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Historian and Broadcaster Dan Snow visits Wirral

30th October 2013

Categories: News

Dan Snow visits The U Boat Story in Wirral
The U-Boat Story Wirral

From Wirral News

Broadcaster and historian Dan Snow visited Wirral last week for a documentary on the sinking of submarine HMS Thetis.

The popular TV presenter was in the borough on Thursday to record the programme about the sinking of the vessel in Liverpool Bay in 1939.

He visited the U-boat story museum in Birkenhead and New Brighton’s Fort Perch Rock. He also took a ferry across the Mersey, snapped photographs and tweeted about his visit.

He used social media to say: “Fort Perch Rock, built on the Wirral to protect Merseyside from the nonexistent French threat in the 1820s.”

“Stoker Walter Arnold was 1 of 4 men to escape. Navy refused to pay him for 6 months because his pay book was still in the stricken sub.”

“Today I'm learning about the worst submarine accident in the history of the Royal Navy. HMS Thetis, sank, June 1939.”

“I'm in the brilliant U-boat Story museum in Merseyside. Reminds me that I'm doing a speech on the Battle of the Atlantic at @historyweekend.”

HMS Thetis is the worst submarine accident in the history of the Royal Navy with the loss of 99 lives. Only four survived.

Robin Bird from New Brighton, opened up the Fort for Dan and his film crew.

He said: “Dan wanted to get feel for the location of the disaster looking out to Liverpool Bay. He knew this stuff and liked the Fort.

“He also looked around the Thetis museum within the Fort, and read a copy of condolence letter from Hitler to Admiralty.

“After the visit he talked to naval experts and they discussed about why the Theses sank.

“Dan also spoke to locals including Derek Arnold, who is the son of one of four survivors – Stoker Walter Arnold. It was a whistle-stop tour.”

The documentary will be shown on the BBC. A broadcast date has yet to be confirmed.

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