Bell Ropes.

Brian Meldon CanewdonBells at
Mon Nov 17 09:57:53 GMT 2008

Hi Alan
The naming of area of land `Bell Ropes' does appear to be quite common.
There is such a field in our village, Canewdon and another in
Prittlewell. In Canewdon it was an acre of land bequeathed to the
church and the rent from the land was to be used to provide help with
the cost of providing new bell ropes.Other examples of similar lands
are in our village are named `bread house lands' for giving bread to
the poor and `vicarage acre' for the upkeep of the vicarage. 
In Canewdon the five bell ropes were replaced almost every year from
1690 to 1805, I have no records prior to 1690 however the set of ropes
purchased in 1805 lasted more than 20 years!
The rope was often priced by weight, some times in length and no
mention is made of any type of sally's in the early years. Some times
they were listed as `five bell ropes' or just `a set of bell ropes' 
There are many different names listed in the records for the supply of
the ropes, but as Canewdon is near the sea it is almost certain that
the ropes were supplied by the local chandlers. In 1701 the set of
five cost 16s:6d and by 1743 this had gone up to £1:1s and in 1843
£4:10s. But by then they were listed as having `worcsted sally's'. 
Brian Meldon


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