[Bell Historians] Re: Listed bells, why are they listed?

David Cawley dave at 1IUwEVeWKtw1dA4kPXUCPXGabjohU4_xd6spp9Anm1PVfxk6bkjN6DefXZ0f-FDlyN9gyF6SD-4XvYUS8kr7wNOE0ND5Nw.yahoo.invalid
Sat May 19 10:57:41 BST 2007

Looks fine to me. Have you seen my report of c1990 (alas recommending a chime)?

  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Chris Pickford 
  To: bellhistorians at yahoogroups.com 
  Sent: Saturday, May 19, 2007 9:02 AM
  Subject: [Bell Historians] Re: Listed bells, why are they listed?

  I visited St.Katharine Cree with Christopher Dalton on 12 March 2002, particularly to look at the frame. We thought the frame rather earlier (in part) than 1754, and the fittings may be somewhat later. Here are some extracts from the notes I made at the time:

  Bellframe:  Apparently a four-bell frame of c.1630-40 later adapted in two phases - first to take five (perhaps c.1710) and eventually six (probably 1754). Pre-Civil War and pre-Fire. Bells hung anti-clockwise with an awkward and very tight rope circle. Tenor pit built into the stair well, and other pits make use of the belfry windows - the treble swung diagonally into the west window, the third into the south widow and the fourth into the east window. Originally three parallel pits with gallows ends on the east side (for bells swinging E/W) and a transverse pit to the west for the tenor. Only the fifth pit is unaltered. Tenor pit shortened on the south the accommodate the treble.  Third pit inserted across the western end of the two parallel pits containing bells 2 and 4. Trusses of sills, braces (13") and long heads. Jack braces in the north side of the tenor pit only. Posts for the gallows ends. The treble pit consists of two short trusses of c.1710 - one with a reused head (with bearing notch now facing the wall) - forming an open-ended pit with an iron bar linking the heads. Iron bar in the north end of the tenor pit too. The pit for the third seems to be the most recent alterations - probably of 1754 - and the introduction of new timber to form the western head of this pit has destroyed evidence of the original arrangement.  Bells 2 and 4 hang towards the east of the original pits - the fourth swung well out into the belfry window and the tower wall has been hollowed out to allow the second to swing. Clearance grooves in the heads and braces, and also in the posts supporting the gallows ends. There are some carpenters' marks. The frame is supported on two N/S beams (one to the east of the stair turret and the other near the east wall), with an E/W beam between them towards the south of the tower

  Fittings: The printed list produced by John Wooding of Whitechapel (successor to Edward Simmons) refers to work here, c.1810. Bells now (including the tenor) all on old oak headstocks with strap gudgeons, stock hoops and plain bearings with wooden covers. Wheels removed. The fittings were overhauled in 1911 by Mears & Stainbank  who provided new supporting ironwork and refurbished the clappers.  Ropes are attached to the clappers for chiming. 

  So perhaps not a contemporary installation of 1754 (a view supported now by DLC), but certainly not a Thomas Mears lash-up of c.1840 as wrongly identified by Rod Bickerton


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