From the Ringing Chamber

 Oct 2004


  I don’t know whether any of you were within listening distance to the church on Sunday 29th August but if the bells sounded somewhat different to you it was because the clapper fell out of the 9th bell whilst we were ringing for Evensong. From a quick glance at the records it would appear to be the first time we have had any damage to this clapper since the recasting of the bells in 1934. We were able to obtain a replacement from the Bellfoundry in Loughborough within ten days and the sound is now back to normal. The ninth bell is the seventh note of the scale and without it we had some interesting note and musical combinations! If the door to the belfry is open have a look at the old clapper sitting in the stair well. We think it was welded together at the break point to obtain the length required for the replacement one. It is quite heavy and it took three strong men to haul it up the staircases to the bells and refasten it in position!

  Now some explanations about the ‘jargon’ used last month –
What is a tied bell? From the diagram of the bell shown you can see the clapper hanging down. As the bell swings the clapper will sound against the side of the bell. When we do our teaching we place a wooden clamp across the mouth of the bell holding the clapper in a central position and preventing it making any noise as the bell is rung.
What is a quarter peal? This is where the ringers ring 1260 changes, starting and ending in rounds, on the bells without stopping and this usually takes about 45 minutes to ring. A full peal consists of over 5000 changes and this takes over three hours.
Rounds are the bells rung in order ie: 1 2 3 4 5 6 etc
Changes are where the bells change order ie: 2 1 4 3 6 5 etc

  Did anyone spot Robert Webb amongst the ringers in the September issue? Robert has been learning to ring with us on Tuesday evenings since the spring and along with William Ubi and they were elected Associate members of the Yorkshire Association of Change Ringers at the August monthly meeting. Becky Hirst was elected a full member. The picture this month shows Robert, William and Becky (who also sings in the Chamber Choir) with their certificates.
Sadly William returned to Nigeria after spending 6 months in Sheffield but it is almost as close to come back to England to ring church bells as his nearest tower is about 3000 miles away in Kenya! We look forward to seeing him back.

  More next time including our autumn outing.

Pauline Heath (Tower Captain)

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