Six people have been injured in a violent brawl on a British cruise ship – with some reports it was started by a man dressed as a clown.
Plates and furniture were reportedly used as weapons in the fight aboard P&O’s Britannia, which was returning to Southampton after a week touring Norway’s fjords.
ITV journalist Richard Gaisford, who was on board, said security staff were summoned to the 16th-floor restaurant by urgent announcements on the ship’s loudspeaker early on Friday.
He said he had been told there was “blood everywhere” in the restaurant.
“Witnesses told me they were so frightened they had to hide, as family groups fought,” he wrote on Twitter.
Gaisford said the violence came after a black-tie dinner – and an afternoon of “patriotic” partying on deck, complete with copious amounts of alcohol.
“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,” he said.
“This upset one of their party because they’d specifically booked a cruise with no fancy dress. It led to a violent confrontation.”
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
A female entertainer aboard the liner confirmed to Britain’s Telegraph that a person dressed as a clown had upset other passengers.
“Things got out of hand very quickly, people had been drinking, and there was a fight,” she said.
“Chairs and plates were being thrown, people were very angry … It was shocking to see and some of the staff and passengers were scared and had to hide.”
However, P&O denied there was anyone dressed as a clown on the ship.
“We don’t tolerate disruptive behaviour. Following an incident on board Britannia on Thursday evening, we can confirm that all guests have now disembarked and the matter is now in the hands of the local police,” a P&O Cruises spokesman said.
Police, who boarded the ship when it docked in Southampton, also denied reports that the violence had been started by a passenger taking exception to another passenger in a clown suit.
They confirmed that a 43-year-old man and a 41-year-old woman were arrested.
A police spokeswoman said three men and three women were assaulted during the row. Their injuries included bruising and cuts.
Gaisford said the people thought to behind the fight were confined to a cabin for the last day of the cruise.