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STRATFORD UPON AVON Holy Trinity 10, 19-0-2 in E

Grid Reference 151/210543 Stratford Church - Source: M Chester
Postcode CV37 6BQ
Affiliation Coventry DG
Peals Felstead Database
Sunday 0945-1025
Practice Tuesday 1930-2100
Other Information Bells Website


History Of The Bells

A magnificent church with a central tower and spire near the river. Easy to see from a distance, but difficult to park near as the town gets busy with tourists. The most obvious connection is with William Shakespeare, whose remarkably simple gravestone is near to the high altar. During the day you enter through the main church door, after closing in the side of the transept to the left of it, and the way up to the bells is in the centre of the church. The tower door is in the North-West pier.

According to "Church Bells of Warwickshire by Tilley and Walters", in 1683 a new ring of 6, tenor c.14cwt, was cast by Matthew Bagley out of the pre-existing five bells. The tenor was recast by Richard Sanders in 1717 and the third by him in 1733. The treble was recast by Henry Bagley in 1742. There have eight here since 1887, the tenor weighing in at c.18cwt. Taylors recast the third and fourth bells and added two more to make the octave and provided a new frame and fittings. The inscriptions on these bells were all incised. 

Taylors recast and augmented the ring in 1948, producing, effectively, a brand new installation. They hang in a in a single level cast iron lowside frame. They go well and sound glorious: a classic Taylor ring of that period. Tenor frequency equates to E-18c. All bells were cast with flat tops.

The local bells website states:-
"The first record of bells in the tower is from 1502 when a legacy of 6/8d (?0.33) was left towards their restoration. We have no record of their number or weights. In October 1617 the churchwardens reported: "we were cited Worcester because the bells were oute of order (Stratford was then in the Worcester Diocese). In December of the same year £4 12d. [£4.05] was paid for re-casting. The next bell-related memorandum in the Vestry minute book is from 1650: It was agreed upon yt there shalbe a leavy made for the gathering of [£10] vizt. [£5] for the Towne, and [£5] for the parish to cast three new belles......"

The local ringers removed the Warner bell of 1881, (4-2-12 with a diameter of 28.125"), from the old cemetery chapel and hung it for electric chiming as a service/sacring bell in 1994. The canons have been removed from this bell.

Details of the Bells

 1 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1948   5-1-02  26.75"  1649.0Hz (G#-13c)
 2 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1948   5-1-10  27.50"  1468.0Hz (F#-14c)
 3 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1948   5-1-06  28.50"  1309.0Hz (E-13c)
 4 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1948   5-3-14  29.75"  1231.0Hz (D#-19c)
 5 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1948   6-3-08  31.50"  1099.0Hz (C#-15c)
 6 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1948   8-0-16  34.00"   979.0Hz (B-15c)
 7 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1948  10-0-23  37.00"   869.0Hz (A-22c)
 8 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1948  11-3-01  39.00"   820.0Hz (G#-22c)
 9 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1948  14-2-02  42.50"   733.0Hz (F#-16c)
10 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1948  19-0-02  47.00"   652.5Hz (E-18c)

Details of the Pre-1947 Bells

 1 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1887   5-0-08
 2 John Taylor & Co, Loughborough  1887   5-0-27
 3 Henry Bagley I, Chacombe        1742   6-0-07
 4 Matthew Bagley I, Chacombe      1683   6-0-26
 5 John Taylor & Co, Loughbrough   1887   6-3-22
 6 John Taylor & Co, Lougborough   1887   8-2-06
 7 Matthew Bagley I, Chcombe       1683  12cwt
 8 Richard Sanders, Bomsgrove      1733  18cwt

Photo Gallery

stratford_old_bells_small stratford_new_bells_small The Old Sixth. Source: Stratford Tower 
The Old Bells, Removed
From the Tower in 1948 
The New Bells Arrive at
the Church, October 1948 
 A picture of the 6th of the
previous ring of 8.
stratford_bells_down_small stratford1_bells1_small  
Looking Down 
on the bells
A Close-Up of
Bells, 4, 5, 6, 7 & 10
stratford_spire_small stratford_table_small stratford_ringing_room_small
Looking up the Spire The Table - Made From the Wheel
of the Cemetery Chapel Bell
The Ringing Room
The Chancel. Source: Mike Chester The Church - Looking West. Source: Mike Chester The Centre of the Church. Source: Mike Chester
The Chancel The Church - Looking West  Underneath the central tower,
showing the bell hatch 
William Shakespeare's Grave. Source: Mike Chester The Church - Looking East. Source: Mike Chester  The Tower Door. Source: Mike Chester
William Shakespeare's Grave  Looking from the centre of the
church towards the east end.
The Tower Door
in the North-West pier. 

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