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Ring the bells at North Norfolk Christmas fayre

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The Christmas Fayre will take place from 11am to 3pm on Saturday 6 November at All Saints Parish Church in Upper Sheringham. The event will include several stalls and homemade soup lunches. The organisers will also offer folks the opportunity to ring the bells.

There were originally three mediaeval bells hung in a large frame high in the tower (this historic empty frame remains in situ).  The six current bells were cast in 1841, but it is believed that they haven’t been rung in the traditional manner since the 1930s.  There was an old, automated chime in the tower for many years, but this fell into disrepair and was subsequently removed.

The project to restore the bells started in February 2018 when the PCC agreed to a full restoration and rehanging of the six derelict bells. The bells were retuned using modern tuning techniques, the canons removed, and then the bells rehung in a new frame with all new fixtures and fittings.  The bells were returned to Upper Sheringham and re-hung in the church in the summer of 2020, along with a new electronically operated chiming mechanism to ensure the bells can be rung even if there are no bell-ringers available.

Sue Morton, PCC secretary, explains, “The bells should be a big draw at the fayre – until last year the bells hadn’t been rung in the traditional full circle manner since the 1930’s so it is amazing to be able to offer folks the chance to come and have a go!  My husband and myself will be leading this and we are both trained bellringing teachers with the Association of Ringing Teachers, and also both have DBS checks through this organisation.”

This article originally appeared in Network Norfolk. The photo of the All Saints bells is courtesy of Sue Morton.