This plain item of town regalia is perhaps the most poignant of souvenirs from a bygone era.
By the 19th century most towns throughout Britain could boast a town crier. The person was usually a man, but sometimes a woman, who possessed a loud, clear voice. They would ring the bell to attract attention and then call out public announcements such as the death of a prominent person, the opening of a public building or a new proclamation of law.
The last time this particular bell was rung in Annan was at the accession of George VI in 1936. The use of the radio, newspapers and television has long since relegated this once important form of communication to a quaint tradition.
In the collection of Annan Museum.