Adverse weather conditions on April 1, 1912 - the official date for
Titanic's sea trials - frustrated the best laid plans of H&W. This latest
delay, coupled with those caused by her sister ship's misfortunes at sea,
meant mounting costs and reduced time available, for she was due at Southampton
the following evening.
At daybreak on April 2, a small army of Belfast tugboats coaxed the Titanic
out into the waters of Belfast Lough. Released, under her own steam, the
great ship sped, manouvered, circled, braked and raced again through the
choppy Irish Sea at the mouth of Belfast Lough.
By evening, Titanic had passed her tests with flying colours and, with final
papers signed, her time for departure had arrived. By midnight she must
be at Southampton. Her maiden voyage had been extensively advertised for
April 12 and there was the official naming and launch to be got through
first. So they turned Titanic's back on Belfast and the great liner bade
farewell to the land of her birth.
Titanic leaving Belfast was the completion of a remarkable chapter in
shipbuilding and in the history of H&W shipbuilders. Her gross tonnage
was 46,328; her length- 268.99 metres; breadth- 28.04 metres; her speed-
Behind her, she left a proud workforce who had risen to an amazing challenge
and succeeded in creating the world's largest and finest ocean liner- RMS
From the spot where Titanic first slid down her slipway to enter sea water,
we snapped this shot-
Titanic departs on her maiden voyage