The captain, Edward John Smith, shouted out: “Be British, boys, be British!”

This story goes to show there’s no end to the saga of the ill fated, ill-riveted colossus. It could inspire new life to the Titanic Quarter signature project, so diabolically cheated of lottery funding .but still supported by £65 million of public money .

Why not dramatically recreate the national characteristics of English, Irish and American queues around a mockup of the ship as they scramble for the lifeboats? You could have different winners every day. There’d be no shortage of paid volunteers to play the competition between the English first and second class and the inevitable Irish steerage. Mr Wilson to play the part of Captain Smith to police the race for the boats? What about a Winslet / Di Caprio prize for re-enacting the iconic figurehead scene? (Down boy, I’m getting carried away here…)

Former BBC journalist and manager in Belfast, Manchester and London, Editor Spolight; Political Editor BBC NI; Current Affairs Commissioning editor BBC Radio 4; Editor Political and Parliamentary Programmes, BBC Westminster; former London Editor Belfast Telegraph. Hon Senior Research Fellow, The Constitution Unit, Univ Coll. London