Mr Ernest John Farenden was born in Emsworth, Hampshire, England in the second half of 1890.
He was the son of William Farenden (b. 1851) and Elizabeth Louisa Hammond (b. 1854); his mother and father, of Emsworth and Portsmouth respectively had married in Portsmouth in late-1876.
His siblings were: William (b. 1878), Elizabeth (1880-1952, later Mrs Albert Frank Reypert), Frances (b. 1882, later Mrs George Fleet), George Edward (1884-1948) and Frank Albert (1889-1889).
On the 1891 census Ernest is listed as living with his family at 321 Nile Street, Warblington, Emsworth. His mother Elizabeth died in 1900 aged 46 and the remaining family appear on the 1901 census living at 23 South Street in Emsworth. His father was remarried to his maternal aunt Frances Hammond (b. 1859) in mid-1901 and they appear to have run their own bakery and on the 1911 census are still living at 23 South Street in Emsworth, with William Farenden being described as a breadmaker and his wife as an assistant in the business. Ernest, as well as his brother George, followed in the footsteps of their father and also became bakers; Ernest was not present on the 1911 census, perhaps at sea.
When he signed-on to the Titanic on 4 April 1912 Farenden gave his address as 23 South Street, Emsworth, Hampshire. His previous ship had been the Olympic and as confectioner he received monthly wages of £8.
Farenden had been in the service of the White Star Line for a considerable time, his first voyage being made to the Mediterranean on board the Romanic. He was on board the Olympic during the Hawke collision and was said to be superstitious of the Olympic "as in fact were all the crew; none of them liked the ship, and those who left the vessel were very glad to do so." Farenden was very glad when he knew he was being transferred to the Titanic.
He sent his parents a postcard from Queenstown on the 11th:
"Hope you and father are well. Did you see the ship which ran into H.M.S. Hawke in the Solent. It might have been serious. Don't you think this [the Titanic] a fine ship. Give my kind regards to all - Much love, Ern."
Hampshire Post, 19 April 1912
Ernest Farenden died in the sinking and his body, if recovered, was never identified.
The following memorial appeared in the Portsmouth Evening News on 15 April 1913:
FARENDEN--In loving memory of Ernest John, who was lost in the Titanic disaster, April 15th, 1912. Fondly loved and so sadly missed by dad and auntie.
He who walked the lonely deep
Has given thee, beloved sleep
Thy Life on earth was all too short
With Christ we trust you're safe in port
His father William continued to live in Emsworth, later moving to the St James area. He died on 25 December 1917. His aunt Frances died in Gosport in 1939.