TRAIL – The City of Trail’s new museum is now in possession of the authentic HCMS Trail Ship’s Bell.
The Trail’s Bell is officially held by Trail’s Sea Cadet Corps – 131 Kootenay RCSCC – and is on loan to the city by the Canadian Armed Forces.
Several months ago, the Trail Historical Society enquired about the possibility of having the bell for its new museum, after having found old newspaper articles featuring the ship’s bell.
An agreement was made between the city and the local branch of the Canadian Armed Forces, that the bell would be on extended loan, and a replica bell, with the Cadet Corps’ identifying number would be provided to the Cadets to use.
The ship’s bell is integral to the life onboard any ship, as sailors mark time using the ship’s bell since the sound can cut through even the loudest noises onboard, and each Sea Cadet Corps in Canada holds at least one.
“The City of Trail used to be quite a booming place in the early part of the 1900’s,” said Sarah Benson-Lord, city representative to the Trail Historical Society. “It’s quite extraordinary for us to have a naval ship named after our little city, so we were really hoping everything would work out for us to be able to complete our display.”
After several months of research and many emails back and forth to different vendors, the replica bell was finally obtained and the exchange was made earlier this month at the Trail Armoury. Attending the event were several members of the Trail Historical Society, the Sea Cadets, and Chief Warrant Officer Sharman Thomas.
“We are proud to have been able to do this for the city,” said Chief Petty Officer Second Class Naomi Savage. “And it’s really nice that they were able to provide us with our ‘own’ bell. I like that the replica says our Corps name on it.”
The HMCS Trail bell is now on display at the Riverfront Centre in Trail, and a formal presentation ceremony is planned for the near future.
The Trail Sea Cadets meet every Tuesday night from September through May at the Trail Armoury from 6 – 9 p.m. For more information, please contact Lieutenant Navy David Cherrington, Commanding Officer at 250-231-1016 or visit us on facebook at www.facebook.com/kootenayseacadets.