A fight broke out on P&O cruise ship Britannia, on Friday, July 26, according to CNN affiliate ITV. Some witnesses have claimed the fight was due to a passenger dressed as a clown, though it now seems this was just a rumor that was taken a little too seriously.
Good Morning Britain correspondent Richard Gaisford reported the news first on Twitter. According to accounts sent to Gaisford by passengers aboard the Brittania, the fight broke out between two families around 2 a.m. on the 16th-floor restaurant. According to Gaisford’s account, a passenger apparently came into the restaurant in a clown outfit and caused an outburst by another group who were specifically offended by the costume.
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.— Richard Gaisford (@richardgaisford) July 27, 2019
In the U.K., “fancy dress” means costumes much like you would dress up for on Halloween, and not like black-tie or cocktail attire.
Gaisford said in this Twitter thread that passengers involved in the fight used plates and furniture as weapons. “There was blood everywhere,” a witness told him. In addition, Gaisford said that “large amounts of alcohol” may have contributed to the fight.
“There was blood everywhere”. Violent late night brawl in the buffet onboard @pocruises Britannia left staff who intervened injured, as passengers used furniture and plates as weapons. Witnesses told me they were so frightened they had to hide, as family groups fought.— Richard Gaisford (@richardgaisford) July 27, 2019
Britannia left Bergen at 1430 on Thursday, the violence occurred 12 hours later after a black-tie evening. It followed an afternoon of ‘patriotic’ partying on deck, with large amounts of alcohol being consumed by many guests. pic.twitter.com/zQcEXGDJeg— Richard Gaisford (@richardgaisford) July 27, 2019
According to CNN, police said that three women and three men were injured in the fight. A P&O Cruises spokesman told CNN, “Following an incident onboard Britannia on Thursday evening we can confirm that all guests disembarked yesterday and the matter is now in the hands of the local police.”
However, according to the Independent and USA Today, the police said that the fight was not due to anyone in a clown outfit. It is unclear what the cause could have been, though this version of events was reported by a wide number of reputable outlets. Michele Andjel, public relations vice president for P&O Cruises/Carnival UK, confirmed to USA Today that there was no clown.
Still, the sizeable fight did occur on the ship, and cruise line said to CNN that it has a zero-tolerance policy against violence.
Those involved were confined to their cabins for the last part of the journey, Gaisford reported on Twitter. The P&O cruise was sailing through the Norway’s fjords at the time and had left Bergen for Southhampton, England earlier that day. It was the last few days of the journey.
According to the BBC, two passengers, a man, and a woman were arrested on suspicion of assault. An investigation is ongoing.