Titanic Ceremony In Southampton
Titanic whistle will sound again in Southampton to mark the centenary of the start of the legendary liner's fateful voyage.
A commemorative event to mark the centenary of the departure of the world's most famous passenger vessel "RMS Titanic" from Southampton, will take place alongside the dock from where she sailed.
At 12 noon on Tuesday 10 April 2012, exactly 100 years on from the start of Titanic's ill-fated maiden voyage, a recording of the ship's whistle, recovered from her wreck, will once again eerily sound around the Port where most of the crew lived and from which over 500 households lost at least one family member.
Re-enacting Titanic's departure, the tug tender Calshot will then sail from 43/44 berth followed by a flotilla of craft. It is anticipated that all ships in the portand the immediate vicinity will sound their whistles as a mark of respect.
The commemorative ceremony has been created jointly by Associated British Ports and Southampton Solent University, which through its Warsash Maritime Academy has strong nautical and maritime connections.
Local businesses, who wish to pay tribute to the legendary liner, have also lent their support. They include: Red Funnel, Tug Tender Calshot, Solent Stevedores, Williams Shipping, Svitzer, ngs and Matt Bundy Events.
The event, to be held in the Ocean Terminal which overlooks the Titanic berths, will be hosted by broadcaster, Fred Dinenage. Poignantly Fred's great uncle, James Richard Dinenage, was one of the 'unsinkable' ship's stewards and a victim of the tragedy. Joining descendants of the tragedy will be civic dignitaries, representatives of maritime organisations and business and community leaders.
Once the vessels have departed, the mood will change in Ocean Terminal, becoming more sombre, and the story will be told of Titanic's voyage into history and the disaster that took place when the ship struck an iceberg on 14 April 1912. Port Chaplain, Rev. Andrew Huckett, from the Southampton Seafarers Centre will lead prayers, and all those attending will be invited to place flowers into the water in memory of the victims of the tragedy.
The script for the event, written by Terry Yarwood, of the Tug Tender Calshot Trust, takes the audience through the story of the preparation of the departure of Titanic, the anticipation, excitement of the crew and passengers and the hectic activity on the quayside
The Royal Marines Association Concert Band and the Southampton Choral Society will provide a musical accompaniment comprising songs and music from the Edwardian era and patriotic standards.
Trevor Thorne, Director of Marketing and Communications at Southampton Solent University said: "We have been working on the event for more than two years andwe believe it will entirely in keeping with the needs of the occasion.
"It is vital that we strike the right note for the commemoration which will be apoignant and emotional moment for both the relatives and the city itself.
"With that in mind we want to hear from descendants of the victims who will beinvited to take part in the ceremony."
Mr Thorne asked relatives to contact Titanic100@live.co.uk.
Terry Yarwood, chairman Tug Tender Calshot Trust said; "I am respectful of the decision by ABP that the historic vessel 'Calshot' will re-enact the maiden voyage departure of 'Titanic' on 10th April.
Both vessels were built in the same era and therefore have similar equipment onboard. Both 'Calshot' and 'Titanic' were equipped when built with Welin quadrant davits for lifeboats. Visitors to 'Calshot' are very impressed with the coal-fired boiler on 'Calshot', because it is the same size as the boilers on board 'Titanic'."