Welcome to our Web site!

What's in a name? MaryEllen is a pseudo company name used by Alan for some years, formed by joining Mary's first and second names, so when it came to choosing a domain name it seemed apt.

The family name is Bell and we guess it originated in Scotland. Dad, Jack Bell, came from Gateshead but was posted to Brighton during the early part of WWII, where he met Mum, Iris (nee White), and that's where we come in.

Alan is the second of five sons and one daughter, Brian, Mick, Graham, Glenn and Iris, otherwise known as Chick. Alan and Mick settled in Bedfordshire when they left the Army, Brian settled in Kent, Glenn in South Wales, leaving Graham in Brighton.

Mary is the eldest daughter of William and Frances Meek who came from Northern Ireland. Brothers Billy, Richard and Jackie and sister Marion still live there, whilst sister Sarah-Jane, otherwise known as Jean, came over and lives just up the road.

Alan and Mary married in 1970 and have three children, Georgina (1973 - Aldershot), Alison (1975 - Leeds) and John (1977 - Berlin).

Alan is a software development/project manager, having taken an HND in Computer Studies and a Masters degree followed by some Microsoft Exams. For the last few years he has been working as an IT SharePoint consultant and developer.

In January 2013, on the basis of needing a regular income, he took on the position of Development Manager with Great Benefit Limited but has now retired.

Mary retired as a Civil Servant with the Employment Services in April 2006 but still holds down a full time job running the Bell household. She got fed up and took on a part time administration job but has now, finally, retired except, of course, for looking after Alan.

Georgina and her husband James, are the proud parents of our Grandsons Sam born in 2001, and Joel born in 2005, who are the subject of a lot of the photos you will see on this site. Georgina is the Manager at Stanwick Pre-School, whilst James works long hours as a Director for Sodexo Defence.

Alison and her husband Steve are the proud parents of our latest Granddaughter, Mackenzie Lucinda at 7lb 3oz. Alison went on to Royal Holloway University and obtained her first degree in Geology; and then on to Reading University for her Masters degree in Geoarchaeology. She started work as a field archaeologist working for Albion Archaeology but is now working as full time mum. She still enjoys digging up dead things so helps run the Albion SAW project on weekends. Steve is a geography teacher, currently working at Higham Ferrers School.

John and Paula are the proud parents of our Grandson Daniel, born in 1996, and our Granddaughter Amy Ellen, born in 2012.