It was a great Honour for BMC Engineering to be asked to take part in the design and manufacturing of the metal infill panels for the staircase at the new Titanic building in Belfast
The phrase Grand Staircase of the RMS Titanic has been used to refer to the first-class entrance aboard the Titanic which contained a large ornate staircase located in the first-class section of the famous White Star Line liner. The staircase is often used by submersibles as an entry point into the sunken wreck as it is now a large opening, which provides easy access to the ship's interior.
The staircase is a close replica of the original one on the ship titanic. Although we had drawings and original photographs to work from during the manufacturing process we were forced at times to make subtle changes to accommodate current day regulations such as building control and the likes. There where eleven panels in total each a deferent shape and size. Though for the most part we used modern day methods but for nostalgic sake we tried to use some traditional methods this involved using our gas forge and a vintage power hammer this proved very slow the whole process took just over 5 weeks.
During this time I often thought about the men from H & W who would off made these panels originally and what exact method would they would have used and just how long would it of taken them? The ironwork for the most famous staircase in maritime history was soley hand crafted by BMC Engineering. The fore Grand Staircase descended five levels down from the Boat Deck to the D Deck in the famous appearance and continues down to F-Deck as an ordinary stairway.
The staircase featured large glass domes that allowed natural light to enter the space during the daytime, oak panelling and detailed carvings, paintings, bronze cherubs (which served as lamp supports on the middle railings), candelabra, and other details. The Fore staircase featured a clock surrounded by an intricate oak carving depicting "Honour and Glory crowning Time", while the Aft staircase featured a far less ornate clock.