This page is dedicated to the Memory of Able Seaman Frank Bee, Royal Navy.
May his name live forever more and be remembered with affection and honour.
23 October 1925 to 2 July 2014
Our Condolences to his Wife Vivien and Daughters Jill and Wendy on the passing of Frank.
HMS Birmingham at full speed 1944
One of many great blokes I have met along the way was Frank Bee, a real character.
He is the sort of bloke you just know you would get on with.
However going out for a good time, he’d be the one to get you into trouble.
I liked him straight away.
Frank Bee at Home
We offer the reader a "gallery view" of the photographs.
You can move from one photo to the next (or previous) by clicking the arrow which appears on the right or left of the pop-up photo.
Or pick from the photos which appear at the bottom of your screen.
and the Blackpool Gazette Tribute
have been enhanced by the provision of a magnifier.
You can use the scroll wheel on your mouse to zoom in and out.
Just move your pointer over the image to start.
Frank Bee had two favourite pieces of music and in his honour we have included them here.
To access the playing menu please click below.
Softly as I leave you
The Magnificent Seven
Frank Bee On Parade for Remembrance Day
Franks first ship HMS Foley K474
Below are excerpts from the author’s correspondence with Mr and Mrs Bee. They are indicative of some of the research and ensuing relationships that have developed while setting up this website.
12 June 2009
Re: H.M.S Birmingham WW II
Frank Sutton Taylor JX 324358
Dear Frank, Vivien,
It was fantastic to speak to you both and thank you very much for your offer of assistance with our Family projects. As explained I was contacted by Mr John Solway Royal Navy Returned Serviceman who in his spare time assists inquiries and by bringing old shipmates together. This was to your inquiry in the Navy News in September 1995 seeking to trace old shipmates from crew of H.M.S Birmingham.
Frank it would be certain your paths would have crossed. You served from 1944 to 1946 and would have been in Copenhagen to accept the surrender of the German warships Prinz Eugen and Nurnberg. As you would be aware there were 80,000 Germans in Copenhagen at the time of Germany’s surrender.
16 December 2010
Dear Frank, Vivien
It was fantastic to speak to you both and thank you very much once again for the hand-embroidered Lancashire Rose. It certainly means a lot to me and takes pride of place in my living room for everyone to see as they come through the lounge door.
The inscription on the reverse side reads
We hope this Lancashire rose reminds you of your visit and your UK roots.
Made especially for you.
With love and best wishes, Frank and Vivien Bee
I too, really enjoyed meeting you both and having a good old chat which was one of the highlights of my trip – getting to Fleetwood and meeting you. As I mentioned I am very proud of my British ancestry. It was certainly an unbelievable trip and a great experience.
My travels took me to the following;
On Thursday 14th October I visited the town of Sudbury in Suffolk to view the adoption shield for H.M.S. Scarab and had the honour of being welcomed by the Lord Mayor - have attached a number of Photos of my trip for your information. I hope very much that you like them as much as I do.
On Saturday 16th October I travelled to Cheltenham to visit Mr. Len Mell who served on H.M.S. Scarab August 1944 to February 45. Mrs.Mell is in her 98th year and what a fine lady.
On Wednesday 20th October I visited Perivale, Middlesex and Essex to pay my respects to my Grandparents.
Friday 22nd I travelled from London to Wales to visit Gordon Smith of naval-history.net.
If you have the opportunity, look up his website. It has been acknowledged as a leader in Royal Navy research.
On 26th October I flew to Los Angeles, spent a week touring around and returned to New Zealand on Monday November 1st . So from leavingNew Zealand on September 19th it was a very busy schedule I had in front of me but a very exciting one.
Frank and Vivienne have a wonderful Christmas and a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year.
The handwritten text reads:
This is Fleetwood’s War Memorial. The trees were planted by children who lost relatives in First World War.
Frank’s 2 Uncles and Father are named on the Memorial.
Photos from Frank’s Album
HMS Birmingham Frank Bee (Right)
HMS Birmingham, Members (Mess 66)
Frank. Bee (centre white cap)
Arriving Jetty, Copenhagen
Frank Bee on right Carly Float
1st left in group
A girl (sorry 2 girls) in every port!!!
All sailors were the same!!!
Frank Bee’s Handwritten Firsthand Account
(including the incident with the mine)
Southampton Class Cruisers
(from Jane’s Fighting Ships courtesy of Frank Bee)
German Heavy Cruiser Prinz Eugen
German Light Cruiser Nurnberg
The German heavy cruiser, Prinz Eugen and the light cruiser Nurnberg at the end of the war were the only two operational cruisers left.