Tower Bell Ringing
The band was formed in February 2018 to ring for Remembrance. They wanted to join in the nationwide aim of getting as many new ringers as were lost in the Great War. We are very pleased to say that we did it! We have continued to ring each week and have some new ringers learning the ropes.
Sadly St Petroc's church is now closed so the band of bell ringers meet at either Langtree, Shebbear or Black Torrington in rotation on a weekly basis.
Hear our St Petroc bells by clicking here
Petrockstowe has a ring of six bells in Ab with a tenor weight of 8-0-14 (413kgs).
Bell ringing celebrates the joy of weddings and victories, intones the
sadness of deaths and funerals, and summons people to church.
You may have heard our bells ringing in the past for special services or when we have visiting ringing bands.
What is Bell Ringing?
The bells at St Petroc’s and in towers like it all over the country produce no recognisable tunes. Yet they are rung in sequences as disciplined and orderly as the stones and timbers of the towers themselves. These bells, rung in an ancient yet very modern way, produce a rich cascade of sound. This is called change ringing.
Change ringing requires special bells, special “music” and ordinary people who enjoy climbing towers and working as a team. The human ingredient is critical because change ringing is very different from playing a carillon or chime. It is not a single person sitting at a keyboard.
There are no computers or electronic devices. Change ringing depends on real bells, each swung in a complete circle by a single person: six bells as at Petrockstowe – six people, twelve bells as at Exeter Cathedral – twelve people, standing in a circle.
Why Do People Ring?
Change ringing is a non-competitive activity that is stimulating intellectually and mildly demanding physically whilst making a beautiful sound. It develops mental and physical skills in a team environment. The concentration required completely detaches the mind from the demands of the day.
In addition there is the companionable nature of ringers, interdependence creates a tremendous fellowship. Visitors to a change ringing session will invariably be asked to join in if they are ringers. All ringing sessions include time for socialising.
Could I Be A Ringer?
Almost certainly! Ringing is within the intellectual and physical reach of anyone who can ride a bicycle. If you can count you know all the mathematics you need and you can become a very good ringer without knowing anything else about music.
You be the judge, come to a practice session and join in.
Are you a ringer already? Have you rung in the past and would like to take it up again? Or would you like to learn how to ring church bells? We would love to meet you, so please come and say hello.
At Petrockstowe we practice every Wednesday between 7.00 and 8:30 pm so just turn up. You will find us in the church where we have a ground floor ring. Please note we do not have toilet or kitchen facilities but we are adjacent to the Laurels public house.
For more information please come to a practice session or contact David French by Email Here for more information.
We hope this overview of what we do will arouse your curiosity – please feel free to contact us and perhaps try your hand at our ancient art.