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TREDINGTON St Gregory 6, 16-1-20 in D (GF)

Grid Reference 151/259435 Tredington Church - Source David Kelly
Postcode CV36 4NQ
Affiliation Coventry DG
Peals Felstead Database
Sunday By Arrangement
Practice None


A magnificent landmark at the junction of the A429 and the old A34, (now renumbered as A3400). Its spire, 210 feet tall, can be seen for some distance. The village was transferred to Warwickshire from Worcestershire in 1931.

The church oconsists of a chancel 45 ft. by 21½ ft., with a north vestry 16½ ft. by 12½ ft., nave 58 ft. by 21 ft., north aisle 16 ft. wide, south aisle 17 ft. wide, north porch, and western tower 16½ ft. square; these dimensions are internal. The remains of the Saxon church consist of the ranges of windows above the nave arcades, which were discovered at the last restoration of the church. Of this building a unique feature was the high gallery at the west end, the doorways to which still exist in part, and could only have been approached by external staircases or ladders. A window in either wall at a higher level than the others lighted this gallery.

Late in the 12th century (c. 1170–80) aisles were added on both sides, the arcades being inserted in the earlier walls and the Saxon windows and doorways closed up. In the beginning of the 14th century the chancel was lengthened and entirely rebuilt, beginning with the east wall. The dedication of the high altar (and a chapel), which cannot now be located, at Tredington (Trediton) is recorded in 1315. The west tower was erected about the same time. About 1360 both aisles were rebuilt and widened, the 12th-century doorway being reset in the later south wall. A block of masonry west of the porch marks the west wall of the north aisle, which was doubtless re-erected partly on the old 12th-century foundations, but both aisles were extended westwards to the tower about thirty years later, an additional half-bay being added to either arcade to match the rest. The clearstory, north porch and vestry are all additions of the 15th century, but the two latter appear to have been altered in the 17th or 18th century. The west wall of the south aisle also appears to have undergone a later rebuilding. Several restorations have taken place, the last and most extensive being in 1899.

The treble bell was cast by Matthew Bagley at Chacombe shortly before he moved to Evesham. It is not common to find Purdue bells in Warwickshire.

A nice ground floor six that ring well. They were rehung, but not retuned with the exception of the second, by Gillett & Johnston in 1946 in a new cast iron lowside frame and new fittings. The tenor's note equates to D+34c and therefore the bells are in D and not Eb as is normally stated. The fourth is a little flat for the ring, which gets sharper in relation to the tenor as you go round to the treble. The back four bells are "listed" and the third is a "maiden" bell.

Park in front of the church and enter via the north door.

Details of the Bells

1 Matthew Bagley I, Chacombe  1683   7-2-14  33.75"   1035.5Hz (B+82c)
2 George Mears, London        1858   8-2-04  35.75"    930.0Hz (A+96c)
3 George Purdue, Taunton      1622   9-3-16  38.50"    802.0Hz (G+39c)
4 George Purdue, Taunton      1622  10-1-00  39.50"    738.5Hz (F#-3c)
5 Robert Atton, Buckingham    1624  12-2-10  42.875"   670.5Hz (E+29c)
6 George Purdue, Taunton      1622  16-1-20  47.50"    599.0Hz (D+34c)

Photo Gallery

tredington1_small tredington2_small
The Ringing Chamber The Nave
Plan of the Church

TYSOE The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary 6; 12-0-18 in F

Grid Reference 151/341444 Tysoe Church - Source M Chester
Postcode CV36 4NQ
Affiliation Coventry DG
Peals Felstead Database
Sunday By Arrangement
Practice Wednesday 2000-2100


Set in the middle of the village of Middle Tysoe, this is a nice church upon which some considerable sum of money has recently been spent restoring the stonework.

The church is a large building consisting of a chancel, north vestry, nave, north and south aisles, south porch, and west tower. It dates from the end of the 11th century or beginning of the 12th, when the nave was shorter than now and probably narrower. A narrow south aisle was added some time after the middle of the 12th century, with an arcade of three bays. Next came the lengthening of the nave and the addition of the west tower at the end of the same century. The south aisle and arcade may have been lengthened then or soon afterwards, when the original respond was moved westward and a new pillar and arch inserted. The archway from the nave to the tower was a later 13th-century insertion, probably replacing an earlier doorway.

