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Displaying items by tag: Titanic

#TITANIC - A replica of the Titanic is at the centre of a High Court dispute between two former partners, as RTE News reports.

Carmel McGrath claims she paid the costs of constructing the 16ft scale replica of the tragic cruise liner, and has secured an injunction preventing Zoltan Panka, a Hungarian national, from selling the €70,000 model after he removed it from her home in the northern suburbs of Cork.

Panka gave a sworn statement to the court disputing the claims of his former partner, alleging he received abusive messages from her after taking the model.

He denies any intention to sell the replica, currently believed to be at a location in Carrigaline, and repudiates the estimated value of McGrath's investment as well as any commercial relationship between the two.

The Hungarian added that model ship building was a family hobby, and that he had put in as much as 2,000 hours' worth of work into the uncompleted project, which was intended to mark the 100th anniversary of the ship's demise.

RTE News has much more on the story HERE.

Published in Titanic

#TITANIC - The first Irishman to see the wreck of the Titanic takes to the stage in the UK next week to present his personal recollections of the experience.

As Biggleswade Today reports, deep-sea diving expert Rory Golden will give his two-part presentation Return to the Titanic at the Gordon Craig Theatre in Stevenage next Wednesday 26 September.

The show - previously hosted at the Marine Institute earlier this year - covers the history of the ill-fated cruise liner's construction at Harland & Wolff in Belfast, through its tragic demise in 1912, and its eventual rediscovery on the North Atlantic sea bed in 1985.

Fifteen years after the wreck was found on a French/American expedition, Golden descended the nearly 4km below the surface on a Russian submarine to witness the watery grave site for himself - and his show lets the audience see some of the magnificent sights he saw.

“When I first cast my eyes on the wreck," he told in April this year, "for me it was just an incredibly exciting and equally humbling and incredibly poignant moment and you have all these emotions all at once because you are looking at something very few people in the world have seen.”

Published in Titanic
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#TITANIC - Nine Galwegians who travelled on the ill-fated Titanic are being commemorated throughout August by a replica of the ocean liner, as the Galway Advertiser reports.

The 1:10 scale model is on display overlooking Galway Bay at the Atlantaquaria on Salthill promenade, on loan from the village of Addergoole in Mayo which lost 11 of the tragic 'Addergoole Fourteen' in the disaster a century ago.

Six of the nine Galway residents on the ship lost their lives. But among the survivors was a Eugene Patrick Daly, who provided key testimony that painted a fuller picture of what happened on the night of 15 April 1912, and led to the passing of stricter lifeboat laws for passenger vessels.

Published in Titanic

#TITANIC - A new plaque has been unveiled in Belfast to remember eight men who died during construction of the Titanic in the city more than 100 years ago.

As UTV News reports, NI First Minister Peter Robinson was on hand at the unveiling of the tribute on the wall outside the Harland & Wolff Welders Club on Dee Street in East Belfast.

The First Minister described the eight men as an integral part of the Titanic story.

"In an era when the phrase 'health and safety' did not even exist it was seen as an inevitability that lives would be lost during any major construction or engineering project.

"It is important the story is told of those who built what was the largest ship afloat at that time."

Construction of the ill-fated cruise liner began in Slipway No 3 at the Harland & Wolff shipyards in March 1909, more than two years before her launch.

The workers' tribute joins a new memorial in the grounds of Belfast City Hall that lists the names of all 1,512 passengers and crew who perished in the tragedy.

UTV News has more on the story HERE.

Published in Titanic
29th May 2012

Titanic In Song

#TITANIC IN SONG – A musical evening 'Titanic in Song' by Dara MacMahon and Gerry Noonan accompanied by Pauline Cooper will be held in the National Maritime Museum of Ireland, Dun Laoghaire on Friday 15th June. Tickets cost €10 each and the event starts at 8 o'clock.

Explore the Titanic story through the songs heard and played by the passengers on the ship. From the light classical and musical comedy numbers familiar to the 1st and 2nd class passengers to the music hall, vaudeville and Irish songs popular in steerage. The evening will present a unique look at the music played on that fateful journey.

The museum which is run by volunteers and members of the Maritime Institute of Ireland was re-opened last month after years of renovation work was carried out at the former Old Mariners Church. For further information and on the museum and its activities visit

Published in Titanic

#TITANIC - This Saturday 26 May, Blanchardstown Library presents a series of talks and discussions on the history of the Titanic.

