St Margaret at Cliffe

St Margaret at Cliffe, St Margaret

Photo: Richard Offen

  • 8 bells hung dead with electric solenoid chime and service bell
  • Tenor: 6-0-2 in C.
  • Grid Ref: TR358447
  • Frame: 1977 Whitechapel steel girders and small timber frame for service bell
  • Denomination: Church of England
    Diocese (Anglican): Canterbury
    Archdeaconry (Anglican): Ashford
  • Building Listed Grade: I Click for Heritage details.

Details of the Bells

Bell Weight
(most recent)
Diameter Note Date Founder Canons Retuned
1 1-1-117⅝" C 1977 Whitechapel Bell Foundry Flat Never
2 1-1-2018¼" B 1977 Whitechapel Bell Foundry Flat Never
3 1-3-820" A 1977 Whitechapel Bell Foundry Flat Never
4 2-1-1222" G 1977 Whitechapel Bell Foundry Flat Never
5 3-0-2124¼" F 1977 Whitechapel Bell Foundry Flat Never
6 3-1-2625⅝" E 1977 Whitechapel Bell Foundry Flat Never
7 4-3-228" D 1977 Whitechapel Bell Foundry Flat Never
8 6-0-231" C 1977 Whitechapel Bell Foundry Flat Never
Service Bell 6½ cwt approx.32" B 1696 John Wood, Bishopsgate Conventional Never

 - Hung dead



1696 Bell cast by John Wood (an itinerant founder, based in Bishopsgate, London). It was hung for ringing in a new double braced king post frame.
1759 Record of 3 bells in the tower. [1]
1800 Hasted describes the tower, but not the bells. [2]
1887 Stahlschmidt recorded that local tradition asserts that there were once more bells in the tower and that they were sold to Ashford or Portsmouth. He noted that the upper part of the tower was ruinous for many years and so may indeed have been repaired through the sale of bells. There is no evidence that they went to Ashford.
1977 A chime of 8 was cast to commemorate the Queen's Silver Jubilee. They were cast without canons and hang in pairs just beneath the concrete roof of the tower on steel joists. They are fitted with internal solenoid operated hammers which are controlled from a small ivory keyboard in the vestry.
[1] "This Church is large, and high, and supported by many round, wrought Arches, and large tall Pillars. It has, also, round the Top of the Wall, on the out Side, many Small, round, wrought Arches and Pillasters. It consists of ye Chancell, Body, and 2 Side Isles. The Tower, which is very large and roomy, and adorn’d with Pillasters, Arches and carv’d Work, is at ye West End, and seems ready to fall. There were 3 Bells in it, wch. are now broken to Peices and lay in an Old Chest. They were taken down, for Fear of their falling, or overturning ye Tower; but what they were broken to Pieces for, I cd. not learn." (Rev’d Bryan Faussett, 1759)
[2] The tower , which is square, had formerly four small turrets, one at each corner, but about the year 1711, that turret on the west side, with a part of the tower, fell down, and the tower gaving never been reparied, the other three turrets were probably taken down to make the whole appear more uniform ('The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent. Vol 9', Edward Hasted)

Belfry photographs

Chime of 8.
Photo: Mike Bundock, 30 Jun 2022

Photo: Mike Bundock, 30 Jun 2022

The service bell. Note the beautiful canons.
Photo: Mike Bundock, 30 Jun 2022

Love's Guide to the Church Bells of Kent Page updated: 1 July 2022