The Cathedral is equipped with a beautiful set of bells hung for full-circle ringing in the North-West Tower. The eight bells form a diatonic octave in the key of F Major, with the heaviest bell (the tenor) weighing 15 cwt. 3 qr. & 6 lb. The bells were recast by Taylor Loughborough in 1940.
In 1840 a single bell weighing some 17-20 cwt. was presented to the Cathedral by The Catholic Friendly Society who required that it, should ‘be tolled on the decease of every member’. This bell, which was hung in the south-west tower, was removed after eight years and used to provide metal for a new ring of five bells, cast by Mears of London, which were hung in the North-West tower. These five bells were subsequently augmented to form the ‘old eight’ by the addition of three light bells, supplied by Blews of Birmingham, in 1877, and these eight bells first rang out across the city on Easter Sunday of that year.
The Cathedral bells are rung regularly by the St Chad’s Cathedral Society of Change Ringers. The Society, which has been in existence in some form or other at least since 1877, if not earlier, was re-constituted circa 1967 as an ecumenical group committed to providing and maintaining ringing of the highest standard on a regular basis at St Chad’s Cathedral. The bells are rung each Sunday morning after High Mass and for all major Cathedral services. Enquiries about the society’s activities are welcome.
Tel: 0121 704 1638