The north aisle was added c. 1330–40 and it is fairly certain that the nave was widened a few feet to the north at the same time, the aisle and arcade being built before the original north wall was removed. There was a good deal of work done at this time: the clearstory was added to the nave and new roofs provided throughout. The nave-roof was high-pitched as indicated by the marks on the tower, but it was fitted with pierced parapets having profusely carved string-courses, obviously the work of the same craftsmen as those employed at Brailes Church. When the roof was placed over the south aisle, the east and south walls were more or less rebuilt, judging from the plinths, but kept at the same narrow width as the original aisle, so that the 12th-century doorway remains in situ. The roofs were again remodelled late in the 15th century, the nave-roof being reduced to a low pitch and the eaves-level of the south aisle being raised so as to reduce the pitch of this also.  Other work done late in the 15th century was the complete rebuilding of the chancel and the heightening of the tower by another stage and some alteration to its buttresses. The south porch was added rather earlier in the 15th century.

There have been repairs and restorations at many periods. There were galleries in the church in 1790 which may have caused damage to the masonry; the later pillar of the south arcade has a capital of modern workmanship, perhaps necessitated by something of this sort. The tower, or part of it, has been underpinned and some of its buttresses more or less rebuilt, probably in the 18th century. The vestry and organ-chamber was added in 1872. Other restorations were carried out in 1854 (by Sir Gilbert Scott), and again in 1912 (at a cost of £2,000) when most of the internal plaster was removed and bonding stones were inserted in the tower walls, which were badly cracked, and other repairs done.

Richard Sanders installed a ring of six here in 1719, the fourth and fifth being subsequently recast. The lowside frame and fittings are by Taylors, 1912. Around this time the parish had attempted to raise money (in 1910) for a completely new ring of eight, tenor 29 cwt, but when the funds proved insufficient they rehung the existing bells instead. The canons have been removed from all the bells and all, bar the Rudhall bell, are listed.

The notes are all, except the treble, just above half way between two semitones. The treble is a fraction flatter than the rest of the ring.

The bells until the mid 1990s were rung from the ground floor, but now are rung from the first floor, up an internal wooden staircase. The 5th is the last known bell of the Bagley dynasty. The 5 bells that were still on plain bearings were rehung on ball bearings in 2003. 

There is a 15" diameter sanctus bell in the gable over the chancel arch. It was probably recast by Blews in 1886 from a bell dated 1715 and sounds the note B.

Details of the Bells

1 Richard Sanders, Bromsgrove          1719   4-2-27  29.50"   1132.0Hz (D-64c)
2 Richard Sanders, Bromsgrove          1719   5-2-18  31.875"  1020.0Hz (C-44c)
3 Richard Sanders, Bromsgrove          1719   6-3-01  34.00"    907.0Hz (Bb-48c)
4 Abel Rudhall, Gloucester             1750   8-0-14  36.00"    857.0Hz (A-46c)
5 Matthew Bagley III, Chipping Norton  1782   9-1-27  38.50"    764.0Hz (G-45c)
6 Richard Sanders, Bromsgrove          1719  12-0-18  43.25"    679.0Hz (F-49c)

Photo Gallery

tysoe_east_small tysoe_east_small tysoe_west_small
The Church -
Looking East
 The Chancel The Church -
Looking West 
tysoe_ladder_small tysoe_ringing_chamber_small tysoe3_small
The Staircase to
the Ringing Chamber 
The Bright and Welcoming Ringing Chamber In a modern recess in the chancel
is a tomb with a stone recumbent effigy
of William Clarke, a patron of the church,
died 17 September 1618.
Plan of the Church

WALSGRAVE-ON-SOWE St Mary 6, 6-1-15 in B

Grid Reference 140/379808 Walsgrave Church - Source: David Kelly
Postcode CV2 2AW
Affiliation Coventry DG
Peals Felstead Database
Sunday By Arrangement
Practice Monday 1930-2100 (Check)

History Of The Bells

This church is in a village that has gradually been absorbed into Coventry. This is on a main dual-carriageway road, south from Junction 2 of the M6 and is near to the University Hospital. The "Sowe" in the title is a small river.

