The Titanic gets personal

My Titanic experience in Belfast took a new turn today as I was whisked off on a tour with Susie Millar of Titanic Tours. Until today I hadn’t experienced the Titanic on a personal level, but meeting Susie Millar reminded me of the loss experienced by a handful of local people almost 100 years ago. Susie is the great granddaughter of Thomas Millar, one of the White Star Line team, and a man who had set sail to work for the company and create a new life for himself and his two boys in America.
At the age of six, Susie was handed a book to read, a book written by her grandfather with many references to the Titanic and his experiences being a Titanic orphan. Susie grew up fully aware of her Titanic connections in a city which almost dared not talk about the ship.
Susie has followed in both her grandparents paths by becoming a journalist and writer, but by also living with the Titanic on a daily basis and sharing her story on the tour.
Part of Susie’s tour takes in a visit to the home of Thomas Andrews, the designer of the Titanic and a view of the grand staircase which surely inspired that famous staircase on the ship. We then headed into east Belfast to see the streets where thousands of locals walked over from, to build the Titanic, every morning, for 3 years.
On the tour we also got to hold the wooden tools of a Titanic worker Mr F McMahon. The tools have his name engraved on them and were kindly donated by their owners to Susie.
But the personal touches kept coming and we were told of the Two Pennies story from Susie, which you can read more about in her book, The Two Pennies.
I cant imagine what it must feel like to be the great grandchild of Thomas Millar, but Titanic Tours Susie takes you on that personal journey, as she strips back all the architecture and building facts to make the Titanic story about the people who built it, rather than the scale of the ship.
Make sure you check the Titanic Tours website for more details of Susie’s story and where you can buy her book or even book a tour.




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