The Appeal launched in April 2013 for funds to conserve the only memorial in Cumbria to the Titanic Chief Engineer Joseph Bell, in Farlam, has enabled the conservation work to be undertaken and completed. A commemoration service celebrating this was held at the gravestone memorial, on Saturday the 26th of April, at 2.00 pm, unveiled by Mr John Lightfoot MBE CEng.
Individual donations, grant aid, company donations and income from the sale of the illustrated biography of Joseph Bell, have funded the skilfully re-lettered memorial stone worked by the stonemason Bob Wellington, of Abbey Stonecraft. The memorial has been cleaned and sealed for future generations with a newly established access footpath to the memorial in the Old Graveyard, at St Thomas a Becket Church, signposted and with an acrylic encrypted QR [Quick Release] plate for further information about Joseph Bell.
A new engraved memorial plaque has also been sited adjacent to the memorial in the Old Graveyard. In his welcome to everyone Barrie Hodgson said, in this high tech, high speed and uncertain world that we share today, when we often lose ourselves in our everyday lives, it’s good that we can pause and come together, to remember and celebrate this remarkable Cumbrian from Farlam, the erstwhile Chief Engineer of R.M.S. Titanic, who died so courageously confronting fear, danger and uncertainty with his fellow Engineers, 102 years ago on the 15th of April 1912.
Mr John Lightfoot unveiled the memorial, followed by aural recollections of Joseph Bell: Edward Freer on his childhood, Toby Fretwell on his education, Hazel Hartley on his family life and John Lightfoot MBE on the White Star Line & R.M.S. Titanic. John Lightfoot laid a wreath on behalf of everyone created by Brenda Benjamin, being representative of White Star, Titanic & the Sea followed by The Reverend Janice Murray who said the closing words for everyone.