The Unseen Queen
Ahead of The Queen's 90th birthday tomorrow Cunard, the luxury cruise line, has released from their archives a series of never-before-seen photos of Her Majesty, to mark the occasion. The photos, which record each of the Cunard events that she attended, include The Queen attending her first Cunard event in 1938 when she was 12 years old. At the time she accompanied her mother Queen Elizabeth to the launch of Queen Elizabeth, the biggest liner in the world. Since then The Queen has launched and named four Cunard ships. Her Majesty is the only person present at the launch of all three Cunard Elizabeth's - the first in 1938, QE2 in 1967 and Queen Elizabeth in 2010.
Launch of Caronia – Thursday 30 October, 1947
HRH Princess Elizabeth, aged 21, had been asked to perform the launch of Caronia – a ship that would become the most luxurious cruise ship in the world and noted for her unusual green livery. This would be the last public function that the Princess would undertake in the weeks before her marriage to the dashing young Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten, who would accompany his bride-to-be to Clydeside of the occasion. After the launch a ration-breaking lunch of cream of tomato soup; cold turkey, ham and tongue; potato croquette potatoes and green peas; Pear Melba followed by coffee was served.
Launch of Queen Elizabeth 2 – Wednesday 20 September, 1967
The Queen had her first view of what was to become QE2 as she flew overhead prior to landing at Abbotsinch Airport in Glasgow. She was then driven to the shipbuilder’s offices. There she was met by Admiral Sir Angus Cunninghame Graham, Lord Lieutenant of Dunbartonshire who presented Sir Basil Smallpeice and Lord Aberconway to Her Majesty. After a private luncheon party in the Boardroom The
Queen then made the two-minute car journey to the launching berth where she and the Duke spent 20 minutes inspecting the launching arrangements.