Would You think I was barking if I told you that I am seriously looking at a project to get the Queen Mary home? I know there are 1001 hurdles to overcome but I say it is possible .......................What say you?
I would love to see something like that happen, personally I hate to see her in America ( No offence to any American members, they have looked after her ) but I think she should be here in the UK..
One item in particular always bothers me in projects like this. Given that the money to bring her home was forthcoming and she made it here, how would her upkeep be paid for.? She is an old ship and to keep her shipshape a lot of money would be needed. Visitors would not pay for it, nor I doubt would memorabilia. It would require a substantial guaranteed annual budget.
I have, unfortunately seen a number of projects come unstuck at that stage, following a successful aquisition and the vessel has had to be subsequently disposed of or scrapped through lack of funding.
I would love to see her home Steve but I have my reservations regarding her future once she was here. She would need a big home something like she has got now.
Things like, would she be afloat or in permanent drydock would have a big effect on funding. If this type of thing could be sorted first, the costings of her return could then be considered, with probably more likelyhood of financial support forthcoming from backers, as they would know she had a home and a viable future.
Certainly an interesting propostion, but surely the costs involved would be horrendous. She would have to be towed back to the UK, which would involve a trip around Cape Horn.
There is the problem of where she would go. Would she fit into the old Royal Docks? A upcoming propostion for use would be as an accommodation ship for the 2012 Olympics, but that is only a short term thing - surely she would have to run as a Hotel for which she is already set-up.
The most recent "try" at getting a former British ship home was the WINDSOR CASTLE project and they managed to interest a few backers. One of the reasons for its failure was the death of the ship's owner, who I believe was in favour of it. They did have a website set up, but unsure of whether it is still online - probably unlikely due to the ships recent scrapping.
As for you Steve - barking mad? I daren't comment on that, but if you are indeed serious I wish you success.
I for one would love to see her back, but agree with everybody else re the cost and maintainence, the weather for an old ship is worse here than california, however the KGV dock in Southampton would be a good place.
A great idea to have her permanently back where she belongs, but the financial viability of such a project in the long-term, assuming a suitable "berth" for her could be found or manufactured. It all comes down to the availability of money, be it through funding, wealthy well-wishers, corporate business - the annual upkeep bill will be staggering. I wonder how the Lottery Commission would view such a project ?
the cost of towing and insurance just to get her here would be ridiculous. KGV is still in use as a commercial ship repair yard so no go there, and I think that she would be left to rot if she came here anyway. Given our maritime history, the British public have no interest in old ships, just look at the Southsea, Windor Castle, royal yacht etc
I agree with the Public attitude to our maritime history, Re the KGV I heard that there were problems with Appledore Southampton in that they had no orders and had made a load redundant, thats why the suggestion.
Well I wonder about your first comment, perhaps there is some cause for concern over the vessels future. I heard a couple of days ago that the Spruce Goose which was in co location has been moved back to Arizona and is now owned by the original designer. So perhaps there is something going on that we are not aware of. Anybody heard anything else of this??.
And Dave I agree absolutely with your latter comments, so much should have been saved and now its all gone and there is very little chance!!.
And yes Dave I did do my little trick again...but I caught myself this time so all is well!!
I understand that Qe2 is still making a profit for the Americans but who knows when Queen Victoria arrives on our shores in 2007, I went on QE2 last september and she is starting to look tired and they do perform a lot of maintainance on her while the paying passengers are aboard, but still the best cruise I have been on , she and all her crew beat QM2 in to a cocked hat.
I haven't heard anything recently, but the following is part of an item I posted to another shipping forum a couple of months ago. At best, the financial situation must be rather shaky.
"The City of Long Beach, owners of the 'Queen Mary', have declared
the operators of that liner in default of the lease and are
threatening to take legal action if the dispute is not settled by
Unpaid rent from 2000 through 2004 and allegedly unjustly claimed
rent credits, which were to be used to develop the site, are at the
centre of the dispute. The amount in question totals over $3.4
million: the rental money is used by the city to maintain beaches
and cover the cost of lifeguards.
Joseph Prevratil the COE of the lessee, Queen's Seaport Development
Inc., was instrumental in saving the ship from being sold to Hong
Kong interests in the early nineties and the company has a contract
on the liner until 2061. He states that the company simply does not
have the money demanded by the municipal authorities."
An update on my previous message on the 'Queen Mary' finances:
The financial affairs pertaining to the 'Queen Mary' are fairly complex.
There's a nonprofit corporation (RMS Foundation) that actually operates the ship and another company (Queen's Seaport Development Inc.) that leases the ship and 55 acres of adjoining property from the City of Long Beach. Both apparently are controlled by the same individuals.
A dispute over the amount of monies owed the city by QSDI has had the effect of having QSDI declare Chapter Eleven Bandruptcy--a procedure by which a California court must approve a plan of financial reorganization after monetary matters have been decided to the satisfaction of all the parties involved. These matters are not likely to be resolved this year. RMS Foundation, the operating arm, is not in bankruptcy and day to day bills and payroll for the ships actual operation are being payed.
The city claims that about $4.4 million (and counting) on the lease is due and there is also about $1 million in disputed rent credits that QSDI is claiming for improvement and developing the 55 acres of land. The contract called for rent creditsto be deducted from the lease for development of the land and the actual improvements made or not made are now in dispute.
Court figures for RMS and QSDI show a loss of over $2 million in 2004 and also a loss in 2003. Those figures do not include legal costs, said to amount to another $2 million.
Another kicker is that a large investor in QSDI, Barney Ng, has filed a loan default against the company. As collateral for the loan, Mr. Ng holds the lease from the City covering the liner and the 55 acres of land. If QSDI cannot come up with the whereforall to cover the loan from outside sources, it looks as if he may end up with a liner and some land on his hands.
The above is probably as clear as mud, but things are apparently in a state of flux as far as the future operation of the liner is concerned.
I am awaiting a few E mails back from Calfornia and malaysia then I will hopefully give you more details, what I can say is that the berth she lies in is now clearly on the list for development (condos appartments Etc.....) and there are those who want shot of her by any means possible,I was on her three weeks ago and posted a few pics in the gallery.
incidently a figure of £600,000 has been touted to tow her to europe.
Hey Steve... It's a grand and noble idea, though as a Yankee that will be moving to California and adore sleeping on board i woudl be sad to see her go. Not to add my obstacles to the others, but I would contact the QM Foundation, Lovetta, they are and have always had a hell of a time keeping the hotel/attraction in the black. There are plans to save the Olympia(Regal Empress) and I my self fantasized about saving either the Augustus or Norway and dont want to see the Topaz go either... And let us not forget the dear Oriana... I actually started to do a plan for the Constitution before she sank, to bring her to NYC as a floating hotel... but the building codes alone are a problem. Evidently if the ship becomes static it becomes a building and then is governed by land based building codes which are nearly impossible to meet..
Do you think the market will support her out there?? She does look very out of place amongst the palm trees...Keep me posted... we could definitely sell out the return voyage even if she is towed...
all the best .. croix