Tom Arnold, of Pike’s View, Fernham, a highly respected historian, gave a fascinating talk on the people of the RMS Titanic on 16 April 2016, to an audience of 44 people drawn from Fernham and across the Vale of the White Horse in Fernham’s popular village hall. The presentation covered many interesting aspects of the famous ship, the fate of a selected number of crew and passengers and covered some of the current conspiracy theories. Tom’s research was clearly evident and his mastery of the subject and ability to make the details interesting held the audience’s attention for over 2 hours. The familiar story line was given a personal touch as each member of the audience was given and envelope with a name, and at the end of the presentation, asked to open it. Inside was the fate of the person named, whether they had survived, and if so what they did for the rest of their lives. Adding extra poignancy, we discovered that we had a relative of a Titanic survivor in the audience (from Shrivenham) and several folk from Longcot, where a memorial to a parson and his wife (who refused to leave her husband), can be found on the walls of St Mary’s Church. Refreshments went down well, and a donations bar too. Proceeds of £200 from the talk went to St John’s Church.
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