It is probably safe to claim that St Nicholas' Church, Carrickfergus, is unique in Ireland in having a tower and spire attached to the church, as well as a detached tower, in each of which there are bells. In the square tower, with its octagonal spire attached to the west end of the church, there are two bells. The earlier one was presented to the parish in 1683 and it was supplied in 1684 with the inscription:
ANDROV WILLOVBY · MAYOR H·P·84·
H.P refers to the founder Henry Paris of Dublin. The bell was probably accommodated in a bell-cote on the west gable of the church until the present tower and spire were erected in 1788. The bell split open in April 1832 and was recast into the present bell in the tower which is 35¾" in diameter, and about 8¾ cwts. It is this bell that sounds the hour in the spire of the church.
The second bell in the tower is a plain casting, having no date or inscription. It is 13 ¾" in diameter, about ½ cwt and is now disused.
Over the main entrance gate there is a modern tower. Designed by Denis O'D Hanna, it contains a ring of eight bells cast in 1920 by Gillett & Johnston of Croydon. These bells were formerly hung in a red brick tower built as a War Memorial beside the church. That tower had to be demolished in 1961 because of the deterioration of the structure, and the new gate tower was built as a replacement. The latter is of a continental style and the original ring of eight bells was installed in the new tower by Taylor's of Loughborough.
Practice Night: 2nd Mondays of each month: 19.30 - 21.00
Service Ring: Sunday Morning 10.30 - 11.00
(please confirm with tower contact for morning and evening service ringing)