Friday, 26 September 2014

First pictures of P&O's newest cruise ship, Britannia, in her red, white and blue Union Flag livery

It’s been a long time coming, from the first unveiling of the artist’s impressions, to the start of painting initiated by two of the most senior executives in the cruise world - from both sides of the Atlantic. But the dramatic Union Jack bow of P&O’s Britannia is finally complete and ready to be shown off in all its red, white and blue glory.

At 94 metres long, it is the world’s largest contemporary version of the Union Flag and it has taken 420 litres of paint to complete - 320 litres of red and 180 litres of blue. Plus another 160 litres to create the bold P&O logo at the very front of the ship.

Florida’s richest man, Micky Arison - chairman of P&O’s parent company, Carnival Corporation - and David Dingle, chairman of Carnival UK, started the paint job three weeks ago. A team of workers finally completed the job yesterday while the vessel was back in dry-dock for a few finishing touches.

The £500 million ship, under construction at a shipyard in north-east Italy, will arrive in Southampton in March, ready for a spectacular christening ceremony and a sold-out 14-night maiden voyage to the Mediterranean.

Pictures by James Morgan