St Saviour's Arklow

 St Saviour's Church was build in 1899 by the Earl of Carysfort as a gift to the people of Arklow. As the inscriptions show, this gift included the bells.  As there was nobody in the area who knew how to ring the bells the Earl brought over Mr J W Washbrook to teach the local band.  The peal boards in the tower indicate that this was a very successful venture - this band rang their first peal on 2 August 1901.

Mr Washbrook was an accomplished peal ringer in own right - on 19th September 1901 he rang the 3 and 4 bells for a Peal of Grandsire Triples.  However, many people (including Lindoff, Baker and Townley) did not believe that this could be done. So, to prove the point on the 19 October 1901 he did it again!

Service Ring - 11.30 - 12.00 (none at present)

 Tower Information

 Full Name      St. Saviour's, Arklow      
 First Peal Rung  12 August 1899
 Dedicated  12 August 1899
 Number of Bells  8
 Directionof ring  Clockwise
 Weight of Tenor  22 Cwt in E

 

Tower Contact:  Stephen Vanston,


 

Christ Church, Bray The story of the bells in Christ Church, Bray starts in the late 19th century, when the Prime Minister of Great Britain, William Gladstone, was visiting the Earl of Meath at his Kilruddery Estate.  It is reported that Mr Gladstone said that such a fine steeple should not stand silent, and donated £50 towards obtaining some bells.

Shortly after this Taylor's of Loughborough were asked to cast a ring of 8 bells for the tower at a cost of £400.  These were installed in the winter of 1880/1881.  The frame was repaired in 1950, and the bells rehung.

 Although Gabriel Lindoff's home tower was St. Patrick's Cathedral,  he was none the less a big asset to this tower.  This includes conducting the very first Peal rung here, which was Plain Bob Triples, in December 1900.

Another key figure at this time was the Reverend Digby Scott, who was president of the Bray society.  Along with Gabriel Lindoff, he was also one of the founder members of the Association

Service Ring: 10.40 - 11.00

Practice Night: Wednesday 19.00 - 20.00

Tower Contact:  David McNerney
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+353(0)868176621

Christ Church Cathedral, Dublin

Christ Church Cathedral has the double honour of being both the oldest building in Dublin and having the world record for largest number of bells that are rung full circle.  This record is the most recent in a number of developments that the ringers of Christ Church have taken part in over the last thousand years.  Every century has seen an improvement to either the tower or the bells within it.

The cathedral was originally founded in 1038 by the Norse King of Dublin, Siric Silkenbeard and Donat, the first Bishop of Dublin.  This would have been a wooden building, though it is recorded to have had at least one ringing bell since that time.

The cathedral was originally founded in 1038 by the Norse King of Dublin, Siric Silkenbeard and Donat, the first Bishop of Dublin.  This would have been a wooden building, though it is recorded to have had at least one ringing bell since that time.

The first stone building was build in the 1170s by the Norman knight Strongbow (who was responsible for bringing Ireland under Norman control) and the Archbishop, St Laurence O'Tool, though neither of them lived long enough to see it completed.

By 1440 there were known to be three great bells in the tower, however in 1603 an accidental explosion of gunpowder in one of the quays cracked the bells and damaged the tower. The effects of this blast also damaged the tower nearby of St. Audeon's church.

In 1670, six new bells were cast for the tower from cannon metal. These were augmented to eight in 1738 and then to twelve in 1878.

The most recent augmentation was in 1999 when an additional seven bells were added to the ring.  Although this does not produce a diatonic scale on 19 bells, it does uniquely provide a choice of combinations: three different 12-bell peals as well as 14 and 16 bell peals.  At the time of the augmentation, this was only the second 16 bell peal in the world - St Martin's church in Birmingham being the first.

The Ringers of Christ Church are also keen mini-bell ringers, after a portable octave was cast for the ringing master in 1998.

Practice Night: Friday 19.00 - 21.00 to gain access after 19.00, please phone 087 1203456

Service Ring: Sunday 10.00 - 11.00 and 14.30 - 15.30

All Service Ringing and Practices are cancelled until further Notice due to the current Covid 19 situation.

Tower Contact:  Gail McEndoo
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Church of the Immaculate Conception, Wexford

One of the first things visitors of Wexford notice at they approach are the towers of the twin churches, in Bride Street and Rowe Street, however only the latter has bells. 
This was achieved through the generosity of Canon Roche, the founder of the churches, and William Healy.  The order was placed with the Murphy  Bell Foundry with the hope that they would be ringing for Christmas 1882.  Sadly the bells were delayed until the following year, which was due to the deaths of both Canon Roche in 1883 and Mr Murphy himself in 1879.

The first recorded visitor to the tower was Gabriel Lindoff, who spent some weeks teaching a local band to ring.

In 1930 the Administrator of the Parish, Rev. John Sinnott, had the original nine bells recast, and augmented the ring with an additional two bells.  These are the present Treble and a flattened Fourth. Shortly after this time Gabriel Lindoff brought a band of ringers from his home tower of St Patrick's Cathedral to ring a Quarter peal of 1331 Grandsire Caters he had composed specifically for the occasion.

The bells were hung in such a way that they can also be used for chime ringing.  This was used to great effect on 20th September 1984 when they played "Auld Lang Syne" and "Home Sweet Home" for the Ordination of Bishop Brendan Cromiskey.

Service Ring: 10.50 - 11.05

Tower Contact:  Joe Kinsella

+353(0)539121297

St Mary, Blessington

The story of Blessington bells starts in 1683 when Archbishop Michael Boyle, came into the possession of the Manor of Blessington.  There, at his own expense, he founded and built the church "even adding a handsome belfry with six tuneful bells".  These bells are still in the tower, and as they have never been recast they are now the oldest ring in Ireland.  In fact the bells have never been taken out of the belfry since they were originally dedicated!

Towards the end of the century a Chime keyboard in the upper loft was installed to play tunes on the bells. These included "Xmas 1897"; "Xmas an 31 12 1989"; "Xmas 1900"; "Lead Kindly Light"; "There is no Night in Heaven" and "Trust and Obey"

The bells were then re-hung in 1923 as a tribute and memorial to the servicemen of the parish who died during the Great War.  Despite the excellent craftsmanship required to maintain the bells in place, there were some problems that affected the ringing of the Tenor bell, which the locals described as "horse work".  This situation was fixed in 1979 by Canon Low, who arranged for the Tenor bell to be re-hung on modern fittings.

Serivce Ring: 10.45 - 11.15 (4th Sunday in month) or special services

Practice Night: Saturday 17.00 - 18.00

Tower Contact:  Sandra Doran
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+353 (0)45865225,