The project to restore the bells of St Michael and St Wulfad and to conserve the original wooden bell frame is split into two projects. The restoration and conservation project which is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund will preserve and conserve in place the original wooden frame and will see the four heaviest Rudhall bells retuned and returned to the tower with new fixtures and fitting. A parallel, self funded scheme, will:
- Install a new metal 10 bell frame with a refurbished set of clock hammers, beneath the existing wooden frame.
- The two Rudhall trebles will go Gloucester, where they will be hung in St Michael’s tower, which is the Gloucestershire Civic Trust’s heritage centre. The centre is close by the site of the old Rudhall Bell Foundry where they were cast.
- The heavier of the two Taylor trebles will go to Thoroton as part of a new ring of bells.
- Three new bells will be cast as their replacements.
- The lighter of the two Taylor trebles will be recast.
- A further two new trebles will be cast to bring the new ring up to ten bells.
- All six new bells will all be tuned to the five tone Simpson principle.
A message from Lord Stafford, the Appeal’s patron.
“I am delighted to act as Patron of the Appeal to raise the funds to restore the bells at St Michael and St Wulfad in Stone.
The art of Bellringing is a great English tradition which has been carried out over centuries at Stone. This project seeks to ensure that the art of change ringing can continue to flourish in Stone for the new 300 years.
The restored bells will be far easier to ring and it will make them ideal to teach the art change ringing to young people.
I fully recommend this project to you.”