HE’S considered Britain’s finest chef, but his latest culinary creation has left a bad taste in Southampton.

The multi-Michelin starred Heston Blumenthal will next week serve up a Titanic-themed menu – billed as the “greatest feast never eaten: the last meal on the Titanic” – on his new Channel 4 show.

A group of six celebrities will dine on an extravagant offerings finishing with a dessert known as a flambéed iceberg, which translates as “flamed iceberg”.

Local experts and relatives of Titanic survivors and victims last night branded Heston’s Titanic Feast as “sick” and “disrespectful”.

Historian Roger Hardingham said it was akin to making light of other human tragedies, such as the September 11 terrorist attacks.

“You wouldn’t dream of doing it about the 9/11 or the Second World War. You have got to remember that there are a lot of families in Southampton who have relatives that died on Titanic,” Mr Hardingham said.

More than 1,520 people lost their lives when the liner sank on its maiden voyage from Southampton to New York on April 15, 1912, after hitting an iceberg off Newfoundland.

More than 550 people from Southampton, many of whom were crew members, perished in the sinking.

Ron Williams’ uncle, Sam Williams, was just 26 when he joined the crew as fireman and died shovelling coal in the boiler room.

The Woolston resident last night told the Daily Echo: “I know it was 100 years ago, but I think this is still in really bad taste.”

Titanic historian Brian Ticehurst described the flamed iceberg dessert as “tacky”, while Terry Yarwood, from the Tug Tender Calshot Trust, said it was “sick”.

“I know Heston’s considered a great chef, but this seems to be in the worst taste possible. It’s quite appalling,” Mr Yarwood said.

“It’s one thing being fascinated by Titanic and another thing being disrespectful.”

Harefield resident Dot Kendle, whose mother survived the sinking as a 16-year-old, said: “I’m not happy about this.

“My grandfather went down with the Titanic and my mother watched people jump into the water. Their screams lived with her forever.”

The show will air on Tuesday night, less than a week after the 98th anniversary of the disaster.

Blumenthal is famous for dishes such as snail porridge. Guests, including former MP Edwina Currie, will also feast on curried ice cream, Antarctic Roll served on snow and camel burger with edible sand.

A statement from Channel 4 said: “Heston’s Feasts is a food show that celebrates periods of great gastronomic innovation and the Titanic Feast pays homage to the Edwardian period as a golden age of adventure.

“The Titanic’s dining room was the biggest ever seen on a ship and Heston pays tribute to its grandeur. The dishes served in the programme are celebratory and encapsulate the spirit of the likes of Lawrence of Arabia and Robert Falcon Scott.”