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HARBORNE* St Peter 8, 12-3-24 in F#

Grid Reference 139/028839 Harborne Church - Source M Chester
Postcode B20 2RW
Recording
Affiliation St Martin's Guild
Peals Felstead Database
Sunday 1745-1830
Practice Monday 1930-2100

History Of The Bells

It is believed that there has been a church on this site, since Saxon times and St Chad is thought to have preached here. The base of a preaching cross was found in the middle 1980s during work at the back of the church and is now in the Church Hall garden. The present building, Grade 2 listed, is Victorian, the sanctuary was rebuilt during l974/5 after a fire. The tower is the oldest part, dating from the 14th century. The west door, ringing chamber and clock, are not in line. It is thought that the tower was built over a period of 200 years and when the Black Death of 1348 killed many of the craftsmen of Harborne, the tower was finished by unskilled workmen.

This church moved geographically from Staffordshire to Warwickshire when Harborne was absorbed by Birmingham in 1891. It has therefore never been administered from Warwick; Birmingham becoming a County Borough in 1889. It is a mediaeval church in foundation, but was almost completely rebuilt in the 1860s. The tower is the only old part of the church to remain.

There is a fine Taylor ring in the tower today. The bells were transferred from Bishop Ryder's Church, Gem Street, Birmingham (q.v.) in 1962/3. A new metal frame was installed as the old wooden frame from Ryder was not suitable for this tower. The fittings date from the time of the casting of the bells, which were quarter turned when they were transferred. The Bagley tenor from the previous ring was installed in a separate frame above the ring for chiming as a service bell.

There were "iij belles" in the tower in 1553. A ring of 6 was cast for the church in 1691 by William Bagley of Chacombe. The second was recast in 1799 by Thomas Mears I of London. In 1877 Warners of Cripplegate rehung the bells and augmented them to 8. The bells were not highly regarded by some, William Saunders noted in 1891 that, "...the ring is in perfect tune but does not contain one good bell. All are too thin and low toned for their weight". Nevertheless there were some that wished the old ring to be retained, without success.

(Most of the above information is quoted directly (with permission) from the research notes of Chris Pickford)

Details of the Bells

1 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1923   3-1-11  24.75"   1484.0Hz (F#+5c)
2 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1923   3-2-10  25.375"  1399.0Hz (Ex+3c)
3 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1923   4-0-07  27.125"  1246.0Hz (D#+2c)
4 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1923   4-1-04  28.375"  1112.0Hz (C#+5c)
5 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1923   5-2-17  31.125"   990.0Hz (B+4c)
6 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1923   6-2-18  32.875"   930.0Hz (A#-4c)
7 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1923   8-3-22  36.50"    832.5Hz (G#+4c)
8 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1923  12-3-24  40.875"   742.0Hz (F#+5c)

Details of the Previous Bells

1 John Warner & Sons, Cripplegate 1877   3-3-07  25.50"   1578.0Hz (G+11c)
2 John Warner & Sons, Cripplegate 1877   3-3-17  26.125"  1492.0Hz (F#+14c)
3 William Bagley, Chacombe        1691   4-0-26  27.125"  1301.0Hz (E-23c)
4 Thomas Mears I, London          1799   4-1-24  28.50"   1170.0Hz (D-7c)
5 William Bagley, Chacombe        1691   4-3-20  30.25"   1035.0Hz (C-19c)
6 William Bagley, Chacombe        1691   5-2-01  32.25"    984.0Hz (B-7c)
7 William Bagley, Chacombe        1691   6-3-02  34.25"    873.0Hz (A-14c)
8 William Bagley, Chacombe        1691   9-1-00  38.25"    778.0Hz (G-13c)
(Scrapping weights )

Photo Gallery

Harborne - Looking East. Source: Tudor Barlow Harborne - Looking West. Source: Tudor Barlow The Church in the 1920s
The Church - Looking East The Church - Looking West The Interior in the 1920s

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