The bells of Ebrington church have been calling people to worship at St. Eadburgha’s, with few exceptions, since 1648. Our original three bells were augmented over time, thanks to the generosity of the church council and other benefactors, and we have now enjoyed our current ring of six bells for 160 years.
Generations of bell-ringers have rung and continue to ring for services, weddings, celebrations and other special events, and the tradition is maintained to this day.
We now find ourselves in a position where we urgently need to begin to recruit the next generation of ringers; however the art is open to anyone aged, literally, from eight to eighty. Physical strength or musicianship is unimportant. A commitment to learning of around twenty Monday nights within a period of anything up to a year will ensure that any new ringer is both safe and competent to handle a bell unaided. Once newly qualified to ring for Sunday services, although we ring most weeks, apart from the 8 o’clock services, we would not expect a new ringer to see this as a burdensome commitment, as an availability rota is planned, to ensure we have sufficient, but not too many ringers for any service.
The Ebrington band prides itself on its informality; practice nights on Mondays are intended to be as much fun as they are for learning; and for service ringing, we can do nothing more than perform to the best of our ability. Another tower open day is planned for the afternoon of fete day – Saturday 14th July from 2:00 pm onwards. Alternatively we always welcome visitors and learners any Monday night at 7:30 pm. Anyone coming to visit us can be assured of a warm welcome – with absolutely no pressure or commitment. Regretfully it is no exaggeration to suggest, if we are not successful in encouraging new members to join our band, that Ebrington tower will eventually, and sadly, fall silent for the first time, war-times excepted, in more than 350 years.
If you, or anyone you know is interested in joining or supporting us please invite them to come along.
Peter Banton, Ebrington tower captain.