Meet the cruise ship superfan housing the world’s biggest private collection of vintage P&O memorabilia

A cruise ship superfan has collected one of the world’s biggest private collection of vintage P&O memorabilia – splashing out more than £5k on over 2,000 items.

Edgar Cross, 31, began buying branded items following the death of his foster dad in 2018.

His parents had previously taken him on cruises, and the last boat trip they enjoyed together was 18 years ago on P&O’s Aurora.

Now, Edgar has amassed thousands of vintage P&O items - including a captain's uniform he bought for just £15.

And he is looking forward to going on a cruise for the first time in nearly two decades - on Aurora - next year.

Edgar, from St Ives, Cambs., said: “I started collecting about four years ago when my foster dad passed away in 2018.

"The last cruise I went on with my foster mum and dad was in 2004.

“I started collecting things while I was depressed to remind me of the great times on P&O cruises.

“I love P&O, I think they're great company. I just love cruises and I've got a big collection of over 2000 items.”

Edgar, who has autism, started his collection when he picked up menus from the two P&O cruises he’d been on – one to Spain in 2000 and another to New York in 2004.

And, following his foster father’s death, Edgar realised he had fond memories of their time on cruise ships together and began to seek out vintage items.

Using eBay, his collection started to grow – and now sits at more than 2,000 items.

Edgar funds his collection by buying and selling the antique wares, sometimes visiting auctions to flog his unique finds.

He says he keeps items in a display cabinet and once a month rotates what is on display by swapping out items.

The items date from the 2000s all the way back to the 1890s, with the oldest item being magic lantern slides showing people on the deck of the ship.

The collection also includes ashtrays, cutlery, silverware, playing cards, photographs and a cigarette dispenser.

However, Edgar says his favourite item is a captain’s suit in his size which he managed to bag for a bargain on eBay.