St John the Divine, Kennington

jim phillips jim at p...
Sun Jan 18 20:58:32 GMT 2004

For twelve years on leaving school I was engaged in the tropical hardwood
trade and in the late 1950's I supervised the unloading of a barge load of
Yang (Dipterocarpus spp) timber that had been cut to size in Thailand for
the bellframes of Great Yarmouth, Bow and St John the Divine, Kennington.
Both Yarmouth and Bow have had twelve's for many years now but does anyone
know what happened to Kennington? The massive timber bellframe has been in
that tower for nigh on 50 years and still no bells have been installed to
replace the 1889 Whitechapel 20 cwt twelve lost by enemy action in WW2.
The timber was completely free of any knots and comes from an evergreen tree
150 ft or more in height, and 70 ft to the first branch, with a girth
frequently exceeding 12 ft. The wood was pale red to red-brown in colour
and weighs between 40 to 57 lbs per cubic ft. Dipterocarpus spp from Burma
is known as Gurjun and from Malaya as Keruing.

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