Monthly Archives: November 2015

Blackburn, St Silas

The Church of St Silas, Blackburn

Blackburn. Saint Silas' Church.

Blackburn. Saint Silas’ Church.

There are 8 bells hung in the tower at Saint Silas installed in 1983. The bells were cast in 1888 by John Taylor and Co of Loughborough and were originally hung in Holy Trinity, Blackburn a mile or so down the road. The ring is in the key of F with the tenor bell weighing 17-2-14 (895 kg). The last peal on the bells at Holy Trinity was Plain Bob Major in 1949. There have been 57 peals rung on the bells: 22 of those at Holy Trinity and, at the time of writing this, 35 at Saint Silas. There is a group of peal boards in the tower relating to peals rung at Holy Trinity.

The main body of the church were completed in 1898 with the tower and porch added in 1914.

About The Bells

Dedication: Saint Silas
Bells: 8 bells. Tenor 17-2-14 (895 kg) in F
Association: Lancashire Association / Blackburn Branch
Practice Night: Friday 8pm
Sunday Ringing: 10am to 10.30am
Address: Preston New Road, Blackburn. BB2 6PS

Visiting The Church

Saint Silas’ church is on raised ground on the north side of Preston New Road very close to the junction with Saint Silas’s Road. There is limited parking available outside the church, but there is normally ample parking available along Preston New Road.

Find Saint Silas on Google Maps

Ten, Eight and Six of Eight

Or . . . Three in a day.

Nothing really spectacular in ringing, but I think worth of note. Today for Remembrance Sunday  we rang at all three Blackburn towers for the morning services. As far as we know it has never been done before. Seven of us rang at all three towers.

  • 08:45 to 09:30 The Cathedral Church of Saint Mary the Virgin – 11 ringers present
  • 10:00 to 10:30 Saint Silas – 10 ringers present
  • 11:00 – 11:45 Saint Judes – 11 ringers present
Blackburn Cathedral. Lancashire.

Blackburn Cathedral. Lancashire.

Blackburn. Saint Silas' Church.

Blackburn. Saint Silas’ Church.

Blackburn. Saint Jude's Church

Blackburn. Saint Jude’s Church

Worsley, St Mark

The Parish Church of St Mark, Worsley

Saint Mark's Church, Worsley

Saint Mark’s Church, Worsley

Saint Mark’s Church now has a ring of 10 bells cast in 1935 by John Taylor & Co of Loughborough and tuned to the Taylor’s True Harmonic System (see blow). When the church was consecrated in 1846 there were 3 bells in the tower. This was augmented to 8 bells in 1873 with the tenor weighing 20 cwt (1,020 kg). By the mid 1920s the bells were described as “a mixed lot, not very well in tune“.

The church is located very close to the Worsley junction with the Manchester orbital M60 motorway. The impressive spire is easy to spot when approaching on the motorway.

About The Bells

Dedication: Saint Mark
Bells: 10 bells. Tenor 24-0-7 (1,222 kg) in D
Association: Lancashire Association / Manchester Branch
Practice Night: Tuesday 7.30pm to 9pm
Sunday Ringing: 10am to 10.30am and 6pm to 6.30pm
Address: Worsley Brow, Worsley, Manchester. M28 2HL
Architect: George Gilbert Scott

Visiting The Bells

Find Saint Mark’s Church on Google Maps.


There is a car park next to the church. The entrance is in Walkden Road, the A575, and is signposted “Footpath / Bishop’s Lodge”. Once you have turned of Walkden Road turn almost immediately right which will take you to the car park.

There is also a lay-by at the west end of the church on Worsley Brow, the A572, where parking is available for short periods of time.


Taylor’s True Harmonic tuning System has the prime and hum of each bell in octaves with the nominal of the bell. If you want the details then Bill Hibbert provides more information on this method of tuning on his The Sound of Bells page.

Experiments with GSiril

What is GSiril

GSiril can be downloaded from Richard Smith’s website and provides a simple and fast way of proving touches. For anyone used to using MicroSiril the syntax is very similar and, in fact, GSiril offers a MicroSiril compatibility mode. I’ve been trying without much luck to get GSiril compiled on Mac OS/X 10.11 so I have been using the Windows version.

