Original British WWII A.R.P Warden Brass Hand Bell - Dated 1939
Original Item: Only One Available. Second World War period British Air Raid Precautions (ARP) warden's 'all clear' hand bell. If a gas attack was suspected warning was given locally by means of the ARP warden's hand rattle and the all clear was announced through the ringing of hand bells.
Air Raid Precautions (ARP) was an organization in the United Kingdom set up in 1937 dedicated to the protection of civilians from the danger of Aerial Attacks. It included the Raid Wardens' Service that was to report on bombing incidents. Every local council was responsible for organising ARP wardens, messengers, ambulance drivers, rescue parties and liaison with police and fire brigades.
From 1 September 1939, ARP Wardens enforced the "blackout". Heavy curtains and shutters were required on all private residences, commercial premises, and factories to prevent light escaping and so making them a possible target for enemy bombers to locate their targets. With increased enemy bombing during the Blitz, the ARP services were central in reporting and dealing with bombing incidents. They managed the air raid sirens and ensured people were directed to shelters.
Air Raid Precautions had Gas decontamination specialists to deal with and clean up incidents involving chemical and gas weapons.
Standing 10" tall constructed of of solid cast brass with a turned wood handle the rim of the bell is 5" across and is clearly stamped:
The other side of the rim is marked:
According to our research this most likely stands for the Gillett & Johnston foundry of Croydon, England, who was in operation from 1889 to 1957. The bell retains its thick steel chain and iron clapper and is in full working order. Perfect for the diner table when dinner is running late. It is very loud! ALL CLEAR!
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