Blast from the past – we take a look at Cunard's hidden cruise archives

Author: Lucy Abbott

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Cunard has unveiled a new archive exhibition showcasing advertising memorabilia over the line's expansive history, Lucy Abbott travels to Liverpool to report

You can smell the history and nostalgia as you walk into the Cunard archives.

After all, Cunard is known for its rich heritage, and we are lucky enough to take a look behind the scenes at special archives from the cruise line.

Titled 'Travel in Style – Iconic Cunard Advertising in the 1920s and 1930s' the curated display at Victoria Gallery & Museum went back in time to look at the line's seafaring heritage.

What's more, we also get the opportunity to admire the wider Cunard archives, held at the University of Liverpool which are a more exclusive affair, available to be viewed by special appointment only.

Luckily for you, if you're a history buff, you can dive into Cunard's history too as the advertising exhibition is open to the public, on display in Gallery 5 within the Victoria Gallery & Museum. So you too can browse through original marketing materials from the past 100 years.

So, let's travel back in time...

Cunard exhibited advertising archives at the Victoria Gallery & Museum. Credit: Cunard

Cunard's fascinating history comes to life

If you've ever sailed onboard a Cunard ship, then you'll know that the line's attention to detail is impressive, to say the least.

So, it won't come as a surprise that this level of detail is firmly part of Cunard's heritage. We even admire some of the timeless pieces inspiring design choices for the Princess Grill restaurant and Queens Grill Suits onboard Cunard's latest ship, Queen Anne.

Next up is the advertising exhibition, where we admired everything from articles from the Christmas edition of the Cunard magazine from 1922 to a programme of sports onboard (including an egg and spoon race and three-legged race) from 1923.

But the star of the show is the special archives held at the University of Liverpool. Explore the picture gallery below to get a glimpse of just a few fascinating historical documents from the early days of Cunard – including a Captain's journal from 1897 and pictures of Cunard's clerical staff but land and sea from 1915.

About Lucy Abbott

Lucy is a cruise journalist who has sailed on a variety of ships, from expedition to river – with her favourite being expedition cruising.

Lucy is interested in new sustainable ways to cruise as well as how cruising is becoming accessible for all.

She works together with Kaye Holland to keep the World of Cruising website up to date with all the latest cruise news.