[Bell Historians] "Wright Jones apparatus" (Belmont)

Bryan McCahey b.mccahey at 7hwdvvbuzaMuYp0tldyIm_2Goc3btuQe2sX0lXvTsydzO8IsqPKd7mNPy5SQ_b-cAXoZQxVJZSOmKPU.yahoo.invalid
Tue Jan 12 21:37:30 GMT 2010

Sam describes the eccentric Belmont installation accurately and evocatively.. I am certain that the chiming arrangements were make-shift and replaced something a little more sophisticated. Surely nobody would deliberately engineer something like that?? There were no other fittings in the bell chamber but there was possibly something below in the intermediate clock-chamber. It was pitch-black in there and I was not happy that the floor was safe. Individually the bells (A Vickers six) were discordant and together they were far from diatonic. The sight of the hymn tunes on the wall boards was a little ludicrous! Perhaps a re-visit is called for. 

Bryan McCahey

From: Sam Austin <sam0austin at yAzsVcoYkFVyk0k-QiglrK9vhNHcEvXdI96IwRkYZw0MMS4w_NqdZUDuOF1LOsVwEP9NrjdMdbZXztlbOnaSCmGj.yahoo.invalid>
To: bellhistorians at yahoogroups.com
Sent: Tue, January 12, 2010 6:40:20 PM
Subject: Re: [Bell Historians] "Wright Jones apparatus" (Belmont)

I visited Belmont some years ago aged 10 or 11. It was an autumnal night, getting dark, the fog was rolling in from the moors and one could not see the church from the lychgate, very spooky.  Suddenly, a great metallic crashing noise was being emitted from the void where church should have been, it sounded like a blacksmith at work. Listening more closely, the 'crashes' were different pitches. It was of course the bells being chimed. 
There are two staircases in the tower. I chose one and ascended, and found six steel bells hung rigid, horizontally (i.e. the mouths facing the wall) at 90 degree angles in two rows of three. The clappers were hung from the centre of the bells in the usual manner, but were resting on the bottom lips. Cords were attached to each clapper and were directed over each bell and down through the floor below. 
The other staircase led to the ringing room where there where in six cords with toggles,  the cords being of the variety used on shutter blinds. On some wooden panelling written in chalk were some hymn tunes in numerical notation. The action required to sound the bell was to pull on the cord, and let go. This lifted the clapper and dropped it onto the bell, where it rested. The cords fell in a similar manner to a conventional rope circle, hence it required three people to chime all six bells, one cord in each hand. 
Referring to the original question, there is no chiming apparatus as such, but the way the installation has been rigged up surely must be unique. 
The visit was arranged by Bryan McCahey ( a member of this list), perhaps he could correct any details I may have misremembered and maybe supply a photo?


On Tue, Jan 12, 2010 at 6:07 PM, John <Dovemaster at googlema il.com> wrote:

>I received an enquiry today from a historian parishioner dealing with the 6 steel bells at Belmont, Lancs.
>Inter alia, he said ...
>> these are fixed and according to the detailed financial statement which we still have, are rung using "Wright Jones apparatus patent 15".
>- a form of chiming apparatus which I have never heard of previously (nor has GAD). The first 100 results of a Google search on "Wright Jones apparatus bell" has produced nothing of relevance.
>If anyone knows of any documented reference to what this is (I infer a sort of Ellacombe variant), I would be pleased to learn more. It dates from 1860 according to the enquiry and so it is possibly contemporary with Ellacombe's design. 


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