Sunday 10 May 2015

Tubular Bells of Maentwrog

Stan plays Tubular Bells
Maentwrog is a very special place in many ways including the tubular bells in the tower of St. Twrog’s Church. Most churches have tower bells, bells that are spun with a hammer on the inside, but Maentwrog is one of just a few hundred churches in the UK with tubular bells.

The set of eight tubular bells was installed in the 1896 restoration, according to Wiki, when the existing single bell was relocated to the old village school. The eight tubes vary in length from four to seven feet and are struck on the outside with wooden hammers connected to ropes that are attached to an Ellacombe frame in the bell ringing room, twenty feet below.  

Tubular bells are much lighter than tower bells and therefore well suited to our wooden church tower. They also cost less and more importantly all eight can be rung by a single bell ringer which means it’s easier to maintain the bell ringing tradition. It’s also a lot simpler to ring them, simpler than a team of eight pulling tower bells, and relatively easy to pick up the skill.

In our parish Stan has become the village bell ringer under the expert guidance of Paul who also performs in churches and cathedrals across the UK. Here they are demonstrating their art. Listen out for 'Pop Goes the Weasel'!

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