With a ring of twelve bells plus an additional “sharp 2nd“, Bolton has a fine set of bells. The band boasts some expert ringers under the leadership of Alan Forrester, the tower captain. This all goes to make Bolton one of your towers to come and ring at, whether you are an experience ringer or a novice wanting to learn this peculiarly British art.
The bells are rung for Sunday service from 9.45 a.m. until 10.30 a.m. and at the Friday practice night at 7.00 p.m.
The requirements to be a bell ringer are very few. You do not need to know anything about music, you do not need to be strong or agile, but you do need to be able to count to eight……and we can even teach you that as part of your training!
Bell ringing is a sociable activity. There is often a social gathering after practices at local hostelry. Ringing trips to ring bells at other churches up and down the country are organised regularly. Bell ringers are always welcome in other towers, so if you are on holiday in the West Country you could find six or more friends somewhere close by.
If you are interested in bell ringing please come along to a practice night here at the Parish Church. Here you can find about a Church tower near you where you can also learn to ring.
The present ring of twelve bells were installed in 1974 when the opportunity was taken to replace the original ring of eight with the eight bells of Saviours Church, Deane Road, plus five new trebles. These five new trebles were recast from seven of the original eight bells. The tenor bell was retained and hung “dead“, to be rung electrically for services when the bell ringers are unavailable.
The inscription on this bell is as follows:
“I to the Chvrch the living call
And to the grave doe svmmon all
Henry Bagley made mee 1699“
An inscription on one of the other bells was also retained by having it inscribed on one of the new trebles.
Bell ringing at Bolton Parish Church has been around for 300 years.
Once a year, the bell ringers invite visitors up the tower to savour the spectacular view from the top of the tower. This is usually in September to coincide with the Civic Trustâ€™s Heritage Weekend.
Click on any of the images below to play the video clip.