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A5 – 160 pages
Perfect bound
Laminated card covers
95 colour photos
29 monochrome photos
33 diagrams

Price £7 (+p&p)


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English style bellringing is a unique part of our heritage. The sound is familiar to everyone, but the ringers, the skills, the rich history and tradition behind it are largely hidden from the general public.

This book lifts the lid on this hidden world by following the fortunes of ringing at one tower in an English market town over three centuries – the life span of the tower's oldest bells.

The book looks at the world they lived in, and how they related to both the community around them, and the church whose bells they rang. It shows how they developed their art, at some times being in a backwater and at others helping to make history.

It paints pictures of the leading individuals in successive generations, and contains many colourful anecdotes of what went on in and around the lives of the ringers.


Chapter Sections
1 Introduction  
2 For non ringers How bells work – Ringing in sequence – Bell music – Change ringing – Method names – Learning & ringing methods – Performances – Bands of ringers – Ringing jargon.
3 Early years: Up to the mid 19th century Wokingham in the 18th century – Prize ringing – The spread of change ringing – Wokingham ringing in the early 19th century – Notable ringers – The bells – The clock
4 The late Victorians (1860 - 1900) A period of change – Wokingham’s role in Sonning Deanery – The band and ringing – Notable ringers – Restoration of the tower
5 The Edwardians (1900 - 1917) New bells for a new century – Ringing – Notable ringers
6 Between the wars (1918 – 1939) The band – Notable ringers – The ringing – Meetings and things
7 The mid 20th Century (1940 - 1979) The band – Notable ringers – The ringing – Ringers and the Church – The tower fabric – Sharing the load
8 The modern era (1980 - 2008) The band – Notable ringers – The ringing – Handbell ringing – Ringers and the church – Ringing and the community – Enhancing the fabric – Social life
9 Retrospective overview The band – Peals – Quarter peals – Tower, bells & fabric
Annexes Glossary – Known All Saints ringers since 1880 – Rules – Sources and references
As well as giving a different view of the tower,
the back cover shows a tiny selection
of the 120+ photos in the book

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Copyright © 2009 John Harrison      Other books by John Harrison        Would your group like a   Talk on the history of ringing in Wokingham ?

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