A BELL THAT once graced the entrance to HMS Fulmar until it departed Moray along with the Royal Navy is set to return to Lossiemouth this month.
The HMS Fulmar bell had been a landmark at the gates of the Lossiemouth base until 1972 – but when the RAF marched back in, the Bell was marched out and ended up in Birmingham.
Dave Clark, who is a representative for the Buccaneer and HMS Fulmar Associations, explained to insideMoray this week that the Bell had been purchased by ex-Fulmar sailors who eventually became members of the Nautical Club in Birmingham.
He said: “I was asked by the Covesea Trust to try to find the bell and investigate the possibility of it being returned to Lossiemouth.
“I finally tracked it down and by a stroke of good fortune for us the Nautical Club was in the process of disbanding due to declining membership. The last few agreed to sell the bell to the Fleet Air Arm Buccaneer Association (FAABA) for a nominal fee – and the FAABA have, together with the HMS Fulmar Association, agreed to permanently loan the bell to the people of Lossiemouth.
“As the Covesea project is still under construction it made sense to offer the Fisheries and Heritage Museum in Pitgaveney Quay the opportunity to display the bell for the season of 2016.
“Ultimately it is envisaged to display the bell in the proposed Covesea Royal Navy/Royal Air Force Museum where it will sit with other artefacts, information boards and Squadron Crests.”
The Bell will go on display to the public at the Lossiemouth Community and Fisheries Museum from March 31 and will remain in their care until the Covesea project is completed and ready to display artefacts related to the history of the Royal Navy and RAF at Lossiemouth.
It’s return is well timed as the Fleet Air Arm Buccaneer Squadron and HMS Fulmar Association reunion will be held in June this year. That event will be filmed by Flood Film and Creative Visions Moray, the video production company behind the recent and highly acclaimed Lossiemouth Northern Lights.
The film will not only record this event but will explore the history of HMS Fulmar and the unique relationship the Royal Navy had with the community of Lossiemouth.
Yvonne M. Findlay of Creative Visions Moray feels very privileged to be making this film and to have played a small part in facilitating the home-coming of the HMS Fulmar Bell. Her Father and Grand-Father both served in the Royal Navy and her Mother was a WRN. Her parents were based at HMS Fulmar on several occasions.
Yvonne is researching material for the film. If anyone has any photographs or anecdotes of the Royal Naval presence in the town they are asked to email firstname.lastname@example.org