Displaying items by tag: Titanic Belfast
Irish deep-sea diving expert Rory Golden was among the first to set eyes on its remains in person during an expedition in 2000 — an “awe-inspiring” moment, as he tells the Irish Examiner’s Conor Kane.
Visitors to Titanic Belfast can get a taste of what it felt like to witness the shipwreck first hand, in the Titanic Beneath portion of the Titanic Experience tour which displays documentary footage from a deep-sea expedition beneath a glass floor.
But for Golden, nothing compares to being there in the moment — or getting to touch with his own hands the ship’s wheel he helped recover from the wreck site.
The Irish Examiner has much more in the story HERE.
Paying tribute to the ill-fated ocean liner RMS Titanic and its history in the city, the Belfast Lough visitor centre took the award for Europe's Leading Visitor Attraction at the World Travel Awards in Sardinia last night (Monday 5 September), according to TheJournal.ie.
The Guinness Storehouse, Buckingham Palace and the Colosseum in Rome were among the renowned tourist hotspots beaten to the prize, the first for Northern Ireland in the history of the awards.
As previously reported on Afloat.ie, the four-year-old venue saw a 2% growth in visitor numbers in the 12 months before March this year, along with a 7% growth in revenues.
A 7% growth in revenues at the popular Belfast Lough tourist attraction, which charts the history of the RMS Titanic, has been offset by increases in administrative expenses and staffing costs in the latest accounts.
But directors cite a 2% growth in visitor numbers since March last year, three-quarters of them from outside Northern Ireland, as well as the centre's estimated contribution of some £105 million to the local economy since opening four years ago.
The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.
To mark the milestone, the RNLI hosted an awareness day in the Titanic Quarter with a full display of their life saving equipment including the Severn and Trent class all-weather lifeboats, RNLI beach lifeguards and their vehicles and the Flood Rescue kit.
The lifeboats were crewed by volunteer lifeboat crew members from Northern Ireland lifeboat stations.
First Minister Peter Robinson visited the event to meet with the RNLI lifeguards and volunteer lifeboat crew, view the lifesaving equipment and learn about the work of the charity in Northern Ireland.
The First Minister also boarded the Severn class lifeboat for a short trip around Belfast Harbour.
"We wanted to bring a little bit of the RNLI to Belfast city," said RNLI divisional operations manager Gareth Morrison. "There is huge awareness of the work of the charity out on coast and at the inland stations where we are present but we wanted to bring our volunteers and equipment into the city for people to see.
"With the awards taking place in the Titanic centre it was a fitting way to mark 190 years saving lives."
The day culminated with the RNLI Annual Presentation of Awards for Northern Ireland fundraising and operational volunteers, which this year was held at Titanic Belfast.
RNLI volunteers and supporters from across Northern Ireland were recognised for their dedication and commitment to raising funds and awareness for the lifesaving charity and for playing a pivotal role in ensuring lifeboat crews and lifeguards can continue to save lives at sea.
Guest of honour and presenting the awards was RNLI chairman Charles Hunter-Pease, who was attending his first awards ceremony in Northern Ireland since taking up his role with the charity last year.
The awards included five gold badges, three silver badges, six bronze badges, 14 inscribed statuettes, six regional supporter awards and six certificates of thanks.
Among the gold badge recipients was Rita Jarvis from the Bangor branch, who was described as an outstanding volunteer who had worked tirelessly for over 20 years for Bangor RNLI.
Hubert Annett from Kilkeel was acknowledged as one of the station's characters, who had performed various roles including that of deputy launching authority over the last 20 years.
Guests heard how Kay Magee joined Maghera RNLI over 30 years ago and remained a driving force at the inland branch throughout.
Gavin Weatherall from Newtownabbey RNLI was acknowledged for his devotion to fundraising for over 25 years with roles including that of treasurer and more recently secretary of the branch.
Patricia Ritchie, the fifth of the gold badge awardees, was described as a highly devoted secretary at Portadown where she has worked tirelessly for more than 23 years.
Two gold badge recipients collected their awards at the RNLI’s annual presentation of awards in London last month. These included Lennie Lawson, deputy launching uthority at Portaferry RNLI and Patricia Crossley, chairman of the Ballymoney fundraising branch. Merwyn Hanna MBE from Kilkeel Fundraising Branch was made an Honorory Life Governor.
Praising the awardees, Hunter-Pease said: "It all starts with the people who give their time, their donation and their expertise.
"Over the decades, as we have expanded our service and developed new craft and facilities; our volunteers, fundraisers and supporters have become more important than ever.
NI Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness, who joined First Minister Peter Robinson at an event to mark the first anniversary of the Belfast Lough-side visitor centre's opening, said the total of 807,340 visitors exceeded expectations and is “an outstanding European tourism success story”.
Operators of the Titanic Visitor Experience at Titanic Belfast said people from 128 different countries had come to see the exhibits, including Britain's Queen Elizabeth II and noted Titanic enthusiast James Cameron.
The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.
The enormous 10-metre drawing was used during an inquiry into the Titanic's sinking in 1912, and was donated anonymously to Titanic Belfast after selling at auction this summer for more than £200,000 (€250,000).
“I would say that it transcends economic value, given its role in Titanic history," said paper conservator Sean Madden, who worked on the project in his Lurgan studio. "Restoring and preparing the plan for display at Titanic Belfast has been an honour.”
The plan was shown at Belfast City Hall in April during the Titanic centenary events, and is set to be installed in the Aftermath Gallery at Titanic Belfast on the shores of Belfast Lough shortly.
The Irish Times has more on the story HERE.