Proving some touches

1,260 Plain Bob Minor


6 bells
2 extents

part1 = wb,bh, 2 h
part2 = wh,2 h

wb = b,p,s,p,p,"- s | @"
bh = p,p,s,p,b," s - | @"
wh = b,p,p,p,b,"- - | @"
h = p,p,p,p,b," - | @"
sh = p,p,p,p,s," s | @"

p = PlainBob, +2
s = PlainBob, +234
b = PlainBob, +4

PlainBob = &x16x16x16

prove "W B H | 123456",2 part1, wb, bh, h, sh, 2 part2, wh,h,sh,"$"


1260 rows ending in 123456
Touch is true

5,088 Yorkshire Surprise Major


8 bells

peal = 3 part

part = 2 (wh, 2h), bh, h

wh = p,p,p,b,p,p,b
m = p,p,b,p,p,p,p
mw = p,p,b,b,p,p,p
w = p,p,p,b,p,p,p
h = p,p,p,p,p,p,b
bh = p,b,p,b

p = Yorkshire, +2
b = Yorkshire, +4

Yorkshire = &-3-4-5-6-2-3-4-7

prove peal


5088 rows ending in 12345678
Touch is true

240 Plain Bob Doubles


5 bells
2 extents

touch = 3 part,"There are $ repeated changes."

part = b,p,p,b,p,b,p,p

p = PlainBob,+2
b = PlainBob,+4

PlainBob = &

prove touch


240 rows ending in 12345
Touch is true

Blackburn St Jude’s

The Church of St Jude, Blackburn

Blackburn. Saint Jude’s Church

The church of Saint Thomas with Saint Jude stands on Accrington Road on the north east side of the Lancashire town of Blackburn. The church has a detached tower with a light ring of eight bells, rung from the ground floor, installed in 2015.

The original church of Saint Jude was consecrated in 1914, but was demolished in the 1990s as the congregation dwindled. Today only the original tower survives. The church building was replaced by a combined church and community centre which stands there today.

A set of eight bells cast by Gillet and Johnston were installed as a chime in 1932 and were capable of playing 72 hymn tunes. Four of the original bells have been retained as the 5, 6, 7 and 8 of the current ring. The original front four bells have gone to the Malta Maritime Museum.

About The Bells

Dedication: Saint Thomas with Saint Jude
Bells: 8 bells. Tenor 6-0-24 (316 kg) in D flat
Association: Lancashire Association / Blackburn Branch
Practice Night: Wednesday 7.30pm to 9pm
Sunday Ringing: Second Sunday of the month from 11.15am to 12.00pm
Address: Junction of Didsbury Street and Accrington Road, Blackburn. BB1 2AB

Visiting The Tower

The church welcomes visitors, quarter peals and peals being rung on the bells.  There is a flat fee for quarter peals of £2 a rope (score or not) and for a peal attempt £5 a rope (score or not).

How To Find The Church

The Church is located on the corner of Didsbury Street and Accrington Road. There is abundant free parking in the area. Parking in Didsbury Street is popular.

Find Saint Jude’s on Google Maps

More About The Bells

The current bells were cast by John Taylor and Co of Loughborough and were installed in 2015.

Quarter 347

Lancashire Association
Blackburn, Lancashire
St Jude
Sunday, 1 November 2015 in 0:43 (6–0–25 in D♭)
1,260 Plain Bob Minor
Composed by Glenn A A Taylor

  1. Donna Jones
  2. Barbara D Murray
  3. L Martin Daniels
  4. Ian P Fowler
  5. Graham Barnes
  6. Raymond A Hutchings (C)

Rung half muffled on the back six. Rung before the All Souls Eve Service.

A completely uneventful ¼ in which nothing other than “go”, “bob”, “single” or “that’s all” was said. Everyone seemed to have a good time and everyone went home with a smile on their face.



1,260 Plain Bob Minor
Glenn A A Taylor

2345    W   B   H
5243    -   ss  3

Six part. s for – halfway and end. Omit ss from parts 4, 5 and 6.