Untitled Document
  
Maidstone
 

Maidstone, All Saints


Photo: Michael Birkbeck, Jun 2001

Details of the Bells

Bell Weight
(most recent)
Diameter Note Date Founder Retuned
Treble 5-0-2629" E♯ 1957 John Taylor & Co., Loughborough Never
2 5-3-430" D♯ 1957 John Taylor & Co., Loughborough Never
3 6-0-2431" C♯ 1957 John Taylor & Co., Loughborough Never
4 6-2-1832½" B♯ 1957 John Taylor & Co., Loughborough Never
5 7-3-1735½" A♯ 1957 John Taylor & Co., Loughborough Never
6 9-1-2238" G♯ 1957 John Taylor & Co., Loughborough Never
7 12-2-2742" F♯ 1957 John Taylor & Co., Loughborough Never
8 15-3-445" E♯ 1957 John Taylor & Co., Loughborough Never
9 23-0-1250½" D♯ 1957 John Taylor & Co., Loughborough Never
Tenor 32-0-2056" C♯ 1957 John Taylor & Co., Loughborough Never

Inscriptions

The 1783/4 ring of ten

Bell Weight
(most recent)
Diameter Note Date Founder Retuned Fate
Treble6-1-201784Chapman & MearsNeverRecast 1957
2nd6-3-151783Chapman & MearsNeverRecast 1957
3rd7-0-121784Chapman & MearsNeverRecast 1957
4th7-1-181784Chapman & MearsNeverRecast 1829
5th8-1-151784Chapman & MearsNeverRecast 1957
6th10-2-241784Chapman & MearsNeverRecast 1957
7th1784Chapman & MearsNeverRecast 1786
8th16-1-181784Chapman & MearsNeverRecast 1957
9th20-2-81784Chapman & MearsNeverRecast 1957
Tenor28-2-131784Chapman & MearsNeverRecast 1840

Bells subsequently recast

Bell Weight
(most recent)
Weight
(Supplied weight)
Diameter Note Date Founder Retuned Fate
4th7-1-181829Thomas Mears IINeverRecast 1957
7th13-0-201786William MearsNeverRecast 1957
Tenor29-2-1331-3-21840Thomas Mears IINeverRecast 1957

Bells prior to 1783

Bell Weight
(most recent)
Diameter Note Date Founder Retuned Fate
Tenor1678John & Christopher HodsonNeverRecast 1784

History

1395 Tower built.
c 1450 Tower thought to possess 4 bells.
1509 The Will of John Leche, 25 August 1509 (proved 10th October 1509 by Alice relict, Thomas Polyll, Wm. Ade and John Plomer) suggests a bell was cast in 1508 or 1509. The "Thomas Hatwiche" could be Thomas Hatch, a hitherto unknown earlier bellfounder, or a church official. [1]
1604 The 2nd and tenor (probably of 4) were recast.
1667 Record of 6 bells in the tower.
1678 Tenor recast by John and/or Christopher Hodson and bells rehung.
1719 7th stated to have been repaired - therefore the tower possessed 8 bells.
1721 Some of the bells recast by Richard Phelps.
1730 Spire struck by lighning and burnt down.
1762 Tenor repaired at the cost of 10 guineas.
1783 - 4 Bells (totalling 6 tons) recast into a ring of 10 by Chapman & Mears and hung in an anticlockwise frame.
1784 The new ring of bells was opened by the Leeds ringers on 3 September. On the 3rd December the local band rang a peal on the new bells (the 4th on the bells). [2]
1786 7th recast by William Mears.
1798 Record of 8 bells in the tower. [3]
1829 4th recast by Thomas Mears.
1840 Tenor recast by Thomas Mears.
1898 Bells rehung by John Warner.
1899 Clock purchased from Gillett & Johnston.
1921 Bells rehung by Mears & Stainbank.
1945 Old barrel chime on the clock went out of action.
1957 Bells recast by John Taylor.
1958 The new bells were hung in a new clockwise frame by John Taylor.
2000 All clappers, bearings and 3 headstocks were refurbished by John Taylor.
[1] John Leche of Maydeston [Maidstone], draper, 25th August 1509. To be buried in churchyarde of the parishe church of Alhalowen in Maydeston … I bequeth to Thomas Hatwiche 5 marc of my stuff. Toward the costs of the new bell late bought for the said church (Will of John Leche, 25 August 1509)
[2] Kentish Gazette (28 August 1784): RINGiNG at MAIDSTONE. On Friday next the 3d of September, 1784, be opened an entire new Peal of Ten Bells at Maidstone, cast by Chapman and Mears, of London, which will be rung Five Thousand Oxford T Bob, by the Leeds Youths. To begin at [ ] o’Clock in the Morning. N. B. There will be an Ordinary at the Q[ueen’s?] Head, at One o’Clock. Kentish Gazette (8 Dec 1784): ON Friday, December 3, 1784, the Maidstone Society of Ringers, at Maidstone, in the county of Kent, rang a true and compleat Peal of Five Thousand Four Hundred Bob-Minor, being the first Peal ever rang on the new Bells, by any Company of Men, of one Parish.- The Time three Hours and Fifty Minutes. - By the following Persons: Treble, Mr. James Brislee, 1.- Mr Robert Tassell, 2.— Mr. Thomas Cutbush, 3.—Mr. Joseph Moore, 4.— Mr. Edw. Jury, 5.— Mr. Thomas King, 6.— Mr. Daniel Whetstone, 7. Mr. John Harper, 8.- Mr. George Hyland, 9.— Mr. Daniel Kingsnorth, 10.— Mr. Thomas King called the Peal. This new Peal Bells were cast by Chapman and Mears, Bell-founders, in Whitechapel, and hung by Mr. Sweetlove, Leeds; and for Melody, being C sharp, are allowed to be one of the noblest and compleat Peal Bells In the Kingdom. Tenor, 30 Cwt. (Kentish Gazette reports)
[3] In the tower were eight bells, a clock, and chimes; the bells, in 1784, were new cast into ten, by Chapman and Mears of London. ('The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent. Vol 4', Edward Hasted)

