Centenary celebrated at Ranmoor 1988


  The church of St. John the Evangelist, Ranmoor, Sheffield was first built in 1879 to serve an area containing the large mansions of many of the city’s leading industrialists. Many wealthy individuals contributed to the cost of the building and its fittings, including one William  Smith, Esq. of the Fulwood and Hallamshire works, who presented a peal of eight bells, cast by James Barwell of Birmingham.

  On the morning of Sunday 2 January 1887, the church caretaker Thomas Leighton arrived at 9.20am to prepare for the day’s services, and on entering the church he at once detected a smell of smoke, and found the organ on fire. Despite prompt action to alert the fire brigade, they were unable to prevent the destruction of the main body of the church.

  The tower and spire alone were saved by the action of Superintendent Pound of the fire service, who by taking a hose up onto the belfry was able to prevent the fire taking hold on the tower.

  Thus, on September 9, 1888, less than ten years after the completion of the original building, a new church was consecrated for worship. The existing tower was incorporated into the new design and the bells, which were undamaged by the fire, continued in service until 1934 when they were recast and augmented into the present ring of ten.

  Late in 1987 the idea of ringing a peal to mark the centenary of the re-consccration was first discussed, and shortly afterwards an exchange of letters with Canon Kenneth Felstcad revealed that the tower peal total stood at 98. With a visiting peal band already booked for the early summer, the opportunity existed, for ringing the 100th peal in the tower to mark the centenary.
  The actual anniversary on Friday 9 September was marked by two quarter peals rung by members of the local band, and on the following day a peal of Plain Bob Major was rung by a band consisting of local ringers and friends.

CHRIS BENNETT


Sheffield (Ranmoor). 9 Sep 1988,
1344 P.B. Major (in hand):
Elaine Scott 1-2, CBennett 3-4, P Scott (C) 5-6, A Wright 7-8.


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