St. James’ Bell Tower Open Day

Name of walk St. James' Bell Tower Open Day
Date of walk 2015-03-07

On Saturday 7th March we marked the first anniversary of the re-dedication of the bells by holding a Bell Tower Open Day and having a celebratory meal in the evening at a local Italian. There were displays in the church, including archive material and the story of the bells. There were talks, a film made by Furness College, and trips up to see the bells ringing from above available, as well as opportunities for visitors to have a go at ringing a bell. Over the course of the day we would ring for two one hour sessions with the bells ringing out, then two one hour sessions with the bell clappers tied and the bell sound being produced by the computer simulator. This is much more friendly towards those people living near and looking forward to a quiet Saturday afternoon, as the sound of the bells is restricted to the ringing room only.

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Andy, Geoff, Alan and Brenda the church warden, had got in early to put up all the display work in the church.

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Andy's tools to aid his bell ringing explanations.

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Our collection of hand bells mostly date from 1870, and are believed to be the handbells used by the church & school to enter national handbell competitions in Belle Vue, Manchester in 1871 & 1873.

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We had visiting ringers from the Kendal, Hawkshead, Ulverston and Dalton Towers.

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Andy giving one of his 'short' talks to a few of the visitors.

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St. James' is Barrow's largest church and could seat 1000.

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The organ that was once in St. James' Palace and played for Queen Victoria and Albert's wedding.

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Mark, the organist, seems to be breeding chicks!

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Eileen instructs one of the younger visitors.

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Visitors in the viewing gallery above the bells. Ear protectors need to be worn while they are ringing.

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The bells.

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One of the afternoon ringing sessions. Andy takes these photos as I am busy ringing.

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In the evening the ringers go to Francesca's for a celebratory meal.

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Sue takes this one.

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I'm not sure I should thank Andy for this one!

An excellent day and evening was had by the ringers, and I’m sure the visitors enjoyed themselves too!

Thanks to Shelagh, Dorothy, Brenda and others who welcomed visitors, and made refreshments throughout the open day, and Jo Pollock for making the cakes for the ringers. Thanks to everyone who helped out on the day and travelled near and far to make it a success, and to Geoff for sacrificing a lot of ringing to man the photos & archive display, and lastly to Tower Captain, Andy Pollock for organising the day and for the use of some of his photos.

The Barrow Bells Website is www.barrowbells.org.uk

Hawkshead are having an Open Day to celebrate 250 years on Sunday 12th April.

Jo

 

 

 

 

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