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Historic Sidcup church bells to celebrate milestone on Easter Sunday

PUBLISHED: 07:00 21 March 2018

The tower was originally one of two, but the second tower was removed when the church was rebuilt in 1901. Picture: St John's Church

The tower was originally one of two, but the second tower was removed when the church was rebuilt in 1901. Picture: St John's Church

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Sidcup will be celebrating a birthday milestone on Easter Sunday, led by ringers at St John’s Church, Church Road.

The bells, hung in a cast iron frame at the top of the tower, date from 1843. Picture: St John's ChurchThe bells, hung in a cast iron frame at the top of the tower, date from 1843. Picture: St John's Church

2018 marks the 175th year of the six bells in the tower of the church, which were cast in 1843 by Thomas Mears II, on the site that would later become the famous Whitechapel Bell Foundry.

The installation has remained largely unaltered ever since, with the exception of some tuning work in 1950 and new fixtures and fittings in 1974.

On Easter Sunday, a full peal will be rung at the church, which will involve 5,040 different permutations of the bells and three hours of concentration from the ringers.

Members of the public are invited to visit the church when the peal is being rung, where they can watch a live video feed from the tower which will show the ringers and the bells.

They will also get the chance to find out more about the history of bell ringing in England and even have a go at ringing a miniature ‘dumb bell’ for themselves.

Anyone interested in learning to ring should get in touch via St John’s website.

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