The bells

The tower houses a ring of 12 bells cast by the famous Croydon firm of Gillett and Johnston Ltd. in 1936, replacing an earlier ring of eight.  The eight original bells were recast and hung with new fittings in a new frame with four additional trebles. 

The new ring of 12 was dedicated by The Right Rev Lord Bishop of Croydon on 12th December 1936 and the first peal on the new 12 was rung for the Coronation of King George VI in 1937. 

There are now actually 14 bells - a ring of 12 with 2 extra bells. An extra 'flat 6th' was added in 1946 by Gillett & Johnston, which allows the use of a 'middle 8'.  An 'extra treble' was added in 1978 by the Whitechapel Bell Foundry, which allows the use of a 'light 10' and 'front 6'.

The 12 bells all hang in one main frame, and the 2 extra bells hang in separate frames above the main frame.

There is also an unusual 'clapper turning mechanism' installed above the Tenor bell.  This novel labour-saving safety device is able to 'flip' the Tenor clapper over to the correct side of the bell (in the usual case where it has been rung-up 'wrong').  It is operated by pulling on a special rope in the ringing room.  Otherwise, a ringer would have to climb more stairs to the bell chamber, clamber amongst the raised bells, and change the position of the clapper by hand - a potentially dangerous procedure!

Original photos taken by Daniel Cooper in 1936 and copied from an album presented to the tower by his wife in 1954.

Go to set on Flickr: Restoration of bells in 1936 

Weights, Notes and Inscriptions of the Bells

No:Weight & NoteInscription
Extra Treble 5-0-24 in A# The Ringers Bell. Whitechapel Bell Foundry 1978
In memory of: Norman S. Brown, Daniel D. Cooper, George K. Humphries, Jack Cawley, Claude St.C.Parks, Herbert G. Pratt, Frank E. Mitchell.
Treble 5-3-0 in G# Given by old friends of the Parish Church.
2nd 6-0-14 in F# To commemorate 45 years of happy married life of Frank Lloyd and Helen Mills married in Croydon Parish Church 18.5.1881.
3rd 6-1-25 in E# In memory of Eugenie Harriet Brouneau. The gift of Cyril and Nora Johnston.
4th 6-2-25 in D# In memory of Arthur Anderson Johnston - given by his wife and son.
5th 7-1-10 in C# To ring in the Kingdom of God. In memory of The Ministry in this Parish (1904-1909) of Leonard Hedley Burrows, Bishop of Sheffield.
The gift of Percy and Margaret Squire, 1936.
6th 7-2-13 in B# Recast as a gift from Arthur H. Harding. So teach us to number our days, That we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.
Flat 6th 8-0-10 in B The gift of Cyril F. Johnston as a thankoffering to commemorate the Allied victory in 1945. Gillett & Johnston 1946
7th 9-1-5 in A# Recast 1936 - A gift from J.C.Kinnear (Priest) in memory of George and Angus Kinnear.
8th 12-1-3 in G# The new frame and fittings for the old eight bells and the recasting of No.8 were given by Lady Edridge.
9th 15-3-13 in F# This bell was recast as a gift in memory of Emily Jessie Edridge by her son Dick.
10th 19-0-2 in E# Vivos Convoco. Mortuos Plango. In Piam Memoriam. d.d. Alumni Amicique Scholorum Johannis Whitgift. Anno MCMXXXVI.
(Translation: I call the living. I toll for the dead. In pious memory. The gift of old boys and friends of the John Whitgift schools)
11th 26-3-13 in D# May God bless all whom we do call. Given by Annie Williams. In memory of her family the Blakes who have lived in this parish since the year 1500.
Tenor 36-3-18 in C# This bell was recast as a gift in memory of Sydney George Edridge by his son Dick.
The 12 bells also have inscribed on them "Gillett & Johnston 1936". The weights above are quoted in the old Imperial system, showing hundredweights (cwts) - quarters (qtrs) - pounds (lbs).


^ 12 bells in their frame at the foundary 1936 ^

v In the belfry v