a large part of the reason I went to Dubai in 2011.  This includes the Captain of the Queen Elizabeth who tells anyone who will listen that QE2 has been open to the public for ages... they take it as fact, because of who he is.  It then gets repeated by fact over and over.
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Offline Clydebuilt1971

Re: Channel 5 Documentary: QE2 -The World's greatest cruise ship
« Reply #99 on: Feb 15, 2018, 08:45 AM »
Thanks for all the input on this subject however - if I may be so blunt - I think we need to get past it and get on with celebrating the ship, the engineering design, skill and workmanship that went into building the most famous ship on the planet.

Its part of her history whether we like it or not and I think we'd look a tad small minded to the outside world if we got too hung up on this.

This kind of media coverage did my head in when I was involved with Waverley until I realised that I couldn't change it - I could point things out but people chose what they wanted to hear and ignored the rest anyway.

The striking was also part and parcel of the Great Britain that was happening around the ship as she rose from her building ways in Clydebank. Unions had gotten too powerful, management too arrogant - no one was actually talking to each other anymore so industrial relations were probably at their lowest ebb (to be fair this didn't really change until the Work In at Fairfields led by Jimmy Reid in 1972 and when Jamie Webster revolutionised Worker - Management relations up at Govan in the 80s)
Add to that the lack of vision and investment in industry as a whole in Great Britain and the future was looking bleak.

Again part of the old girl's history.

Gav

« Last Edit: Feb 15, 2018, 09:25 AM by Clydebuilt1971 »