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Ken Howard, a founder of Bell Security, died on April 7, 2020.
He worked in the electronic security industry for around 30 years, as his son Jamie recalls. Ken was initially promoted to Senior Manager at Thorn EMI Hi-Security Division, with responsibility for the City, the West End of London and surrounding areas. He was co-founder (with friend and colleague Pat Curran) of Bell Security Ltd, which spawned fire and technology based companies.
At one stage, Bell was responsible for the electronic security requirements of over 70 per cent of the UK’s retail banks (including NatWest, HSBC, Lloyds, Royal Bank of Scotland, Bank of Scotland, Halifax, Norwich and Peterborough, Yorkshire Bank and others). Bell also had as customers ‘blue chip’ companies and iconic properties around the UK such as Citigroup at Canary Wharf, HSBC at Canary Wharf, the Millennium Wheel, and New London Stock Exchange.
Jamie says: “It provided the perfect synergies between quality products and services and new technologies which enabled its clients to use and transmit information utilising existing structured cabling and communications methods, providing an upscaled service coupled with unparalleled cost savings, making it the market leader in the industry.” Formed in 1986, Bell grew from a one desk office in Ilford in east London, to sites worldwide, leading to a Stock Exchange listing in 1999.
Bell was purchased by the multinational security company Securitas in 2004 valued at circa £100m, and is now part of the Stanley Security family.
Jamie says: “Dad retired upon floatation and became more involved in family and charity works, where he was a prominent member of the DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) committee with the City of London Police, often driving his 1920s coach or 1950s fire engine in the Lord Mayor’s Show as part of DARE’s float [pictured]; VP of his local rugby club and loving husband, father, grandfather and friend. There are many in the industry today who owe a debt of gratitude towards dad giving them opportunity and hope to succeed in their chosen field.”
He leaves wife Gloria, daughter Kerrie, and son Jamie.