The Bromfield Platinum Jubilee band
To celebrate the Queen's Platinum Jubilee, members of St Milburga Ringers participated in ringing at various churches within and near to our Benefice.
Firstly, on Thursday 2nd June, five ringers participated in Rounds and Call Changes at Tugford...
On Friday 3rd June, ten ringers convened at St Milburga's to participate in 45 minutes of Rounds, Call Changes and Grandsire Triples...
Then, on Saturday 4th June, two separate bands were formed to perform concurrent quarter peals at Stanton Lacy (8) and Bromfield (6).
The method rung at Stanton Lacy was Grandsire Triples...
... whilst at Bromfield, we rang 1270 of Grandsire Doubles and Plain Bob Doubles (the '70' being a nod to the seventy years of Her Majesty's reign...
Congratulations to all participants on a great set of performances, and to HM Queen Elizabeth II on her incredible 70 years on the throne.
The Stanton Lacy Platinum Jubilee band
In readiness for our forthcoming bell festival, we have installed our new ropes today. A bit springy, but we're confident that they will calm down quickly enough. As our bells were cast in Italy, the sally colours of red, white and green were inspired by the colours of the Italian flag. We look forward to letting you come and have a go on them any time - just get in touch!
The first ever time that the bells have been chimed by a clock in the approximately 750 year period of the church's existence.
Filmed at 9:00am on Tuesday 21st December 2021.
Many thanks to Neil Thomas and Andrew Barham of Matthew Higby & Company Ltd who came to do the work, and to Whites of Appleton who supplied the control unit for the chimes.
We will be finishing off the project with new ropes and dumb bells in the New Year, and watch this space for details of a summer 2022 celebration to welcome in the new bells properly.
We mostly associate church bells with the call to worship, weddings and very special national celebrations such as the millennium or the ending of the Second World War. But they also have another historic function: to ring out warnings. Normally those warnings have been local: to warn of fire, floods or shipwrecks. But they were very much on standby to warn of possible invasions by Hitler, Napoleon or the Spanish Armada: times of real national crisis.
Here at St Milburga's, we believe that today is a time of real national crisis and so on Saturday 30th October we will be ringing our bells to warn the people of Stoke Saint Milborough of the threat
The IPCC report has stated unequivocally that the extreme weather events which have swept the globe are the consequence of man-made climate change. The UN Secretary General has signalled ‘Code Red for Humanity’, which he would not do lightly. Our planet has given us warning after warning, through floods, wildfires, droughts, heat domes and hurricanes, that we have profoundly affected the balance of the planet and are making it increasingly hostile to mankind.
There can no longer be any doubt that humanity is now in mortal danger… and on a global scale. Here in South Shropshire, extreme weather events have affected large areas in recent years, most notably flooding of the river Teme. As Christians we are deeply concerned with the millions around the world who are also being profoundly affected: the poor who have contributed the least to the problem.
The nations of the Global South are already suffering the severest effects of drought, crop failures, hurricanes and cyclones. But the poor in this country will also be the first to suffer from rising food prices, heat exhaustion or the inability to insure their homes and businesses against floods.
On Monday, in Glasgow, the UK is hosting the 26th International Conference to address the Climate Crisis. So far those conferences have failed to slow the rate of greenhouse gas emissions, allowing us to continue the path of self-destruction.
The bells of St Milburga will be ringing out our warning on at 6pm Saturday 30th September to remind the delegates of the urgency of the dangers we now face. We need our politicians to take the courageous and, if necessary, selfless actions that times of extreme emergency require.
Now the restrictions on ringing have been lifted, we are happily returning to open practices on Tuesday evenings from 7.30pm to 9pm and are ready, at last, to welcome visitors. However, due to limited space in the ringing room, we would ask you to contact us if you are thinking of coming and haven’t been part of the last few weeks’ ringing sessions. This way we can make sure that we don’t end up with more people than we can comfortably fit in the ringing room!
Please email email@example.com to check availability
As of 17th May 2021, the CCCBR is allowing ringing of up to 45 minutes for a maximum of six people.
We have been thinking about how we can get back to ringing at St Milburga's and we are proposing that for the first month ringing will only be done by the local band members. We are proposing a gentle return, easing us back into ringing, so that we can all grow in confidence again, given that so few of us have done any ringing over the past 14 months.
So, it will be back to Rounds and Call Changes and Plain Hunt initially. (We want to learn to walk again before trying to run... So our Surprise Minor will be on the back burner for a while!)
Regretfully, there won't be any opportunity for one-to-one handling lessons for the time being.
By mid-June, we will hope to have rung the first Quarter Peal on our new bells and you will understand that this will involve solely local ringers who have contributed directly to the project.
We will continue to update this page with news of the next stage in our opening up of ringing at St Milburga.
Members and friends of St Milburga's tower assembled together with Matthew Higby & Company on 19th August 2020 to help perform the test ring of the new bells.
Strict COVID prevention rules had to be observed throughout, of course, with all ringers wearing face coverings and using hand sanitiser before and after each ring of the bells.
Collectively, we rang shorts touches of Grandsire, Stedman and Spliced Surprise Major, as well as Round and Call Changes to finish off our quick test. The bells passed with flying colours, with all in attendance agreeing that they were a joy to ring and to hear. We are all itching to ring them properly, of course, but, as everybody knows, patience is a virtue!
Once again, huge thanks to Matthew and his crew for their sterling efforts, and congratulations to Henry Lewis on the realisation of a lifelong dream...
On Monday 10th August 2020, we were finally able to welcome our new bells to Stoke St Milborough. The light four were brought to the church by Matthew Higby's bell hangers, and the heavy four were collected by Henry and Edward Lewis on a trailer.
Arriving at the church around 2pm, there was an hour of hard work to unload and line them up in front of the church ready for our 3pm blessing ceremony, led by the Rev'd Fr Justin Trevelyan Parker.
A thundery downpour appeared right in the middle of the 15 minute ceremony, baptising the bells with heavenly rain! Fortunately, the sun was back out within moments and the assembled congregation were able to take some time afterwards to admire the bells and their inscriptions.
Many thanks to the Allanconi Foundry, and to Matthew Higby and his team for all of their hard work. Congratulations also to Henry and family for bringing the project into the home strait! Won't be long until the world will hear these wild bells ring out...
Click here to read more about the bells and the thinking behind their design and inscriptions.
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