[Bell Historians] Re: Bell pitches

David Bryant davidbryant at ...
Tue Jun 14 13:51:54 BST 2005

On a more general note, many people seem to find it surprising just how 
ill-informed the average ringer is when it comes to the musical and 
mechanical aspects of bells. Musicians often tend to be surprised - where 
any other musical instrument is concerned, a reasonable degree of knowledge 
is mandatory.

A few years ago David Potter taught the head of the Danish Carillon School 
the basics of change ringing. She came and stayed in York for several weeks. 
As would be expected, she had considerable in-depth knowledge of bell tuning 
and carillon construction, and was extremely surprised at how little most 
ringers knew about bells. She was even more surprised at how ringers who 
were insterested in and knowledgeable about bells were often branded as 
'anoraks' by many other ringers.

I suppose this all goes to show that however accurate we try to be in 
describing bell pitches, it will be lost on the majority of ringers. It 
would be interesting do a survey and ask a large group of ringers what the 
note of a specified bell in their ring other than the tenor was. I rather 
suspect that the majority would have no idea.



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