St Marys currently has a band of ten regular ringers. We are all members of the Suffolk Guild of Ringers.
St Marys Woodbridge houses one of the heaviest and musical rings of eight bells in Suffolk. The largest bell weighs one and a quarter tonnes, and the total weight of all eight bells is over 4 tonnes. They were cast in 1799, so are now over 200 years old. When they are being rung "full circle", to use the term that describes the English style of ringing, the tower sways significantly. Consequently some visiting ringers find the bells quite a challenge to ring. Nevertheless, they do enjoy ringing them and always look forward to having the opportunity to ring on them.
As well as ringing the bells for Sunday worship and for the major Christian festivals, we ring them for other occasions, such as weddings, New Years Eve and days of local and national celebration.
Although our prime purpose is to ring the bells to draw attention to the presence of St Marys church in Woodbridge, we also enjoy various social activities. These include a barbecue at the rectory in the summer hosted (and cooked) by the rector, a party in the tower on New Years Eve, and joining some of our ringing friends in other churches on their practice nights. We also regularly enter a team (or two) in the annual quiz, which is run in aid of the St Elizabeth Hospice.
For a small fee, we are also willing to ring to mark special family occasions such as wedding anniversaries and birthdays. For more information contact the Parish Office.
We are always willing to welcome new members to our band. If you cant already handle a bell, then tuition will be given. No musical ability is required, just a reasonable sense of rhythm. Its also cheaper than going to a gym. There are some 40,000 ringers in the British Isles. So why not become one of them.
Meetings: At St. Mary's Church, Sundays 9.30 to 10.0 a.m.; Tuesdays 7.30 to 9.00 p.m.
Read about the history of Bell Ringing at St. Mary's in Outlook.
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