Page last updated at 16:09 GMT, Wednesday, 9 April 2008 17:09 UK

Queen to say goodbye to QE2 liner

The QE2 at Southampton
The QE2 has crossed the Atlantic more than 800 times

The Queen is to make a farewell visit to the world-famous QE2 passenger liner before the vessel is decommissioned and turned into a floating hotel in Dubai.

The visit, on 2 June, will be the third time the Queen has visited the Southampton-based ship since she named her at Clydebank, Scotland, in 1967.

The vessel is in her last year of passenger voyages after being bought by Dubai World for $100m (50.5m) in 2007.

The vessel's last voyage will see her reach Dubai on 28 November.

Carol Marlow, president and managing director of Cunard, which owns the QE2, said: "We are delighted and honoured that the Queen has chosen to visit QE2 to wish her farewell.

Final world tour

"Her majesty has taken a close interest in the ship over the last 40 years, and I am certain this will be a memorable occasion for all involved."

During her 41 years at sea, the 70,000-tonne QE2 has broken records, transported troops and hosted royalty.

She has travelled more than 5.6 million nautical miles - more than any other ship and the equivalent of travelling to the moon and back 13 times, a Cunard spokesperson said.

The QE2 has also carried more than 2.5 million passengers, completed 25 world cruises, crossed the Atlantic 802 times and is still the fastest merchant ship in operation - being able to go faster backwards than most cruise ships can go forwards, the spokesperson added.

In January, the QE2 departed from Southampton on a final world trip in tandem with Cunard's latest addition, Queen Victoria, which departed on her maiden world cruise.


SEE ALSO
QE2 departs on final world trip
06 Jan 08 |  Hampshire
In pictures: The QE2 through the ages
21 Sep 07 |  In Pictures
QE2 sets off on birthday cruise
15 Sep 07 |  England
QE2 set to become floating hotel
18 Jun 07 |  Business

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