MV Britannia (Restoration)

In early 2024, we were tasked with rejuvenating a model ship P&O Cruises’ MV Britannia. The real ship was built by Fincantieri, at its shipyard in Italy. Britannia is the current flagship of their fleet, having usurped the honour from Oriana. She cost £473 million to build, can hold 3,647 passengers and 1,398 crew, and measures an astonishing 330 metres in length!

The Britannia has an atrium, and this is the vessel’s focal point. It features four pools, twenty-seven restaurants and bars and eight entertainment venues!

The model equivalent is complete with stunning detail, and we were tasked with a full deep clean, as well as refitting dislodged assets such as lifeboats, wind breaks, extraction funnels and navigation aids. We also repaired the glass display case, so the model could be better protected in the future.

The model belongs to Carnival UK themselves, and they are the operating company for P&O Cruises and Cunard, one of the most well-renowned and prestigious cruise line establishments around the globe. They create unforgettable memories for hundreds of thousands of people every year, and operate across six continents and 180 ports!

Restoration projects necessitate extensive communication both before and throughout the process. Our model restorer will initially coordinate with the client and our team, ensuring that all requirements are feasible and within budget.

We will discuss various tools and methods, with special attention to older and more delicate models that demand extra care and precision. Rigging, in particular, can be quite challenging due to its complexity. In this instance, the most difficult elements were the smaller components like navigation aids and wind breaks, but our restorer completed the work with exceptional expertise and quality.

As previously mentioned, the initial stages of a restoration project require our team and our model restorer to liaise with the client as closely as possible, ensuring their vision and expectations are clear, while also establishing a realistic and satisfactory timeline for all parties involved.

An invoice is prepared for the client at the earliest opportunity, allowing everyone to work to schedule within a defined budget.

Our restorer can then begin working on the model, typically starting with larger elements such as the hull and the rigging, or in this case, the extraction funnels. He will buff out any scratches and paint over where necessary, ensuring the precise paint colour is used to match.

He will then carefully replace and/or repair any smaller details, such as the wind breaks and navigation aids. This is perhaps the most tedious part, but it was done brilliantly.

Final touches usually include any larger accessories, in this case the reattachment of the lifeboats.

One significant improvement was the repair of the display case. This ensures the long-term protection of the model, allowing it to retain its fantastic quality.

This project was finished on schedule, within the agreed budget, and to an exceptional standard of quality. Everyone involved was delighted: we were pleased with the work and the experience, and the client was thrilled with the enhanced quality of their model.

Restoration projects are always enjoyable, as they breathe new life into old, damaged models, bringing them back to their former glory.

It was a pleasure to work on an MV Britannia model, particularly because of its significant role in the cruise-line industry today.

We eagerly anticipate our next restoration project!

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After Restoration:

Before Restoration: