halesworth

A history of Halesworth, Suffolk, UK, through the ages.

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Volume 2



bells

Church Bells 

The history of the Church Bells and the Tower are the subject of an excellent pamphlet compiled and printed in 1991, which tells us that by 1440 a peal of five bells cast by the Bury St. Edmunds foundry was hung in the tower, and two of those bells are still in use. One (present 4th) is inscribed 'Sancte-Thome-Ore-Pro-Noblis' and the other (now 6th) 'Johannes-Christi-Oare-Dignare-Pro-Nobis-Orare'.

In 1553 we know there were five bells and a Sanctus bell. The sanctus bell was used to sound the Mass, being rung once at the start of the service, once at the Elevation of the Host, and once at the Elevation of the Chalice. This bell was still at the Church as late as 1968, when it was sold, and is now in Ireland serving as a clock bell.

Other bells include the 7th recast in 1611 by William Brend of Norwich, the tenor bell also recast by William and John Brend which has the words 'New repaired by Rodger Woods, Erasmus Moss, Church Wardens. Gafrey Garett Gave Me W.I.B. 1620', and three years later came the present 5th bell 'Richard Welton and Daniel Barne, Church Wardens IVLII 1627 W.I.B.'.

Other bells were added in 1759 (no.3) and in 1770 (nos 1 & 2) so completing the octave. In 1611 the original bell-frame was replaced, and that served up to 1930, when a 'Bell Fund' was started to raise 300 to rehang the bells. It was started in January 1930 and completed in May, with the bells rung on the new bell-frame for the first time in November that same year. 

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