Did anyone give Tetley's a Bell???

Discussion in 'Social & Reunions' started by Chillipepper, Jul 22, 2011.

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  1. The lovely brewery at Tetley's in Leeds was taken over by Carlsberg and the area is now being demolished. We have been given an 11" cast bell that was presented to them "by the ship's company of HMS ARK ROYAL 1989". I would like to make a bit of a feature of this and use it to raise the profile of the RNR in Leeds, who are about to be presented with said bell. As the brewery has been decommissioned no-one there knows the story or how such a fantastic bell came to be presented and therefore there's not much of a story for the local news. Was anyone on this site onboard the ship in 1989 and do they remember how this presentation came about? Additionally are there any local Leeds ARK ROYAL shipmates who would like to be invited to the presentation. It seems such a shame just to put the bell in an establishment and not use it to raise a bit of profile.
    Grateful for all your help.
  2. There may have been some coverage in the Navy News of that Bell Presentation.

    Their contacts are here: http://www.navynews.co.uk/navy-news-contacts and if you ask them nicely they might be able to scour their archives - As well as giving you some publicity for the re-locating of that bell.

    Worth a try!
  3. Inspired! Thanks for that - I've just called them and they're looking.
    Why haven't I joined this site before???
    I would still be delighted to hear from anyone else who knows anything about the bell - I remember going on several brewery visits and all the owners ever got was a thank you and a plaque!!!
  4. ChilliP

    What is the entire inscription on the bell?
  5. Hi Soleil,

    It says "Presented to Tetley's Brewery by the ship's company of HMS ARK ROYAL 1989". There's always been a big link with ARK and Leeds (as you probably know) and the City Hall has a reproduction of the silver bell but there must have been a really strong link wih Tetley's for them to get this bell.

  6. It's slightly hazy, but there was an event being celebrated between the City of Leeds and HMS Ark Royal in 1989. I only recall this, because there was a bit of memorabillia from the event in the passageway leading to the CO's cabin.
    Off the top of my head, it was an affirmation of friendship between the ship and city.

    I'll get hold of my decommissioning book and see if there's any mention of it in there.

    *Just also remembered, they may have been put into storage and catalogued by HMS Nelson's trophy room. No number to hand, but I'm sure the Navy News might be able to put you in touch.
  7. WLS

    HMS Ark Royal was granted the Freedom of the City of Leeds in October 1973, bestowing the right to march through its streets, so the event you remember may be an occasion when the ship visited the City to exercise this right.
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2011
  8. Thanks WLS - if you could have a look I'd be grateful. I know there's a huge link between ARKR and Leeds (there was a decommissioning march earlier this year in the city) and Leeds City council have a replica of the silver bell but I've drawn a complete blank here and the presentation is on Thursday! It coincides with a VRSM presentation so I can highlight that in the papers and follow up with the bell but any help is appreciated!
  9. ChilliP

    I've been in touch with the Yorkshire Post; its library staff are endeavouring to source any articles covering the gift of the bell to Tetley's for you.
  10. There was a cartograph map of the city, framed and dated 1973. It's this one "scroll" which I remember seeing which had 1989 on it and is doing my head in. It was immediately to the left as you went through the door/hatch and it's annoying that I can't remember the exact date. 1989 was significant for some reason, I'm half tempted to think that it was the 50th anniversary of the City of Leeds and HMS Ark Royal affliation. But that can't be right, can it?

    Edit: A bit of a longshot, but this video link has personnel onboard at the time, so it might be worth seeing if they're around? ‪HMS ARK ROYAL Gunnery '89‬‏ - YouTube
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2011
  11. Leeds first adopted HMS Ark Royal in 1941, so if there were a 50 year anniversary, it would have been in 1991.
  12. Many thanks Soleil - much appreciated!
  13. Thanks WLS - I'll take a good look at the video. I promise if I get down to the bottom of this I'll let you know!
  14. Bit of a dead end on the decommissioning book unfortunately, I've been through it thrice and absolutely no mention of it in there.
  15. Thanks anyway WLS :)
  16. No luck from my side at the moment, I'm afraid; have now spoken to Carlsberg-Tetley's and asked for any help which the company can offer.
  17. Something like that remains the property of the RN, and is loaned out by the RN Trophy Centre. They should be able to furnish you with details. You can ring them on 02392 720120
  18. Cheers all chaps.... Great presentation tonight and I will post our internal release once I put it on our site. At the presentation a chap from the CO's office in ARKR was present and told me that it was one of six bells kept by the ship that went onto the gangway (multiple bells as they kept going 'missing'). This one was engraved by the buffer and given to Tetley's purely as they had been so supportive to ARKR and the ship wanted to give something back. So... no real provenance, just a few matelots saying cheers to somewhere that thought their local ship was the dogs.
    Thanks for all your help, not as interesting or in need of our lovely banter in these threads but still a story that I'll use to promote the RNR.

    Will try to stay faithful to Rum Ration but will probably steer clear of Diamond Lil's - kinda scares me!
    Chillipepper :)
  19. News This is the link for the Ark Royal Bell presentation......
  20. Glad it all went well in the end. Any samples?

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