Bells of Liverpool
..
Samuel M Austin



Liverpool, Our Lady & St Nicholas
13 bells, 41-3-15 in C

Grid Ref.: SJ339905

Liverpool Branch
Frame: Two tier, metal. John Taylor & Co. Loughborough 1952. The Sanctus bell is hung in a copper roofed little pyramid at the liturgical North West corner of the church. It is hung dead and struck with an ellacombe hammer.
Retuning: Never subsequently retuned
Ringing room: Upstairs.
Sound: A-. Bells 1-8 are superb and have a singing-like quality but the back four suffer from poor quality clappers.
Go: B-

Bell

Weight

Diameter

Key

Founder

 

 

 

 

 

Treble

6-0-5

27”

G

John Taylor & Co. Loughborough 1952

2

6-0-0

28”

F

John Taylor & Co. Loughborough 1952

3

6-3-3

29”

E

John Taylor & Co. Loughborough 1952

4

7-0-24

30¼”

D

John Taylor & Co. Loughborough 1952

5

7-1-8

32½”

C

John Taylor & Co. Loughborough 1952

6

7-3-4

32½”

B

John Taylor & Co. Loughborough 1952

7

10-0-25

37”

A

John Taylor & Co. Loughborough 1952

8

12-3-22

40½”

G

John Taylor & Co. Loughborough 1952

9

16-3-19

45”

F

John Taylor & Co. Loughborough 1952

10

20-3-15

48”

E

John Taylor & Co. Loughborough 1952

11

31-1-24

54”

D

John Taylor & Co. Loughborough 1952

12

41-3-15

60½”

C

John Taylor & Co. Loughborough 1952

Flat 6th

9-0-4

35½”

Bb

John Taylor & Co. Loughborough 1952

Sanctus

2-3-21

 

E

John Taylor & Co. Loughborough 1952


Inscriptions

 
Treble RECAST 1952
O YE ANGELS OF THE LORD, BLESS YE THE LORD
WILLIAM DOBSON, FOUNDERS, DOWNHAM, NORFOLK
1812
2nd RECAST 1952
O YE SUN AND MOON, BLESS YE THE LORD
THE LORD TO PRAISE, MY VOICE I’LL RAISE
3rd RECAST 1952
O YE WINDS OF GOD, BLESS YE THE LORD
GIVE NO OFFENCE TO THE CHURCH
4th RECAST 1952
O YE LIGHT AND DARKNESS, BLESS YE THE LORD
WILLIAM DOBSON
FOUNDER
DOWNHAM
NORFOLK
1825
5th RECAST 1952
O YE SEA AND FLOODS, BLESS YE THE LORD
OUR VOICES SHALL, WITH JOYFUL SOUND;
MAKE HILLS AND VALLEYS ROUND
6th  
Flat 6th 1952
O YE WHALES AND ALL THAT MOVES IN THE WATERS BLESS YE THE LORD
7th RECAST 1952
O YE CHILDREN OF MEN, BLESS YE THE LORD
PROSPERITY TO THIS TOWN
WILLIAM DOBSON FECIT 1813
8th RECAST 1952
O YE PRIESTS OF THE LORD, BLESS YE THE LORD
MY SONG SHALL BE ALWAYS OF THE
LOVINGKINDNESS OF THE LORD
9th RECAST 1952
O YE SERVANTS OF THE LORD, BLESS YE THE LORD
I WILL GIVE THANKS UNTO THE LORD
WILLIAM DOBSON, FOUNDER, 1813
10th RECAST 1952
O YE SPIRITS AND SOULS OF THE RIGHTEOUS, BLESS YE THE LORD
BLESSED IS HE THAT TEMPERETH MERCY WITH JUSTICE
* * *
SAML STANIFORTH ESQR., MAYOR
THOS HINDE AND THOS CASE ESQRS., BAILIFFS
11th RECAST 1952
O YE HOLY AND HUMBLE MEN OF HEART, BLESS THE LORD
GEO: NELSON AND JOHN CARTER, CH :WDNS
JNO SWAINSON AND CHAS CLEMENTSM SIDESMEN:
ANTHONY BLACK AND JNO ALDERSEY, OVERSEERS
1813
Tenor Tenor: RECAST 1952
O ALL YE WORKS OF THE LORD, BLESS YE THE LORD
* * *
 

