Free course in bell ringers offered at Dales churches

The Two Dales bell ringers have announced a second free introductory course to bell ringing.

The group held an online course on the joy, techniques, and benefits of bell ringing last year.

A second course is now planned with hands-on training, as well as on-line presentations.

Organisers Martin Stott said: “For over five hundred years the church bells of Wensleydale and Swaledale have been resounding across our countryside.

“The sound of bells ringing is deeply rooted in English culture. They provide the grand soundtrack to our historic moments, call out for our celebrations and toll sadly in empathy with our grief.

“However, for the first time since the second world war, in 2020 the bells fell silent.

“The Covid lockdown halted ringing in the church towers. However, our teams of enthusiastic ringers were not deterred.

“The Wensleydale Ringers started getting together on-line to practise and learn, and this in turn created an excellent opportunity for those new to ringing to find out all about it and why so many have got the ringing bug.”

Martin said bell ringing was a team activity that kept the brain active and your body agile.

“Some do it for the community of friends, some do it to contribute to Church life, some to keep the glorious sound of bells alive, and some do it for the pure pleasure and feeling of well-being it brings.

“In the North East Dales we have over 80 active ringers of different ages, male and female. Some of us attend church but others do not: there is no requirement to be a church-goer. Whether your interest is theoretical, or whether you are wondering if bell ringing could be for you, we invite you to join the first of our on-line evening sessions and take it from there.

“Bell ringing does not require great strength and we have had children as young as 10 learning in Wensleydale. Many others learn in retirement.”

The bell towers participating in this course are at the churches of Askrigg, Aysgarth, Grinton, Richmond, and Kirkby Malzeard and those living within reach of those churches are particularly welcome to participate in the course.

The times and dates of sessions will be arranged in agreement with participants.

The first session will be held in February.

If you are interested in finding out more about what the sessions entail and how to participate, please email David at with your name and contact details.

Alternatively, click here.