In her talk 'How the Titanic Touched My Family', author Martina Devlin tells the story of her grandmother's uncle Tom O'Brien, a farm labourer from Co Limerick who made plans to emigrate to America on board the ill-fated ship, but didn't tell his family he was taking someone with him - leading to a secret that was hushed up for generations.

Stephen Cameron will also be discussing his book Titanic - Belfast's Own, which looks at the ship from the perspective of those who helped to build it and "bring the dream to life".

Meanwhile, Patrick Fitzgerald of the Centre for Migration Studies at the Ulster American Folk Park gives his talk, 'A Window on Emigration', that accompanies the park's exhibition highlighting the stories of Irish emigrants who embarked for a new life in the New World on board the Titanic.

And Ed Coughlan of the Irish Titanic Historical Society will present his talk 'Titanic - A Voyage Into History', giving an overview of the Titanic story.

Registration is at 10.45am on the day, with the first talk starting at 11am. The event is free but booking is required on 01 8905563.

Published in Titanic
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#TITANIC - Irreverent tech website Gizmodo has marked the 100th annversary of the sinking of the Titanic with a list of the 13 deadliest shipwrecks in history.

The list runs the gamut from well over a century ago, in the early days of passenger shipping - see the SS Sultana, a tragedy overshadowed by the assassination of Abraham Lincoln and the end of the American Civl War - to more recent events.

Included are such as sad tales as that of the Empress of Ireland, the worst disaster in Canadian maritime history in which more than 1,000 died, and much closer to home the Lusitania, which went down off Kinsale in May 1915 after a torpedo attack.

But the worst was arguably suffered by the passengers of the steamship SS Kiangya - which blew up 50 miles north of Shanghai in December 1948, taking as many as 3,920 lives - and the horror that befell the MV Doña Paz in the Philippines in December 1987, where estimates put the death toll at an unbelievable 4,000.

Gizmodo has more on the story HERE.

Published in Titanic

#TITANIC - To mark the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic, sat down with the first Irishman to dive the historic wreckage.

In 2000, Rory Golden descended two-and-a-half miles beneath the surface of the Atlantic to witness the Titanic's watery gravesite.

“When I first cast my eyes on the wreck," he says, "for me it was just an incredibly exciting and equally humbling and incredibly poignant moment and you have all these emotions all at once because you are looking at something very few people in the world have seen.”

Amazingly, the self-avowed Titanic expert wasn't originally a part of the dive team for the expedition.

"My role at the time was to be the dive safety supervisor, but that whole role changed over the course of the expedition," he says. “There was no guarantee of me going down there because I was very low in the pecking order."

But a memorial plaque he brought with him from Cobh ended up being Golden's ticket to the TItanic, joining the crew aboard an 18-tonne Russian submarine.

And he came back with more than memories, too, as a glint in the corner of his eye turned out to be the remains of the ship's wheel.

"I was the first person to touch the wheel of the ship since it went down in 1912 and probably the last person to hold it before it went down was Captain Smith.” has much more on the story HERE.

Published in Titanic

#BOOK REVIEW – This is a book which documents the entire output of the Belfast shipyards since construction of the first ship "Silistria", launched in 1854, was begun by Robert Hickson. Interestingly Belfast had no natural advantages for the building of ships, no ready supply of raw materials, no tradition of shipbuilding, no major ship-owners, no skilled labour in metalwork and engineering. How did it happen that a provincial town, which became a city only in 1888, developed into one of the world's great industrial centres? The author has a detailed series of analyses which answer this question in terms other than the usual suggestions of nepotism, Protestant work ethic and sheer good luck. They make interesting and enlightening reading.

At the core of the book is a beautifully presented catalogue of ships in which data for each of 1589 vessels totalling 13,886,873 tons is laid out in table form. Interesting historical notes are added by way of lively narratives as appropriate. At intervals on facing pages there are line drawings or good side view photographs mostly arranged in groups of five ships to a page. The result is a pictorial history of developments in general design and layout over one hundred and fifty years which I found instructive.

