Category Archives: History

Ringing for Peace: Document/Poster

Please see the document/poster via the link below.  As part of the ringing initiative, Ringing for Peace, please print copies of these out, to display/make accessible to congregation members.

All you need to do is change the email address so it is relevant to your tower.

If anyone needs assistance doing this, please let me know.

Contact Peter Murdock-Saint

 

Ringing for Peace Battles Over Self Fill

100 Years On… We Do Remember Them

Members of Brading, Shanklin and Ryde bands assembled at St Mary’s Church, Brading, on Sunday evening to remember the family member of one ringer.
100 year’s ago to the day at the age of 35, William Brett, the grandfather of Jill Taylor, was killed in action during World War I, leaving a widow and Jill’s mother at the age of just 5.
The well-struck quarter peal is recorded on Bellboard as follows:
Brading, Isle of Wight
St Mary the Virgin
Sunday, 15 October 2017 in 42 mins (9–3–19 in G)
1260 Grandsire Triples
1 Robyn Downer
2 June Mitchell
3 John R Stock
4 Jill Taylor
5 Margaret Downer
6 Kieran Downer
7 Barry Downer (C)
8 Peter Taylor
Rung half muffled in memory of 2nd Lieutenant William Frank Brett, of this parish, 24th Siege Battery, Royal Garrison Artillery, died 15/10/1917 aged 35. 17/32.
Jill Taylor (4th) is the granddaughter of William
The team assembled afterwards at the War Memorial for a group photo, which was taken by 6-year-old Mitchell.
L-r: John Stock, Kieran Downer, Revd Barry Downer, Margaret Downer, Jill Taylor, Robyn Downer (behind Jill), Peter Taylor and June Mitchell.

A Piece of Curdridge ringing history comes home

The May issue of the Curdridge parish magazine had a piece called ‘Curdridge Reminiscence’, with various extracts from church records, several referring to the bells and ringing. One said that Alfred Pook, first Captain of the bell ringers, was presented with a tea set on his marriage in 1896, with each piece carrying a picture of Curdridge church. Some years ago now I bought just such a piece, I think from a stall in Botley square. It is 7 inches (175 mm) diameter, with a picture of the church on the front and a mark on the back of a vertical bar with ‘KPM Germany’. I understand that this refers to ‘Krister Porcelain Manufactory’, not the more famous Royal Porcelain Factory. The piece now hangs in the bell tower ringing room – how appropriate if it is indeed from Alfred Pook’s service! A picture of the piece is shown below – it looks to me from the shape as if it may be a teapot stand or similar, rather than a plate or saucer.

Robin Milford
Current tower captain.

Ryde Steps Back in Time…

All Saints’ Church, Ryde, was the venue for a visit from the Vectis 1940s Vintage group.

After a talk in the ringing room about bells and bell ringing locally and Island-wide, particularly about what occurred during the war years, the group were taken up to the parapet for some spectacular sites of the Island and mainland coastline.

Following the descent, some of whom found it more onerous than they first thought, a tea was served in the Church Hall, which also had a 1940s feel to it, which had been set out with an exhibition of the history of Ryde tower from 1886.

A big thank you is due to all Ryde ringers for their contributions of help and cake.

 

Historical Notes on Ringing for the Departed (by Derek Jackson)

Our Guild was started on 20th June 1878 by two clergymen. Revs. Rev. Arthur du Boulay Hill and Rev. F.T. Madge. Both were ringers at Winchester Cathedral and both were Masters at Winchester College. The former was much more active and was appointed as the Guild’s first Secretary.

He travelled to most areas of Hampshire at a time when one either rode a horse or travelled in a coach pulled by a horse. Using the latter he increased membership from just seven towers to nearly 50, visiting many unlit bell chambers to record by candlelight important and historical detail. All of this is recorded, using pen and ink, in his notebook which can be viewed in Winchester Record Office.

I noted recently the following details about the Guild tradition in 1878 when ringing for the departed:-
Either, 3 strokes on each bell,
using bells 1 to 8 for a male.
Using bells 1 to 7 for a female
Using bells 1 to 6 for a child.
Or,7 strokes on any one bell for a male
6 strokes on any one bell for a female.
5 strokes on any one bell for a child.

