A petition has been launched by the residents of Bell End in Sandwell, West Midlands, to have the name of their street changed to something a little less knob-related – but it’s not going well.
The move came amid concerns that people living on the street had become “a laughing stock” on social media as a result of the name while local children are facing bullying and teasing at school as a result of the name.
“As you may be aware, the term “Bell End” can be seen and used as a rude and/or a offensive word,” the petition on Change.org reads.
“We want the local Sandwell Council to acknowledge our name change request to a new road name and at the very least to a similar name. The local councillors for the local area will be contacted too,” the blurb adds.
“Bell End” to “Bells Road” ?? .. Even this would be sufficient”
Despite an impassioned plea for support, the petition has so far only attracted 42 signatures at the time of writing, leaving it some way short of it’s 100-signature target. It’s also shone a light on the street name, no doubt resulting in more online mockery as a result.
In the meantime, not one but two rival petitions have been launched calling on the council to leave the name in place and they are already proving popular.
One, entitled “Leave the Historic Name of Bell End Alone!” has accumulated 1,767 signatures to date and is closing in on its target of 2,500.
Linda George, the campaigner behind this counter petition, argued that the name has important historical links to the area.
“Bell End is an historic name in Rowley Regis. Believed to be named after a mine in the locality,” she writes.
“My Great Uncle’s family lived and kept a shop there, long after his death in WW1.
“Moving forward to today, none of the residents and locals and those that have long standing family connections, that are known to me want this pointless change and in fact find the suggestion that it should be changed, deeply offensive.
“If children are being bullied because of the name of their road, the problem is the bullying children, who need educating. Changing a road name will not stop their behaviour.”
With things heading towards a stalemate, it looks likely that Bell End will remain in place for the foreseeable future.