The Bell Tower at St Michael's Church
In late 2013 a number of villagers embarked on a beginners’ bell ringing course under the expert tutelage of Jill Garlick of the East Hagbourne bell tower, assisted by many generous ‘helpers’ from around other local towers, such as Blewbury, Harwell, Cholsey and Wallingford.
We quite quickly became reasonably proficient in rope handling, simple ‘rounds’ and change ringing, but it is taking us longer to get to grips with more advanced ringing, mainly because we were nearly all complete beginners, whilst in most operational towers beginners get introduced gradually and ring at quite an early stage with experienced ringers. However, we do make quite a respectable sound which seems to be appreciated by lots of villagers, especially in the summer evenings, as they sip a glass of beer or wine on their garden terraces!
We have rung for a couple of weddings where our lack of sophistication seems to have been kindly accepted and we also ring from time to time for such events as.... Carol services, the Queen’s 90th Birthday and ringing in the New Year on 1st January.
Bell ringing practices are generally from 7.15-8.15pm on Thursday evenings and we have a group of regular ringers which includes Anna Dillon, Guy Liverton, Tom Coates, Chris Hart, Bob Picken, Emilia Panzeri, James Panzeri, Jo Walshe, Julie Latter, Simon Young and Christopher Hawker.
We are always ready to greet new ringers and would encourage anybody who has rung before or simply wants to try it out, to get in contact with any of the above ringers, or with me, Christopher Hawker.