Hope you find this interesting.
Derek

Records on Show for First Time

As Island Peal Recorder I can today announce that for the first time ever, a complete list of 2 volumes of Peals and 5 volumes of Quarter Peals on Island ringing will be available to view at the Arreton Striking Competition tomorrow.
The Volumes date back to 1772 and are the first time an as complete as possible listing has been compiled. I hope those of the Island ringers are interested will find this an interesting read.
This has been a mammoth task taking many hours of research and checking around towers so I hope you will all appreciate this and make the effort to have a view.

RYDE EXHIBITION OF HISTORY

You don’t need to comment but I became an exhibitionist this weekend… and here are the photos to prove it!
If you didn’t see it and the William Rayner book from 1770, very kindly shown by Simon Dear of the Island Archive at Newport, then you missed an interesting afternoon. The first time in a very long while (probably nearly 100 years) that these records have seen the light of day in bell ringing circles.
Money is still coming in from the event so that will help our funds for the restoration project which begins in September. We even had some ringers from Vancouver so well chuffed with that.

A very big thank you to all those involved in helping me organise this mammoth task.

DSCF6214 DSCF6215 DSCF6216 DSCF6217 DSCF6218 DSCF6219 DSCF6023

EXHIBITION AT RYDE (IoW) – Celebrating 130 Years of Ringing

exhibition at RydeDuring the weekend of 28th/29th May Ryde are hosting an exhibition of ringing to coincide with the Central Council meeting at Portsmouth.

Ryde has been ringing for 130 years this year so we thought it time to do a history lesson and we’re hoping to include the records of Island ringer William Rayner, who died in 1823. These records haven’t seen the light of day for nearly 100 years and they do make interesting reading, so worth a visit to view this.

If the attached poster could be printed off and displayed for people to see during and on the run up to the weekend on the mainland I would be very grateful, as it may be an extra incentive to come over to the Island to have a ring at Ryde and Shanklin and view the exhibition.

Contact John Stock - Facebook: Yes Telephone: 01983 719502 Email: Use Form  

Poster – ALL SAINTS EXHIBITION 28 05 16

DELVING INTO ISLAND BELL RINGING HISTORY

I have spent this morning at the Island Archive building at Newport delving through 250 years of Island bell ringing history with the tomes of William Rayner, very odd to think I may be the first to have looked at some of these pages in 200 years! His records go back to 1771 so history just oozes from the pages.

Just look at the writing and how beautifully it is done, better than my handwriting that’s for sure! Lot’s of information to see and so interesting when taken in context with the time.

These are available for anyone to have a look at now they have been dusted off and the absolutely brilliant staff now know what they are.

The history of these volumes is remarkable in the fact that they were discovered on the mainland in 1921 by Lady Hampshire after the death of her husband who apparently had acquired them in a box of books at a second-hand shop somewhere and at some time during his life and it was only by luck she had contacted Newport bell ringers to ask if they would like them returned. There is a letter amongst the books to confirm this.

History is brilliant isn’t it! As Island Peal Recorder I now have a lot more work to do in collating all this information

From the volumes of William Rayner's records
From the volumes of William Rayner’s records

DSCF6003!

A brief History of the bells at Brighstone by Steve Noyes

Brighstone Logo_smallIn 1740 the Brighstone bells were recast, rehung and augmented to five. The work was done by Joshua Kipling of Portsmouth, known as a good producer of moulds but a poor designer of bells. A brass gun which was housed in a ‘gun house’, at one time next to the north side of the tower, is believed to have been incorporated into the bell metal at this time. The original treble (the present second) became cracked in 1780 and was recast by Thomas Mears in 1800. The bells were again rehung by Mears and the second bell (present third) was recast in 1877; the inscription “SUCCESS TO THE GREAT ADMIRAL VERNON” and the impressions of the Vernon medal are thought to have been lost from the bell during this casting. In 1961 the present bells were recast and rehung and a new treble was added, being the gift of Frank Cheverton in memory of his wife.