 



1813

THE REVD. SAML. RENSHAW AND ROBT. H. ROUGHSEDGE, RECTORS
RICHD. ROPER AND JOHN WALTHEW, CHURCHWARDENS
GEORGE NELSON AND JOHN CATER, SIDESMEN
* * *
CAST ON CHRISTMAS EVE IN THE YEAR 1812
BY WILLIAM DOBSON
* * *
MAY ALL I SUMMON TO THE SILENT TOMB
BE CROWN’D WITH GLORY IN THE WORLD TO COME
* * *
RECAST IN THE FIRST YEAR OF THE REIGN
OF KING GEORGE V 1911
BY JOHN WARNER AND SONS LONDON
REVD CANON H.E. BILBROUGH, RECTOR

Details of the Old Bells


 

Bell

Weight

Diameter

Key

Founder

 

 

 

 

 

Treble

6-3-15

30”

F

( approx. F)

William Dobson 1812

2

7-0-4

31½”

Eb

(between D# & E)

William Dobson 1813

3

7-2-7

31⅞”

D

(shade sharp of D)

William Dobson 1813

4

8-1-15

32¾”

C

(approx. C)

William Dobson 1823

5

8-3-27

34½”

Bb

(shade sharp of A#)

William Dobson 1813

6

8-2-17

35⅝”

A

(approx. A)

William Dobson 1813

7

11-0-12

39⅜”

G

(shade sharp of G)

William Dobson 1813

8

15-1-23

42¼”

F

(between F & F#)

William Dobson 1813

9

19-1-13

47½”

Eb

(sharp of D#)

William Dobson 1813

10

20-3-23

49½”

D

(near D)

William Dobson 1813

11

29-1-14

55¾”

C

(C)

William Dobson 1813

12

41-0-14 / 39-3-10*

62”*

Bb

(approx. A#)

William Dobson 1812 /
John Warner 1911*

*- 1911 particulars – Weight of 1911 Tenor was actually found to be 36-0-22 when scrapped.
Notes from Taylor’s inspection notes. Not dated but presumed to be c1938. (info Dave Cawley). They also say “A very poor toned peal”


Inscriptions on Old Bells

 
Treble
 
WILLIAM DOBSON, FOUNDER, DOWNHAM, NORFOLD 1812
2
 
+THE LORD TO PRAISE, MY VOICE I’LL RAISE+
3
 
 +GIVE NO OFFENCE TO THE CHURCH+
4
 
WILLIAM DOBSON FOUNDER; DOWNHAM, NORFOLK, 1825
5
 
CAST BY WILLIAM DOBSON OF DOWNHAM IN NORFOLK A.D.1813
6
 
OUR VOICES SHALL, WITH JOYFUL SOUND; MAKE HILLS AND VALLEYS ECCHO ROUND
7
 
PROSPERITY TO THIS TOWN. WILLIAM DOBSON FECIT 1813
8
 
MY SONG SHALL BE ALWAYS OF THE LOVINGKINDNESS OF THE LORD
9
 
I WILL GIVE THANKS UNTO THE LORD. WILLIAM DOBSON FOUNDER 1813.
10

 
BLESSED IS HE THAT TEMPERETH MERCY WITH JUSTICE. SAML STANIFORTH ESQR MAYOR THOS HINDE         AND THOS CASE ESQRS BAILIFFS 1813
11

 
GEO : NELSON AND JOHN CARTER CH: WDNS JNO SWAINSON AND CHAS CLEMENTS SIDESMEN: ANTHONY BLACK AND JNO ALDERSEY OVERSEER. 1813
12
 
