We have a long tradition of bell ringing at St Matthias’ Church, dating back to 1899 when the first bell was installed in the newly-built tower. For more information, scroll down to discover fun facts about our bells, or if you’re a serious campanologist, read Chris Pickford’s full history and technical specifications.

Visitors to the bell tower are always welcome at Sunday services and at practices:

  • Sunday Mornings – 9:15-10:00 (when the service is at St Matthias)
  • Practice Night – Monday 19:30-21:00 (including Bank Holidays)

Please check the service dates beforehand, as the Sunday Mass alternates between St Matthias’ Church and The Church of the Ascension.

Access to the Bell Tower

When the church is open, you can access the bell tower via the main (North) entrance and through the back of the church (Link Room) to the tower on the South side, where you’ll find a spiral staircase to the ringing room in the SW corner of the tower. If the church is closed, i.e. on practice nights, access is via the external tower door on the South side of the church.  Turning the handle on the small door will ring a bell in the ringing room and someone will come down to let you in.  Please wait for a pause in ringing.

Fun Facts

The Ropes and Sally Colours

St Matthias’ bells are unique in that each rope has a different sally colour.  This came about because most of the ringers were, at some stage, employed at the Radar Research Establishment on electronics work.  The sally colours were therefore chosen to comply with the Electronics Colour Code.

The Italian Connection

While visiting Italy on holiday, St Matthias’ ringers George and Ruth Morris, saw bells being rung full circle in a very similar way to the English tradition.  They established a close fellowship with Italian campanologists in the Verona region of Italy, which led to a series of exchange visits between English and Italian ringers.


Contacts

Ringing Master:
Ian Panton 01684 561764

Secretary:
Gerry Edwards 01886 832640

Links to other resources

Central Council of Church Bell Ringers  https://cccbr.org.uk

Worcestershire and Districts Change Ringing Association  http://www.wdcra.org.uk

Felstead Peal Database    https://cccbr.org.uk/felstead/tbid.php?tid=3243

Worcester Cathedral Teaching Centre  http://worcesterbells.org.uk/ringing-towers/cathedral-teaching-centre