H.M.S. Hood Today
Relics and Artefacts from Hood
Updated 27-Nov-2018

This section of the site deals with surviving relics and artefacts that are believed to have once been used aboard Hood. Included here are mementoes, machines/devices, decorative pieces and actual wreckage from her sinking. These are by no means, all such items, but are merely presented here as a representative sample.

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H.M.S. Hood Bell

H.M.S. Hood's Bell
Hood's bell is the ultimate relic from the ship. It was with her from her beginning to end and beyond. The bell was one of three bells used aboard the ship. The other two were larger but less ornate watch bells (one positioned amidships and the other positioned at the front of the quarterdeck). This bell was the most important of the three and was kept in a mobile frame and manned by the Royal Marines.

The bell had originally come from It had previously been used aboard the pre-dreadnought battleship Hood and was given to Admiral SIr Horace Hood following that ship's retirement. Following the death of Sir Horace at Jutland, his widow, Lady Hood, gifted the bell to our Hood. The bell bears two inscriptions: the first, located around the lower edge reads "This bell was preserved from HMS Hood Battleship 1891-1914 by Late ADM Hon. Horace Hood killed at Jutland 31 May 1916.". The second inscription, located on the side of the bell reads "In accordance with the wishes of Lady Hood it was presented in memoray of her husband to HMS Hood battle cruiser the ship she launched 22nd August 1918." In addition to the inscriptions, the bell still wears vivid royal blue paint work on its crown as well as its interior. The bell was recovered in August 2015 and subsequently preserved for display at the National Museum of the Royal Navy, Portsmouth. The history of the bell is covered in the excellent documentary "For Years Unseen - How HMS Hood's Bell Came Home."


Rivet Pieces from H.M.S. Hood

Nobby's "Hood Nuggets"
These rivet portions were in the possession of the late Ken "Nobby" Clark since his time in Hood. Here is what he wrote about them in 2003: "These two bits of rivet came from HMS HOOD. The tail bit came from a aft oil tank near the port "A" bracket when HOOD was leaving Gib and hit a submerged object causing damage to the tank. When I went into the tank I found this part rivet. This happened on the 20th September 1938. On the 26th September 1940 we were attacked by a JU88. It dropped a 500lb bomb which just about missed us, but caused some damage to the stokers bathroom sump. This greenish rivet head I got from there."

Note: The "greenish" one Nobby referred to was actually white...the paint had oxidized a bit over the years turning it yellowish. Additionally, the other rivet still seems to have traces of oil fuel permeated into it! Both are small (roughly between 1.5 and 2 inches at the widest) but of substantial weight. Click on the image to see an enlarged version of the "nuggets".


Possible Hood Tampions

Decorative Hood Badges/Gun Tampions
For the past 40 plus years, the Bryant family has possessed what appear to be two brass Hood badges/tampions. The larger of the two measures 6 ¾ “ in outer diameter (making it most likely a 5.25" tampion). The second (shown on the right) is roughly 5" in outer diameter (making it most likely a 4" tampion). This smaller badge is mounted on a 16" bakelite shield and is surrounded by a crown and sea serpents.

Click on the image to see an enlarged version of both badges/tampions.



Former Hood Signal Flags in use, 2009

Hood Signal Flags
Shown here are flags which were once assigned to Hood. They were removed/retired from the ship sometime around 1940. They are shown here flying from the Millenium Mast in St Peter Port, Guernsey, during June 2009.  This photo is courtesy of Association member John Oakley.

Click on the image to see an enlarged version.



1935 Home Fleet Regatta Newsletter

1935 Home Fleet Regatta Edition of "The Chough" Newsletter
This is a newsletter (known as "The Chough") celebrating Hood's excellent showings in the Home Fleet Regatta of 1935. The ship once again won the covetted Silver Cockerell trophy (aka "The Cock"). The front page shows the ship's rowing "mascot" the Chuffiosoarus with his blazer, stopwatch, oarlock thighs, rudder tail and rowing skull (oar). The document contains the various results of the regatta racing events. This document is courtesy of Association member Craig Twaddle.

Click on the image to see a the newsletter.





1930s Sailors Cap Tally

1930s Cap Tally
This is an authentic cap tally once owned by a sailor named Harry Faro. He may have served in Hood or may have had a mate who did. This type of cap tally would have been used in the ship up until the start of the Second World War. Note the dot after the name HOOD as well as the bow which would have been located above the wearer's right eye. It is shown here on a reproduction winter seaman's cap. This photo is courtesy of Colin Dawson.

Click on the image to see an enlarged version.





Pocket Aneroid Barometer owned by Sir Geoffrey Blake

Pocket Aneroid Barometer
This is a pocket aneroid barometer that was once owned by Admiral Sir Geoffrey Blake. It appears to be brass. The carrying case features the initials "G.B." and measures 4.1/4" high by 3.1/2" wide. The dial of the barometer measures 3 ins dia. This photo is courtesy of Derek & Tina Rayment Antiques.

Click on the image to see an enlarged version.





15 inch Tampion from H.M.S. Hood

15 inch Tampion
This is a 15" tampion from Hood. It is on display at the Palace Museum, Stone Town, Zanzibar, Tanzania. The museum is a former palace of the Sultans who once ruled Zanzibar. In January 1924, Hood visited Zanzibar during the Empire Cruise of The Special Service Squadron. Sultan Khalifa Bin Harud visited the ship and entertained officials. This tampion wsa most likely presented to him at that time. This photo is courtesy of Ian MacDonald of British Columbia, Canada.

Click on the image to see an enlarged version.