The church is fairly small, despite having aisles either side of the nave (that on the north side being far more substantial) and the first thing you notice is the different coloured stone, red sandstone for the 13th/14th century nave and chancel and grey for the 15th century west tower and aisles (a mixture is used on the north side where earlier material was presumably recycled).

The Perpendicular tower itself is fairly short, and of a type consistent with other local examples (e.g. Exhall & Ryton on Dunsmore); here its proportions have not been helped by the Victorian restoration that raised the level and pitch of the nave roof, making at break into the belfry window on the east side and giving it a stunted appearance from all sides except the west. This was done fairly often in the 19th century, where there was more thought given to enhancing the internal proportions than respecting the harmony of the existing external ones. A red sandstone clerestorey was added but lit only by tiny porthole windows, and only visible on the south side owing to the generous north aisle roof. More recently a parish centre was added to the south west corner which wholly embraces the west end of the south aisle and much of the base of the tower, though fortunately its effect is less noticeable than one might think owing to being largely camouflaged by trees.

The bells at this church were an unringable 8cwt 5 for many years until in mid 1980s when they were recast and rehung. A peal of Bob Doubles was rung on the bells in 23/4/1927. It was noted at this time that the ringing conditions were difficult, suggesting that for over 60 years the bells were in need of attention.  You had to descend into a "pit" 10ft by 5ft by 6ft deep and there was no glass in the windows.  The 4th kept trying to jump the wheel, the tenor was hard work and the treble was right in the corner and the ringer had to ring with his back to the rest of the band. The treble's wheel is reported to have disintegrated during ringing for a ringer's wedding in 1937. Details of the peal are:-

Warwickshire Guild
Walsgrave on Sowe, Warwicks, St Mary
Sat April 23rd 1927 2h. 51 (8)
5040 Plain Bob Doubles
1 James H Raper (C)
2 Alfred E Bacon
3 Joseph E Sykes
4 Thomas W Chown
5 Charles G Bates
First peal on the bells.
Mr Raper's first peal as conductor.
Rung for the feast of St. George 
(Sadly, within 2 years the ringers of 3, 4 & 5 were all dead)

The inscriptions on the old bells were repeated in facsimile on the new ones. One is "Harke doe ye heare our claperes want beer" and the other "Quantum suffiifit bibiere volo clancula vos a" - not easy to translate from Latin, but clearly a reference to the beer-drinking habits of bellringers!.

The fourth and tenor were William Bagley bells of 1702, the two remaining bells from a ring of 4. The exisiting treble was recast and a new treble was added by Taylor of Oxford in 1843. The third is a recast of the 2nd of the original 4 by Taylor of Loughborough in 1872. A chime barrel was added by George Worton of Coventry, who had previously hung the third and repaired the frame and fitting, in 1877. The old frame was of late Seventeenth Century in date, built originally for four bells, with a square void in the middle. When the bells were augmented to 5 in 1843 the pit of the second bell was turned altered to accommodate the five bells. This frame was originally re-erected in the churchyard when the completely new installation was provided, but has subsequently had to be be demolished due to the activities of local youths in the churchyard.  The new H-frame and fittings are typical Taylors of the period.

There is an old post with 4 bell call changes on it in the tower that shows they were once an anticlockwise 4.  It spells out the changes to ring Double Canterbury Minimus. See Chris Pickford's article which is in Ringing World of 20/27 December 1985 pp.1078-80 for fuller details.

The Warwick University ringers started to practice here at the beginning of 2015. They aim to practice each week, but checking that any practice will take place is advised before travelling.

It is usually best to park in the pub car park, The Red Lion just after the church.  There is a charage, but you can get (some of) it back at the bar!

