Some of you may have heard the bells ringing on the morning of Thursday 26 September – indeed a number of people have commented on how pleased they were to hear them as this was the first time in over 2 years that the bells had sounded.
The ringing was organised as part of a formal structural inspection by Stuart Armitage of the Morton Partnership - the Structural Engineers who had been the brains behind the East End Restoration project. Stuart was assisted by David Sloman who is the DAC Bells Advisor and a long-time friend of the ringers at St Michaels.
The investigation looked at the movement in the tower with individual bells ringing, then with the lightest 4 bells, the heaviest 4 bells and finally with all 8 bells ringing.
We await the official report but overall we were pleased to learn that there was no significant movement in the tower at any level. There are some significant cracks in the turret and above the West Door as well as some areas of flint-work that need further investigation before ringing can be resumed but we are looking at how we might move these forward.
We will provide further updates as things progress but we are all pleased to see plans starting to come together to allow the bells to be rung on a regular basis.
Chairman, Friends of St Michael’s