SCARBOROUGH’S tourism bosses are being urged not to “miss the boat” and commemorate the town’s links to an historic maritime disaster.
This year marks the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic, and Cllr Norman Murphy has called for the links to be better highlighted.
Speaking at this week’s meeting of Scarborough Council, he asked Cllr David Jeffels, the portfolio holder for tourism, whether plans were in place.
He said: “This year is the 100th anniversary of the Titanic sinking and Scarborough has such strong connections with the Titanic story – Sir Edward James Harland, who founded shipbuilders Harland and Wolff, was born here and Sixth Officer James Moody was a Scarborough lad.
“I see a very big opportunity there but it seems as though we are missing the boat.”
Cllr Jeffels said that it was a good opportunity to focus on Scarborough’s connections and plans were already in place to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Bombardment in two years’ time. He added: “These anniversaries are well worth recording.”
Sir Edward James Harland, 1st Baronet, was born in Scarborough in May 1831 and created the famous Belfast-based shipbuilders in partnership with Gustav Wolff in 1861. The shipyard had close links with the White Star Line and built the RMS Titanic.
There is a heritage plaque at the Westborough branch of Marks & Spencer which commemorates his birth at a house on the site and which was unveiled by his great nephew, Air Marshal Reginald Harland, in 2001.
James Paul Moody was also born in Scarborough, in August 1887, and went to sea when he was 14-years-old.
He was the only junior officer of the Titanic to lose his life in the disaster – during the ship’s evacuation he helped to load the lifeboats – and his sacrifice is commemorated on a monument in Woodlands Cemetery and at St-Martin-on-the-Hill Church.
Speaking after the meeting Cllr Jeffels said: “We are certainly going to look at it and see what we can focus on. It’s worth flagging up because history does create a lot of interest.”