A MAJOR conference on the historic QE2 steamer liner is headed to Clydebank, it has been announced.

To mark the 50th anniversary of the launch of the vessel on September 20, 1967, The QE2 Story internet forum is planning an event to celebrate her building and life.

Organisers are aiming to have speakers ranging from a maritime historian and author talking about the QE2’s early life in Clydebank, a QE2 captain on being master of the famous ship, a QE2 engineer discussing his apprenticeship at John Brown’s and a passenger about what it was like to sail on her.

There will also be speakers on the setting up of the QE2 story and QE2 in Dubai.

Dr Bruce Peter, reader in design history at Glasgow School of Art, said: “When new, the Queen Elizabeth 2 was a masterpiece of modern British design – a futuristic and exciting ship, combining many of the same ‘Swinging ‘Sixties’ qualities as the BIBA department store and Post Office Tower in London, or the Concorde Airliner.

“It was one of the great results of Britain’s design and engineering imagination in that era. The fact that the QE2 remained in service for around forty years, spanning a period of profound social and economic change and alterations in taste, is testament to the quality of the original concept and to the superb construction carried out in Clydebank. The QE2’s design also greatly influenced most of the subsequent generations of cruise ships.”

Lynda Bradford, from the QE2 Story events group, said she was there at the launch of the vessel in 1967 and remembers its importance to this day.

She said: “My first memory of QE2 was the construction of the ship in Clydebank and the excitement in the town in the build-up to her launch, on September 20, 1967. I was working that day, but I heard the salute given by the ships and shipyards on the River Clyde when she was launched. It was at that moment I first knew she was special.

“When I went home, I said to my father: ‘What an amazing reception for the new ship’. My father’s response was that she was no ordinary ship – she was a Queen.

My dad, who was a managing foreman at John Brown’s Shipyard, asked me if I would like to go into the yard at the weekend to see her. As a result of the invite, I stood on the decks of QE2 just days after she was launched and this was the start of my love for the ship.”

Booking for the September 22, 2017 event will open in January 2017 and organisers are keen to ensure Bankies get prime spots. They are also want to hear from potential conference sponsors. for the conference. Visit www.TheQE2Story.com for more information.