Northern Ireland

Two Titanic menus fetch more than £100,000 at auction in England

Titanic VIP lunch menu
Image caption Twelve courses were featured on the menu for the lunch, which was sponsored by Harland & Wolff

A first class lunch menu from the Titanic has sold at auction for £64,000.

Another menu, from a VIP lunch held in Belfast to mark the launch of the Titanic, went for £36,000.

They both featured in a Titanic auction at Henry Aldridge and Son in Devizes in Wiltshire on Saturday.

The firm said both items had set new new world record prices. The first class menu belonged to the May brothers.

Richard and Stanley were travelling to Cork for a week's fishing holiday and used the Titanic as their method to cross the Irish Sea.

This particular meal was the first held on Titanic's fateful voyage - the cream of Edwardian society would have enjoyed a feast that included fresh lobsters, hodge podge (stew) and roast beef.

The auctioneers said the menu represented a "true snapshot" into the opulent lives the first class passengers enjoyed.

It was sold to a private collector.

Image caption The first class lunch menu included lobster and spiced beef

A second menu relating to Titanic was offered in the same sale - a VIP lunch at the Grand Central Hotel in Belfast on 31 May 1911.

Sixty-nine dignitaries enjoyed a lavish spread featuring 12 courses, including eggs stuffed with foie gras, turtle soup and Sussex capon.

The courses were matched with the finest wines and spirits as well as a palate cleanser made from lemon water, ice, champagne and rum.

Many of those in attendance would have mingled with the thousands who witnessed the launch of the ship at Harland & Wolff against a backdrop of booming rockets.

They included Luigi Gatti, who would later be manager of Titanic's a la carte restaurant.

The menu was sold to a private UK collector for more than £36,000, another world record

Andrew Aldridge from the auction company said memorabilia from Titanic's launch was among the rarest material linked to the doomed White Star liner in existence.