Picture of the Belfry


The tenor bell.
Photo: Dickon Love, 24 Jul 2004

The seventh in the foreground.
Photo: Dickon Love, 24 Jul 2004


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017


Photo: Alexander Runting, 1 Jun 2017

Peal Boards

Framed card Performance Board dated approx. 1958
09 May 1958: 5058 Stedman Caters (1st peal on the bells.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Timber Performance Board dated approx. 2012
16 Jun 2012: 5080 Man of Kent Surprise Royal (John B Keeler's 2000th peal.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Timber Performance Board dated approx. 1933
30 Apr 1910: 5069 Stedman Caters
20 May 1933: 5019 Stedman Caters

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Timber Performance Board dated approx. 1744
30 Oct 1743: 5040 Union Triples (This being the first of its kind ever performed in this county.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Timber Performance Board dated approx. 2003
20 May 2003: 5090 Yorkshire Surprise Royal (In memoriam Thomas Cullingworth.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Timber Performance Board dated approx. 1992
04 Feb 1992: 5040 Yorkshire Surprise Royal (Thomas Cullingworth's 2000th peal.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Timber Performance Board dated approx. 1969
05 Oct 1968: 5050 Stedman Caters (Louis Head's Golden Wedding.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Timber Performance Board dated approx. 1977
20 Sept 1977: 5077 Stedman Caters (In memoriam Louis Head.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Timber Performance Board dated approx. 1947
21 Apr 1947: 5021 Stedman Caters (For the coming of age of HRH Princess Elizabeth.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Framed card Performance Board dated approx. 1977
26 Oct 1976: 5040 Yorkshire Surprise Royal (Timothy Wylie's 1000th peal.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Timber Performance Board dated approx. 1890
25 Jan 1883: 5040 Grandsire Triples
13 Dec 1890: 5021 Grandsire Caters (1st peal of caters on the bells for over 100 years.)
28 Feb 1922: 5079 Stedman Caters (1st on the bells following rehanging, for Princess Mary's wedding.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Timber Performance Board dated approx. 1997
20 May 1997: 5040 Yorkshire Surprise Royal (In memoriam Lily Cullingworth.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Framed card Performance Board dated approx. 1935
29 Nov 1934: 5077 Stedman Caters (For the wedding of HRH The Duke of Kent and Princess Marina of Greece.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Timber Performance Board dated approx. 1881
07 Feb 1881: 5040 Grandsire Triples

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Ceramic Performance Board dated approx. 1900
17 Feb 1900: 5000 Kent Treble Bob Royal (1st peal on the bells since rehanging.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Timber Performance Board dated approx. 1984
15 Sept 1984: 5039 Grandsire Caters (Silver wedding of Martin Pring.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Stone Memorial Board dated approx. 1923

