Britannia to rule the waves

The largest ever cruise ship for Britain will be called Britannia, it has just been announced. P&O Cruises want to celebrate the "best of Britain past, present and future." The ship will carry the patriotic name as she travel around the world.

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Britannia to be biggest cruise ship for Britain

She will be called Britannia, cost £500 million to build and will be the biggest ever cruise ship for Britain. The 141,000 tonne ship is 20% bigger than any existing ship. It will carry 3,600 passengers and is more than 1000 feet long.

But with so many passengers, and ten other ships being based in the region, will they be able to fill her? Our Transport Correspondent Mike Pearse was given exclusive access to see the work in Italy and to talk to her captain from Sussex.

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Southampton's economy to get Britannia boost

David Dingle Chief Executive of P&O Cruises said:

Many ships have been called Britannia in the past dating back to the early 1800's. One of the most famous is the former Royal Yacht which is today a tourist attraction near Edinburgh.

This is great news for the south. Every time a ship pulls into Southampton the local economy gets a £2.5 million boost. From food suppliers to cab drivers this couldn't be better news.

– David Dingle, Chief Executive of P&O Cruises

Britannia - the name for Britain's newest and biggest cruise liner

An artist's impression of how Britannia will look when she is built Credit: P&O Cruises

The last major vessel to carry the name was the Royal Yacht which was retied in 1997. It will be the first in a new generation of "green ships" with a new style hull reducing fuel consumption by 20% and the most environmentally friendly in the world.

The 141,000 ton ship will be a major boost for Southampton where she will be based bringing in tens of millions of pounds to the local economy. It will bring to eleven the number of ships based in the port.

The ship will carry 3,600 passengers, she'll be 1,082 feet long and 25,000 tons bigger than any existing British cruise ships. Britannia will enter service in 2015 and cost £350 million

Britannia will arrive in Southampton in 2015 Credit: P&O Cruises
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