Our Bells

Here you will find details of the bells of Saint Mary the Virgin which were augmented from 8 to 13 during the summer of 2020 
by John Taylor &Co. For more information click here
A brief description of our project can be found below
Plan view of our new thirteen bell peal

The project has been supported by generous donations from the following bodies:

Bath and Wells Diocesan Association .
of Change Ringers

Our project delivery partners are:

Stephen Adams
SJB Adams and Son
Rhode Farm
Rhode Lane
Bridgwater TA5 2AD

The children, parents and staff from 

         Margaret and Richard Lee.  
Tower Captain and Tower Tutor 2019
25 1/2"  4-2-20  A

Henry T. Dixon, Rector
Given by his Grandchildren 2019
26 1/2” 4-2-23  G

Dennis & Sylvia Winter 
Who for many years worshipped in this Church 2019
27”  4-3-11  F♯

Kate Bennett Bellringer
  Bridgwater T. C.   
Sedgemoor D.C. 2019
28 1/2”  5-1-19  E

Glory to God in the Highest. 
Cast T. Bayley 1745. 
Recast John Taylor & Co, Loughborough 1899
30"  6-0-11  D

And on earth peace, Goodwill toward men. T.B. 1745
31"  6-0-24  C♯

Bath & Wells D.A.C.R. 
I was cast by donations 
large and small 2020
32 1/2”  7-0-20  C

1650. N.C.
34 1/2"  8-1-1  B

W.P. G.P. Anno Domini 1617
37 3/4"  10-3-9  A

Sanctae Maria. Anno Domini 1634. Recast 1899. In the mayoralty of Thomas Good Esquire. Henry Bircham M.A. Vicar. H.C Salmon, Francis Brice, JP, F.J.C. Parsons JP, E.H. Hooper - Wardens
39 1/2"  11-0-25  G

From Lightning and Tempest Good Lord Deliver us.A.R. 1721
41 3/4"  12-0-27  F♯

Wm. Methwin, Wm. Bryant, Churchwardens. A.R 1721.
46 1/2"  15-3-24  E

Recast by subscriptions. Obtained 1867 John Taylor & Co. Founders. Loughborough, 1868. John B. Hammill, Mayor. I call the living, mourn the dead; I tell how days and years are fled; For Joy, for grief, for prayer and praise, My tuneful voice to heaven I raise.
53 3/4"  25-1-1  D

The bells and frame before augmentation

Our 2016 augmentation project.
To install 5 additional lighter bells.

The Church
St Mary's, the Grade 1 listed Parish Church of Bridgwater, is located in the very heart of the town. It's engaging visual situation with an imposing 14th century spire on a 13th century tower, which houses a ring of 8 bells, is a beacon to ringers and non ringers alike. The church was also instrumental during the Monmouth Rebellion and we ring from a chamber named in his memory.

The Bells
The earliest bell we know of was cast locally in 1283. There were 5 bells in the tower by the mid 16th century and the earliest surviving bell still in the tower was cast in 1617. In 1745 the bells were augmented to 8 and refurbished in 1899 with the installation of an iron H frame, also, 2 bells were then recast. In 1979 the bells were overhauled and re- hung on modern bearings.

The Opportunity
To augment the bells to 13 by removing the bell frame, and the existing 8 bells.  Also, install a new frame to house all the bells on one level, have repairs carried out on our existing bells and install remote operated environmental sound control to the belfry window openings.

Our heaviest bell is 25cwt, (1250kg approx), and having a lighter ring of bells will make it easier to teach new recruits, allow existing ringers to participate for longer and to future proof ringing in St Mary's. Our fine ring of eight bells will still be there but the peal will be enhanced by the addition of lighter bells giving us more flexible combinations to use. We are also the nominated teaching tower for the area so we have the latest computerised education system for quicker progress in change ringing.

The complete project will cost £194,505 which includes installing sound control to enable us to hold more practice sessions without disturbing the local community.