Details of the Bells

1 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1984  2-2-04  22.375"  1682.0Hz (G#+22c)
2 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1984  3-1-08  24.00"   1492.0Hz (F#+14c)
3 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1984  3-1-09  24.875"  1325.5Hz (E+9c)
4 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1984  3-3-00  26.00"   1251.0Hz (D#+9c)
5 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1984  4-1-23  28.50"   1111.0Hz (C#+4c)
6 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1984  6-1-15  32.125"   986.0Hz (B-3c)

Details of the Previous Bells

1 W & J Taylor, Oxford            1843  2-2-08  24.00"
W & J Taylor, Oxford            1843  2-3-02  25.25"
3 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1882  4-3-23  29.50" 
4 William Bagley Chacombe         1702  6-0-01  31.00"
William Bagley Chacombe         1702  8-0-00  34.25"

Photo Gallery

The Church - Looking West. Source: Mike Chester The Church - Looking East. Source: Mike Chester
The Church - Looking West The Church - Looking East
The Bells. Source: Mike Chester The Ringing Chamber. Source: Mike Chester
The Bells The Ringing Chamber 
The Frame - Source: Chris Pickford The Inscriptions. Source: Chris Pickford 
The Old Frame The Inscriptions 
The Post - Source: D Phillipson for Chris Pickford The Post - Source: 
Christopher Dalton
The "Post" What is on each side of the post. 

ULLENHALL St Mary the Virgin 8, 3-0-25 in Eb Anticlockwise

Grid Reference 150/121672 Ullenhall Church - Source: David Kelly
Postcode B95 5PG
Affiliation Coventry DG
Peals Felstead Database
Sunday None
Practice None
Other Information Benefice Website

History Of The Bells

A small ring of bells in a very small tower! I have been told that the bells were intended to be hung as a chime, but a last minute change of heart had them hung for ringing. Certainly they could be chimed from a keyboard in the ringing room at the outset. I have no supporting evidence for them being initially a chime - do you? They are by Warners and are a little bit of an acquired taste, their tuning not being the best around and some bells double clapper. Listen to the various recordings to hear when I mean.

The bells were cast for the new church in the village which was built in 1874-5, the architect being John Paul Seddon of London. It was built in memory of William and Mary Newton of Barrells Part, at the expense of their sons and daughters. This donation included the ring of bells. Note that the tower is so small that the louvres have to be "bowed" in order that there is enough room for these bells to swing. They were installed under the supervision of William Martin who was responsible for the erection of the church. James E Hawkins was killed whilst helping to install the bells, falling some 38 feet down the scaffolding.

The frame is ingenious. It is a "double decker" Maltese Cross in shape, with the bells in pairs at the end of the arms, odd bells over even bells. There is a "hole" in the middle of the frame directly above the trapdoor to allow for access.

Somewhat ironically, the one word inscriptions on bells 7-1 make up the phrase: "Come let us make a joyful noise". the tenor is inscribed "CAST BY JOHN WARNER AND SONS LONDON 1874" and on its waist

EN (shield) MRN

In the shield are three battle-axes, the arms of the Newton family, of Barrells. It is lozenge shaped to indicate female ownership of the property. The initials are of Elizabeth and Mary Rose Newton, the donors.

They are loud inside, (ensure that the traps are in place as the clock winder sometimes leaves them out). They handle reasonably well for their weight but the front two or three are very tricky and the inexperienced may find them a little too light and anticlockwise! The ladder in the middle of the rope circle will need moving more to the vertical in order to ring the two trebles. Don't try to ring them too fast, try about 3 hours peal speed. Note the "Acme" brand mangle via which all 8 bells can be chimed.

The church is signposted to the west off the road through the village. Yes it is the church with a spire that you see quite quickly! Don't think, "That never has a ring of bells in it". It does! Park in front of the church and enter via the door round the back of the tower, i.e. at the base of the tower on the right of the photograph.

