SS Shieldhall, Southampton’s heritage steamship, will embark on her 2015 sailing programme with three cruises over the weekend of 30th and 31st May. A morning family cruise on Sat 30th May between 11am and 1pm will see a party of Vikings on board, marking 1000 years of King Canute in Southampton. There will be lots of photo opportunities and hands-on activities, with an added commentary referencing the history of the docks and describing the cruise ships in port. Tickets for the Vikings Cruise are £18 for adults, with up to six accompanying children admitted free of charge.
On the afternoon of 30th May Shieldhall will set out on a Docks Commentary Cruise (3.30pm – 5.30pm), sailing close to the might cruise ships Arcadia, Britannia, Caribbean Princess and Celebrity Eclipse. Tickets are £18 adults, £5 children with a family ticket (2 adults and 2 children) costing £41.
Sunday 31st May will see Shieldhall set sail on a lunchtime 3hr Live Music Excursion, between 12 noon and 3pm, with Johnny Cash tribute band ‘Cash Converted’ on board. Tickets are £26 adults, £10 children with a family ticket (2 adults and 2 children) costing £62.
Shieldhall is considered to be the largest passenger-cargo steamship still active in Europe, and passengers are invited to explore her engine and boiler rooms and access the bridge during their time spent on board. Run by volunteers, the steamship was the recipient of a Heritage Lottery Grant two years ago, and over the winter has seen a number of improvements to her facilities on board. New ladies and gents heads have been installed, together with a volunteer mess room, whilst interpretation panels and children’s logbooks are being introduced.
‘We are looking forward to the 2015 season’ said Marketing Director Nigel Philpott. ‘Shieldhall has undergone her sea trials and our crew can’t wait for the season to commence. All the hard winter work pays off when we can fire up the engines and take Shieldhall out into Southampton Water and beyond. 2015 marks the 60th anniversary of the launch of Shieldhall in Glasgow, and we have a full programme of cruises to mark the occasion, including a Titanic themed cruise on Sun 14 June and a 60th anniversary excursion on Sun 5 July.’
Cruises leave Berth 48, Eastern Docks, Southampton via Dock Gate 4. Tickets for the cruises can be booked on-line at www.ss-shieldhall.co.uk or by calling 0844 357 2329.