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PHOTOS: Reliving the TITANIC saga after 100 years!

Last updated on: April 10, 2012 10:43 IST

Reliving the TITANIC saga after 100 years!

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ANI

A cruise carrying relatives of some of the more than 1,500 people who died aboard the Titanic nearly 100 years ago, set sail from England on Sunday to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the White Star liner.

The Titanic Memorial Cruise, carrying the same number of passengers -- not including crew -- as the Titanic did, cast off from Southampton, where the doomed vessel left on its maiden voyage.

The 12-night cruise will retrace Titanic's voyage, including a visit to the location where it sank, Fox News reported.

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Image: Titanic Memorial Cruise leaves port in Southampton, England. The cruise retraces the voyage of the ill-fated Titanic liner, which hit an iceberg and sank 100 years ago on April 15, 1912.
Photographs: Reuters

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Waving passengers crowded the decks as the ship prepared to set sail, many dressed in period costumes as first-class passengers, crew members, steerage passenger and stewards.

With 1,309 passengers aboard, the MS Balmoral will follow the same route as the Titanic -- though the Balmoral had to leave two days earlier than the Titanic did because it is a small and slower vessel.

The Balmoral is operated by Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, whose parent company, Harland and Wolff, built the Titanic in Belfast. It has been chartered for the event by Miles Morgan Travel, which specialises in tailor-made holidays.

The organisers are trying to recreate the onboard experience -- minus the disaster -- including the food and a live band playing music from that era, in a tribute to Titanic's musicians who reportedly played their instruments until the ship sank.

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Image: The cruise ship Balmoral is prepared before passengers board it
Photographs: Chris Helgren/Reuters

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People from 28 countries have booked passage, organisers said, including relatives of some of the more than 1,500 people who died when the Titanic collided with an iceberg and sank on April 15, 1912, in international waters in the North Atlantic.

Other passengers include relatives of the around 700 survivors, along with authors and historians.

The tickets varied in cost from 2,799 pounds to 5,995 pounds.

Over the course of the voyage, passengers will attend lectures by Titanic experts such as Philip Littlejohn, grandson of a Titanic survivor. Littlejohn said he is sure his grandfather would be proud to know his story would be shared with passengers on the Titanic Memorial Cruise.

"It will be an emotional moment when we are over the wreck site, where I dived in 2001 and where my grandfather left Titanic rowing Lifeboat 13," he said.

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Image: Bernadette and Brice Christie of Grande Prairie, Alberta stand with Canadian flags as the Titanic Memorial Cruise leaves port in Southampton
Photographs: Chris Helgren/Reuters

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While on board, passengers also will dine on meals based around dishes served in April 1912, with a formal dinner on April 13 made up entirely of dishes served aboard the Titanic.

Cruise organisers have set up a special memorial service on April 14 to start at 11.40 pm to mark the moment Titanic hit the iceberg, and later at the exact moment when the ship sank.

The cruise is among an abundance of commemorations and memorials to the reputedly unsinkable ship that have sprung up to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the Titanic's doomed voyage.

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Image: Newlyweds Mary Beth Crocker Dearing and Tom Dearing of Newport, Kentucky pose while wearing period costume before boarding the Titanic Memorial Cruise in Southampton
Photographs: Chris Helgren/Reuters
Tags: TITANIC , PHOTOS

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Reliving the TITANIC saga after 100 years!

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Carmel Bradburn of Adelaide, South Australia waves as the Titanic Memorial Cruise leaves port in Southampton, England.

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Photographs: Chris Helgren/Reuters

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Reliving the TITANIC saga after 100 years!

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John Philip of South Coast, New South Wales, Australia adjusts his period bowler hat while donning a life jacket, during a drill on board the Titanic Memorial Cruise in Southampton.

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Photographs: Chris Helgren/Reuters

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Reliving the TITANIC saga after 100 years!

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Kerry Kimble of Oshawa, Ontario reacts after successfully donning a life jacket during a drill on board the Titanic Memorial Cruise in Southampton.

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Photographs: Chris Helgren/Reuters

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Reliving the TITANIC saga after 100 years!

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Maritime artist James Allan Flood of Del Ray Beach, Florida arrives wearing period costume to board the Titanic Memorial Cruise in Southampton. The cruise is to retrace the voyage of the ill-fated Titanic liner, which hit an iceberg and sank 100 years ago on April 15, 1912.

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Photographs: Chris Helgren/Reuters

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Reliving the TITANIC saga after 100 years!

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Eight month old Alisa Dounaeva of Godalming is held by her mother Lorna while seeing off her grandparents on the Titanic Memorial Cruise in Southampton.

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Photographs: Chris Helgren/Reuters

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Reliving the TITANIC saga after 100 years!

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Passengers wearing period costume queue to board the Titanic Memorial Cruise in Southampton.

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Photographs: Chris Helgren/Reuters

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Reliving the TITANIC saga after 100 years!

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A priest gives communion during an Easter Sunday religious service on board the Titanic Memorial Cruise in Southampton.

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Photographs: Chris Helgren/Reuters

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Reliving the TITANIC saga after 100 years!

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Megan Zubok and Evan Perelekos of Detroit arrive wearing period costume to board the Titanic Memorial Cruise in Southampton.

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Photographs: Chris Helgren/Reuters

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Robert Burr of Southampton, whose grandfather Ewart Burr was a 1st class saloon steward who died on the Titanic, poses on the bed of a replica Titanic cabin before boarding the Titanic Memorial Cruise in Southampton.

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Photographs: Chris Helgren/Reuters

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