Details of the Bells 

1 John Warner, London  1874  1¼cwt   17.50"   2467.6Hz (Eb-15c)
2 John Warner, London  1874  1½cwt   17.625"  2193.8Hz (D-81c)
3 John Warner, London  1874  1¾cwt   19.00"   1822.8Hz (C-89c)
4 John Warner, London  1874  2cwt    20.00"   1804.0Hz (Bb+57c)
5 John Warner, London  1874  2¼cwt   21.00"   1624.4Hz (Ab-39c)
6 John Warner, London  1874  2½cwt   21.625"  1492.2Hz (G+86c)
7 John Warner, London  1874  2¾cwt   23.75"   1351.8Hz (F-57c)
8 John Warner, London  1874  3-0-25  25.00"   1219.6Hz (Eb-35c)

Bell Tuning

These pairs should be exactly one tone apart:-

2 & 3 together

3 & 4 together

These should sound as "true" rings:

The Front Four

The Back 5

All Eight Together

The bell tuning expert Bill Hibbert notes,

The third's nominal is two semitones flat, making it almost the same note as the fourth.
The second is a semitone flat.
The third is so flat that it's prime is lower than that of the fourth
Primes are horribly flat everywhere, especially round the front
Hums, bizarrely, are pretty near the double octave, especially in the first, second, fourth and fifth.

His full analysis is here as an Excel file.

Photo Gallery

ullenhall6_small ullenhall4_small  
Ringing around the ladder.
The rope in the foreground
obscures the treble ringer.
The Third Above the Fourth  
ullenhall2_small ullenhall3_small ullenhall5_small
The Way Up to the Bells The Fifth
Note the Metal Stay!
The Acme Mangle

WARWICK St Mary 10, 24-3-20 in D

Grid Reference 151/282650 Warwick, St Mary Church - Source J Gwynne
Postcode CV34 4AB
Affiliation Coventry DG
Peals Felstead Database
Sunday 0945 - 1030 (ex 1st) 1030 - 1100 (1st)
1745 - 1830
Practice Wednesday 1930-2100 (1 & 3) (Check for 5th)
Other Information Church Website


An historic church that is one anyone should stop a while and visit before ringing there. The Beauchamp Chapel is beautiful. The tower stands stands out for miles around, the tower door being in the north-east pier.

The church was founded as a collegiate church (administered by a 'college' of a Dean and Canons) in 1123 by Roger de Newburgh, second Earl of Warwick. The style of Newburgh's church was decidedly Romanesque, with heavy, rounded pillars. The best surviving part of that Norman church is in the crypt. The early Norman church was rebuilt in the 14th century by Thomas Beauchamp, father and son, the first Beauchamp Earls of Warwick. The first Thomas Beauchamp financed his building of the chancel with money obtained from the ransom of a French archbishop. The chancel, vestries, and chapter house were rebuilt in Gothic style.

Thomas Beauchamp's  descendant, Richard de Beauchamp (d.1439),  provided funds in his will for the creation of a chantry chapel in St Mary's. This, aptly dubbed The Beauchamp Chapel, is one of the great Gothic architectural achievements in England. The executors of Beauchamp's will spent over £2400, an enormous sum in those days, creating a masterpiece of Gothic style which took over 20 years to complete. The chapel, which is dedicated to Our Lady, is composed of three bays, at the centre of which is the tomb of Richard Beauchamp, raised on a pedestal and surrounded by an iron fence. The effigy of Earl Richard is set upon a chest of Purbeck marble, with a canopy above, and latten (gilded in copper alloys) weeping figures below. Beside the tomb of Earl Richard is that of Ambrose Dudley (d. 1590), whose effigy wears a gilded iron coronet, added in the 18th century. The grandest tomb of all in the Beauchamp Chapel is that of Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester (d.1588), and his wife Lettice (d.1634). Dudley, the brother of Ambrose Dudley, Earl of Warwick, was a favourite of Queen Elizabeth, and one of the most powerful men in the kingdom. His tomb is set into the north wall of the chapel, beneath a gilded canopy.

Warwick had its own "Great Fire" in 1694. The blaze destroyed much of the old medieval town, and the nave and tower of St Mary's were lost. Sir Christopher Wren, architect of St Paul's in London, submitted a design for reconstruction of the church, but Wren's design was rejected in favour of one by Sir William Wilson of Sutton Coldfield. The most striking aspect of Wilson's design is the west tower, which stands 174 feet high, and, unusually, projects out into the road, with a arches on three sides to allow passage under the tower for foot traffic. 

