[Bell Historians] Re: Thaxted (was Oakham etc)

Richard Offen richard.offen at o...
Mon Jun 14 15:48:42 BST 2004

--- In bellhistorians at yahoogroups.com, "David Cawley" <dcawley at w...> 
> On Thaxted, I think that the legend has multiplied with the years. 
G&J - from whom Cyril had already parted company - were instructed to 
recast 3, 4 and 5 which they did early in 1949 (the 5th is dated 
1948). Donors (The People of Thaxted; The Morris [dancing] Ring; The 
Patron) had been found. The resulting bells must be among the finest 
examples of bell moulding and decoration ever.
> The 5th probably has the longest inscription on an 8 1/2 cwt bell 
> However, within a year the 7th (by Gardiner in 1734) did crack all 
round the shoulder most likely for the reasons Richard states. It was 
recast with 1 1/2 cwt extra metal in 1950. It is again highly 
decorated, but the style of the inscription is simpler. Significantly 
there is no name of a donor.
> Michael Howard personally designed the bells and their ornament. I 
bet Wally Spragget tuned them; perhaps his notebook (at WBF) tells us 
something about these bells.

I believe Michael Howard came from Thaxted. He was also a keen 
Morris dancer, which explains why one of the bells was donated by 

Yes Wally did tune them and they are a very fine ring.


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