The narrative section of the book begins with an account of the creation of the three Belfast shipbuilding companies. In 1853 Belfast Harbour Commissioners leased out a yard on Queen's Island which Edward Harland was appointed to manage in 1854 and purchased in 1858. Out of this came Harland and Wolff. A second yard, McIlwaine and Partners, was set up in 1867 and in 1879 two trained premium apprentices left positions in Harland and Wolff to start a third yard, Workman Clark, at a site next to their former employer. These were not the ailing shipyards to which our generation later became accustomed but dynamic fast-growing businesses perhaps more like what we see today in certain information technology sectors and they were set up by very young men. Harland was twenty-three years old when appointed and Workman and Clarke were twenty-three and eighteen years old respectively. Their stories are exciting and dramatic.


The author next deals with Output of the Belfast Shipyards in which he explains the impact of developments in economics, commerce, politics and technology over a span of one hundred and fifty years. How he achieves this is worthy of study i.e. how he spans from the era of sail all the way to air travel while still keeping the thread of his story. Basically he breaks the one hundred and fifty years into eight slices of unequal but meaningful time spans thereby making the subjects accessible to the reader. Each of these sections has its own interesting developments but in 1940 there is a surprise. Suddenly she is there again, two hundred feet long, broad, chunky and graceless, would roll on wet grass: "Compass Rose" the fictional Flower Class Corvette and heroine of Nicholas Monsarrat's famous book "The Cruel Sea" is under construction. Belfast built 34 of these corvettes and the extract from Monsarrat's book is quoted to describe their appearance. Of course the effect was to send me scurrying to the attic for my dog-eared 1956 copy of the book to see if the magic of Monsarrat's prose still works. It does, and maybe that's what a book like "Belfast Built Ships" is really for - to send you scurrying down the corridors of memory.

With regard to "a famous White Star liner lost on her maiden voyage" the author is restrained and factual throughout. However in the third section of the book entitled Urban Myths and Forgotten Histories the gloves come off and his weapon of choice is the undisputable fact. His first target is those who claim "The greatest loss of life in a disaster involving a Belfast ship was on Titanic", next the hapless Nomadic myth is demolished, then on to her correct Yard Number – it is 401 not 909E. The carnage of myths continues but I cannot get my mind off that wrong yard number 909E. Does anyone else get a whiff of the Opium of the People?

I found the author's balanced comments an antidote to the current mania for blather on events in the Atlantic in April 1912. In fairness he is never critical of any aspect of the Titanic herself which he describes as "one of the greatest ships of its kind produced in Belfast, or indeed anywhere". His main criticism is of the cult that has grown up around this one ship as if it were the only important example of Belfast shipbuilding. Significantly his vocabulary may contain the explanation of what is going on when he describes the cult as "monodical". Monody is a term from Greek tragedy and there is much of Greek tragedy and mythology in the Titanic story. The name Titanic itself is straight out of Greek mythology and the great sin of Greek tragedy, Hubris, is to be found all over the story as routinely related. Perhaps it is an encounter with poetic truth which draws people back again and again to this rather than other maritime stories?

This is a book which will delight all "ship freaks" and provide them with hours if not years of ongoing pleasure exploring its seemingly endless corridors of enquiry. The quality of the research and presentation ensures that it will be of ongoing value to social researchers and transport historians and it is also a book which will please anybody who worked or has ancestors who worked on any of the 1589 ships. Most importantly it will have special significance for those thousands of people whose families worked in the Belfast yards. The yards have now ceased building ships but as they move from industry into history a large part of them survives in this formidable account of their formidable output. J K


By John Lynch. Published by The History Press

Softcover, 303 Pages, ISBN 978 0 7524 6539 5

Price £19.99

Published in Book Review
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#TITANIC - The Titanic memorial cruise was yesterday forced to turn back just 100 miles from the southwest coast of Ireland after a passenger fell ill, BBC News reports.

The Irish Coast Guard rescue helicopter at Shannon was dispached to the MS Balmoral to retrieve BBC cameraman Tim Rex, 56, who was struck by a non-life threatening heart condition, according to the Irish Independent.

Rex, who was covering the memorial sailing for the BBC, was treated by ship's doctors before being airlifted to hospital as a precaution.

The emergency happened just hours after the ship departed Cobh, the last port of call of the ill-fated Titanic before it sank in the North Atlantic on 14 April 1912.

A spokesperson for Titanic Memorial Cruises confirmed that despite the delay, the ship is still on schedule and is expected to arrive at the Titanic wreck site as planned on Saturday.

Published in Titanic
Page 4 of 7

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