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He was working as chief purser of the Cunard Line and was on board the Birkenhead ferry during the heavy ice floes of 1963 and says the boat refused to be beaten by the ice.
By December, the ice floes are beginning to break up.
The scale here seemed innocent, almost ordinary in comparison to the images that appeared on the maxiscreen--an endless series of footprints in the snow was followed by a waterfall with ice floes enclosed in a smaller rectangle which then split and became more intricate, breaking away from the standard video format in a number of ingenious ways.
1881: Heavy ice floes on the Mersey which caused disruption to many ferry services1780: Temperatures of23 and -13 degrees were recorded1739 : Extreme severe frost lasting nearly two months caused many deaths from starvation1684: Worst winter on record.
MAROONED: Stranded skaters on the ice floes at Askoe Island on Saturday wait for help while, inset, one is winched to safety by a rescue helicopter
They mean that gaunt, bearded, agile Jacques and his four team-mates can leap from ice floe to bobbing ice floe in Canada's answer to the Boat Race - across the St Lawrence River in winter!
His captain was responsible for saving three of the 11 ships which reached Russia by hiding them behind ice floes.
But when the 40-year-old found himself freezing on ice floes in the Arctic Circle, the line between fact and fiction became a fine one.
But then the ice started to melt, forming dangerous ice floes and breaking up the normally flat ice fields.
Making the critical descent, he could not find a place to land amid the treacherous flimsy ice floes and the balloon bounced off the ice several times.
The play is set partly on the barren ice floes of the Arctic and partly in the drawing room of Lady Jane Franklin, and is billed as "ripping yarn", a bold and adventurous tale of tragedy, mishap, folly, arrogance, madness and betrayal, Victorian heroism, and ruthless news management.