Putting the ding and dong back in the bells

St Mary The Virgin Church, Hailsham
St Mary The Virgin Church, Hailsham

The bells of St Mary’s Church in Hailsham are to undergo maintenance work in the next few weeks.

Specialist company Nicholson Engineering Ltd was asked what would be required to improve the ringing.

It turns out that a number of fairly minor works need to be carried out amounting to some £16.5k but none that necessitate removal of the bells from the church. They all appear to be sound but the framework needs attention, particularly the ironwork. The timberwork, though, is sound.

There is quite a bit of dismantling work to be done and bits returned to Nicholson’s works where the remedial work will be carried out. All the ironwork, which will remain in the tower, needs to be thoroughly cleaned and tightened up before everything is put back together. Fortunately there have been some substantial donations and pledges towards this work and also the Sussex Churches Bell Restoration Fund have agreed to a grant of £3.5k.

Help is needed with dismantling, cleaning, painting and tightening up, then reassembling everything ready to ring the bells again. B&B is needed for two men, the assistance of one or two fit persons (under 70 for insurance purposes) to help with the physical, dirty, not dangerous, well supervised and instructed work. If you are able to help please contact Elizabeth on 01323 841127 or email rogmund@talktalk.net