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Hail to the Queen Mary 2 on her 10th birthday

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It seems like just yesterday that Cunard Line launched its grand flagship, Queen Mary 2 but in actuality it was 10 years ago. In celebration of her anniversary the company’s three ship fleet met in Southampton, England, this morning. This was a rare occasion to see the trio of Queens that includes Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria together in one port. Check it out for yourself, if you’re interested at : http://bit.ly/1l5IJiY or to view video highlights of HRH The Duke of Edinburgh’s visit aboard, go to: http://bit.ly/DukeOfEdinburgh.

The ships, which arrived at the crack of dawn presented a regal birthday salute to Queen Mary 2 – “Happy Birthday” in ships' whistles (foghorns in common parlance) sounding out across Southampton Water. This was followed by a special reception and lunch aboard Queen Mary 2 for invited guests in the presence of His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh, who last visited the ship when accompanying Her Majesty The Queen to name her in 2004. Prior to the reception and luncheon, His Royal Highness visited several behind-the-scenes areas to meet with crew who perform different roles on board. He spent time in the ship’s Laundry, crew gymnasium, crew training room / library, and one of the crew bars. After meeting officers, he was given a tour of the largest Bridge at sea and was invited to sign the Visitor’s Book.

“We are honoured that His Royal Highness visited our flagship Queen Mary 2 on such a special day in the history of the world's only ocean liner,” said David Dingle, CEO for Cunard Line. “For him to have spent time with many of our 1,200 staff was very exciting and highly appropriate, for it is they who have made Queen Mary 2 the great success she is today. As we reflect on her first decade of excellence, we look forward to the next ten years and are delighted to have had His Royal Highness taking part in these celebrations with us, as he was also present at her entry into service in 2004.Later in the evening, a ten-minute firework display – one minute for each of Queen Mary 2's ten years in service – will begin at 10:00 p.m. local time and create a spectacular send-off before the flagship leads her younger sisters in convoy down to the Solent.

No ship celebration is complete with fireworks which were set off later that night prior to the Queen Mary 2 special anniversary Transatlantic Crossing to New York. The Queen Elizabeth will sail on a short break to Hamburg, and Queen Victoria will be headed for the Baltic capitals. Since entering service, Queen Mary 2 has sailed 1.5 million nautical miles on over 400 voyages including 213 Transatlantic Crossings. She has called at 182 ports in 60 countries and carried over 1.3 million guests.

Since entering service, Queen Mary 2 has sailed 1.5 million nautical miles on over 400 voyages including 213 Transatlantic Crossings. She has called at 182 ports in 60 countries and carried more than1.3 million guests.

For more information about Queen Mary 2, or to book a voyage, contact your Travel Agent, call Cunard Line at 1-800-728-6273, or visit www.cunard.com.

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