They are on their way! Three of the world's most famous ships are heading for Southampton for the tenth anniversary of the Cunard flagship, Queen Mary 2 in the port on Friday.

The world's grandest ocean liner, QM2 and her sister ships, Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria, are sailing in formation from Lisbon, Portugal to Southampton ahead of a visit by the Duke of Edinburgh to celebrate QM2's tenth anniversary as Cunard's flagship.

QM2 is on the final leg of her annual world cruise and her sister ships were on hand to escort her home to Southampton in style. For the first time ever, the three Queens were photographed side-by-side at sea as part of a shoot which took months of meticulous planning.

Centrepiece of the shoot was QM2 herself, the only ocean liner in service today and still the fastest passenger ship afloat ten years after she was named by the Queen in Southampton back in 2004.

It took the three ships around an hour to sail out of Lisbon to the site of the shoot.

All shipping in the area had to be totally cleared for the three Queens to ensure absolute safety for the technical manoeuvre. Cunard director, Angus Struthers said: “This is the first time all three Queens of the Cunard fleet have been seen together anywhere outside Southampton or New York, and the first time these magnificent ships have been seen together at sea."

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