The Great New v Old Debate

Chris Isaac
20th September 2006, 11:39
I have seen much discussion (heated at times) about the merits of new passenger ships versus the grace of the old.
Most of us were at sea during the 50s 60s and 70s undoubtedly the zenith of the British Passenger Fleet.
My own personal views favour the old but I think many of us must feel a great deal of regret that absolutely nothing was done to preserve a little bit of that glorious heritage.
The Queen Elizabeth was allowed to go at the end of her useful life.
The Canberra and Windsor Castle, both hauled up a beach and ripped apart.
Only the Americans placed some value on that heritage and preserved the Queen Mary.
Cunard, P & O and Union Castle were the greatest of our shipping companies and we did very nearly nothing to preserve the past. I was for a time a member of the group trying to preserve Windsor Castle, it came to nothing as we could not find patronage or funding, despite approaching government and Royalty.
Its all well and good us all getting dewy eyed about the past but as a nation, we blew it!

Pat McCardle
20th September 2006, 13:23
Well said Chris & so very, very true!

Jan Hendrik
20th September 2006, 13:34
Preservation of ss Rotterdam is in progress.
She will be moored at a top location in Rotterdam by mid next year.

20th September 2006, 15:40
We always seem to want to preserve the past by public subscription. I cannot recall a, shipping company willing to hand over a redundant vessel and/or pay a part of its preservation.
In Scotland we have an abundance of old castles and houses that were "given" to the Nation as part of an Inheritance Tax deal. The owners still live in most of them and the upkeep is paid for by the taxpayer.
It is the same with paintings etc. given over, they are supposed to be available to the public for viewing. Try and get to see any of them. To be honest, I think that the upkeep of a ship must cost an anormous amount of money. Better if we took the money and started a fund for ex.M.N. guys on hard times.


" look forwards "

31st March 2007, 05:59
Chris, the White Star Line held some of the most famous British liners of all time also. Besides the Titanic, there were other extremely popular liners in Britain; the "Big Four" which consisted of the Baltic, Celtic, Cedric, and Adriatic. Not to mention the Britannic (1920), Olympic, and the tender Nomadic.

31st March 2007, 12:58
quite agree with you Chris. We do,nt do much to preserve our heritage. I think we are in a culture of what is in for me. What does it cost? ( too much get rid of it) Bob

Syd young
31st March 2007, 13:20
I could never understand why the Mary went to the USA of the Lizze went to Japan after all we preserve the Great Britain in Bristol and the Warrior and Victory in Portsmouth,and these are Royal naval ships so why are Liners second best.I am sure visitors to both ships would have been lucrative income,this country was their home(MAD)

31st March 2007, 16:40
Syd Young,
Long Beach aquired the Queen Mary due to money set aside from oil drilling. They wanted a maritime museum and the RMS Queen Mary fit the bill. You're right though. I do not know why Great Britain let the Queen mary slip out of their hands. We both can say thought hat whatever country she lies in, at least she is preserved and that is what matters. Preserving maritime heritage is crucial for our future population to learn of the world's history and the Queen mary is a perfect example of the fine British maritime heritage.

31st March 2007, 18:42
I saw Queen Mary in Long Beach a month ago and she is looking a bit run down. With all the tales of bankruptcy and who now owns her and the debts, I guess the maintenance budgets are beginning to dry up. Her funnels have been bleached a horrible orange by the sun. If I can work out how, I will post a photo of her near sunset. BTW the QE(1) went to Hong Kong where she caught fire and was lost, while being converted to become a floating university.

31st March 2007, 19:56
The main problems now are the property developers who seem to me to want to obliterate any sign or example of maritime history whether Naval or Merchant.

Here on Merseyside there are number of examples of this. The Historic Warships have been evicted because of property development. The Liverpool Dock System is being decimated and filled in because of property development, and the famous Bar Lightship 'Planet' is in line for eviction from the Albert Dock, because in the words of certain business people ' she is not suitable for the Albert Dock ', she takes up too much room.

Soon Liverpool will have nothing of Maritime History left. It will consist of large expanses of luxery waterfront flats,appartments and offices which nobody can afford or want.

3rd April 2007, 19:20
The main problems now are the property developers who seem to me to want to obliterate any sign or example of maritime history whether Naval or Merchant.
Soon Liverpool will have nothing of Maritime History left. It will consist of large expanses of luxery waterfront flats,appartments and offices which nobody can afford or want.

I suspect a similar thing is happening in Cape Town at the V&A waterfront, the accent is no longer on "working harbour" but on yuppies, expensive apartments, image, glitz and glamour. I dont know if its true but the maritime museum has been closed, the Alwyn Vintcent has been left to rot, the historic buildings have lost their history and ships and harbours do not feature in the grand scheme of things. Cape Town should have been the one that brought the Windsor Castle home, but it did not even feature on their future plans at all. Sorry to say but South Africa's history of shipping preservation is atrocious too.

Jeff Taylor
5th April 2007, 20:10
I stayed onboard the Mary last spring during the QM/QM2 photo op when they met in Long Beach, and I concur that she is looking a bit run down, and honestly somewhat spooky at night in the hotel accomodatios. In case you hadn't heard, however, the operators and the town have finally resolved their differences, and are in the process of leasing a major parcel of land adjacent to the ship for development, and some of the proceeds are going to be used for major upgrades to the ship. Several plans are being evaluated, but the general focus will be to get rid of a lot of the tacky retail/food operations and exhibits which were added over the years, and restore major portions of the former public areas to their original glory. Don't hold your breath, but it sounds good.

7th April 2007, 09:08
Although she is not of the same calibre as passenger liners, the museum ship "Cap San Diego" which is moored in Hamburg still recieves contributions from her original owners Hamburg Sud for her upkeep and preservation. It was a year ago she was given an overhaul by Bohm + Voss that enabled classification and her return to seaworthiness. She is a living example of a vessel that dates back to the early 60's and the period before containerisation.