Titanic survivor's granddaughter 'reveals truth'
A novelist whose grandfather sailed on the Titanic claims her new book reveals the truth behind the sinking of the ship.
Louise Patten said Charles Lightoller, who was Second Officer on board the ship which sank when it hit an iceberg on its maiden voyage in 1912, said an order to steer the ship away from the danger was misunderstood.
She said that at the time, different steering systems were used for steam ships and sailing ships and her grandfather maintained this caused confusion when an order was given to turn the ship to starboard.
Mrs Patten said: "Crucially, the two steering systems were the complete opposite of one another. So a command to turn 'hard a-starboard' meant turn the wheel right under one system and left under the other.
"The steersman panicked and the real reason why Titanic hit the iceberg, which has never come to light before, is because he turned the wheel the wrong way."
Mrs Patten's grandfather died before she was born but she lived with her grandmother who told her the story.
She said: "As a teenager, I was enthralled by Titanic. Granny revealed to me exactly what had happened on that night and we would discuss it endlessly."
Born in Chorley, Lancashire, Mr Lightoller was in charge of the lifeboats on the ship's port side when it sank.
After surviving the disaster, which killed more than 1,000 people, he continued with a career at sea and commanded one of the little ships that rescued British troops from the beach at Dunkirk.
The story of the Titanic, which sank on its way from Southampton to New York, inspired countless books and films including the 1997 version starring Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio.
Mrs Patten's novel, Good As Gold, tells the story of a wealthy banker branded a coward after escaping the sinking ship.
Artists unveils new exhibition inspired by Hastings beachart
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 I was a Woman Against Feminism too
- 2 Is Gideon Levy the most hated man in Israel or just the most heroic?
- 3 Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
- 4 The Tory donor whose firm is one of Britain’s biggest tax avoiders - with HMRC's blessing
- 5 John Barrowman praised for Commonwealth Games opening ceremony gay kiss
Comic-Con 2014: Sherlock's Benedict Cumberbatch and Game of Thrones' George RR Martin set to attend
Hercules, review: Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson takes centre stage in preposterous movie
Can Secret Cinema sell 80,000 'Back to the Future' tickets?
George R. R. Martin responds to 13-year-old fan's 'heartfelt' letter asking for a grisly death in Game of Thrones
Star Wars 7: Plot details 'leak', with sequel's opening sequence and premise revealed
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Vladimir Putin is given 'one last chance' to end hostilities in Ukraine
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: victims’ bodies bundled in black bags and loaded onto trains