A SPOOKY coincidence is how one Ripley mum described stumbling across a 1912 copy of the Daily Mirror depicting the aftermath of the Titanic disaster.
Susan Waldron’s family were rifling through their loft for old photos, when they came across a pristine newspaper carrying the heart wrenching stories of survivors of the ship, which claimed the lines of 1,517 people when it sank.
Susan, could not believe it when her eldest daughter Alison, 24, pulled the copy down from the attic, almost 100 years to the day since it was printed.
Susan said: “It’s really spooky - the timing of it is really weird!”
The mum-of-three, from Wright Avenue, in the town believes the paper must have belonged to her great-grandmother originally.
It would have been passed down to her mother, Susan said, who was a ‘bit of a sentimental hoarder’.
“Some years ago my mum, who’s passed away now, said she’d got a supplement on the Titanic and she was going to get rid of it,” Susan said.
“My daughter Alison said to her, ‘you should keep it’.
“When my mum died I put all her photos in a box with the lid on.
“On the Monday Alison had to go up there to look through some of the old photos we keep up there when she found this newspaper and brought it downstairs.
“No-one had seen it in years - we didn’t even know we had it. At one point it was used to line a set of drawers with, my mum said.”
Susan and her daughter Chelsea, ten, have read the harrowing 1912 paper from cover to cover.
The photograph on the front page shows women queuing outside the London offices of the White Star Line, which owned the Titanic, to see if their loved ones were among the 1,517 to have perished.
Inside are reports from numerous survivors. One anecdote tells how a baby was rescued in a nick of time, another how a life jacket was stolen from a man’s back as he prepared to head towards deck. Another man tells how he and his friends were so sure the ‘unsinkable ship’ would not go down, they carried on with their game of cards.
Susan’s youngest daughter Chelsea, who attends Ripley’s St John’s School also happens to be a fanatic on the 1997 James Cameron film Titanic. She has seen it 14 times and just about knows the film ‘word-for-word’.
“It makes it seem so real,” Chelsea said looking at the paper, “most films are just fantasy. Seeing this, it makes it seem so real – it just amazes me.
“I thought it was a bit spooky to find it this week too.”