Untitled Document
  
Chatham
 

Chatham, St Mary the Virgin (The Victoria Tower)


Photo: Dickon Love, Nov 2002

  • No bells, formerly ring of 8, tenor 25-0-21
  • Grid Ref: TQ757684
  • Rung from: Upstairs in Detached Tower
  • Frame: 1897 John Warner & Sons
  • Diocese: Rochester
  • Building Listed Grade: II. Click for Heritage details.

How the bells are tuned

Prior to 2004

Bell Weight
(most recent)
Diameter Note Date Founder Retuned Fate
Clock4-2-028½"F1651William HatchNever while at ChathamStorage from Mar 2004 after stealing. Weight from scrap firm who recovered it.

Prior to 1897

Bell Weight
(most recent)
Diameter Note Date Founder Retuned Fate
Larger bell38"1812John Warner & SonsNeverRecast as the treble 1897.

Prior to 2013

Bell Weight
(most recent)
Diameter Note Date Founder Retuned Fate
Treble (of 8)7-0-1033.25"D♯1897John Warner & SonsNever while at ChathamTransferred to Goran, 2014
2 (of 8)7-0-1932"C*1897John Warner & SonsNever while at ChathamTransferred to Goran, 2014
3 (of 8)7-3-2534.25"B♯1897John Warner & SonsNever while at ChathamTransferred to Goran, 2014
4 (of 8)10-1-637"A♯1897John Warner & SonsNever while at ChathamTransferred to Goran, 2014
5 (of 8)12-2-2441"G♯1897John Warner & SonsNever while at ChathamTransferred to Goran, 2014
6 (of 8)14-3-2443"F*1897John Warner & SonsNever while at ChathamTransferred to Goran, 2014
7 (of 8)18-3-2747"E♯1897John Warner & SonsNever while at ChathamTransferred to Goran, 2014
Tenor (of 8)25-0-2152"D♯1897John Warner & SonsNever while at ChathamTransferred to Goran, 2014

History

1241 There was a dispute over the use of the Chantry Chapel at the time when Richard, Bishop of Rochester and Leeds Priory were Rectors of St Mary's.
1651 Clock bell cast by William Hatch.
1726 A faculty was sought for the sale of a cracked bell, the proceeds of which were to go towards the repair of the church.
1788 Church built.
1812 Bell cast by Thomas Mears II.
1884 Chancel added.
1897 "Victoria Tower" built and ring of 8 cast. The metal from the larger of the two bells (1812) was added to the pot and remembered on the new treble inscription.
1898 2nd Feb. Dedication of the Victoria Ring.
1920 Bells rehung by Alfred Bowell with steel headstocks.
1974 Church made redundant.
c 2004 28th Feb The William Hatch bell, which was stored in the church on a ledge over the staircase entrance to the former tower, was stolen.
2010 The Hatch bell was hung as the treble of a ring of five at Eakring, Notts.
2013 The church had been unused for several years and there were concerns about vandalism. Electricity had been cut off in the tower and there was local concern about the ongoing maintenance of the bells. In a hurried attempt to escape ongoing responsibility for the bells, they were removed from the tower in November and transferred to St Goran in Cornwall into a 2 tier frame.

Articles

  • "A hundred years of 'Victoria' at Chatham", Cawley, David L (The Ringing World) 6 February 1998
  • Gallery


    The belfry in 2012.
    Photo: Dickon Love, Nov 2012

    The belfry.
    Photo: Dickon Love, Nov 2012

    The belfry.
    Photo: Dickon Love, Nov 2012

    The ringing room in 2012.
    Photo: Dickon Love, Nov 2012

    The church in 2012.
    Photo: Dickon Love, Nov 2012

    The tenor at Taylors after removal from the church (photo Simon Adams).
    Photo: Simon Adams, 2013

    This is an unusual photographs of the church shortly after the Victoria Tower was built, but before the old tower was demolished.
    Photo: David Cawley collection

    The ring of eight bells on display prior to hanging in the church.
    Photo: David Cawley collection

    The small William Hatch bell on display in the church above the entrance to the spiral staircase that was the entrance to the former tower. This bell was stolen in 2004 but recovered a few weeks later and went into the care of the Kent CACR and then went
    Photo: Dickon Love
    Recent Peals
    The most recent performances, according to BellBoard.
    2006-10-075024 Spliced Surprise Major
    2005-06-045088 Priestfield Delight Major
    2005-02-265088 Keevil Surprise Major
    2004-02-285152 Double Norwich Court Bob Major
    2003-11-155088 Bristol Surprise Major
    2003-08-165120 London Surprise Major
    2002-11-235024 Spliced Surprise Major
    1927-12-265040 Stedman Triples
    1922-09-235024 Double Norwich Court Bob Major
    Recent Quarter Peals
    The most recent performances, according to BellBoard.
    2003-04-191280 Yorkshire Surprise Major
    1986-01-061250 Lincolnshire Surprise Major
    Full list of peals here
    Full list of quarters here

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