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In pictures: Crowds gather to watch Azamara Quest cruise liner leaving Glasgow

© Ross CraeAzamara Quest heading down the River Clyde
Azamara Quest heading down the River Clyde

Crowds gathered on the banks of the River Clyde to wave farewell to one of the three cruise liners that have spent the pandemic moored in Glasgow.

Azamara Quest left King George V Dock on Monday lunchtime, heading for the Spanish port of Cádiz to prepare for its return to service.

The ship will undergo some maintenance and cosmetic work before once again taking passengers on holidays across the globe.

The ship had been docked in Glasgow since June 2020, with the cruise industry shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic.

It has been maintained by a skeleton crew from around the world, who temporarily made Scotland their home.

© Azamara / Facebook
A piper was on hand as the first of the ships left

Quest’s sister ships Azamara Pursuit and Azamara Journey remain in dock, and will depart on August 7 and 9 respectively.

The three giant vessels have become a familiar sight on the city skyline during their stay.

Hundreds flocked to the waterfront at Clydebank, Braehead, Renfrew and even on the Erskine Bridge to give Quest a fond farewell.

The crew waved and the ship blasted her horn as well-wishers flew flags and held up Bon Voyage signs.

In an interview with The Sunday Post last year, the ship’s captain Magnus Davidson, who was raised in Shetland, said he had been delighted by the love shown.

He said: “I know and love Glasgow, but I’ve never sailed upriver here before, so that experience was memorable.

“The scenery was beautiful and for me, personally, I felt a real sense of homecoming.

“I was very surprised to see so many people. It was extremely heartwarming to see the interest in the ship sailing up the Clyde and to feel so welcomed in that way.

“There’s always been a special connection between the people of Glasgow and the sea and to see so many people lining the riverbanks, waving as we sailed upriver, was just fantastic.”