THE incredible story of a Chester man who survived the sinking of the Titanic is featured in a new book.

Historian, James W Bancroft's work entitled ‘Titanic: Iceberg Ahead’ highlights the lives of 50 victims of the disaster, and among them is Chester-born Billy ‘Punch’ Wynn’ who was a survivor.

He said: "The RMS Titanic disaster, which occurred when the ship hit an iceberg on the night of April 14/15, 1912, is one of history’s most catastrophic human tragedies, which resulted in a terrible sacrifice of life.

"The people on board were proud to be part of the ship’s maiden voyage, but what they didn’t know was that it was destined to be its only voyage.

"It harbours many heartbreaking stories about its ill-fated passengers and crew, whose lives were painfully shattered by what they saw and experienced during that one dreadful incident."

William Wynn was born in Chester, on November 13, 1870, and as a boy he attended Holy Trinity Boys’ School, in Vicarage Road, Hoole.

Soon after his eleventh birthday he became an errand boy at Bollands, a tea and coffee merchants on Eastgate Row, and then at a tailor’s shop in Foregate Street and later he acted as a conductor on the trams.

But he always felt the ‘call of the sea’ as he termed it. About this time he was mixing with a number of young lads, among whom were some who might have led him into trouble, so he was glad when an old lady was instrumental in getting him posted to the training ship Clio, which had its main offices at 29 Eastgate Row, not far from Bollands.

He stated that he was known as ‘Punch’ Wynn as a lad in Chester.

Mr Bancroft states in his book that Billy had already been involved in two previous shipping disasters, while he was employed on a large sailing ship named The Garfield, he nearly lost his life in a typhoon while on a voyage from India to New York.

And on February 6, 1898, he was aboard the USS St Louis as an able seaman when that ship mounted a rescue of passengers and crew from SS Veendam when she collided with a sunken wreck and foundered.

He also saw service in the Spanish-American war of 1898, and in the Boer War, 1899-1902.

In 1907 he married Eliza Kate Abbott, and he joined the White Star Line.

One day the men were assembled, and he was chosen to proceed to Belfast, where he found he was posted to Titanic as quartermaster.

When the disaster occurred he was placed in charge of lifeboat nine which contained 42 women.

He ‘carried on’ during the period of the Great War in different ships, finishing up in the Persian Gulf.

Bill and Eliza had no children, and he died in 1945, at the age of 75.

The book is priced £20 but is available at a discount on Amazon or the publishers Pen and Sword at Barnsley, or most outlets.