Our new ring of eight bells has now been removed from their moulds and polished to perfection, ready for shipment from the bell foundry in Italy to the UK. They should be arriving in time for Christmas, but before they can be put into service they must be hung in the tower, allowed to settle and tuned.
Ringers Get Ready
In the meantime, St Mary’s bell ringers are continuing to practice (pausing only for lockdown) on the dumb bell in St Mary’s Tower Captain Colin Dixon‘s barn. As their skills develop, they are starting to practice ringing in rounds with a virtual team online.
Additional coaching is being given by two local experts:
- Chris Cooper, Chairman of the Wotton Branch of the Gloucester and Bristol Diocesan Association of Bell Ringers (G&BDABR) and who rings at Chipping Sodbury
- James Joynson, Bell Master for the Wotton branch of the G&BDABR and responsible for technical aspects of bells and bell ringing training within the Diocese and training
James has also been really helpful with St Mary’s training to date, including setting up the dumb bell.
Like to Try Bell Ringing?
New ringers are always welcome to join the team, which will need to be at least 8 strong by the time the bells come into use, ideally with some reserves.
No previous experience is necessary as full training will be given. Bellringing is great fun for all ages, with our youngest team member in his teens and the oldest well into retirement. Provided you’re tall enough to reach the rope (minimum recommended age is about 10), you’re never too young – or too old – to give it a try!