21st Jan, 2018

Bells ring out for open days

Aaron Wise 10th Sep, 2016 Updated: 20th Oct, 2016

HISTORIC bells more than 140-years-old will be on display in Bishampton this weekend as part of the national Heritage Open Days celebrations.

The Vale village’s open day today (Saturday), will give visitors the chance to explore the historic 14th century belfry tower in St James’ Church, which holds the six 146-year-old bells.

Free guided tours by volunteers of the Friends of St James’ Church will allow the public to discover the stunning craftsmanship of the 17th century monuments.

In addition, campanologists – those who study bells – and anyone interested in learning more about the ancient art of bell ringing, will be able to find out more from a dedicated display on loan from Worcester Cathedral.

The church originally had five bells in 1661 at a cost of £43, but they did not last, so the five, plus an additional one, were recast in 1690 by William Bagley, who took over the work when Evesham-based Matthew Bagley died.

Members of Bishampton History Society will also be at the event with displays of their Heritage Lottery Funded project on the First World War, which will give youngsters the chance to create their own replica medals from the Great War.

A brief fact sheet with more details on the history the bells will also be available at the event.

The tours will run from 10am to 4.30pm.

Visit www.heritageopendays.org.uk or www.bishampton.org.uk for more information.

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