In 1552 there were "v belles" and by 1656 a treble had been added. Tilley & Walters state that the treble had no inscription, the second was probably by Newcombe, the third was cast in Worcester, the 5th in Nottingham. The fourth and tenor was Isabella Despenser, Countess of Warwick who died in 1439 foundress of the Beauchamp Chapel.

There became a ring of eight here in 1656 when the old tenor was recast into three trebles at Coventry by Bryan Eldridge. All were destroyed in the Great Fire of Warwick.

Abraham Rudhall was contracted to provide a new ring of eight which were delivered in 1702, but in the following year two more bells were added to make ten. The tenor was first recast in 1725 and recast again by Mears in 1814, its frequency now equating to D-34c. There was a major restoration in 1901 that involved the recasting of 1, 2, 3, 4, 7 & 8. Before this restoration they were an anticlockwise 10. The old bells were retuned. Prior to this the 5th was 8-0-21, the 6th 9-3-21, the 9th 18-3-18 and the tenor 27-0-14.

Cast iron frame and fittings are by Taylors, 1901. The back four were hung on ball bearings by Arthur Fidler in 1979 and numbers 4, 5 & 6 in 1981 by the same person. The rest were rehung on ball bearings by Taylors during 2008. The Taylor bells were all cast with flat tops and the canons have been removed from the others.

Tonally they are a grand ring, but, despite being anything but "too difficult to handle", do take some ringing to get the best out of them due to tower sway. Put the necessary effort into your ringing and you will be rewarded, is the best thing to say.

ThA bell that survived the great fire of Warwick was rehung. It was cast in 1671 by a Mr Henry Bagley at a cost of 25 shillings. It is believed that the bell originally was hung in the chapel and so separately from the tower bells which crashed to the ground in the fire. The bell loitered in the crypt for 75 years or so before it was cleaned and rehung above the main bells in 1976. It has a distinctive shape and its sound was described as harsh and rather unmusical and for a few years it was chimed as a service bell. When mobile phone aerials were installed in the bell chamber this old bell was removed and can now be seen once more in the crypt.

There is one band for the two towers in Warwick.  Normally practice is here on the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays of each month and at St Nicholas on 1st and 3rd.  The band decide which tower to ring at when there is a 5th Wednesday. Sometimes church activities change the schedule, so you might wish to check before turning up - though the two towers are hardly distant from each other!

Details of the Bells

 1 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1901   4-2-19  27.00"   1451.5Hz (F#-34c)
 2 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1901   5-0-07  28.125"  1296.5Hz (E-29c)
 3 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1901   5-3-04  29.875"  1154.0Hz (D-31c)
 4 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1901   6-1-14  31.25"   1086.0Hz (C#-36c)
 5 Abraham Rudhall I, Gloucester   1702   7-1-20  33.75"    966.0Hz (B-39c)
 6 Abraham Rudhall I, Gloucester   1702   9-2-02  37.625"   864.0Hz (A-32c)
 7 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1901  11-1-11  40.125"   769.0Hz (G-33c)
 8 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1901  13-1-11  42.50"    723.0Hz (F#-40c)
 9 Abraham Rudhall I, Gloucester   1702  18-0-21  48.00"    647.5Hz (E-31c)
10 Thomas Mears II, London         1814  24-3-20  54.375"   576.0Hz (D-34c)

Photo Gallery

The Church - Looking East. Source: Mike Chester The Church - Looking west. Source: Mike Chester
The Church - Looking East The Church - Looking West
The Beauchamp Chapel. Source: Aidan MacRae Thomson The Crypt. Source: Aidan MacRae Thomson
The magnificent Beauchamp Chapel The massive piers in the Crypt 
The Church - Looking East. Source: Mike Chester warwick_mary_fire_small
The Choir and Sanctuary  The Fire Bell
The Bells - Tenor in the middle of the photo  

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