alanmglover aglover at ...
Thu Oct 27 17:35:18 BST 2005

I have been on holiday and missed the various postings about 

The information given by the two Christophers is, as ever, accurate. 
I, for one, was fully in favour of RCO's transportation to the penal 
colonies for the reckless posting on misremembered details.

During the period when peals were rung there, the bells of the Abbey 
were rung from a loft. This was probably installed in 1697 and 
removed in 1814. From that time, the best indication is that the 
bells were rung from the present belfry floor with the bell frame 
being fixed a little higher. It seems to have been very little 
higher, with Taylor's report of 1884 speaking of 'the ringers being 
such a short distance from the bells.' In The Bell News in 1895 a 
correspondent, `G', reported, `a splendid peal of eight. We did get 
a muster for a haul; will it be credited that the ringers are 
banished to the under timbers of the frame, where the beams 
themselves interfere. Mr Taylor's people had been busy doing up the 
bells, but nothing else is allowed on that ridiculous plea of 
spoiling the church. The ascent to `the slaughterhouse' is difficult 
and indirect. Two iron circles at the proper levels not only scale 
the edifice, but the eight ropes are handsome in themselves. The 
great perpendicular window would be improved by such an arrangement.'

There is certainly no prospect of the bells being rung in the 
existing frame.

I can confirm to David that the belfry and ringing room at St 
Alkmund's have been cleaned out and we are in the process of 
restoring the peal boards. I have also been up the tower of St 
Michael's and may be able to supply information on that installation.

Alan Glover


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