The relative of a passenger who died aboard the Titanic has travelled to Southampton to mark the anniversary of the ship's sinking.

Matthew Day is visiting the city for the annual British Titanic Society convention due to be held this weekend.

After travelling by coach from Bluntisham in Cambridgeshire, the 37-year-old embarked on a Titanic walking tour, visited the SeaCity Museum and watched the Titanic musical theatre show.

Matthew, who has more than 900 collectables on the doomed cruise liner, said his fascination with the Titanic started when he discovered a personal connection.

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He said: “I found out I had a relative on board the ship around the time the movie (Titanic, 1997) came out – his name was Frederick Wright and he was my great grandmother's uncle – and I’ve been collecting and finding out information about it ever since.

“I’ve seen all the films and documentaries, and if I see there’s an exhibition, I do what I can to get down and go. I went to the Belfast museum for the 100th anniversary of the Titanic, I’ve been to events in London, Stoke-on-Trent – I’d like to go up to Liverpool as they have their own display.”

Daily Echo:

Matthew’s Titanic relative, Frederick, was a squash court attendant on the ship and gave lessons to first and second-class passengers having previously worked on sister ship, Olympic.   

American writer, Archibald Gracie, who was a first-class passenger on the Titanic wrote about his experiences aboard when he returned to New York after he’d been rescued and mentioned Frederick in his accounts.

On passing Frederick on C deck shortly after the Titanic’s fateful collision with an iceberg in the North Atlantic, Gracie remarked: “Hadn’t we better cancel that (squash) appointment for tomorrow morning?”

To which Frederick, who seemed a little pale, calmly replied: “Yes.”

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Frederick died at the age of 24 when the Titanic sank on April 15, 1912. His body was never identified, and his father and sister were awarded a weekly allowance from the British Titanic Relief Fund as a result of his death and loss of his income.

On what it means to be in Southampton for the anniversary of the Titanic’s sinking, Matthew said: “Coming to Southampton makes me feel closer to Frederick. I would have liked to have met him and go back in time.

“To say that I have a relative who was on the ship is something that’s really special.

“It’s hard to imagine what he must have gone through but it’s strange really as it doesn’t feel like it was that long ago.

“It’s an important part of history and in a way, I want to continue Frederick’s legacy.”

The British Titanic Society will mark the 111th anniversary of the Titanic’s sinking by cutting a ribbon and holding a convention at the Leonardo Royal Grand Harbour Hotel.