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Spirit of Adventure naming festivity set for July 19 in Portsmouth, led by former Navy official

The naming ceremony takes place on the same day that the final restrictions are set to be lifted in the UK
The naming of Saga’s Spirit of Adventure will take place on July 19 at Portsmouth International Port, with recently retired Head of the Royal Navy Medical Service Cmdre Inga J. Kennedy set to undertake the smashing of the bottle – a jeroboam of English sparkling wine from Balfour Hush Heath Estate.

The date coincides with the anticipated final phase of the lifting of restrictions in the UK; the ceremony will be shown at 1pm BST on YouTube and via Saga’s Facebook page.

‘A historic day’

‘It feels symbolic that the naming of our brand-new cruise ship, Spirit of Adventure, will be part of such a historic day for the UK,’ said Nick Stace, CEO, Saga Travel. ‘We felt it was important to recognise the outstanding work the medical profession has undertaken during the pandemic and wanted to pay our respects the best way we knew how. 

‘Commodore Kennedy has served in the Navy for 20 years and within healthcare for 40 years, so we felt she was the perfect choice for the role and we’re honoured that she accepted.’

Significant for Portsmouth 

Spirit of Adventure will be the first vessel to be named at Portsmouth.

Inaugural cruise and winter cruises 

The vessel had been scheduled to take to the waters last year after its handover from the shipbuilder in September 2020, but has been anchored since then as a result of COVID-19.

On July 26 it will finally commence its inaugural voyage from London Tilbury, calling Newcastle, Belfast, the Isle of Man, Liverpool, Holyhead, Bristol, Lundy Island, the north Cornwall coast, the Isles of Scilly and Falmouth before returning to Tilbury on August 10.

On October 5, Spirit of Adventure will embark on its ‘Taste of the Continent’ five-night cruise, followed by its ‘Continental Escape’ itinerary which departs November 15 to Amsterdam, Bruges and Cherbourg. 

Sister ship Spirit of Discovery resumed sailing on June 27.

Layout and services

The 999-capacity ship has 554 cabins, all with a private balcony, and is decorated throughout in bold colours.

Chauffeur service, meals and Wi-Fi are included on board.