Cobh is set to mark the centenary of the sinking of RMS Lusitania with five months of events. The passenger liner was sunk by a German U-boat during World War I on May 7, 1915. 1,198 passengers and crew died. The sinking was a critical factor in the United States entering the war.
The carillonneur of St Colman’s Cathedral Adrian Gebruers will present a recital on the 49 bells of the cathedral, to be followed by a remembrance ceremony and a recital by the Cobh Confraternity Band.
Schoolchildren will read the names of the 169 victims laid to rest in Cobh’s Old Church Cemetery while the Irish Coast Guard launches flares from the quayside in Cobh and from the ramparts of Fort Mitchel on Spike Island.
On May 7 the Cunard liner Queen Victoria will be in Cobh as a part of its 'Lusitania Remembered' voyage. That evening, a flotilla of boats, each illuminated with white lights, will start towards Cobh from Roches Point, to symbolize the return of the boats from Cobh that were sent to rescue the survivors and bring the victims back for burial in 1915.
A museum dedicated to the Lusitania is also expected to open, 100 years to the day of the sinking, at the Old Head of Kinsale.
The centenary will be marked by the blowing of the ship’s whistle for the first time since 1915, the Irish Times reports.