Author Topic: Thursday 27 November 2008 – The Handover Ceremony  (Read 304 times)

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Online Michael Gallagher

Thursday 27 November 2008 – The Handover Ceremony
« on: Nov 27, 2019, 06:55 AM »
At 1400 hours on Thursday 27 November 2008 the QE2 sale contract was signed by Peter Shanks (Chief Commercial Officer, Carnival UK) and Joe Sita (Nakheel’s Chief Executive) in QE2’s Boardroom, with Carol Marlow (Cunard President and Managing Director) and Manfred Ursprunger (Chief Executive Officer, QE2 Enterprises) looking on.

QE2 had a new owner.

That was 39 years 7 months and 9 days after she was officially handed over to Cunard on Friday 18 April 1969 (flag raising image).

That was 43 years 10 months and 28 days after the contract to build the ship was signed in the Bank of England on Wednesday 30 December 1964.

Online Michael Gallagher

Re: Thursday 27 November 2008 – The Handover Ceremony
« Reply #1 on: Nov 27, 2019, 06:57 AM »
Originally scheduled to start at 1500 hours, the late arrival of all of the guests resulted in the start of formal Handover Ceremony being delayed by approximately 20 – 25 minutes.

The ship’s senior officers were in attendance: Captain Ian McNaught, Staff Captain Hamish Sunter, Chief Engineer John Hanvey and Hotel Manager John Duffy.

Cunard President Carol Marlow was overcome with emotion during as soon as she started her speech and it took her a long time to regain her poise.

Carol said:

Your Excellency, Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen

The Cunard house flag was first raised above the then new Cunard Queen, Queen Elizabeth 2, on 18 April 1969 after Cunard had taken delivery of their new hope for the future.

Despite predictions of doom and gloom for her future QE2 went on to become the most famous, best loved and most successful ocean liner of all time.

Now it is time for Cunard to say goodbye to it’s longest-serving vessel.

The Paying Off Pennant you see flying proudly from her mast denotes the paying off of a vessel that has sailed further than any other.

And a vessel that is about to embark on an exciting new future here in Dubai where she will be enjoyed for generations to come who will marvel at the history of a great ocean liner whose record currently has no equal.

We are delighted that QE2 has found a new home here in Dubai – an Emirate with such a rich maritime heritage and a great tourist destination for the world to enjoy.

Before we officially commence with the flag ceremony, I would like to thank Captain Ian McNaught who, along with QE2’s 24 other Captains, has upheld the great Cunard tradition set down by our founder Samuel Cunard in 1839. I would like to thank the Senior Officers and Crew who have served on board this vessel so magnificently over the last 39 years.

And I would further like to thank Hotel Manager John Duffy who shares with this ship the ‘longest-serving’ accolade as he is the longest-serving four-stripe officer in the Cunard fleet.

Cunard must not and will not forget the legacy QE2 leaves behind.

Captain, may I ask you to lower our flags.



It was then time to lower the flags (the Cunard houseflag, the ‘Paying-Off’ Pennant and the UAE flag).

The ‘Paying-Off’ Pennant was lowered first followed by the Cunard flag and UAE flag at the same time.

A black crow flew in and then settled on top of QE2’s mast.

Captain McNaught then sounded QE2’s whistle for 39 seconds (one second for each year in service) at 1531 hours (1131 hours UK time) signaling the transfer of ownership. The crow soon disappeared as soon as the whistle started!

Sultan Bin Ahmed Sulayem then said a few words prior to the raising of the Nakheel houseflag on both the main mast and forward flagpole.

A moment later the blue Nakheel flag and UAE flag were simultaneously raised.

Carol Marlow then presented Captain McNaught with the ‘Paying-Off’ Pennant which had just been lowered and said a few words thanking him.

Captain McNaught presented Manfred Ursprunger (CEO QE2 Enterprises) with the Cunard houseflag.

John Duffy then accepted from Sultan Bin Ahmed Sulayem the framed certificate presenting the City of Southampton with the anchor that had been left behind at the Testbank facility in the city.

The VIPs then proceeded to a small reception in the forward section of the Queens Grill Lounge.


Offline Thomas Hypher

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Re: Thursday 27 November 2008 – The Handover Ceremony
« Reply #2 on: Nov 27, 2019, 11:35 AM »
Rather apt a black crow was present as it was the day the ship we knew and loved passed on into history in many ways. Watching the video of the handover ceremony still saddens me today.
First sailed on QE2 in August 2003 aged 6 years old. Last stepped foot and sailed on QE2 in July 2008. Last saw the seagoing QE2 in person from the decks of QM2, on QE2's last Transatlantic crossing (Eastbound tandem) in October 2008. Visited QE2, in her new life, in Dubai back in January 2020.

Offline June Ingram

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Re: Thursday 27 November 2008 – The Handover Ceremony
« Reply #3 on: Nov 27, 2019, 02:25 PM »
Many thanks, Michael !
QE2 - the ship for all of time, a ship of timeless beauty !

Online cunardqueen

Re: Thursday 27 November 2008 – The Handover Ceremony
« Reply #4 on: Nov 27, 2019, 07:10 PM »
Amazing !  Thanks for sharing

The photo below was taken of the crew calendar showing the month of Novemeber
I hope given the nanny state that the whole world seems to be under it doesnt cause offence
If it does..Tough
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!