Salford Hall Bell - Abbots Salford, Warwickshire
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member SMacB
N 52° 08.929 W 001° 54.148
30U E 575095 N 5778158
Quick Description: The original bell from the bellcote on Salford Hall, Abbots Salford, with a story to tell....
Location: West Midlands, United Kingdom
Date Posted: 11/21/2018 11:13:14 AM
Waymark Code: WMZJXB
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member Alfouine
Views: 1

Long Description:
The original bell from the bellcote on Salford Hall, Abbots Salford, with a story to tell....

"The Hall was built around 1470 as a half timbered retreat and guest residence for the monks of Evesham Abbey. Successive owners were Henry VIII, who in 1539 dissolved Evesham Abbey and took over its properties: Sir Philip Hobby, a favourite courtier to whom King Henry gave the hall: and Anthony Littleton, who bought it from Sir Phillip in 1546 for the sum of £891 and ten shillings (along With a 600 acre estate).

Littleton‘s daughter and heiress married John Alderford, who in 1602 added an imposing new stone wing to the building. Like so many noble homes of the time, this new wing was planned in the shape of a letter E, in honour of Queen Elizabeth I. Above the central branch of the E, which forms the main staircase of the new wing, a belfry was added whose bell carried the elaborately moulded inscription:

CHARLES STANFORD ESQUIRE - ELENOR - 1610


Elenor was John Alderford‘s daughter, who brought the Hall for her husband, Charles Stanford on Alderford's death in 1606. The dating of the bell in 1610 possibly marked the completion of the new wing begun in 1602.

For nearly 4 centuries the bell hung in its belfry undisturbed. But the old Hall fell on hard times. The Stanfords died out, and their family home was left unoccupied and largely deserted. In the 1980s squatters, gypsies and thieves stripped the building of everything remaining of value, and the last act of vandalism was the theft of the bell itself in June 1987.

In July 1987 Charter Hotels Ltd., a family company spent two years restoring the Hall to its former beauty and grace. The forlorn empty belfi-y was given a new brass bell, filling the void but without the history of romance of the original.

Then in 1989, when the renovated building was opened as a hotel, the story of the old bell took a strange twist. A neighbour reported that it had been sold by auction in Stanford, offer for sale not by the thief, but by the Police!

It appeared the thief had been caught quickly, but the Police had been unable to link the bell, which they found among his assorted loot. The neighbour had immediately recognised the bell and its message, but the Police claimed they had not even noticed it carried one.

Charter Hotels traced the bells purchaser, bought it back, and restored it to its ancestral home. It now has a proud place in the reception lounge, where guests can admire its striking inscription and reflect on its romantic history."

SOURCE - framed note next to bell
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