Monday, 6 February 2017

The Bells! (Crouch and Grimace here)

bored husband wife shopping shoesToday we got some of our exam results back: I got 117/120 in English, top equal in the class - proves I'm English. Maths results to come: let's see if I'm maths too.
Scored a punishment loss-of-tablet-privileges for the second day running by jumping on Jof while she was having supper. Hey, gotta show her who's boss.
But what we were all waiting for was Campanology. One of our Scout Helpers is a bell-ringer and she has the ear (possibly with Tinnitus) of the local bell-banging group and so we got the chance to ring some bells of our own. This goes towards our Creative Badge, part of the highly coveted Chief Scout Gold Award, and again proves that the higher up the Scouting ladder you go, the better the activities, already we've had shooting and the calendar is looking full.
We took Tall James and drove through the rain to the same church where we shoot each other with lasers every year while the parents drink beer. I have also done the tower tour twice, first time when I was 4 years old.
Getting in the locked church was not an issue as a rival Scout Group were holding a meet in the café so we noisily barged through while saying hello to the nice old District Scout chap who organizes the Swimathon and Cross-country.
We gathered as a babble-gaggle and climbed the long and winding spiral staircase to the bellringers room.
5th portsmouth scout group creative badgeThis is the one with the little window into the main church, and we'd already seen the lights on from the churchyard. We sat daintily round the outside of the vast room and listened to the wise words from the official bellringer.
st marys church fratton portsea bellringers roomMany plaques line the walls describing special long peals for special occasions, some taking actual hours, must be fun for the locals. And on some plaques it was a Peal of bells, and on others it was a Peel of bells.
We all trooped up to the bell-room itself, past the clock which is a massive bit of brass Lego wheels in a big glass box like a railway ticket office. You could see the staircases going up to the roof, including the final one which traverses the void in spectacular fashion. We have at least 4 pictures on Google Earth from the roof.
st marys church fratton portsea bellringers roomHe explained about the bells, some weighing nearly a ton (20 hundredweight in their language) but all from 1938, how thoughtful to put them in just before the air raids started.
Downstairs, we all got a chance to pull the ropes on the down-swing and also to do it on the up-swing too, but we all had the silenced bells with their clappers tied up so as not to wake the neighbours. Also we had to tuck our neckerchiefs into our shirts so as not to get well hung. But it was still really fun and I want to go back onto the roof again.

No comments:

Post a comment

Hi! I'm glad you want to comment, for I like messages from humans. But if you're a Robot spam program, Google will put you in the spam folder for me to laugh at later.