Tuesday, 10 July 2012

P&O Cruises Grand Event - The Out-Takes.

Sifting through my photos from last week's P&O extravaganza (see my previous blog dated Friday 6th July 2012), I stumbled across this shot (see above).  I remember being attracted by the two yachts, especially the one with the big red sails, but I was particularly drawn to the magnificent building across the water and just managed to get one picture with them all in frame.

It was a dull, damp day, and the picture shows it, but I love the way the red sails sing out against the dark green of the trees and the blue-grey water, and that building really looks as though it means business; it looks solid, stately and defiant over there on the shoreline, surrounded by those massive oaks.

Looking at the picture again, I discovered that I'd photographed Netley Castle, near the village of Netley and the ruins of Netley Abbey.  The Castle was built for Henry VIII in the fifteen hundreds as a coastal fort for the defence of Southampton and Portsmouth, and is still in use today.... as privately owned apartments. Ah well....

The picture shows Netley Castle, Netley, Hampshire, and the two yachts on Southampton Water, at 10:11 on Tuesday 3rd July 2012, the day of the P&O Cruises 175th birthday celebrations.

To see more out-takes from my P&O Grand Event, click on the link below.

To read about Netley Castle, click on the link below.

To find about Netley Abbey, click on the link below.

Friday, 6 July 2012

P&O Cruises 175 Years - The Grand Event.

Last Tuesday was a very busy day on Southampton Water.  There were seven cruise ships in port, a vintage paddle steamer, a steamship, a tall ship, ferry boats, tug boats, sightseeing boats, pleasure boats, yachts, cargo ships and a state-of-the-art warship.  For some it was business as usual, but most were there to mark the 175th Anniversary of P&O Cruises, The Grand Event 03 July 2012, bringing together the entire fleet of seven ships to their home port of Southampton for a day of celebrations.

Not that I could see the activities on board each of the seven ships, but I did hear tell of fabulous lunches, famous ballerinas, royalty, and some 30,000 people embarking and disembarking, swelling the population of Southampton almost to bursting.  It is true that Darcey Bussell greeted the fleet as they arrived and that HRH The Princess Royal reviewed the fleet and took the salute as they left.  It's also true that it was a very wet day in Southampton and the promised flypast of a seven-plane formation of the RAF Red Arrows was cancelled, due to the poor visibility and low cloud cover.

Without a doubt, it was a real thrill to see all those ships and, despite the mist and persistent rain, lots of people turned out with their umbrellas and waterproofs to watch as the seven ships left dock and processed down Southampton Water to a volley of fireworks and a cacophony of ships whistles.  I even managed to grab a few interesting photos throughout the day.  The picture at the top gives a feel for the smoky splendour of ships, water-spray and sparkling fireworks on Southampton Water, Hampshire, at 19:14 on Tuesday 3rd July 2012.  The picture at the bottom gives a close-up view of Ventura joining the procession at 18:41 on the same day.

To see more of my photos of The Grand Event, click on the link below.

To visit The Grand Event P&O website, click on the link below.

NB: The list of big ships reads something like this: Oceana, Adonia, Azura, Oriana, Aurora, Arcadia and Ventura (the seven P&O ships); paddle steamer Balmoral; steam ship Shieldhall; tall ship Tenacious; air defence destroyer HMS Dragon; Trinity House flagship Patricia.

Monday, 2 July 2012

Round The Island Race 2012.

There are usually quite a few yachts to be seen on Southampton Water, but over the weekend there seemed to be more than usual, and after a bit of ferreting around on the internet, I discovered that it was the Round the Island Race 2012 on Saturday 30th June, and I'd missed it!  Not that I would have visited the Isle of Wight to watch the event, but I might just have ventured down the coast to Lepe (one of the closest mainland points to the Isle of Wight) for a photo opportunity and to watch the hundreds of glamorous yachts pouring out of Cowes and jostling for position in the Solent.  As it is, I was blissfully unaware and the only photo I can find from the weekend features a seagull - not a yacht in sight!  Ah well.....

The picture shows the lone seagull, on Southampton Water, Hampshire, at 18:03 on Saturday 30th June 2012.

Click on the link below to watch the start of the Round the Island Race 2012.

Click on the link below to visit the Round the Island Race website.