Handbell ringing at St Mary's
Our handbell ringers are a sociable group and welcome newcomers and anyone who would like to try handbell-ringing. They meet in St Mary’s Church Room to practice at 7.45 pm on Tuesdays except during January and August.
Do I need to be able to read music to play handbells?
No! Our musical scores use a simple colour scheme, so anyone who isn’t totally colour-blind can follow them.
A sense of rhythm is useful, along with the ability to count up to six in a bar, but otherwise no other musical skills are required. Most people are quite capable of learning to play. Age is no barrier and teenagers and octogenarians can happily ring together, each learning from the other.
Learners start with one bell, progressing to having one in each hand. With practice, experienced ringers can manage as many as four bells at once; two in either hand.
Where can I hear St Mary's handbell ringers?
The ringers usually hold an annual supper concert with readings – this is always popular and tickets sell out fast. They also take part in local concerts and church services, including St Mary’s Carol Service. At Christmas time, the team goes carol-ringing around local pubs.
Many of these events raise valuable funds for charities including the Children’s Society, St Luke’s Hospice and
St Mary’s church itself.
For further information about joining the handbell ringers or booking them to play for your event, please phone Jean Pearson on 020 8907 0130 or email Lesley Dodd.