A church is on track to ring out its bells.
Now at the base of the church’s tower, it will be only a few weeks until the bell ringers can sound out the first notes across the town, which for the first time ever, will be in tune.
It has cost £89,000 to carry out the work, which included the melting down of six of the huge instruments to recast them as new bells using a process which has not changed for centuries.
Ian Ackroyd, bell captain, battled through snow and rain to wheel in the bells with a team of helpers.
“It’s a process that has taken us three years due to fundraising.
“Taylor Bells have done the work for us. The front six were recast and the heavier four at the back were cleaned and re-tuned to bring them back in line with the others.
“We’ve got new ropes and other parts– it was a full restoration. It will now take three weeks to get them back up.
“They will be passed up on an electric hoist into the ringing room and then we’ll change hoists so that they can go up through another trap door where they will be put back onto the original oak beam.
“People can come and see them this Saturday from 10am to 4pm and from 2 to 4pm on Sunday.
“They will also be able to see them get blessed by our priest, the Rev Hugh Baker, at the 9.45am service the same day.”
Ian cannot wait to give them a ring.
“I’m itching to have a go. This will be the first time that the bells will be in tune because they weren’t when they were originally put there in 1869.
“We’ve just had to put up with the sound we’ve had. Taylors told us that they now sound wonderful and will be the best ring of 10 bells in Yorkshire, if not England.
“The original bells have lasted us 144 years so we would like these to keep working for another 144 years as I don’t fancy taking them down again.”
Ian is now looking for more volunteers to help ring out their new sound after Easter.
“We don’t ring the bells during Holy Week and I’m not sure if we’ll have had time to practice before Easter Sunday but we hope to definitely be ringing them the week after.
“We’re always on the lookout for more people to come join us so that we can use all 10 at the same time.
“People don’t need experience as we will teach them.”
To contact the church, call 01924 490167.