'I Strike, I Cover'
'Lost and Found'
The Ship's Bell from H.M.S. Vengeance
The ship's bell from H.M.S. Vengeance, has long been sought by the 'H.M.S. Vengeance Association', with enquiries made and advertisements placed in 'Navy News', all to no avail, by the Secretary, Derek (Lew) Lewis and other member's of the Association.
It is estimated, that the ship's bell from H.M.S. Vengeance, has been missing for approximately 48 years, although this cannot be confirmed, however, it is assumed, that the bell disappeared, when H.M.S. Vengeance was loaned to the Royal Australian Navy on the 13th November 1952. I personally, have no knowledge if the bell was still on H.M.S. Vengeance, when she was returned to the Royal Navy on the 13th August 1955, unless you know different.......in which case, please let us know.
Despite the search for the bell and the it's anticipated 'lost forever' tones, the bell does still exist and was found by an Associate Member, Ron Davis by delving into the World Wide Web. The enquiries were made and written confirmation received, however, the rejoicing was postponed, until the photographic evidence was received, pictures of the bell itself. Once these came through, the search for the bell was over. The good news was sent directly to Secretary Lew Lewis, with the accompanying photograph's.
The Informant* shall remain nameless, until such times as he/she is willing to disclose his/her identity, which is only fair. I can advise you though, that the bell is displayed in a school in New Zealand, how and when it got there, is uncertain, but the school has had the bell for approximately 40 years and the best person to have had knowledge of how and when it arrived, is now deceased.
I am also advised, that there are names written inside the bell, the details of which, are yet to be forwarded to me (see Latest Bell Photographs). Unfortunately, the bell is not 'For Sale', as the school is very reluctant to part with it after all this time, however, the bell has no particular significance to the school itself, apart from it's long association and possession of it.
It would have been nice for 'The H.M.S. Vengeance Association', to purchase the bell, or replace the one at the school, in exchange, this in time may or may not happen, but at least the 'Association' knows of it's rough location and most importantly, it's existence, after all these years. Ironically, the bell has spent more time at the school than it did aboard the ship.
* The informant is Mrs. Margaret Brown, a former Executive Officer (Finance) at the school and whose father served aboard HMS. Vengeance in 1947. The school is Mana College in Porirua, New Zealand and the Principal is Mr. M.T. Webster. An inscription on the bell reads, 'Presented to Mana College by Lt. Cdr. W.E.V. Lowe, Chairman Mana College Board of Governors'.
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