Treble  IN MEMORY OF
MURIEL KATHLEEN,
DEARLY LOVED WIFE OF
F.A.CHEVERTON, RUDCOT.
DIED JANUARY 16TH 1960MEARS
1961
LONDON
 3-2-6  G
2  IN THE YEAR 1740 JOHN LORD ZEALOUS FOR THE PROMOTION OF CAMPANALOGIAS
ART CAUSED ME TO BE FABRIGATED IN PORTSMOUTH AND PLACED IN THIS TOWER
60 YEARS I LED THE PEAL WHEN I WAS UNFORTUNATELY BROKEN
IN THE YEAR 1800 I WAS CAST INTO THE FURNACE REFOUNDED IN LONDON AND
RETURNED TO MY FORMER STATION: READER THOU ALSO SHALT KNOW A RESURECTION
MAY IT BE UNTO ETERNAL LIFE WILLIAM CHIP & DAVID WAY CH.WARDENS
THOS MEARS FECIT RECAST 1961
3-3-17  F
3 MEARS & STAINBANK FOUNDERS 1877
RECAST 1961
 4-1-27  D#
4 GOD PRESERVE THE BRITIS ARMES 1740
JOSHUA KIPLING FECIT
RECAST
1961
 4-2-27  D
5  PROSPERITY TO THE PARISH OF BRIXTON
JOSHUA KIPLING FECIT
RECAST
1961
 5-3-5  C
Tenor  MR JOHN LORD MR THOMAS JOLIF CHURCHWARDENS 1740
JOSHUA KIPLING FECIT
RECAST
1961
MEARS LONDON
 7-1-15  A#

Bells stolen from Quarley Church

An unusual feature of Quarley Church is the arrangement of the bells, which are hung outside the building in a frame at ground level.
The oldest bell is 13th Century, and has the makers mark, a small letter S, on the shoulder, and the inscription “Sancta Maria ora pro nobis”.

The second is by J.D., dated 1636, and has the words “Love God” on it.

The third bell dates from 1686, but was cracked and recast in 1905 as a gift from the Marquis of Winchester. The original inscription was “Ave Gratia”, and “Henry Paulet, XVI Marquis of Winchester” was added.

The two oldest bells were stolen on 5 or 6 July.

The Police fear they could be sold for scrap, and urge anybody who may have been offered these items to buy, to get in contact.

This article was reproduced from the Quarley Village Website by kind permission of the editor.

The History of the Bells at Christchurch Priory

The Tower contains a ring of 12 bells, plus a flat 6th semi-tone bell, dating from the end of the 14th century to 1976. The two oldest, two of the oldest in England still in use, were cast in 1370 by a John Rufford of Bedfordshire, who was appointed the Royal Bellfounder by King Edward III in 1367. A medallion of the King’s head is cast in the inscription on the crown band of each bell. This points to the fact that these bells, with others, were a royal gift to the Priory at Twynham. King’s Head Bells as they are called, are very rare.

Letters Patent issued by King Henry VIII in 1540 refer to the Priory and to “seven bells hanging in the tower thereof” are 100 years older than the tower.

There is little doubt that the church at one time had a central tower. This either collapsed or was taken down in 1422, damaging much of an earlier quire, but it is doubtful if the 7 bells referred to by Henry were ever in that central tower. There are several indications, however, that the room over the North Porch was once a bellchamber. The walls of the porch are substantially buttressed; the housings of the timber baulks, which supported the bell frame, are clearly visible, as are the chasings in the window frames and mullions, showing that they were once louvered. The present tower was completed in 1470 and in due course the bells were hung in it, being rung from ground level, inside the West Door some 90 feet below.

The Letters Patent issued by Henry also recorded that 2 bells were taken “for the King’s use”. In those days it was usual for churches of cathedral status to have 7 bells, a parish church to have 5, and smaller village churches to have 3 or less. Christchurch Priory would have ranked as a cathedral or Minster previously, but it is now a parish church.

The first reference to 8 bells is in a Vestry minute book of 1640 which says “The 4th and 8th shall be rung all the year long.”

In 1885 one bell was recast, and by 1976 after gifts of new bells and replacements, the number of bells reached its present number.

The above is taken from “The Story of Christchurch Bells” by Arthur V Davis. The complete book is available from the Gift Shop for £1.