Survivors of the Titanic | Survivors from the famous shipwreck tell their stories

Line Up | Edith Russell

The 90-year-old survivor vividly describes her experiences on the Titanic.

CHANNEL | Unknown

FIRST BROADCAST | 14 April 1970

DURATION | 20 minutes 52 seconds

FIRSTBROADCAST

1970

Synopsis

Edith Russell recalls how nobody took the incident seriously at first. They had snowball fights with ice from the iceberg, and Edith carefully locked up her valuables before reluctantly making her way to the lifeboats. She reveals details of her inappropriate attire - a tight sheath dress and velvet pumps - and her toy pig, which she carried to safety.

Did you know?

Edith Russell was a fashion writer at the time, and later went on to report from the trenches during World War I. She lived at Claridges Hotel in London during her final years and died in 1975. Pictured above is the first class staircase on the Titanic (courtesy of Corbis).

Contributors

Sheridan Morley
Reporter
Edith Russell
Contributor

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Archive document asking for brandy to made available for nervous radio guests.

Internal memo calling for brandy for nervous guests

WRITTEN 1938
1 Page

Dutch courage is required for radio interviewees.

A letter about the proposed dramatisation of the Titanic disaster.

'Sensations': Could the play be re-written?

WRITTEN 1947
1 Page

The Head of Features asks if the play could be re-written as a documentary.

A telegram from the Northern Irish PM to the BBC.

'Sensations': Telegram from Northern Ireland PM

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The government of Northern Ireland urges for the broadcast to be stopped.

A letter questioning the broadcast of a controversial play.

'Sensations': BBC Northern Ireland Director expresses his disapproval of the play.

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Concerns that this play could damage the BBC's relationships in Northern Ireland.

A memo about the broadcast of a controversial play.

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A document summarising the controversy over a play about the Titanic.

Sensation: Note for file re Titanic programme

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A summary of the brewing controversy.

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