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The Bells at St Mary-le-Ghyll Church

The original three bells, which have rung out over Barnoldswick since 1723, were cast and hung by Abraham Rudhall II. of Gloucester. In 1880, T. Mallaby and Sons, bellhangers of Masham, removed the bells for refurbishment. They were reinstalled in a new wooden frame and fittings in May, 1881.
These bells fell into disuse during the last quarter of the 20th Century. In 2005 repairs and maintenance were carried out on them and a new Ringing Band was formed from members of the congregation and from local inhabitants. It was soon realised that to maintain interest as the Band progressed, it would be advisable to augment the ring to six or eight bells.
A project to raise the necessary funds of £67,000 commenced in 2006. However, by 2009 sufficient funds had been raised and work done to augment to six bells in the interim period. Meanwhile fund raising continues and it is hoped to finish the project by the addition of the final two bells sometime in the future. Donations towards this are gratefully accepted and can be made to the Treasurer of the Ghyll Bells Group, Roy Bunn, tel. 01282 813703.
In November, 2009 the ring of six bells was installed in a cast iron frame which can accommodate eight bells. On 30 January 2010, the bells were dedicated by Rt. Revd. David James, Bishop of Bradford, in the presence of their Worships the Mayor and Mayoress of Pendle. Weekly bell ringing practice and instruction is held every Tuesday evening, from 7.30 p.m. to 9 p.m. and invitation is open to all (whether being existing bell ringers or potential learners) to join our ringing band. Enquiries relating to joining both as an existing bell ringer or to learn can be made to the Tower Captain, Chris Whale, tel. 01282 812734.

The three original bells of 1723 now form the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th of the ring.

  • The 1st bell, known as the treble, originally cast by John Taylor of Loughborough, was acquired from among the redundant bells from St. George’s Church, Kendal in Cumbria.
  • The 2nd bell is inscribed, “A.R. 1723. Peace and Good Neighbourhood”.
  • The 3rd is inscribed, “Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s and unto God the things that are God’s. A.R. 1723”
  • The 4th is inscribed, “Wm. Drake Esq. Ch. Warden. A.R. 1723”.
  • The 5th bell, known as the Ringer’s Bell, was cast on the 3rd May 2007 to celebrate the church’s 850 anniversary, by Taylor, Eayre and Smith of Loughborough. It is inscribed with the names of the members of the Band at that time, some of whom made generous contributions to its cost.
  • The 6th bell, the tenor, was cast in 2009 by Taylor, Eayre and Smith and is inscribed with a dedication to each of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Associations of Change Ringers, who were the major sponsors of the project.

Bell Weight Hz Note Diameter
cwts. qtrs. lbs.

  • 1 3 2 24 1399.0 F 26.25”
  • 2 4 0 16 1246.0 E flat 27.25”
  • 3 4 3 0 1111.5 D flat 29.75”
  • 4 5 1 6 1046.0 C 31.00”
  • 5 8 1 4 932.0 B flat 34.75”
  • 6 12 1 17 832.0 A flat 39.50”
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St Mary-le-Ghyll, Barnoldswick

Not much remains of the original structure.  Perhaps a triplet window could be original, and an early English window on the North side.   The font probably dates from that period, as does an old stone coffin alongside the porch.

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