Boat or decorative badge from H.M.S. Hood

Decorative Badge
This is a large metal badge which might have been used aboard Hood. It had been brought home by crewman Colin Snelgrove. Colin would later lose his life when Hood sank on 24 May 1941. The exact purpose of this badge is unclear. It may have been a boat badge, or more likely, it was some form of interior decoration. This is in the collection of Alan Johnstone, who kindly sent this photo in.

Click on the image to see an enlarged version.





Chunk of bronze from an H.M.S. Hood screw/propeller

"Chunk" from Hood's Screw/Propeller
This is a chunk of manganese bronze. It came from one of Hood's starboard screws (propellers). Both screws were damaged during the January 1935 collision with battle cruiser H.M.S. Renown off Spain. The bronze has been inscribed "HOOD V RENOWN OFF AROSA 23-1-35". This was in the possession of the Hood family until 2006, when Lord Hood kindly donated it to the Hood Association. This is one of a small number of known surviving propeller "chunks" or "nuggets" (similarly engraved) from Hood.

Click on the image to see an enlarged version.





Container Lid from Hood

Metal Container Lid
This is an actual remnant from the sinking of Hood. It is the lid of a metal container that once held a pay ledger and other personnel records. It washed ashore on the Norwegian island of Senja almost a year after the sinking. After many interesting twists and turns, it was returned to the UK via the Naval Historical Branch in 1979. The photo shown here is of Ted Briggs unveiling the lid at H.M.S. Centurion, Gosport, in May 1981. The display is now believed to be at the former RAF Chicksands.

Click on the photo to the right to learn the full story behind this item.






Wreckage from one of Hoods boats

Wooden Boat Remnant
This is a large fragment of a transom from the stern section of one of the boats carried by Hood at the time of her loss. It was discovered after washing ashore on Iceland during the Second World War. This is currently housed in the National Maritime Museum in Greenwich. Special thanks to Ian Beattie who provided the photo seen here.

Click on the photo to the right to see an enlarged version.






5.5inch tompion from Hood

5.5" Gun Tampion from H.M.S. Hood
Tampions (AKA "tompions") were used to plug gun barrel muzzles from exposure to salt and spray when not in use. This particular size was used on Hood's 5.5" guns. It would have originally had a dark blue background. This particular tampion was presented to a Canadian family for hospitality shown a Hood crewman in 1924 during the Empire Cruise. It is owned by Dr Ian Beattie, who supplied us with the information and photo seen here. A similar tampion is in the collection of the National Museum of the Royal Navy in Portsmouth.






5.5inch guns on Ascension Island

5.5" Guns on Ascension Island
This is one of the 5.5" guns removed from Hood in 1935. This and one other gun (known collectively as the "Hood Battery") are located on Ascension Island in the South Atlantic.

Click on the image to the right to learn more about the guns and Ascension Island.





Portsmouth Naval Base Museum Hood Display

Hood Items in Portsmouth Naval Base Museum
The museum holds several Hood artefacts and Hood-related items. The items shown here were on display to commemorate the 60th anniversary of Hood's sinking. A number of these items, to include superb models of Hood, Prince of Wales and Bismarck (all built by Colin Vass) are now on display in the museum's Lewin Gallery (20th Century). The museum holds the painting "Empire Day 1941," Ted Briggs's medals, several photos, a banjo, ash trays, badges and so forth. They even have a piece of shrapnel from Bismarck (removed from Prince of Wales).

Click on the photo to the right to see an enlarged version.





Signal Lamp from the Cheney Collection of Equipment from Hood

Equipment from Hood
Paul Cheney of Canada has collected some interesting pieces of equipment that were once used aboard Hood. These include a lamp, signal flags, some magazine keys and a hand-held signal lamp (shown on the right).

Click on the photo to the right to see photos and descriptions of all three items.






Bosuns Pipe Owned by Walter Smith

Bosun's Pipe from Hood
Steve Wiggett sent a photo of this pipe. It was formerly owned by Walter Smith, who was lost in the sinking of Hood.

Click on the photo to the right to see an enlarged version.







Possible buoycrest from Hood

Decorative Badge from Hood
This item is believed to be from Hood. It's exact function is unknown, but we have theorised that it may have been the centrepiece to a life buoy rack. Of course, it may also be some sort of wardroom or even boat/launch decoration. The badge is made of brass and is mounted on a wooden plaque approximately 10½ inches across. This item is owned by Ian McCallum who supplied the photo and information posted here.

Click on the photo to the right to see an enlarged version.






1924 Prayer Book

Hood crewmen had numerous books at their disposal. These were brought aboard after being obtained ashore. They could also be purchased aboard ship, borrowed from the ship's library, or were otherwise made available through religious channels. The book featured here is of the latter type. Its a prayer book from Hood circa 1924 and was shared with us by John Parker.

Click on the image to the right to see an enlarged version.






1936 Christmas dinner menu   1936 Christmas dinner menu

Letters, Photos & Correspondence
Many people have old letters, photos and a variety of other correspondence from family members or friends who served aboard Hood during the 1920s, 1930s or 1940s. The examples shown here are Christmas menus. The left hand menu is from 1936 and was sent home by Len Pay, who was lost in the sinking of Hood. Photo courtesy of Glen Hughes. The right hand photo is a Christmas 1940 menu sent home by Albert Nuding, also lost in the sinking of Hood. Photo courtesy of John Stuksis.

Click on the photos to the right to see enlarged versions.





Cartoons and artwork

Cartoons & Artwork
Hood had her share of talented individuals. Among these were artists who created many entertaining cartoons and drawings.

Click on the image to the right to see examples of surviving cartoons & artwork.