The Tom Bowling Lamp?

In our Arthur Beale archive we have a few old Beale catalogues. Actually we still have the printing blocks! Many of the products in this 1959 catalogue are still stocked. We still sell this lovely and very practical lamp but nowadays we just call it a Globe Lamp. I was intrigued by the Tom Bowling reference so I did a bit of research. I discovered that this lamp was the very first product made by the car parts giant Lucas! It was made in a factory called The Tom Bowling Lamp Works and patented by Joseph Lucas in 1875. The factory was soon renamed Joseph Lucas and Sons and the rest is history.

Tom Bowling was the title of a sea-shanty written by Charles Dibdin in the late 18th century. Dibdin was paid a pension by the Pitt Government to write patriotic sea-shanties to keep up the ferment of popular feeling against France!
It’s a lot of history from just one of our products. Why not hang one from your boom and tell the tale or maybe try to sing the shanty

Here a sheer hulk, lies poor Tom Bowling
The darling of our crew;
No more he'll hear the tempest howling
For death has broached him to.
His form was of the manliest beauty, his heart was kind and soft;
Faithful below, Tom did his duty
And now he's gone aloft
And now he's gone aloft.

Tom never from his word departed
His virtues were so rare:
His friends were many and true hearted
His Poll was kind and fair;
And then he'd sing so blithe and jolly
Ah! Many's the time and oft;
But mirth is turn'd to melancholy
For Tom is gone aloft
For Tom is gone aloft

Yet shall poor Tom find pleasant weather
When He who all commands
Shall give, to call life's crew together
The word to pipe all hands:
Thus Death, who kings and tars despatches
In vain Tom's life hath doff'd
For tho' his body's under hatches
His soul is gone aloft
His soul is gone aloft

Charles Dibdin (1745-1814)

Davey & Co. have produced this polished brass oil lamp for over a century. Standard safety equipment for many years in ships lifeboats, it is today widely used for general and emergency lighting. The globe is 7". It has a round burner which provides plenty of light. The oil reservoir holds 250 ml of lamp oil and will burn for approximately 35 hours. A very welcome addition to any evenings cockpit gathering. We supply these lamps unlacquered so they age gracefully. They can be polished with any brass polish but we recommend Daveyshine.

Great value at £129.60 including VAT
Buy Online

Leave a comment

All comments are moderated before being published