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A Titanic slice of history?

You may have heard about Morris & Company’s infamous doors at the company's Shrewsbury headquarters, and for good reason. They have been have been a talking point of the town since the BBC got in touch. Here’s why…

The three ornate doors were purchased in Birkenhead by James Kent Morris the first son of the founding family member, also named James Kent Morris, who set up Morris’s in 1869. James was travelling up to Liverpool to sell his Golden Film Oil, when he purchased the beautifully carved matching saloon doors which had been originally destined for the Titanic’s sister ship, the Britannic.

By the early 20's interior decoration was becoming less ornate as art deco was emerging so maybe it was felt the panels and doors were no longer suitable and hence they were sold off and James Kent came upon them. The elegant doors now reside as the main entrance and side entrance at our head office building, at Welsh Bridge in Shrewsbury.

The front doors found their current home on our building when it was completed in 1922 and have been an eye-catching feature ever since. After over 70 years, the second door, having been carefully braced and stored, was added to another elevation of the head office building when it was extended in 2008.

It has always been believed that these doors were originally destined for an ocean liner due to their intricate detailing. In fact, there is a piece of wreckage from the Titanic that has the exact same design as the panel above our double doors.  Sean Szmalc, an ocean liner enthusiast, and fellow enthusiast Paul Barker came to see the doors and they are confident that these are identical to those found in the first-class lounge on the Titanic. 

It seems conclusive that the Morris doors were hand carved to be fitted onto the Titanic’s sister ship, The Britannic, but were never used. The Britannic was the 3rd sister for the Olympic and Titanic ships.

The company says: “Following the keen interest in our distinguished doors, we are proud that they have become a unique landmark in Shrewsbury having been part of the Morris family for so long.”

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