Cunard Line will proudly celebrate its 175th Anniversary in 2015 with a special collection of remarkable anniversary cruises and events that will pay homage to significant moments in the company’s illustrious history. These highly anticipated sailings will give loyal and new Cunarders exciting opportunities to explore the ultimate in cruising adventures with Cunard’s luxurious vessels – flagship Queen Mary 2, Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth.
The 175th Anniversary Cruises will go on sale to the public on 13 March. Diamond and Platinum World Club members will be able to book beginning on 11 March 2014, two days earlier than the public sale date, in anticipation of a high demand for these historic commemorative sailings. Past passengers may also receive 5% off fares through 31 August 2014.
Among the momentous celebrations, all three Queens will meet in Southampton on 3 May 2015 at the close of their spectacular World Cruises. This Royal Rendezvous will be followed by the unprecedented sight of all three Queens together at Cunard’s “spiritual” home of Liverpool on 25 May – the first time the entire fleet will have been together on the River Mersey. Liverpool is Cunard’s birthplace and was home to the Line’s Head Office from 1839 to 1967. The Cunard Building on the Pierhead remains one of the most significant buildings in the city and part of a World Heritage site.
Queen Mary 2 will arrive in Liverpool on Sunday 24 May 2015 and make her first-ever overnight stay in the city, berthed in sight of the Cunard Building. The following morning, on Monday 25 May, Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria will sail into the city and for a time all three ships of the Cunard fleet will line up on the Mersey in a spectacle that is expected to draw huge crowds. Over a million people saw Queen Elizabeth 2 sail into Liverpool for the first time in July 1990.
Queen Mary 2 will then take her leave and sail out of Liverpool on Monday 25 May as Queen Elizabeth berths at the landing stage and Queen Victoria remains anchored in the Mersey. Late in the evening, Queen Elizabeth will set sail and Queen Victoria will then take the berth for an overnight stay.
Prior to that, Queen Victoria will call at Cobh, Ireland, on 7 May to commemorate the 100th Anniversary of the sinking of Cunard’s Lusitania – a poignant visit that will give passengers the opportunity to attend ceremonies at the town’s memorial. In all, Cunard lost 22 ships during the First World War, including Carpathia which had rescued all of the survivors of the Titanic. A special tribute will be paid to the ships, and Cunard men, that were lost in the War.
The 175th Anniversary celebrations will continue in true Cunard style with Queen Mary 2 echoing the very first Transatlantic Crossing, which was inaugurated by Cunard’s Britannia in July 1840. Every year since then, Cunard ships have crossed and re-crossed the Atlantic, in peace and war, without fail. Queen Mary 2 will depart Liverpool on 4 July – 175 years to the day since Britannia began her journey – and will be enthusiastically welcomed at both Halifax and then Boston, just as Britannia was 175 years previously. This will also be the first time since 1968 that a Cunard ship has departed from Liverpool for America.
“Cunard history reads like no other,” said David Dingle, CEO of Cunard Line. “For so long, the heartbeats of Cunard and Britain have been as one, and we intend to celebrate this landmark anniversary in grand style. These special voyages have been planned over many months to commemorate key dates in the company’s history with all who wish to be part of Cunard’s special and unique heritage.”
Dingle continued, “We look forward to delivering this year of spectacle and celebration to the many people who share the pride we feel in Cunard’s ongoing success on both sides of the Atlantic and beyond.”