A Short History of the QE2

30 December 1964
Contract signed with John Brown Shipyard of Clydebank
5 July 1965
Keel laid. Assigned job number 736.
20 September 1967
Launched by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth 11.*
19 November 1968
QE2 sets sail from the fitting out berth at John Brown's under the command of Captain 'Bill' Warwick.
26 November 1968
Start of preliminary trials in the Irish Sea.
17 December 1968
Start of second trials.
23 December 1968
Maiden Cruise Greenock to Canary Islands. Turbine damage forced return to builders
1 April 1969
Fresh trials
18 April 1969
Delivered to Cunard.
22 April 1969
Preview Cruise to Las Palmas.*
2 May 1969
Official maiden voyage to New York.*
24 April 1970
First visit to Gibraltar.*
8 January 1971
Rescued passengers from Antilles, which had run aground.
May 1972. Ransome demand in mid-Atlantic
Refit at Vosper Thorneycroft at Southampton
20 Penthouses fitted
11th October 1973.
First visit to Halifax, Nova Scotia.
1 April 1974.
1654 passengers transfered at sea to Norwegian cruise ship Sea Venture.
5 April 1974.
Taken in tow by Joan Moran & Elizabeth Moran to Hamilton where damage repaired.
First world cruise*
8th February. First visit to Seychelles*
17th February. First visit to Sri Lanka*
25 March Passed through the Panama Canal for the first time.
Refit atBethlem Steel at Bayonne, New Jersey
2 Grand Suites plus 2 more Penthouses added
24 February 1978
First visit to Australia (Sydney).*
8 February 1979
First visit to Tristan da Cunha.*
1st October 1979
First visit to Boston, Massachusetts.
20th July 1981
First visit to the city of Quebec.
23rd July 1981
First visit to Bar Harbor. Maine.
25 April 1982
First visit to Philadelphia.*
May/June 1982
QE2 requisitioned for Falklands War as a troop transport. On 12 May 1982 she set sail for St Georgia with 3000 troops aboard, The ship arrived on May 27, disembarked the troops and then embarked the survivors of the HMS Ardent. Since British intelligence had learned that the Argentineans were using air reconnaissance to try and locate QE2, it left the same day.
11 June 1982
QE2 arrived safely back in Southampton.*
14 August 1982
QE2 returned to service following trooping duty in the Falkland Islands with a grey hull.
2 Dec 1982
Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother unveils the special Falklands Plaque on board the QE2*
July 1983
Refit at Lloyd Werft at Bremehaven
QE2, her black hull restored.
19 February 1985
Visit to Adelaide.*
October 1986
Work starts in Germany at Lloyd Werft Shipyard, Bremerhaven on the conversion from steam to diesel engines. Plus A further 8 Penthouses were added
25th April 1987
QE2 handed back to Cunard with the new diesel engines.
QE2 wins The Queen's Award for Export Achievement
Refit at Blohm Voss
24 July 1990
First visit to Liverpool.*
5th August 1992
First Visit to St. John, New Brunswick.
7 August 1992
Runs aground off Matha's Vineyard, Mass.*
December 1994
Extensive, much publicised refit by Blohm & Voss, Germany.
Magrodome & quarter deck swimming pool removed
11 September 1995
QE2 encountered Hurricane Luis on a Westbound Atlantic crossing and got hit by a 95 foot wave. This resulted in QE2 arriving in New York late and having to stay a day for repairs. Captain Warwick issued a certificate to all passengers and crew.
2nd January At 21:00 GMT the QE2 clocked up her four-millionth miles, the equivalent of sailing around the world 185 times!
November/December the QE2 underwent an $18-million overhaul at the A&P Shipyards in Southampton
Following the purchase of Cunard by the Carnival Corporation, QE2 again received a massive, multi-million dollar refurbishment. The refit took place at Lloyd-Werft, from November 12 to December 11, 1999.
29 August 2002
At approximately 2150 ship's time, the QE2 completed 5 million miles since being brought into service in 1969.
25 April Left New York with the QM2 on her last transatlatic voyage.
1 May Both Queens arrive in Southampton – the first time two Cunard Queens have been in the company’s home port since 1967. QE2 relinquishes the title of flagship to RMS Queen Mary 2.
5 November QE2 becomes Cunard’s longest serving express liner having completed 35 years, six months and three days of service – taking the record from Aquitania.
4th September 2005
Becomes the longest serving Cunard Liner ever as she sailed past the 36 years & 4 months set by Scythia.
9th September 2005
Maiden visit to St. John's, Newfoundland.
18th June 2007
Cunard announce the sale of the QE2 to Istithmar, the Dubai government's investment arm for 100 million dollars. A black day for lovers of the QE2.
17th September 2008
Final Call to Newport, Rhode Island.#
18th September 2008
Final Call to Boston, Massachusetts.#
19th September 2008
Final Call to Bar Harbor, Maine.#
20th September 2008
Final Call to St John, New Brunswick.#
21st September 2008
Final Call to Halifax, Nova Scotia.#
24th September 2008
Final Call to Quebec City, Canada, also the last port in Canada.#
11th November 2008
Departed Southampton & the UK for the last time.
* I have a First Day Cover for that event
# I was there.
QE2 items For Sale

[Vince's][CAMRA][Folk][Collecting][Web Sites][Geneology]