ON AUG 30, the Port of Tyne celebrated 20 years of cruise ship travel.
The first cruise ship call of recent times was by the Cunard Line’s Royal Viking Sun, 37,845gt, on Aug 30, 1999, and last year, the Tyne had more than 2mn passengers taking cruises, and since then, almost £8mn has been invested in passenger facilities including £5mn in transforming Northumbrian Quay into a cruise berth.
In 2008, £1.2mn was spent on refurbishing the International Passenger Terminal, improving the passenger lounge, check-in desks and car parking facilities. Also that year, the Cunard Line’s Queen Elizabeth 2, 70,327gt, made a final visit as part of the ship’s farewell tour (pictured). In the past 20 years, the port has welcomed over 700,000 cruise passengers from 60 different cruise lines on 450 calls. This year, the port will welcome a record 59 calls. (Port of Tyne)