Knapton’s Church Bells – the Ring of Five

In 1881 the architect, Sir Gilbert Scott, was brought in to arrange for the restoration of the Church.   As a result of his inspection a great number of projects were undertaken but no work was carried out on the bells.   The Church was reopened on Sunday, September 9th, 1883.

50 years after this restoration work was carried out the bells were sent to bell founders, Messrs. Gillett & Johnston.   Their Croydon factory was one of the first steam-powered clock factories in the world and in 1868 the well-known clock tower at the factory was built as a working advertisement.   They are now based in Bletchingley.

The three trebles were recast in 1932 and were rehung on a steel frame for six bells.

Knapton – Norfolk
Ring of Five

The weight and inscriptions of the bells are as follows

  1. 3 cwt  2 qtr 14 lbs   T Mears of London fecit 1804
  2. 4 cwt  0 qtr 10 lbs  T Mears of London 1825
  3. 4 cwt  1 qtr 22 lbs  T Mears of London 1825
    with the names of the Church Wardens inscribed – Sam Baker and John Cooper
  4. 4 cwt  1 qtr 13 lbs  Anno Domini 1565  R.B. and I.B.
  5. 5 cwt  2 qtr 10 lbs Facta Erata Nodmi. Isgzrb
    i.e. Facta Erat Anno Domini 1592

for comparison…
1 cwt = 112 lbs = 50.8 Kg
1 quarter = 28 lbs = 12.7 Kg

The Sixth Bell
Bell Ringing

A sixth bell was cast at the Whitechapel Bell Foundry on the 20th December 1990 from a bell metal of copper and tin and weighing 3 cwts 1 qtr 13 lbs (171 Kg).

Installed on the 16th June 1991, the bell was a donated by a lady in remembrance of her Grandfather and has an inscription cast on the bell.

In Memory of Arthur Thomas King I.S.O. 1845 – 1922  President of the Middlesex Association of Ringers 1913 – 1922
(Foundry Mark) 90.  Whitechapel

The Bells today…

According to Dove’s Guide for Church Bell Ringers, the authoritative source for current information about rings of bells since 1950, we have 6 bells in fine working order.

View Knapton’s page on the Dove website

There is also a recorded list of all the peels rung, recorded by the Felstead Database, whose aim it is to list brief details of every towerbell peal that has been rung by recording historical evidence received, or obtained from, current sources such as BellBoard, The Ringing World and PealBase.

View Knapton’s page on the Felstead website

St Peter & St Pauls Church is a member of the Northern branch of the Norwich Diocesan Association of Ringers (NDAR), in the Diocese of Norwich.

It is recorded as having 6 bells, tenor 5-2-10 in Band the condition as being “Excellent”.

View Knapton’s page on the NDAR website

Practice times:
Usually very 1st, 3rd and 5th Monday of the month at 7:30pm.
Please check with Andrew for any changes or additions to this schedule.

Membership
The number of members has slowly dwindled over the years, from twelve in 2002 down to six in 2018, so it’s very likely that any budding campanologist showing interest in becoming involved would be welcomed.

Contact details:
Andrew Lubbock
Tel: 01263 722929
Email: andyman1@live.co.uk

Or write to Andrew at:
9 The Green, Knapton, North Walsham, Norfolk NR28 0RU