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You can settle your account at end of cruise with cash (sterling) on F.O. but payment by credit card is the norm on cruise ships. Do you really want to join a long queue of people on the last morning of departure, mostly people with the most time consuming of minor reasons to be there?
I couldn't agree more with Mr/Ms Wilba. You certainly cannot "pay as you go" with cash as on board as it is a "cashless" society. If you are going on longer cruises you are given interim bills from time to time for expenses incurred which will help you to control your spending. Try to avoid the last day's queues for they can spoil the final hours of your cruise.
Depends what you mean by 'pay for everything on board by cash'. All ships operate a 'cashless' system which means you sign a 'chitty' for each purchase and at the end of the cruise either settle your 'on board' account by credit card OR CASH. Go to reception and make sure that they will accepts settlement of your account at the end of the cruise in CASH.