Bad weather sees cruise ship naming ceremony evacuated

A naming ceremony for the largest cruise ship to be christened in the UK has had to be evacuated as heavy winds rocked the quayside marquee.

The star-studded event for the MSC Bellissima was being held in a giant marquee next to the liner at Southampton when the decision was made to move the event on board.

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On board the MSC Bellissima
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On board the MSC Bellissima
General view of the solarium on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of sun loungers in the MSC Yacht Club area on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the Formula One simulator on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the solarium on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the bowling alley on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the solarium on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
A person makes their way along the Himalayan Bridge on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of lounge in the MSC Yacht Club on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the Sportsplex on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
A picture of Queen Elizabeth II next to the master of the Sea pub on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the Amphitheatre pool on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the Atmosphere pool on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the entrance to the London Theatre on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the Atmosphere pool on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the Galleria Bellissima on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the Galleria Bellissima on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
A person makes their way along the Himalayan Bridge on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
A person makes their way along the Himalayan Bridge on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of sun loungers in the MSC Yacht Club area on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the entrance to the London Theatre on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the speed walking and running track on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the Atmosphere pool on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the bowling alley on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the bowling alley on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the Amphitheatre on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
A chef makes finishing touches to a chocolate sculpture on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the speed walking and running track on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the speed walking and running track on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
General view of the Masters of the Sea pub on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
A person makes their way along the Himalayan Bridge on board the new MSC Cruise ship MSC Bellissima at dock in Southampton Port.
Members of the public look on as the MSC Bellissima, the largest cruise ship to be christened in the UK, arrives into berth 101 at City Cruise Terminal in Southampton for it's naming ceremony on Saturday.
A member of the public takes a photograph as MSC Cruises' newest cruise ship, MSC Bellissima, arrives into berth 101 at City Cruise Terminal in Southampton for it's naming ceremony on Saturday.
The MSC Bellissima cruise ship leaves 'Chantiers de l'Atlantique' shipyard of Saint-Nazaire on February 27, 2019. - The liner 'MSC Bellissima', built by Chantiers de l'Atlantique in Saint-Nazaire, was delivered on February 27, 2019 to the Swiss ship owner MSC Cruises. (Photo by Sebastien SALOM-GOMIS / AFP) (Photo credit should read SEBASTIEN SALOM-GOMIS/AFP/Getty Images)
An employee practices aerobic in the 'MSC Bellissima' cruise ship on February 27 2019, at Les chantiers de l Atlantique shipyard of Saint-Nazaire. - The ocean liner 'MSC Bellissima' built in Saint-Nazaire was delivered on February 27, 2019 to the Swiss shipowner 'MSC Croisiere'. (Photo by Sebastien SALOM-GOMIS / AFP) (Photo credit should read SEBASTIEN SALOM-GOMIS/AFP/Getty Images)
Workers of 'Les chantiers de l'Atlantique' pose in front of the 'MSC Bellissima' during its delivery ceremony on February 27, 2019 in Saint-Nazaire, eastern France. - The ocean liner 'MSC Bellissima' built in Saint-Nazaire was delivered on February 27, 2019 to the Swiss shipowner 'MSC Croisiere'. (Photo by Sebastien SALOM-GOMIS / AFP) (Photo credit should read SEBASTIEN SALOM-GOMIS/AFP/Getty Images)
A picture taken on February 27, 2019 shows the central lane of the MSC Bellissima cruise ship at 'Chantiers de l'Atlantique' shipyard of Saint-Nazaire. - The liner 'MSC Bellissima', built by Chantiers de l'Atlantique in Saint-Nazaire, was delivered on February 27, 2019 to the Swiss ship owner MSC Cruises. (Photo by Sebastien SALOM-GOMIS / AFP) (Photo credit should read SEBASTIEN SALOM-GOMIS/AFP/Getty Images)
A picture taken on February 27, 2019 shows the central lane of the MSC Bellissima cruise ship at 'Chantiers de l'Atlantique' shipyard of Saint-Nazaire. - The liner 'MSC Bellissima', built by Chantiers de l'Atlantique in Saint-Nazaire, was delivered on February 27, 2019 to the Swiss ship owner MSC Cruises. (Photo by Sebastien SALOM-GOMIS / AFP) (Photo credit should read SEBASTIEN SALOM-GOMIS/AFP/Getty Images)
A picture taken on February 27, 2019 shows the casino of the MSC Bellissima cruise ship at 'Chantiers de l'Atlantique' shipyard of Saint-Nazaire. - The liner 'MSC Bellissima', built by Chantiers de l'Atlantique in Saint-Nazaire, was delivered on February 27, 2019 to the Swiss ship owner MSC Cruises. (Photo by Sebastien SALOM-GOMIS / AFP) (Photo credit should read SEBASTIEN SALOM-GOMIS/AFP/Getty Images)
TOPSHOT - A picture taken on February 27, 2019 shows the MSC Bellissima cruise ship at 'Chantiers de l'Atlantique' shipyard of Saint-Nazaire. - The liner 'MSC Bellissima', built by Chantiers de l'Atlantique in Saint-Nazaire, was delivered on February 27, 2019 to the Swiss ship owner MSC Cruises. (Photo by Sebastien SALOM-GOMIS / AFP) (Photo credit should read SEBASTIEN SALOM-GOMIS/AFP/Getty Images)
Sunday, December 23, 2018, the liner MSC Bellissima returned to Chantiers de l'Atlantique in Saint-Nazaire, France, after having passed a series of sea trials for 4 days.The liner, 315 meters long and 43 wide, is expected to be delivered to the Italian cruise line in February 2019. (Photo by Estelle Ruiz/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
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The ceremony, being hosted by This Morning presenter Holly Willoughby, will see screen legend Sophia Loren perform the ribbon-cutting duties.

Guests were able to enjoy a performance by tenors Andrea and Matteo Bocelli and a show by Cirque du Soleil at Sea before the decision was made to move the event.

Also due to perform were R&B singer Craig David, disco star Nile Rodgers and soul singer Leee John.

The Bellissima is the 14th ship to be named by Italian singer and actress Loren, 84, for MSC Cruises, for who she fulfils the role of "godmother".

The cruise ship, the sixth largest in the world, was built at a cost of 1 billion US dollars (£752 million) in Saint Nazaire, France.

Holly WilloughbyIt has 2,217 cabins with a capacity of 5,686 guests, 19 decks, 12 restaurants and a 985-seat theatre on board.

The Bellissima, operated by MSC Cruises, also features a 96-metre promenade with an 80-metre LED dome which shows atmospheric vistas, sunsets and starry night skies.

Antonio Paradiso, managing director for MSC Cruises UK and Ireland, said: "We are excited to be launching MSC Bellissima, the largest ship coming to the UK and the sixth largest cruise ship in the world.

"We celebrate her launch in Southampton, an important destination for us as we are the fastest growing cruise line in the UK and a top cruise line in Ireland.

MSC Bellissima
The Bellissima has room for almost 5,700 guests (Andrew Matthews/PA)

"This is the largest ship event held by MSC Cruises in the UK, with 6,000 people on board over three days, including 2,300 seated at the naming ceremony on the quayside."

The MSC Bellissima has been fitted with features to reduce its environmental footprint including an exhaust gas cleaning system to improve emissions, an advanced wastewater treatment system, and LED lighting to save energy.

The liner will spend its inaugural season in the Mediterranean before moving to the Emirates next winter and Asia in 2020.

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