To many of a slightly older generation Colin Bell was a famous Manchester City footballer. However, to Laurencekirk Rotarians, Colin Bell, the speaker at the Rotary Club’s meeting on Monday September 5, was a player in a quite different league – that of the Gas and Oil industries. Rotarians learned that though originating in the same area as the footballer, Colin after attending the noted Queen Elizabeth School in Darlington went on to study chemical engineering at Newcastle University – possibly influence by the St. Fergus-like structures and flares of the large nearby ICI Billingham plant!
Serving with that huge company for some 28 happy and satisfying years, and not without its challenges, such as, with those of other disciplines, studying the Piper Alpha Disaster and seeking ways to avert such catastrophes. Another piece of significant work was his involvement in conceptual studies for redesigning the Brent platforms for another 20 years of life. Appropriately Rotarian Mike Robson, retired vet, gave an amusing vote of thanks to what was an interesting talk characterised by two other “degree” : that friendliness and, despite the importance of his work with Shell, a decided light-heartedness.