"If all the bells in England were rung at the same time there would scarcely be a single spot where a bell could not be
heard." Bishop Latimer, 1552.
To most people the ringing of church bells is a medieval mystery, as incomprehensible as the Theory of Relativity, yet
practised by simple country folk. It is a straightforward matter to achieve competence in ringing a bell, but learning
never stops. And that is a part of its fascination. Bellringing in England is unique, well, almost, because the method of
hanging the bells is peculiar to Britain, and allows the speed of ringing to be changed at will. Hence, the term 'change
Each church bell tower has a 'Tower Captain' and a band of ringers, mainly local. They are a dedicated band and turn
up regularly on Thursday evenings for practice. They are always practising, and have achieved a commendable
competence in the simpler methods such as 'rounds' and 'called changes', and 'Plain Hunting' which is the basis of all
the more complex methods.
We have used the word 'unique' in the first paragraph, but it also describes the good fellowship, the camaraderie, and
the dedication of the ringers, who are always ready to welcome newcomers. Young or old, male or female, parishioner
or living beyond the boundaries, you would be welcome to see what goes on at practice on Thursday evenings. Come
along to look, to listen, maybe to handle a rope, or even to see the bells, just for the experience, without commitment.
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