One sad note to come out this recession is that Fred Olsen, the Ipswich based cruise operator is to retire the Black Prince, one of their best loved ships. The 440 passenger ship was built for Fred Olsen in 1966, as a ferry, converted to a full cruise liner in 1987 and underwent an extensive re-fit in 2004. This will reduce Fred Olsen's cruise fleet to four ships but passenger capacity has been increased by adding new middle sections to the Balmoral and the Braemar.
All the major cruise companies have been hit by the huge increase in the price of fuel. Large passenger liners are heavy consumers; not only do the engines move the ship but they also generate electricity and desalinate water.
I also hear that Fred Olsen have delayed building their new headquarters, which was to be in Sprites Lane, opposite Tesco, Copdock.