the benefice of Hever, Four Elms and Markbeech

The Bells of St Peter's, Hever

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"If all the bells in England were rung at the same time there would scarcely be a single spot where a bell could not be

heard."   Bishop Latimer, 1552.

To most people the ringing of church bells is a medieval mystery, as incomprehensible as the Theory of Relativity, yet

practised by simple country folk. It is a straightforward matter to achieve competence in ringing a bell, but learning

never stops. And that is a part of its fascination. Bellringing in England is unique, well, almost, because the method of

hanging the bells is peculiar to Britain, and allows the speed of ringing to be changed at will. Hence, the term 'change

ringing'.

Each church bell tower has a 'Tower Captain' and a band of ringers, mainly local. They are a dedicated band and turn

up regularly on Thursday evenings for practice. They are always practising, and have achieved a commendable

competence in the simpler methods such as 'rounds' and 'called changes', and 'Plain Hunting' which is the basis of all

the more complex methods.

We have used the word 'unique' in the first paragraph, but it also describes the good fellowship, the camaraderie, and

the dedication of the ringers, who are always ready to welcome newcomers. Young or old, male or female, parishioner

or living beyond the boundaries, you would be welcome to see what goes on at practice on Thursday evenings. Come

along to look, to listen, maybe to handle a rope, or even to see the bells, just for the experience, without commitment.

Thursdays 8.00pm

For more information contact:

Terry Dell

01732 864365