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Framed card Performance Board dated approx. 1976
02 Mar 1976: 5040 Yorkshire Surprise Royal (Tom Cullingworth's 1000th peal.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Framed card Performance Board dated approx. 1976
01 Jan 1976: 5077 Stedman Caters (In memoriam William Thomas Grice.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Stone Memorial Board dated approx. 1922

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Stone Memorial Board dated approx. 1889

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Framed card Performance Board dated approx. 1886
21 Nov 1885: 5040 Grandsire Triples

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Framed card Performance Board dated approx. 2010
05 Nov 1996: 5000 London No 3 Surprise Royal (Catherine Merlane's 1000th peal.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Framed card Performance Board dated approx. 2010
22 Feb 1986: 5000 London No 3 Surprise Royal (David Dearnley's 1000th peal.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Framed card Performance Board dated approx. 2010
07 Jan 2003: 5000 London No 3 Surprise Royal (Dickon Love's 1000th peal.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Framed card Performance Board dated approx. 2010
04 May 1987: 5040 Yorkshire Surprise Royal (John Howard's 1000th peal.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Framed card Performance Board dated approx. 2010
26 Aug 2008: 5000 Bristol Surprise Royal (Fr David Gibbons' 1000th peal.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Framed card Performance Board dated approx. 2010
24 Mar 1992: 5039 Grandsire Caters (John Keeler's 1000th peal.)

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Framed card Memorial Board dated approx. 1990

Photo: Michael A Birkbeck, 29 May 2017

Recent Peals
The most recent performances, according to BellBoard.
2018-09-125042 Bristol Surprise Royal
2018-08-215040 Cambridge Surprise Royal
2018-06-165069 Stedman Caters
2018-06-055040 Penenden Heath Delight Royal
2018-05-165040 London No.3 Surprise Royal
2018-05-015040 Woodspring Surprise Royal
2018-04-285050 Maidstone Delight Royal
2018-04-245040 Surprise Minor
2018-04-185000 Spliced Surprise Royal
2018-04-075040 Yorkshire Surprise Royal
2018-04-035100 Stedman Caters
2018-03-145040 Bristol Surprise Royal
2018-03-105000 London No.3 Surprise Royal
2018-03-065040 Cambridge Surprise Royal
2018-02-215040 London No.3 Surprise Royal
2018-02-175130 Grandsire Caters
2018-02-065040 Kinloss Surprise Royal
2018-01-175080 Spliced Surprise Royal (8m)
2018-01-035040 Stedman Caters
2017-12-305030 Stedman Caters
2017-11-075040 Pudsey Surprise Royal
2017-10-185040 Spliced Surprise Royal
2017-10-035082 Cambridge Surprise Royal
2017-09-055040 Surprise Minor
2017-08-255040 Cambridge Surprise Royal
Recent Quarter Peals
The most recent performances, according to BellBoard.
2018-06-171320 Cambridge Surprise Minor
2018-06-031282 Cambridge Surprise Royal
2018-05-201280 Superlative Surprise Major
2018-05-131296 Cambridge Surprise Minor
2018-04-151260 Plain Bob Doubles
2018-03-181259 Grandsire Caters
2018-02-181259 Grandsire Caters
2018-02-041296 Cambridge Surprise Minor
2018-01-211282 Yorkshire Surprise Royal
2018-01-071250 Yorkshire Surprise Major
2017-11-191282 Yorkshire Surprise Royal
2017-10-151260 Plain Bob Doubles
2017-09-171282 Yorkshire Surprise Royal
2017-07-291250 Grandsire Caters
2017-07-031289 Erin Caters
2017-07-021280 Cambridge Surprise Major
2017-06-041280 Cambridge Surprise Major
2017-05-211287 Stedman Caters
2017-05-071259 Grandsire Caters
2017-04-221475 Grandsire Caters
2017-04-021260 Plain Bob Royal
2017-03-191260 Doubles (5m)
2017-03-051260 Plain Bob Royal
2017-02-241282 Evesham Surprise Royal
2017-02-051259 Grandsire Caters
Full list of peals here
Full list of quarters here

Elsewhere in the Parish

Maidstone, County Hall
Single bell on display

Love's Guide to the Church Bells of Kent Page updated: 1 April 2016