Just before Christmas 2006 the eight bells at the Barrow-upon-Humber Ringing Centre were rehung in a 12-bell frame and the ringing chamber was redecorated. Following this, two new bells were donated, one by the Garfield Weston Foundation, and the other by the Colley family of Caistor. They were cast on 21st June at Taylors Eayre & Smith Ltd’s foundry in Loughborough. A large party of us were pleased to go and have a tour of the works, and then watch the casting.
The bells were scheduled to be hung during 3 days in August, but the work went much more quickly than anticipated and it became clear during the day on the 2nd day that the bells would be ready for a try-out that evening. After some swift telephoning, the normal practice at nearby Elsham was moved to Barrow and the two bell hangers were delighted to be able to join us. Practice appropriately began with Ted Colley leading up the front 6, ringing the bell given by the Colley family. The rest of the evening was spent ringing Rounds & Call Changes, Plain Bob Caters and Plain Hunt Caters & Royal. Those with experience in ten-bell ringing were put to work supporting the less experienced, who all acquitted themselves very well, obviously trying really hard to put into practice the advice given about good rhythm and striking on 10.
The first quarter on the 10 was Plain Bob Caters rung on 25th August, by Heather Peachey (C), Ted Colley, Sue Francis, Paul Wilkinson, Amanda Plaskitt, Steve Colley, David Hibbert, Rod French, Andy Bennett & Jenny Bennett. To the surprise of many, Barry Peachey didn’t ring, preferring to give the opportunity to others, rather than take a rope himself.
We are really pleased to report that the two new trebles are an excellent tonal match to the existing bells. In the practices since the augmentation we have already started to see ringers’ skills and confidence on 10 grow tremendously. We still run a 6-bell practice at Elsham on Wednesdays, but at the Monday practice at Barrow we are now concentrating more on 10-bell ringing, with 6 & 8 bells being rung in the early part of the evening while people are still arriving. Novices are particularly welcome to come and learn to ring on 10 – it is not a practice for the already proficient, it is a practice for everyone and all ringers from anywhere are welcome. We are now considering starting practice at 7pm to ensure there is enough time for what we need to fit in.
The casting of a bell at Loughborough on 21/06/2007
Some of those who were able to come and see the bells when they arrived on 14/08/2007.