It’s been a landmark year for Queen Elizabeth II as she celebrates 60 years as England’s monarch, hosts the 2012 Summer Olympic Games and has the Royal Navy’s newest aircraft carrier christened the HMS Queen Elizabeth in her honor. A company based in Southampton, England, brought its talents to this trifecta, manufacturing covers to protect both the Queen and the aircraft carrier from inclement weather.
Custom Covers got the call to cover parts of the HMS Queen Elizabeth from point of manufacture in Portsmouth to the assembly point for the aircraft carrier in Rosyth, Scotland, a 500-mile seagoing trip. The cover was larger than 450 by 160 feet, weighed 880 pounds and dwarfed boat traffic as it took to the seas on April 30. “We started life as a port-based cover maker, and we all get excited about a project that incorporates our traditional skills,” says Custom Covers managing director Robert Sanders. The company covered another tradition, the State Opening of Parliament May 9, with a 462-by-26-foot entrance awning and gutter system to protect the monarch, Lords, Commons and other dignitaries awaiting entrance to the ceremony.