Norwich, St. Stephens

Jonathan Dickenson JMVD at u...
Sun Jan 30 13:30:07 GMT 2005

The inspection went quite well, considering they have hardly ever been
swung, they were in quite good condition (better than St. Andrews)

Full wheels all in tact, bearings (plain) actually working, and bells able
to be swung. It's interesting to see the frame, you can tell the old 5 bells
were quite heavy as the frame has 'cut outs' at either end of the frame to
allow the lip of the bell to swing.

Not sure how safe the bell frame is, as wouldn't know what to look for.

The vicar told us that they were not allowed to be swung, however we assured
him that swinging a bell through 20 degrees wouldn't be a problem to frame
or tower fabric, so was quite happy to 'have a go'

Treble and Tenor were roped up already, and were chimed from the (very well
appointed, and quite spacious) ringing room. I said i would contact him
again to get a 3rd rope put on, so chiming could be resumed for Sunday
services only. I would go up and do a little maintainance - i.e. grease the
bearings, and make the ground pulleys free, and oil the clappers (if

Oddly enough the bells are not tuned to a major key, can't quite remember,
but i think they were 1, 2, 3 of a 4, but were quite tuneful for Mears
bells!, also considering the size of the tower/frame, the bells have been
roped so that they all fall within 1.5ft of each other (possibly so 1 person
could chime all 3 bells)

You can tell the old 5 were ringable, as there was a provision for rope
guides in the ringing chamber.


I also have inspected, and am the ringer at St. Catherine's church on
Aylsham Road.

More information about the Bell-historians mailing list