Outings

Ocean Liner Exhibit, V & A Museum

 

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A few weekends ago I visited the Ocean Liners: Speed and Style exhibit at the V & A Museum, London. The museum website described it as “Experience a unique journey through the design stories of the world’s greatest ocean liners, including the Titanic, Normandie, the Queen Mary and the Canberra, and find out how these impressive vessels helped shape the modern world.” It is running presently until June 17th 2018.

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I wanted to visit the exhibit after going on two cruises, and thought it would be an interesting subject, with lots of history. The exhibit was much quieter and more adult friendly. There was more space, and didn’t feel like you had to rush.

It started off with lots of posters advertising cruises and the ships back in the day, there was also an old black and white video, and models of ships.

The next few rooms were all actual items from past cruises and ships. Doors, furniture, carpets, vases etc. All with the signage next to it, saying the ship and year, with a little information.

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On a cruise, you realise how tasteful everything is, and it was back in the day – maybe even more so. Some of them were so glamorous – and they sold it that way!

On ships, they had the classes broken up into different sections of the ship. The first class lounge had prime location – mid ship, on a higher deck, as if it was bad weather – this is the best place to be.

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There was a room dedicated to the engine and mechanics. This room was dark and painted black so it gave you the feeling of being lower down on a ship.

The best part was the ‘Life on board’ section, there was a big screen showing the sea with a railing to give you the impression you was on the ship! There were mannequins showcasing staff uniforms, and the swimming wear from old times. There was even a deck chair from the titanic!

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They had videos showing, with the room broken into smaller sections – so the cabin rooms, dining, fashion etc. Lots of pieces to look at.

The last room had an actual piece of The Titanic in – and even more surprisingly it was the first time it had been back in Europe since it had set sail! There was also a short video clip with movies/films with ships featured, one was Titanic by James Cameron. It just makes me feel instantly sad!

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Overall, I enjoyed the exhibit and would recommend if you was interested in the good old days of luxury cruise ships and liners, and like learning about the history of them. We went on a Saturday, and I booked the tickets about an hour before going, so it’s not too busy.

 

Outings

Day out in Portsmouth!

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Over the last August Bank Holiday, we decided to go to Portsmouth. We had last been about 3 years ago.

But this time, my partner wanted to visit the Historic Dockyard, I didn’t mind going as long as I got to visit Gunwharf Quays after!

We got an early start, and managed to get in to the second car park we found. Then a short walk to the Dockyard. We bought a ticket which gained entrance to all the attraction’s, and apparently lasts a year!

The first ship we saw, (pictured above) and that you can actually walk on and around was The HMS Warrior. First thing I learnt, the steps was super tiny and narrow. So difficult to walk up and down. Must have been awful if they was at sea, and there was bad weather!

I liked the way they had the ship and equipment set up so we can see what it would have been like.

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We walked round most of The Dockyard (it was really big), we also went and saw The HMS Victory – which was Lord Nelson’s ship. This one was huge! You was given a headset, which you then pointed at various points, and that then gave you information. You started by walking up the stairs, and then walking round each deck, going down and down. I liked this style, as felt like you didn’t miss anything and wasn’t walking in front of people all over the place.

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We also went into the specially built museum to showcase the Mary Rose. This has taken years and years to bring up from the sea bed along with anything else they could find/salvage. This was actually Henry VIII’s favourite warship.

The part of the ship that was bought up, is in a special airtight room that has a certain temperature and is constantly monitored.

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We also visited a few of the museums, including a new part which was Women and the Royal Navy. That was quite interesting.

We missed the submarine part as the queue was over half hour.

We then walked to Gunwharf Quays, we headed to the front and grabbed a late lunch. We sat outside overlooking the harbour, in the sun. It felt like a holiday!

We then hit the shops! I got a shirt from Superdry, and a bundle of coconut goodness from The Body Shop, plus a coconut Toblerone to try!

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