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Bellringing at the Cathedral
The Cathedral is fortunate in possessing a fine ring of ten bells, cast by Messrs John Taylor of Loughbrough in 1949 and considered by many ringers to be amongst the top dozen or so from a total of two hundred and fifty similar rings. Ringing in the so-called "full circle" or "English" style has been practised on the Cathedral site for at least three hundred and fifty years, and we are privileged to be able to carry on this great tradition on such excellent bells.
Change ringing is a non-competitve, non-violent team activity that is highly stimulating intellectually and mildly demanding physically, and makes a beautiful sound. It develops mental and physical skills in a context of communal effort. The concentration required brings euphoric detachment that cleanses the mind of the day's petty demands and frustrations. Many people ring as a contribution to church life.
In addition, there is the companionable nature of ringers. The interdependence among individuals creates a tremendous fellowship. Visitors to a change ringing session will invariably be asked to join in if they are ringers. Almost all ringing sessions include time for socialising.
Ringing normally takes place at the weekly practices on Thursday evenings, and before the 10.30 Sunday Eucharist. We also try to provide ringing for other significant Church services and events, or for important Civic occasions.
We do not always have enough people available to ring all ten bells on Sunday mornings, and we always extend a warm welcome to would-be learners. Male and female recruits of almost any age can take part - you do not need to be musically adept, or built like Arnold Schwarzenegger to be able to do it, but a sense of rythymn and timing definitely helps, and you do have to be able to climb the fifty steps up to the Cathedral belfry!
The Cathedral ringers have recently ventured into ringing tunes on handbells, with their first 'performance' at the beginning of the Cathedral Crib Service. We intend to develop this activity separately from bell-tower ringing.
If you would like to come for a try out, or even if you would just like to have a look and see what we do and how we do it, please contact the Cathedral Tower Captain, Ian Smith, personally, on 01254 706260 or by e-mail: Ian Smith