Old St. Martin in the Cornmarket

New bells in one of Worcester’s ancient parish churches

Old St. Martin’s Georgian tower contains 17 bells. The old ring of six and a sanctus bell were hung dead in the 1780 bellframe in 2011 when a new light peal of ten bells were hung in the middle of the tower. This lovely bright and easy to ring peal of ten bells are a popular valuable addition to the Worcester ringing scene. The bells are regularly rung and form a key resource for the teaching of new bellringers by the Worcester Cathedral Guild of Bellringers. The bells are available for peals, quarter peals and outings.

old st martins new bells

Ringing Times

The bells are available for visiting ringers. Sunday service ringing is by arrangement.

Video

James Atkinson’s film of the first ring of the new bells on 11th November 2011.

Audio

Click on the green play button to the left of the title to begin playing.

The first ring of the new bells (4m26s)

The clock striking at noon (0m57s)

The Bells

The new ring

Bell Inscription
1. 317 / 20 (Taylor’s circular mark) 11 (vine-leaf border)
Waist: THE CITY OF / WORCESTER / GAVE ME
2. 311 / 20 (Taylor’s circular mark) 11 (vine-leaf border)
Waist: ST MARTIN / PRAY FOR US
Opposite: PAUL AND GILLIAN / WESTCOTT / GAVE ME
3. 310 / 20 (Taylor’s circular mark) 11 (vine-leaf border)
Waist: IN MEMORY OF / BISHOP / PHILIP GOODRICH
Opposite: “RING OUT WILD BELLS”
4. 278 / 20 (Taylor’s circular mark) 11 (vine-leaf border)
Opposite: URSULA ANDERSON / AND / GERAD HAMBURG / GAVE ME
5. 243 / 20 (Taylor’s circular mark) 11 (vine-leaf border)
Waist: EDWARD AND ELIZABETH / PRIOR / AND FAMILY / IN THANKSGIVING
6. 267 / 20 (Taylor’s circular mark) 11 (vine-leaf border)
Waist: BERNARD TAYLOR / GAVE ME
7. 298 / 20 (Taylor’s circular mark) 11 (vine-leaf border)
Waist: THE FOUNDATION / FOR SPORTS AND THE ARTS / GAVE ME
8. 210 / 20 (Taylor’s circular mark) 11 (vine-leaf border)
Waist: THE BRANSFORD TRUST / AND / THE KINNEAR FAMILY / GAVE ME
9. 151 / 20 (Taylor’s circular mark) 11 (vine-leaf border)
Waist: IN MEMORY OF / JOAN SUMMERHAYES
10. 211 / 20 (Taylor’s circular mark) 11 (vine-leaf border)
Waist: THE / WORCESTERSHIRE AND DISTRICTS / CHANGE RINGING ASSOCIATION / BELFRY REPAIRS FUND / GAVE ME
Bell Founder and Date Diameter Hz Note Cwt. Qrs. Lbs.
1. John Taylor & Co, 2011 19½ 2474 D# 2 1 17
2. John Taylor & Co, 2011 20⅝ 2201 C# 2 2 2
3. John Taylor & Co, 2011 21⅜ 1954 B 2 2 15
4. John Taylor & Co, 2011 22 1854 A# 2 3 1
5. John Taylor & Co, 2011 23 1651 G# 2 3 23
6. John Taylor & Co, 2011 23⅞ 1468 F# 3 0 8
7. John Taylor & Co, 2011 25½ 1310 E 3 1 11
8. John Taylor & Co, 2011 26¼ 1236 D# 3 3 21
9. John Taylor & Co, 2011 29½ 1100 C# 5 0 13
10. John Taylor & Co, 2011 32 9/16 980 B 6 2 17

The new bells were all cast with flat tops and have standard Taylor mouldings (2:2-2:3:2). They are hung with Taylor ringing fittings including cast iron stocks and ball bearings in a galvanised steel frame manufactured to Taylors’ designs by NDS Engineering of Clifton-on-Teme. The installation work was undertaken locally under the supervision of John Slater. The bells were dedicated on the floor of the church on Sunday 4 September 2011 and first rung for the Patronal Festival service on Friday evening, 11 November 2011.

The old ring

The old ring of six remains in situ above the new bells, along with the old sanctus bell:

Bell Inscription
1. GOD PROSPER ALL OVR BENEFACTORS (vine border) 1780 (vine border)
Below (cutting into the mouldings): (arabesque border) JOHN BAND CHVRCHWARDEN (vine border)
2. Thomas Mears of London Founder 1833
Waist: Christopher Barden } / John Goodman } Church Wardens
3. + (fleur-de-lys) SANCTE (fleur-de-lis) MARTINE (fleur-de-lis) HORA (fleur-de-lis) PRO (fleur-de-lis) NOBIS (fleur-de-lis)
4. (Arabesque border all round) / (Brasyer shield) DVRANTIA (border) DONIA (border) IN (border) HONOREM (border) DEI (border) 1638 (border) / (arabesque border all round)
5. 1638 (acorn border all round) / (Brasyer shield) THE (mark) GIFTE (mark) OF ROBERT (mark) DURANT (mark) FOR (mark) THE (mark) HONOUR (mark) OF GOD (mark) / (arabesque border all round)
On rim: (three coins)
6. (Arabesque border all round) / + DEO (border) GLORIAM (border) ET (border) GRATIAS (border) SONO (border) BERKELEY (border) 1640 (border) / (arabesque border all round)
Bell Founder and date Diameter (inches) Hz Note Cwt. Qrs.
1. Thomas Rudhall, 1780 28½ 1305 E-18 3
2. Thomas Mears II, 1833 31 1183 D+12 6 0
3. John Mitchell of Lichfield c.1320 (attributed) or
Unknown founder c.1400
30¾ 1045 C-2 2
4. Hugh Watts II, 1638 33½ 991 B+6 2
5. Hugh Watts II, 1638 37¼ 886 A+12 9 0
6. Hugh Watts II, 1640 42 778 G-13 13 0

The 18″ sanctus hangs in an upright wooden frame within the eastern window of the bell chamber. It is hung for swing chiming. It bears the following inscription:

+ THE GIFT OF RICHARD DVRANT 1621

 

Downloads

History of the Bells

Detailed history of the Old St Martin bells by Chris Pickford

Contact the Old St. Martin Tower

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