#TREESOME CRUISECALLS – This morning three cruiseships arrived into Dublin Bay and all within less than an hour. Currently the trio are berthed closely together in the centre of Dublin port, which this year expects to see around 90 such vessels visiting this season, writes Jehan Ashmore.
First to arrive was Holland America Line's Prinsendam (1988/37,983grt) from Liverpool, followed by Swan Hellenic's Minerva (1996/12,449grt) from Portsmouth and lastly Peter Deilmann's Deutschland (1998/22,496grt) from Douglas.
In 2011 around 200 large cruise vessels visited Irish shores carrying more than 308,000 passengers and crew. The cruise sector in fact has doubled in terms of visitors, in just over 7 years when 142 cruise ships called in 2004 bringing more than 146,000 passengers and crew.
Large ports such as Dublin, Cork and Belfast handled over 85% of the total cruiseship visitor numbers in 2011. Of these ports only Dublin saw an increase, leaving the others remaining relatively unchanged. However, as previously reported on Afloat.ie, the opening earlier this year of Titanic Belfast is attracting more cruise calls to Belfast.
#CRUISE LINERS – This year Belfast Harbour can look forward to a boost in the cruise sector as more than 40 calls are scheduled during the season, the increase is largely attributed to the opening of the iconic visitor attraction of Titanic Belfast, writes Jehan Ashmore.
In 2012 the port is to see an impressive 32% increase on last year with 41 cruise ships bringing almost 75,000 visitors to the port compared to 2011 where 32 ships called with 58,000 passengers.
The ports cruise facility at Stormont Wharf, which cost £10m, continues to pay dividends with its advantage of accommodating large cruise ships operating in the Irish Sea. The wharf at 1km in length is the longest deep-water berth on the island of Ireland.
Among this season's cruise operators visiting the harbour are Cruise & Maritime Voyages (CMV), Fred Olsen Cruise Line, Holland America Line (HAL), P&O Cruises, Prestige Cruises, Princess Cruises and Saga Cruises. Click HERE for a list of cruiseships calling to the port.
#BELFAST LOUGH - Following two stakeholder workshops that were held in Liverpool and Dublin in 2011, a new Irish Sea Maritime Forum is to be held this Thursday in Belfast, writes Jehan Ashmore.
The one-day conference has been established with the support of the Department of Environment (DOE) in Northern Ireland, The Isle of Man Government, the Marine Management Organisation and the Irish Planning Institute.
Delegates attending the free pre-booked inaugural conference of the forum, is to be held in the iconic new Titanic Belfast visitor centre and is open to all with an interest in the Irish Sea. Presentations are to include an opening address from Northern Ireland's DOE Minister Alex Attwood, MLA and Dr. Peter Heffernan, CEO of the Marine Institute based in Oranmore, Co. Galway.
The conference is organised by the North West Coastal Forum which was formed in May 2000. Originally it was hosted by Government Office for the North West and later by the North West Regional Assembly / 4NW as an independent partnership of coastal stakeholders to help with coastal policy development. Currently there is a management board with representatives from over 25 coastal stakeholder organisations, an elected chair, and carries out a wide range of activities.
In recent years the forum has worked with Department of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and other bodies to influence the development of the Marine and Coastal Access Act 2009. The forum has also worked in assisting the development and implementation of legislation, including the Water Framework Directive, the Marine Strategy Framework Directive and the Bathing Water Directive.
#TITANIC'S TENDER - While all the attention is focused on the R.M.S. Titanic and the newly opened Titanic Belfast visitor experience, the White Star Line passenger tender SS Nomadic is only a stone's throw away from the venue, writes Jehan Ashmore.
Like the liner she was built by Harland & Wolff and her launch took place in 1911. She was commissioned by White Star Line as a 1st and 2nd class passenger tender for Titanic and sister Olympic.
The Nomadic carried out her duties based in Cherbourg, where she transferred passengers to the Titanic on her only call to the Normandy port. As such the vessel which is registered in the French port, is the last surviving White Star Line vessel in the world and the only remaining authentic link to the ill-fated liner.
Decades later, the Nomadic became a floating restaurant on the River Seine in Paris close to the Eiffel Tower, where the venture which started in 1977 remained formore than twenty years.
The ageing vessel faced new safety regulations threatening her fate which ultimately led to her being seized in 2002. She was then offered for sale and then followed a court action for her to be scrapped but a campaign was raised to save the historic vessel which succeeded in her securement.
At 95 years old she was towed by barge back to her builder's birthplace in Belfast in 2006. Now that she is over a century old the vessel is currently undergoing restoration by the SS Nomadic Charitable Trust. She is dry-docked in the Hamilton Dock which adjoins the new iconic landmark of the Titanic Belfast building within the developing Titanic Quarter.
Yesterday 'hard-hat' tours began of the preserved liner tender and it is essential to note that tickets are to be 'pre-booked' with the last tour on 15th April. Daily tours are at 10.30, 12 noon, 2pm and the last tour is 3.30pm. To ensure availability visit: www.nomadicbelfast.com/book-a-tour
For further information about the various visitor attractions and events click the following headings, to be directed to the relevant websites.
Following yesterday's inaugural cruise call to Belfast this year of Balmoral as previously reported the Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines vessel was making a cruise in memory of the liner. To see the list of the other cruiseships calling to the city, click HERE.
- RMS Titanic
- SS Nomadic
- White Star Line
- Nomadic Charitble Trust
- Harland & Wolff
- White Star Line passenger tenders
- Hamilton Dock, Belfast
- Port of Belfast
- Belfast Lough News
- Cruise ships
- Cruise Liners
- Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines
- Restaurant river Seine boats
- Titanic Belfast
- Titanic Quater
- Titanic Belfast Festival
- RMS Olympic