Cunard has this week announced that Captain Christopher Wells is retiring after a stellar 20 year career with Cunard, part of 30 years spent working across Carnival Corporation cruise lines. In recognition of his outstanding service he has been awarded the rank of Commodore.
Commodore Wells has spent the last 13 years leading the team on board Cunard’s flagship, Queen Mary 2, having originally been a key part of the commissioning of the ship which launched in 2004.
Cunard president Simon Palethorpe said: “Commodore Wells has been a wonderful ambassador for Cunard, proudly upholding the finest traditions and highest standards of the world’s most famous shipping line. It is only fitting, and I am delighted, that he be awarded the rank of Commodore, the highest rank afforded to any seafarer.
“He’ll be sorely missed by colleagues and guests alike, evidenced by the vast numbers of cards that have been received wishing him all the very best and noting his much-loved sense of humour as well as the respect he commanded. We thank him for the enormous contribution he has made to Cunard, in a highlight packed career, and wish him an equally successful retirement.”
Bournemouth-born Commodore Wells began his career at sea on board tankers and bulk carriers in South East Asia before transitioning to cruise shipping in 1992, first with Cunard then Princess Cruises, P&O Cruises and P&O Cruises Australia before returning to Cunard.
During his three decades on cruise ships, Commodore Wells has had the pleasure of meeting Her Majesty the Queen at the naming event for Queen Mary 2 and once again as Master at the naming of Queen Elizabeth. Another highlight was in 2017 when Commodore Wells climbed the tallest sail of the Sydney Opera House to mark the 10-year anniversary of Queen Mary 2’s very first visit to the Australian city.
Commodore Wells combined his seafaring career with a 25-year commission in the Royal Naval Reserve (RNR) and remains an Honorary Captain in the RNR.