[Bell Historians] St. Luke's, Chelsea

Robert Lewis editor at mebcHOdjVhrHT8PIQ18MgsgyaG4Jy7SMw8wbGNvpX8WRcdGaPaKj64QWMfE-8CuwqT-MfM4gDCxHHMgaJzjfspY.yahoo.invalid
Mon Oct 1 17:35:30 BST 2007

At 23:08 30/09/2007, David wrote:

>So far as I'm aware, opinions on St Luke's, Chelsea, don't vary - I've never
>heard anyone say anything in favour of them!

I don't think you will find many ringers in favour of keeping the 
existing bells at St. Luke's - though I know at least one who claims 
to appreciate their unique 'character'.

  As I recall the problem with trying to tune the bells was that some 
of the profiles are a bit peculiar.

The local ringers have been trying to get a sensible scheme (for a 
lighter ring of ten, lower in the tower) off the ground there for 
over twenty years.  But I think that part of the problem in the past 
has been the failure of the parish to sign on to the idea. Certainly 
when I was involved with the restoration committee there was some 
fairly vocal opposition to getting rid of the old bells from one or 
two members of the congregation/PCC. The DAC Advisor (who was also 
the Church Architect) was not in favour of the scheme.  The ringers 
had very little clout (partly, perhaps, because Chelsea is only rung 
as part of a Sunday morning circuit and the ringers are based and 
hold their regular practices elsewhere). Various learned and 
professional opinions were sought in support of the ringers' case - 
all to no avail (so far).

Money certainly wasn't the issue (maybe there are parallels with 
Cornhill in that respect);  Chelsea must be one of the wealthiest 
parishes in the land.

When somebody pipes up with an emotive statement like "these are the 
historic bells that Charles Dickens heard at his wedding" it can be 
difficult to counter. Except, perhaps, to commiserate with poor Mr. 
Dickens and express the hope that he wasn't charged too much for the pleasure.

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