P&O Fleet Gathers For Grand Event

P&O Cruises celebrated its 175th anniversary in style yesterday with a gathering of its entire fleet of 7 ships in their homeport of Southampton for the very first time. Dubbed the “Grand Event”, the stunning display was attended by Her Royal Highness the Princess Royal, ballerina Darcey Bussell, dignitaries and passengers.

 

Despite inclement weather that forced the cancellation of a flypast and aerial display by the Royal Air Force’s Red Arrows, thousands of people lined the shores to witness the Adonia, Arcadia, Aurora, Azura, Oceana, Oriana and Ventura docked at different points in port. Fireworks lit up the sky as each ship sailed down the Solent between Weston Shore and Hythe out to sea in single file, reviewed by the Princess Royal onboard the Trinity House vessel Patricia.

 

Onboard the vessels, entertainment staff in period dress welcomed passengers in a throwback to the line’s beginnings in 1837 as the Peninsula Steam Navigation Company. The celebrations continued with a special themed evening that included a commemorative dinner, champagne deck party and marching band.

 

Part of year-long festivities, the Grand Event marks the line’s heritage and cements its position in British maritime history. P&O Cruises is inviting past passengers to share their memories and stories of travelling with the line.

 

For more information, visit www.pocruises.com.

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