THE REVD SAML RENSHAW AND ROBT H. ROUGHSEDGE RECTORS. RICHD. ROPER AND JOHN WALTHEW CHURCHWARDENS GEORGE NELSON AND JOHN CARTER SIDESMEN.
  MAY ALL I SUMMON TO THE SILENT TOMB BE CROWNED WITH GLORY IN THE WORLD TO COME. CAST ON CHRISTMAS EVE IN THE YEAR 1812 BY WILLIAM DOBSON

On the waist

RECAST IN THE FIRST YEAR OF THE REIGN OF KING GEORGE V 1911 BY JOHN WARNER AND SONS LONDON THE REVD CANON H.E.BILBROUGH, RECTOR
Historical Events & Dates

• 1552: “One grette belle”
• 1636: From a minute in the Corporation accounts, it appears that Robert Oldfield had previously cast three bells to augment the present bell, but they required immediate attention, and were consequently sent to be recast by Thomas Hancock of Walsall.

The weights of the new bells were therefore:-

Treble. 5-1-20
2nd 6-0-14
3rd 8-0-0
Tenor 9-3-0

• 1659: Two new bells by John Scott of Wigan were added
• 1724: All six recast by Abraham Rudhall of Gloucester

The weights of these bells were as follows

Treble. 7-0-3
2nd 7-1-5
3rd 8-1-20
4th 9-2-6
5th 12-0-10
Tenor 15-1-12

No record appears to have been kept of the inscriptions on these bells

• 1745: New spire erected and tower heightened.
• 1810: On Sunday Morning February 11th “a few minutes before the commencement of divine service, while the bells were ringing the second peal.” A portion of the congregation was already in the church, and the masonry falling to the east “instantly burst through the roof and fell along the centre aisle.” The result was that twenty-five people were killed, of whom eighteen were children. New tower was begun in September
• 1812-1813: A new ring of 12 bells was cast by William Dobson of Downham, Norfolk.
• 1814: First peal on the bells.
• 1815: Tower and lantern completed
• J.J. Raven writes in 'The bells of England' about Dobson’s bells “His greatest work was the twelve of St Nicholas, Liverpool. I have been told that the Liverpool folk were determined to rival St. Peter Mancroft, Norwich, bell for bell, but they tied Dobson down too tightly, so that his heaviest peal is not his best.”
• 1825: The fourth was recast.
• 1895: An Ellacombe chiming apparatus was installed. This had been was removed by c1938 and has never been replaced although the holes still exist in the ringing room ceiling behind the present 10th rope.
• 1911: Tenor recast by John Warner & Sons, London and rehung the bells on new fittings. Cast iron stocks, plain bearings. (Taylor’s records per David Cawley)
• C1938: Taylor’s report that Hoffman ball bearings fitted to bells 10-12 at some stage fitted locally. These three bells are reported to run well. There was also a disused clock hammer on the 11th bell. Looking at the old frame drawings, the tenor rope fell approximately where the present 9th rope falls now.
• 1939: Last peal on the Dobson bells.
• C1940 The bells were removed and stored at Taylor’s for the duration of World War II.
• 1941: Church burnt out during a bombing raid. .
• 1952: The old ring of twelve was recast by Taylor’s, a flat sixth and sanctus bells added. Further metal was added to that of the old peal from the church of St. Martin in the Fields, Silvester Street, Liverpool. Details of these bells were:

 

Bell

Weight

Diameter

Note

Founder

 

 

 

 

 

Treble

1-2-20

20”

 

Unknown (Possibly ship’s bell)

Tenor

26-0-6

Between 54” & 55”

 

Thomas Mears 1834

(Information provided by Rev. David Cawley & from Taylor’s archives researched by Rev. David Cawley)

• 1953: First peal on the new bells.

Incriptions of the present ringing peal provided by Peter Furniss
 

www.bellsofliverpool.co.uk