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Phantom clown in cruise brawl meets Mickey Mouse Air

July 31, 2019 Headline News No Comments Email Email

Did the sudden appearance of a clown during a formal black-tie dinner cause a bloody mass brawl aboard a cruise ship – and is Disney planning to launch a new airline, flown by pilots who sound like Buzz Lightyear?

Those weird travel-related questions have occupied the media in recent days.

The answer to both questions appears to be no. But there’s more to the stories than that – and there certainly was a wild brawl on the ship. 



The sudden appearance of a “passenger dressed as a clown” at a formal dinner sparked a brawl on a P&O cruise ship. That was the story.

Police and the cruise line stepped in swiftly to deny initial reports that a clown was involved or responsible.

Nobody denied the brawl happened – possibly leading to furniture being thrown. It erupted in the early hours last Friday during a cruise from Bergen, Norway to Southampton, England, aboard P&O’s ship Britannia. Two passengers were subsequently arrested.


Britannia. Image: Brian Burnell

The Daily Mail said the violence, which erupted after a “booze-fuelled patriotic event”, injured nine passengers. Britain’s Telegraph reported that families on the cruise were “forced to flee to their cabins or hide as apparently drunken passengers hurled furniture and plates at one another as a buffet descended into violence”.

But where was the clown? The clown stemmed from a social media posting, from an ITV journalist aboard the ship, as follows:

“One witness, part of a group involved in the trouble, explained to staff that things kicked off when another passenger appeared dressed as a clown. This upset one of their party because they’d specifically booked a cruise with no fancy dress. It led to a violent confrontation.”

Police gave clowns a break. “There is no information to suggest anyone dressed as a clown, or any type of fancy dress, was involved in this incident,” Hampshire Police detective constable Lisa Robins stated.

“I can confirm there was no clown,” a senior public relations executive with P&O Cruises/Carnival UK added.

No clown. Just a big fight.




 A flurry of news reports, including one on Disney fan site, reported that Disney is planning to acquire small regional airlines in the US from 2021 – and combine them to launch its own domestic airline.

Reports said ground staff would be dressed as Disney characters and the captain’s voice on the planes would be that of Buzz Lightyear. (Don’t you love it!)

This is your captain speaking!

Disney songs would play as happy passengers strolled aboard the planes – and once in the air, everyone would watch Disney cartoons and eat Disney favourites like Mickey Premium Ice Cream bars. Whee!

Alas, this warm and fuzzy flight to Fantasyland didn’t last long. Disney flatly denied any such plans.

Perhaps it was an April Fool joke that got delayed in the post.

Written by Peter Needham

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