BIRMINGHAM, St John the Baptist, Deritend 8: 10-2-16 in F#
History Of The Bells
A church here was built as early as the 14th century. Despite being in sight of St Martin's-in-the-Bullring, it was a chapel of ease to Aston; located some three miles distant. It was not for 600 years that it became a separate parish and also the parishioners ceased to elect its incumbent. The church was rebuilt in the 1730s and a ring of eight by Robert Wells of Aldbourne was installed in 1776 by Samuel Turner of Whitechapel. The fittings were partially renewed by Blews in 1872, repaired by Barwell in 1895 and again repaired by Barwell in 1913.
The church was restored between 1881 and 1891, with sittings for 800 people. Changing demographics and land use meant that the church was closed in 1936. However, demolition was delayed by the outbreak of WWII and the church was badly damaged by bombing in 1940. It was demolished in c.1947. The Bull Ring Trading Estate is now located on the site.
The bells were removed in June 1947 when the building was demolished. They were taken to Bishop Latimer’s church, where they were stored for some years before being recast by Taylors towards a new ring of eight there in 1957-8. (q.v.).
Though fairly popular for peals, particularly in the decade either side of the turn of the 20 century, they were described at the end thus, “The bells, a tuneless peal of eight, … have been silent for some five years, chiefly because, with so many modern peals in the vicinity, they were not considered to be worth ringing”.
(Most of the above information is quoted directly (with permission) from the research notes of Chris Pickford)
Details of the Bells
1 Robert Wells, Aldbourne 1776 5-0-25 27.75" 1505.0Hz (F#+29c)
2 Robert Wells, Aldbourne 1776 5-1-25 28.375" 1420.0Hz (Ex+28c)
3 Robert Wells, Aldbourne 1776 5-2-24 29.75" 1261.0Hz (D#+23c)
4 Robert Wells, Aldbourne 1776 6-0-01 31.00" 1138.0Hz (C#+45c)
5 Robert Wells, Aldbourne 1776 6-2-21 32.875" 1010.0Hz (B+39c)
6 Robert Wells, Aldbourne 1776 7-2-13 34.75" 938.0Hz (A#+11c)
7 Robert Wells, Aldbourne 1776 8-3-14 37.75" 841.0Hz (G#+22c)
8 Robert Wells, Aldbourne 1776 10-2-16 40.875" 757.0Hz (F#+39c)