Queen Victoria cruise ship heads for River Mersey on Monday THOUSANDS of people are expected to turn out to welcome an iconic ocean liner on its maiden voyage to Liverpool.
Cunard’s 90,000-ton Queen Victoria, which contains a two-storey library, a ballroom and an 806-seater theatre, will dock at its spiritual home on Monday, with the Duchess of Cornwall on board.
Its arrival will be a symbolic moment in its UK tour to mark the 170th anniversary of the departure of Cunard’s first vessel, Britannia, from Liverpool to Boston, in July, 1840. The Duchess, who launched the Queen Victoria in December 2007, will be present for a ceremonial exchange of plaques to mark the historic occasion.
Cllr Wendy Simon, Liverpool council’s cabinet member for culture and tourism, said:
“The visit has huge historical significance for the city and Cunard and it’s a huge boost to Liverpool’s pride and economy that vessels of this magnitude are now a more common sight thanks to the cruise terminal.’’
The luxury liner, which is the second largest Cunard ship ever built, will be carrying 2,014 passengers and 1,200 crew and is expected to berth between 9am and 9.30am, but will be visible in the Mersey estuary from 7.15am.
It is scheduled to leave the city at 11pm and its departure will be marked by a short fireworks display at 10.50pm.
Peter Shanks, president and managing director of Cunard, said: “Liverpool is our spiritual home and the welcomes our ships always receive are the ones to remember for their warmth and size of the crowds.”
In a bid to control crowds and traffic on the day, the council will put a one-way traffic system in place on Princes Parade from 7am – 11.30pm, with vehicle access only from the northern end via the Bath Street roundabout. THE DAILY POST