Ship’s bell donated by Bempton man now on display as part of SS Nomadic exhibition in Belfast

A ship’s bell donated by a Bempton man has gone on display on the restored SS Nomadic vessel, which has close connections to the Titanic.

By The Newsroom
Thursday, 16th September 2021, 3:45 pm
The ship’s bell, lanyard, and inclinometer, donated by Christopher Wardlow, have gone on display on the SS Nomadic.
The ship’s bell, lanyard, and inclinometer, donated by Christopher Wardlow, have gone on display on the SS Nomadic.

Christopher Wardlow offered the bell to the Nomadic Preservation Society, which is based in Belfast, in 2014.

However, due to changes at the society, part of the Nomadic Charitable Trust, and a takeover by Maritime Belfast which runs the Titanic Quarter and now the Nomadic, there had been no news about the bell, along with a donated lanyard and inclinometer.

Earlier this year Mr Wardlow got in touch with the Belfast Maritime Trust and helpful staff at the organisation said he just had to fill in a donation agreement.

Mr Wardlow donated the items in 2014.

This month he received a message from its Chief Executive Officer Kerrie Sweeney saying the display on the Nomadic was complete with all three of his nautical items on show.

The Nomadic was a Tender to RMS Titanic and is the last remaining White Star Line ship in the world.

It is located near the Titanic Quarter attraction at Belfast’s historic Hamilton Dock.

Mr Wardlow said: “I originally bought the bell after a few beers in the pub.

The inclinometer and card mentioning Mr Wardlow.

“I arrived back home covered in snow carrying the bell after going back to my friend’s home. We gave the bell to the society in 2014 and then things went quiet.

“I am a member of the Nomadic Preservation Society, and because so much had been pilfered from the vessel, I decided to donate the bell.

“This year I decided to find out what was happening with the items and I actually got though to Maritime Belfast.

“They asked me to fill in a form so the items could be used and now they are on show. Kerrie Sweeney sent over some photos of them in a cabinet and I am even mentioned on a card within the display.

“The Nomadic was called Titanic’s ‘Little Sister’ and was used as a Tender.

“The vessel carried passengers to the Titanic because the post of Cherbourg was too small for the big liners such as the Titanic.

“The Nomadic ended up staying in France on the River Seine. It was used as a nightclub and a restaurant. Eventually it fell into disrepair.

“A campaign was launched to bring it back to Belfast which is where it is based now, just across the road from where the Titanic Quarter is.

“The ship is now restored to her original glory and a popular visitor attraction.”

To find out more about the SS Nomadic click here