QE_Handover_(Vocus)[1]

In the above photo, Cunard President Peter Shanks holds the keys to the vessel that he then handed over to the Captain, Christopher Wells. As all my readers know, ships do not use keys to turn the engine on, but symbolic none the less. But I digress…..

At Fincantieri’s Monfalcone yard, the Italian shipbuilder delivered the Queen ELizabeth to Cunard Line. Unlike earlier in the week, this ship was actually accepted. [bazinga] Fincantieri also delivered the “Queen Victoria” in 2007, but built in their Marghera yard.

The 90,400 grt ship will be christened by Her Majesty The Queen on October 11th.

Press release after the break.

30 September 2010 – Cunard Line has taken delivery of Queen Elizabeth – the second largest Cunarder ever built and the third new liner for the luxury cruise vacation company in six years.

The Handover Ceremony took place today on board the new 92,400-ton vessel at the Fincantieri Monfalcone shipyard. The event included a speech by Cunard President Peter Shanks. The Italian flag was ceremonially lowered and the Blue Ensign was raised, marking the entry of another magnificent Cunard liner into the Register of British Shipping.

"This ceremony to mark the completion of the Queen Elizabeth and our acceptance of delivery, is just the first of a number of significant events over the next few weeks – including the ship’s official naming by Her Majesty The Queen in Southampton on Monday 11 October," said Shanks. "I’m certain the British will take this truly magnificent ship to their hearts, as they have all the Cunard Queens."

Queen Elizabeth is due to leave the shipyard today and sail to Southampton, where she will berth at the Ocean Cruise Terminal on Friday 8 October.

Queen Elizabeth will depart on her Maiden Voyage at 5:00pm on Tuesday 12 October.