Don’t you think there’s something disturbing about an Australian billionaire’s plans to build a replica of the doomed trans-Atlantic liner Titanic?
The story of the ship has captivated people around the world for more than 100 years now.
But could the journey that she so famously failed to complete in 1912 actually be made successfully by a new version in 2016?
In a few weeks, Clive Palmer will be in Southampton to reveal his plans to the British public. A similar launch has just taken place in New York.
But would any Brit want to take such a crossing on such a vessel? To me, it would be like taking a trip from Zeebrugge on a new version of the Herald Of Free Enterprise. Is this not all in bad taste?
Titanic II will be built to modern ship standards, thankfully.
She will be of welded construction instead of riveted, powered by diesel instead of coal-fired steam engines and will be fitted with enough lifeboats to carry every single passenger.
The computer images of the ship are fascinating and I’ve been following the story with interest for a while. This is the first time a Chinese shipyard will have built an Atlantic liner.
Clive Palmer is a very brash, confident person – but not so brash to claim the new ship would be ‘unsinkable’!
Inside, her layout and style will echo the original Titanic.
She will also carry passengers in three different classes. Although they will all have their own areas of the ship, at least all will benefit this time from air conditioning.
There will be no TVs or internet. The idea is to capture the ‘atmosphere’ of 1912.
The plan is to have grand dining rooms for the upper classes and benches in lower. But will anyone want to cross the Atlantic in this old-fashioned way?
Maybe in three years’ time you’ll be walking along Southsea seafront, pointing at this piece of maritime history as it passes by en route to New York.
Or maybe you’ll be pointing at a flying pig as it chases a dodo across the Common.
Which one is more likely?