To mark the 30th anniversary on the 1st September, when a team led by American oceanographer Dr. Robert Ballard and French diving engineer Jean-Louis Michel discovered the world’s most famous ship’s final resting place, Titanic Belfast will be exhibiting The Explorers Club Flag carried on the discovery expedition throughout September.
The Explorers Club Flag, which was on board the 1985 Titanic Discovery Expedition, has a unique story and will be on display throughout September at Titanic Belfast. The Explorers Club Flag represents more than a century of tradition and outstanding feats of exploration. The Club Flag has been carried to both poles, to the deepest and highest points on earth, and on every Apollo mission to the moon. This is the first time an Explorers Club Flag has been to Ireland and marks the second time an Explorers Club Flag has been displayed as part of an exhibition.
Rory Golden, Explorers Club Member who worked to secure the flag for Titanic Belfast, and the first Irish diver to visit the resting place of the Titanic, described the significance of the flag: “The history of this flag is like no other due to its connection with Titanic. The 1985 expedition to Titanic was shrouded in secrecy; therefore, no official application could be made for permission to carry The Explorers Club Flag. However, Ralph White, Explorers Club member and cameraman, felt it was important to have one on board and had one secretly made! When Titanic was discovered, he unveiled it to mark the occasion.”
“I’m delighted that the flag will be exhibited at Titanic Belfast, especially as it is due to be retired after the visit and put permanently on display at The Explorers Club headquarters in New York. It’s very fitting, as its last expedition was to Titanic sister’s ship, RMS Britannic in June this year.”
On the 1st September, Titanic Belfast will also be screening footage taken by Ralph White from the ‘The Moment’ of discovery for the first time in Europe, as well as hosting a live interaction from 5-6pm with Dr Robert Ballard, the discoverer of the Titanic, where guests can directly ask questions about the discovery.
Tim Husbands MBE, Titanic Belfast’s Chief Executive, commented, “Although Titanic lies in 13,000 feet of water, the enduring story still captures minds and hearts throughout the world. This excitement was showcased 30 years ago when Dr Ballard discovered the liner, 73 years after its sinking. This excitement is still alive today at Titanic Belfast, with 2.5 million visitors from over 145 countries discovering the full story of Titanic, and the people and city that built her.”
“To celebrate the anniversary of the discovery, we are delighted to display The Explorers Club Flag, that was on board the KNORR, the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute ship that discovered Titanic, and was recently taken on an expedition to Titanic’s sister ship HMHS Britannic earlier this year, on display throughout September, as well as the screening unique footage in Europe- ‘The Moment’. At Titanic Belfast, we are committed to bringing the story to life and uncovering new elements for visitors to enjoy.”
The world-class exhibition, which has been described by the Prime Minister as ‘absolutely brilliant’ and ‘magnificent and dramatic’ by TITANIC movie director, James Cameron, has recently re-vamped three galleries.
Visitors to the world’s largest Titanic visitor attraction can now experience the excitement of launch day in the gallery, which was previewed by HRH The Earl of Wessex earlier this year. The Maiden Voyage gallery transports visitors from four embarkation ports to Titanic’s deck promenade, where guests can see and hear the ocean and feel the ships engines rumbling and meet Fredrick Dent Ray, a dining room steward and survivor, on board at the Palm Court Café.
Other recent additions include the last letter ever to be written on board the Titanic by Essex-born Esther Hart, Dr John Simpson letter and the historic plan, commissioned by the Board of Trade for the British inquiry.
To join the 30th anniversary celebrations, visit Titanic Belfast, tickets cost £15.50 per adult, from £11 per senior/student and £7.25 per child. For more information, visit www.titanicbelfast.com.