Untitled Document

Elham, St Mary the Virgin


  • 8 bells hung for full circle ringing
  • Tenor: 13-2-15 in F♯.
  • Grid Ref: TR177438
  • Rung from: Upstairs Ringing Room
  • Frame: 1887 John Warner & Sons, strengthened in 1983
  • Diocese: Canterbury
  • Building Listed Grade: I. Click for Heritage details.
  • Peals rung at the tower

Details of the Bells

Bell Weight
(most recent)
Diameter Note Date Founder Retuned
Tenor 13-2-1542¼" F♯ 1970 Whitechapel Bell Foundry Never
7 9-3-038" G♯ 1970 Whitechapel Bell Foundry Never
6 7-1-2634" A♯ 1970 Whitechapel Bell Foundry Never
5 6-2-832½" B 1970 Whitechapel Bell Foundry Never
4 5-0-2030" C♯ 1970 Whitechapel Bell Foundry Never
3 4-3-2728½" D♯ 1970 Whitechapel Bell Foundry Never
2 4-1-1127" E♯ 1970 Whitechapel Bell Foundry Never
Treble 3-2-1626" F♯ 1970 Whitechapel Bell Foundry Never


The 1763 Ring of 8.

Bell Weight
(most recent)
Diameter Note Date Founder Retuned Fate
Treble (of 8)4-2-228"1763Lester & PackNeverRecast 1970
2nd (of 8)4-2-1829"1763Lester & PackNeverRecast 1970
3rd (of 8)5-3-830"1763Lester & PackNeverRecast 1970
4th (of 8)6-2-1132½"1763Lester & PackNeverRecast 1970
5th (of 8)7-0-1134"1763Lester & PackNeverRecast 1970
6th (of 8)7-3-2436"1763Lester & PackNeverRecast 1970
7th (of 8)10-2-01763Lester & PackNeverRecast 1809
Tenor (of 8)15-2-1145"1763Lester & PackNeverRecast 1970

1809 recast

Bell Weight
(most recent)
Diameter Note Date Founder Retuned Fate
7th (of 8)11-3-2741"1809Thomas Mears INeverRecast 1970

Original 5 from Sandwich

Bell Weight
(most recent)
Diameter Note Date Founder Retuned Fate
Treble (of 5)8-1-221659John WilnarNeverRecast 1763
2nd (of 5)8-2-131659John WilnarNeverRecast 1763
3rd (of 5)12-0-91659John WilnarNeverRecast 1763
4th (of 5)15-0-61659John WilnarNeverRecast 1763
Tenor (of 5)20-0-141659John WilnarNeverRecast 1763


1552 Record of 5 bells. [1]
1639 5 bells cast by John Wilnar for St Mary's, Sandwich.
1667 Tower of St Mary's, Sandwich fell down. Some time afterwards, the bells were given to Elham.
1758 Record of 5 bells in the tower. [2]
1763 Bells recast into 8 by Lester & Pack.
1799 Record of 8 bells. [3]
1809 7th recast by Thomas Mears.
1887 Bells rehung in a new frame by Warner. Just before this happened, J C L Stahlschmidt visited and found the bells and frame in bad order. [4]
1970 Bells recast and rehung by Whitechapel in the old frame.
1983 Timber frame strengthened.
[1] Item v great belles. (Edwardian Inventory, 1552)
[2] This Church consists of a Tiled Chancell, and 3 Isles cover’d with Lead. On the South Side of the Chancell, are the Ruins of Another. In The Steeple, which is a Tower, Pointed with a Lofty Spire, hang 5 heavy Bells, all made by John Wlnar in ye Year 1659 (Rev’d Bryan Faussett, 1758)
[3] The church, which is dedicated to St. Mary, is large and handsome, consisting of three isles, the middle one having an upper range of windows, and one chancel, having a tower steeple, with a spire shast on it, at the west end, in which are eight bells, a ('The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent. Vol 8', Edward Hasted)
[4] At present the frame is in bad order and the bells can only be chimed. I am sorry to see that the reprehensible practice of "clocking" has been introduced. The sooner it is discontinued the better for the bells. There is a local tradition as to No. 7 that ("Church Bells of Kent", J C L Stahlschmidt, 1887)


Harry Parkes and David Cawley with the old eight bells after removal.
Photo: David Cawley

Loading the tenor bell. July 1970.
Photo: David Cawley

David Cawley, lowering the tenor bell.
Photo: David Cawley

The belfry prior to the restoration of 1970.
Photo: David Cawley
Recent Peals
The most recent performances, according to BellBoard.
2017-10-075024 Kent Treble Bob Major
1980-07-055088 Rutland Surprise Major
1978-02-185056 Cambridge Surprise Major
Recent Quarter Peals
The most recent performances, according to BellBoard.
2017-11-111260 Plain Bob Doubles
2017-07-061250 Bristol Surprise Major
2016-11-111260 Plain Bob Doubles
2015-11-111280 Plain Bob Doubles
2015-05-141280 Double Norwich Court Bob Major
2014-11-011260 Single Oxford Bob Triples
2014-05-171344 Lessness Surprise Major
2013-12-281260 Canterbury Pleasure Bob Triples
2013-11-111260 Single Oxford Bob Triples
2013-09-111250 Steeple Aston Surprise Major
2013-06-051344 St Clement's College Bob Major
2013-02-181260 Stedman Triples
2012-10-061280 Spliced Surprise Major (5m)
2012-03-171344 Lincolnshire Surprise Major
2011-03-161280 Spliced Surprise Major (5m)
2010-05-201260 Single Oxford Bob Triples
2009-07-111288 Double Grandsire Triples
2008-03-291288 Double Grandsire Triples
2003-09-201280 Cambridge 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