At our last project meeting (Wed. 3rd Sept.) it was confirmed that we now have sponsors for seven of the new bells. One of these will be the Taunton Branch bell which has been generously supported by Annie's Ride. Together with a number of other promises we estimate that the total is now equivalent to another £54,000.
The rain stopped just after 9am and the sun smiled on 'Gypsy' and her followers over the last mile through the streets of Taunton. Over 200 gathered at St. Mary's for the 'Welcome', 'speeches', and 'thank yous'; and to share stories of the past three weeks. A great success with over £12,000 towards one of our new bells.
This event is nearing the end. After the weekend off, tomorrow (Tues. 26th Aug.) will see the final walk through Taunton from St. Andrew's via St. James to the culmination at St. Mary's. The final walk will be along Hammet Street around 1.00 to 1.30 pm. Annie and Jo will then join the ringers for their final ring before a civic reception in the Church at 2.30 pm.
We were honoured to play our part in remembering the 100th anniversary of the start of World War 1 by tolling the tenor (our heaviest bell at 1.5 tons) half-muffled for 25 minutes before and after the Civic Service. It took a team of 5 ringers to do this. A letter sent to the Parish Office afterwards said "...and I have to say, as I walked up Magdalene Street after the service, I stopped and looked back at your Church. There was a single bell ringing, sounding very sombre and poignant. It was very moving. Thank you.'