Who Do You Think You Are?



Please thank Felix Rowe for his interesting article ‘Fighting fire’ (July). You may be interested to know that my maternal great uncle Robert Carr invented an “electronically driven bell ringing mechanism”. This replaced manual bell-ringing on the fire engines in Kingston upon Hull in 1937. It took Robert two years to perfect his design, and it was demonstrated on the streets of Hull on 3 March 1937. Robert was an electrician working at the Little Theatre next door to the Fire Station. An article (pictured below) in the Hull Daily Mail described how firemen used to ring the bell while half-dressed and perilously hanging onto the fire engine as it raced through the street. Robert’s device had an easy on/off switch, and could be rung indefinitely.

Anne Sherman, by email

EDITOR REPLIES: What an enterprising great uncle!


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