Years of being hit has almost rung bells out

St Nicholas Church bellringer Anthony Hughes up in the tower with the biggest bell

St Nicholas Church bellringer Anthony Hughes up in the tower with the biggest bell

First published in News Oxford Mail: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter covering Headington and Marston. Call me on (01865) 425411

THE sound of church bells has rung out across the rooftops of Marston for more than a century.

But it is not the residents’ tolerance of them that is wearing thin. St Nicholas Church, Elsfield Road, Marston, has been told its six bells had worn down from years of the hammer striking them.

Honorary treasurer of the St Nicholas Church Marston Society of bellringers, Anthony Hughes, said: “We were warned that the bells needed a major overhaul because the clangers have been hitting the same bit of bell, which has created large pits on the edge.

“The worry is that the sound of the bell might change.”

Other than funerals and weddings, the bells only ring in two practice sessions every Sunday because of fears the bells might crack.

If this happens the bells would need recasting, which could cost up to £100,000.

Instead the society must now raise £25,000 to remove, renovate and retune the bells.

Abingdon bell hanging firm Whites of Appleton would be the firm to remove and inspect the bells before they are sent to the Whitechapel Bell Foundry in London to be tuned.

They will be rotated when reinstalled in the tower so the hammer strikes a different part of the bell.

Five of the bells were installed in the 19th century before a sixth bell was added in 1972.

Mr Hughes, 71, of Oxford Road, Old Marston, said: “It’s the biggest task that the bellringers have undertaken since the war.

It’s a significant job, but they are light bells and they can get at them through the traps.”

He added that bellringing classes could be taught and visitors allowed to use the bells once they are replaced.

The work will take about two months. The society has already raised £4,000 from its 100 club lottery.

  • Donations can be made directly to the church. People can get entry forms for the 100 Club from the church or by emailing ritchfish@gmail.com
  • Our top stories:

Cyclist sexually harassed two women in Oxford

Oxford Mail: Thames Valley Police logo

3:57pm Friday 19th September 2014

A CYCLIST who sexually harassed two women this morning is being hunted by police.

Kennington roundabout contraflow switch put back by a month due to fragile cables

Oxford Mail: Oxfordshire County Council is spending £6m on turning the Kennington roundabout at the southern end of Abingdon Road into a “hamburger” style junction

3:19pm Friday 19th September 2014

A CHANGEOVER in the traffic system at Oxford’s Kennington Roundabout is to be delayed by four weeks, to mid-October.

First OxfordOxford festival cancelled a week before event

Oxford Mail:

1:50pm Friday 19th September 2014

THE inaugural OxfordOxford festival has been cancelled due to poor ticket sales and uncertainty with a booked artist, organisers have said today.

Alcoholic jailed for ‘sickening’ attack in street

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Friday 19th September 2014

AN ALCOHOLIC who kicked a woman’s head like she was “taking a penalty” has been jailed.

‘Co-operation is key to ending child sex gangs’

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Friday 19th September 2014

A HOME Office minister has admitted that social services and police officers should have been co-operating “for years” to stamp out child sexual exploitation.

Northern Gateway ‘will increase traffic by half’

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Friday 19th September 2014

MORNING traffic on a main route into the city could increase by almost half if a major development in North Oxford goes ahead, it has been claimed.

 

Comments

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree