Former staff on board Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth 2 cruise ship have travelled from across the globe to attend a reunion.

The event, the third of its kind and organised by Tara Doel and Janice Jefferey (pictured below), saw hundreds of people travel to Southampton to see old friends.

Launched in 1967 by HM Queen Elizabeth, the QE2 was the flagship of the Cunard Line for over 40 years and was one of the last great Transatlantic liners.

It was retired in 2008.

Daily Echo: Janice Jefferey and Tara DoelThe weekend saw the former colleagues reunite during a ball at the Leonardo Grand Hotel in West Quay Road and a Sunday lunch at The Grand.

Speaking at lunch, Tara, 59, said: “I think the QE2 was just an iconic cruise ship, and all the crew that were on her have this close bond - and that is whether you were on her in the 70s or if you left in 2008.

“When she went out of service, we all met and watched the ship sail away and the idea for these reunions grew a little bit there.

“We wouldn’t be able to do it without social media; we have people that come from all over the world to come to this."

Daily Echo: Richard English, 59Richard English, 59 (Image: Newsquest, Jose Ramos)

British-born Richard English, 59, was a waiter and an auctioneer on the ship and now lives in Georgia in the US.

He said: “A lot of the conversations here start with 'what year were you working?' and 'what did you do?', because there were just so many people that worked there and that you didn’t actually meet.

“Sometimes you don’t recognise them, but for at least a few you can go ‘Oh yeah, I remember you’.

“All of us share that identity.”

Daily Echo: Steve McLaughlin, 59Steve McLaughlin, 59 (Image: Newsquest, Jose Ramos)

Steve McLaughlin, was born in Scotland but now lives in Sydney in Australia.

He flew to the UK just to attend the reunion.

The 59-year-old used to work in the purser's office on the ship - the department in charge of financial matters on board.

He is now is a director of sales at an expedition cruise company.

He said: “I always put my business first and didn’t attend these reunions -  but I always kicked myself for it.

“So, I said to Janice and Taya 'I am coming this time, come what may'.

"It has been amazing - I have seen people who I have not seen for years.”