The huge anchor from the city’s beloved cruise-liner the QE2, has been re-homed on the footpath in front of Holy Rood Church. On 10 July, the 13 tonne anchor, given to Southampton City Council as a gift from Cunard was lifted into place. It will create another historical site in Southampton and will be celebrated with a formal opening in the late summer.
Councillor Royston Smith, Leader of Southampton City Council, said: “Cunard’s generous gift has finally been given an appropriate home in Southampton. Not only will it add an important heritage site to the city, it will also raise the profile of the QE2 Mile and ultimately attract more people to Southampton’s Old Town. I look forward to formally unveiling the name plaque and opening the site with Cunard in due course.”
Peter Shanks, Cunard President and Managing Director, added: "QE2 called at her home port of Southampton more times than any other port during her long and illustrious career so it is entirely fitting for there to be such a tribute to her in her home city. The anchor and the designated 'QE2 Mile' will ensure that her legacy in Southampton will endure for many years to come.”
The QE2 anchor has a strong connection with Southampton. Not only did the ship bring prosperity to the city but it is also a symbol of great pride as it sailed off to help in the Falkland conflict 1982. In 1957 Holy Rood Church was dedicated as a memorial to the sailors of the Merchant Navy.
The council says it is turning Southampton’s Old Town into an exciting and vibrant city quarter, celebrating the city’s medieval heritage. Holy Rood Place will create a more pedestrian friendly environment with new green bedding and will encourage al fresco dining from several of the new restaurants in the area. Another milestone in the Old Town includes Tudor House and Garden opening on July 30.