1951 & 1953 Blenheim, named in honour of Sir Winston Churchill, who was born at Blenheim Palace,
the Churchill family seat, is introduced to the fleet, followed two years later by Braemar,
named in tribute to Scotland and the British Royal Family. The new ships are among the
most eye-catching liners of the period.
1955 The third Thomas Fredrik – and current Fred. – takes over the running of the companies at
the age of 26 after his father, Thomas, falls ill.
1966 A new Black Watch sails to the Canary Islands on her maiden voyage from the Fred. Olsen
terminal, Canary Wharf, West Indian Docks, London. Sister ship Black Prince embarks on
the same route the following month.
1987 A ‘reborn’ Black Prince begins her career as a ‘sunshine cruiser’, sailing to Cádiz,
Casablanca, the Canary Islands, Madeira and Gibraltar from Southampton (all destinations
still visited by Fred. Olsen ships). The officers and crew on board are noted for being very
friendly and well-liked by their guests – a trait that has continued to this day as one of
Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines’ most endearing characteristics.
1996 Beginning of the first brain revolution: marking the end of manufacturing as we have
known it, with software replacing machines as the driver for innovation. Black Watch joins
the Fred. Olsen fleet after extensive refurbishment.
2001 Braemar is sent to the Blohm & Voss shipyard in Hamburg to undergo a major
refurbishment, ready for her new role as the second member of the fleet.
2005 Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines purchases a new, elegant ship which, following a complete
refurbishment, is renamed Boudicca after the great British warrior queen.
2006 Boudicca visits the Canary Islands on her maiden Fred. Olsen voyage.
2007 A yet-to-be-renamed ship arrives at Hamburg’s Elbe 17 Dry-Dock to undergo an ambitious
refit and redesign programme, involving the fitting of a new 30-metre extension to give
the ‘stretched’ ship extra rooms and improvements to guest facilities.
2008 The ‘stretched’ ship is renamed Balmoral on entering service.
2015 All four Fred. Olsen ships converge in the same place, on the same day, for the first time
ever. The event in Bergen, Norway on 28th July celebrates the 200th anniversary of the
birth of Fredrik Christian Olsen.
2018 The ‘Captains in Cádiz’ celebrations on 10th September will see the four ships meet again
in southern Spain to celebrate 170 years since Fredrik Christian began his shipping
operations. See pages 78, 108, 110 & 112 for further details.
Today Fred.’s daughter, Anette, is CEO of A/S Bonheur and partner in Fred. Olsen & Co.
Fred. Olsen remains chairman of A/S Bonheur, the central owning company. His son, the
fourth Thomas Fredrik (Fredrik Jnr.), is the chairman of the daughter company Fred. Olsen
View destination and ship videos at www.cruisewithfred.tv