Group name - Hull Handbell Change Ringers

  B&D 75th Birthday, 2021
Tower data and images

Kirk Ella, St Andrew

Kirk Ella, St Andrew, Image to follow

Kirk Ella, St Andrew

The first Church on the site was provided before 1066 by Alwyn, a King's Thegn, the Parish being called at that time Aelfsleah or Elverley. Major alterations carried out in 1859/1860 included enlargement of the Sykes Chapel and a new Choir Vestry. The present Choir Vestry was added in 1955/1956. The tower was built in 1450 and pinnacles were added in 1883 to give the impression of greater height.

The Bells
Richard Anlaby, the Lord of the Manor, and other Freemen gave three bells to be hung in the new tower in 1454. One was found to be broken in 1591 and in 1688 all three needed attention. By the mid-nineteenth century the tenor bell had long been cracked and the Churchwardens wanted to increase the peal, but Major Richard Sykes advised that the tower would not stand it.

On his death in 1870 the bell was sent to Messrs Mears and Stainbank in London who replaced it with two bells.

When the tower was restored and strengthened in 1882 Taylors of Loughborough took down the four bells and recast them into a peal of six at the expense of Arthur Eggington of South Ella, in memory of his mother Frances. A new wooden frame was paid for by the parishioners. In 1928 the bells were rehung on ball bearings, and the peal was further augmented by the addition of two lighter bells in 1976/1977. The full peal of eight bells was rehung in a steel frame by Taylors of Loughborough, the two new bells being dedicated and the other six bells rehallowed by the Archbishop of York on 7th September 1977. Details of the bells are recorded as:- Bell Diameter Note Weight Date
Treble 2'3" E 4-1-18 1976
2nd 2'4" D# 4-3-14 1976
3rd 2'6" C# 5-1-5 1882
4th 2'8" B 6-1-16 1882
5th 3'0" A 8-3-10 1882
6th 3'2.5" G# 10-1-22 1882
7th 3'6.5 F# 13-1-13 1882
Tenor 3'11.5 E 19-0-12 1882

The Bell Ringers
There is written evidence that the St. Andrews' Society of Bell-ringers was formed early in 1883 following the installation of the peal of six bells. The first annual meeting was held on 31st December 1883 with the Revd. James Foord as President and Chairman. On Saturday 30'" July 1983 a Centenary Dinner was arranged to commemorate the hanging of the peal of six bells in 1883. A Peal of Bristol Surprise Major was rung by a band of Beverley and District Society members to mark the occasion.

For a period of very many years the living of the Parish of Kirk Ella was in the gift of the Foord family and it is most significant that the Revd. James Foord was Vicar for 53 years until he died in 1932. There is a memorial plaque in the tower recording a peal rung in his memory. He was followed for 29 years by the Revd. Richard Foord, the last member of the Foord family to hold the living. Canon John Wilson was also Vicar for 29 years and it is remarkable for any Parish to have only three incumbents over a period of more than 100 years.

A B Cooper

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