Hello all, I’m not a bell collector but I have acquired this bell since I am a collector of British militaria. I have been informed that this type might have been used in trenches as a gas alarm bell. This example has the British military arrow symbol cast on the bell itself and the top is marked J & F Ltd 1916. Can anyone shed any more light as to the manufacturer or this particular bell? Any information would be greatly appreciated.
A very neat bell. I am looking to see if I can find anything on it.
The markings do indicate WWI British era, yes.
I am not so sure about it being a trenches gas bell though. In WWI they typically issued wooden rattles (and had a great deal of trouble with them because wood was in short supply and hot tea was dearly loved!) as they were needed in great numbers. Many / most of the combatants carried them as you never knew who would spot the gas first. I suspect (but haven’t confirmed) that this would be an officer’s bell (to signal “attack” etc.?) as the brass tone would carry farther and better over the noise of combat. Or it might be from a military base as some sort of audible signaler.