UNCOVER the fascinating truth behind the devastating sinking of the passenger ferry SS Berlin.

It is now known that 128 souls perished when ferocious waves swept over the ship in February 1907.

The ferry had departed Harwich in stormy weather, which worsened as the ship approached the Hook of Holland.

A crashing wave caused her to become impaled on the tip of the granite breakwater, at the entrance to the New Waterway.

Bringing together pictures, accounts and memorabilia of the harrowing final journey of the SS Berlin, Harwich Society historian David Whittle will reveal all about the disaster in a talk later this month.

He said: “The illustrated talk features a piece of film which comes from a Dutch museum.

“In the former Parkeston church, the organ was a memorial for the 128 lives lost.

“We will have the brass plaque from the organ - we rescued a lot of memorabilia from Parkeston church when it closed.

“Fourteen people survived, of which four or five were crew members.

“Many from Harwich were left widows and orphans after this disaster.

“There was an opera company from Germany, who had been in England for a performance, they all perished.

“We will have lists of the crew and lists of the survivors.

“Refreshments will follow in the church hall next door and there will be a photo display, alongside old newspaper cuttings.”

He added: “It was a bad time for ships making the crossing.

“In 1908 the SS Yarmouth went down after setting off from the Hook of Holland.

“A lot of it was the weather, back then these ships weighed around 1,700 tonnes, the tide and the wind took their toll.”

The free talk will take place at the Catholic Church, in Fronks Road, on Sunday, February 17, at 3pm.