image of St Peter's Cathedral, Armidale

The Bells

Cast by the Whitechapel Bell Foundry on 30 January 1996 (treble, 3rd, 5th and 7th) and 14 March 1996 (2nd, 4th, 6th and tenor).

Bell Note Diameter at Mouth Weight Inscription on Band Inscription on Waist
Treble Bb 560 mm
22 in
137 kg
2cwt 2qr 22lb
EX SAPIENTIA MODUS UNE THE UNIVERSITY OF NEW ENGLAND
2nd A 572 mm
22.5 in
139 kg
2-2-26
  IN MEMORY OF FREDERICK SPERRY COVENTRY
26.8.1908 - 21.6.95
3rd G 600 mm
23.6 in
154 kg
3-0-3
SERVICE ABOVE SELF HONOURING PAUL HARRIS ROTARY CLUBS OF ARMIDALE
4th F 630 mm
24.8 in
166 kg
3-1-2
REJOICE IN THE LORD ALWAY ROBERT AND LYN BACKHOUSE 1996
5th Eb 676 mm
26.6 in
206 kg
4-0-6
MAY YOU RING OUT THE CHRISTIAN MESSAGE IN THE AEONS TO COME IN THE MEMORY OF MEGAN McMILLAN
1922 - 1994
6th D 705 mm
27.8 in
229 kg
4-2-1
O SING TO THE LORD A NEW SONG JOHN AND MERLE GOLDSMITH JUBILEE
1945 - 1995
7th C 768 mm
30.2 in
276 kg
5-1-21
STRIKE HARD 33RD INF. BN. A.I.F W.W.I
2/33RD INF. BN. A.I.F W.W.II
Tenor Bb 846 mm
33.3 in
359 kg
7-0-7
  THE CITY OF ARMIDALE

Armidale Commemorates ANZAC Day 2020

Normally, the Armidale community's annual commemoration of ANZAC Day begins with a dawn service, followed by a larger gathering at 11:00am. Both services are held at the cenotaph in Central Park, adjacent to St Peter's Cathedral, and the ringers are involved from the outset in setting the Cathedral's flag to half-mast at dawn and then raising it to full mast when reveille is sounded during the 11:00am service. As well, the 7th bell, dedicated to the memory of the 33rd and 2nd/33rd Infantry Battalions AIF, is tolled 11 times during the minute's silence. Following the service a commemorative quarter peal is rung, if there are enough ringers available.

What to do in a time of COVID-19?

Despite the restrictions the ringers were keen to participate. Flag duty was easy. This could be done by two people, very much isolated from the community atop the 85 foot tower. Dawn and dusk, no problem; with flag raising in the middle of the day timed for 12:00 noon in line with Commonwealth guidelines. It was decided to toll the Battalion bell 105 times just prior to noon as this would fit nicely with the flag raising.

Meanwhile, it turned out that the usual commemorative services had not been abandoned altogether, and small "by invitation only" socially-distanced ceremonies took place at dawn and 11:00am. During the minute's silence at the later service, the Dean of the Cathedral, Chris Brennan, chimed the service bell "Maud" 11 times, so the ringers' involvement was complete. Chris is, after all, patron of the bellringers' society!

ANZAC Day 2020 was a glorious Armidale autumn day as this late afternoon image of the tower shows.

St Peter's Cathedral, Armidale - ANZAC Day 2020

From the top of the tower, the intricate nature of the eastern end of the Cathedral roof is evident, as is the deserted carpark and largely empty Central Park.

St Pater's Cathedral, Armidale - the roof, ANZAC Day 2020

My co-self-isolator, Jane McMillan, was my safety backup, flag-raising assistant and auxiliary counter.

Simon McMillan

Armidale 23rd Anniversary Weekend, 2019

Armidale's anniversary weekend is usually held at the end of October. This year it was delayed due to competing commitments. When it finally happened, on the weekend of 15-17 November, we were pleased to welcome 5 visitors from Sydney, Canberra and Brisbane, who can be identified in the image below, and who worked their way valiantly around various road closures caused by the devastating bushfires in New South Wales and Queensland.

Armidale Anniversary Weekend 2019

Participants in the Armidale Anniversary Weekend 2019

The weekend was a great success, with 6 hours of general and training ringing on the Friday and Saturday, and service ringing and a quarter peal on the Sunday. The presence of the visitors meant that we could ring on 8 bells, which has been a rare experience for us in recent times. Dry times indeed!

The weekend's ringing ranged from Grandsire Doubles, through Plain and Surprise Minor, to Grandsire and Stedman Triples. 'Come and try' methods included Double Oxford Bob Triples and Superlative Surprise Major. There was some outstanding call change ringing on 6 and 8 bells, and even a touch of Original Minor. Two of our newer ringers, Hayden Gray and Kristal Spreadborough, scored firsts in Sunday's quarter peal of Grandsire Triples.

Simon McMillan

Armidale 19th Anniversary Weekend, 2015

The 19th Armidale Anniversary Weekend was a great success, with 6 hours of general and training ringing on the Friday and Saturday, and service ringing and a quarter peal on the Sunday. As ever, we could not have done it without the assistance of our visitors from Sydney, Canberra and Brisbane, who can be identified in the image below. We also welcomed Dru Haywood from nearby Bellingen (well, 2 hours away by road) and hope to see her again soon.

Armidale Anniversary Weekend 2015

Happy participants at the Armidale Anniversary Weekend 2015

This year the particular focus was on Surprise Major ringing, and I am pleased to report that the successful quarter peal was a first of Surprise Major for one of our band, the weekend's organiser, Carol Quinn.

Armidale Anniversary Weekend 2015, QP band

Armidale Anniversary Weekend 2015, quarter peal band

We gratefully acknowledge the training grant from ANZAB which assisted in the running of the weekend.

Simon McMillan

Armidale Training Weekend, 24-27 April 2014

Armidale took advantage of the offer of a training weekend from Deryn Griffiths, NEANZAB's Education and Training Officer for our region. Deryn was ably assisted by Elaine Lee and Pam Brock. We just managed to stand still for long enough to have a group photo after Sunday service ringing.

Armidale Training weekend, April 2014

Simon McMillan, Carol Quinn, Geoff Milne, Kim Quinn, John Hadfield, Elaine Lee, Pam Brock, Deryn Griffiths, Nicholas Hadfield, Lois Beaton, Trina Beldan

The weekend concentrated on consolidating our 8 bell ringing, and one of a number of highlights was a quarter peal of Grandsire Triples conducted by local ringer Geoff Milne.

Simon McMillan

This page supplements the ANZAB Tower Directory, and records further information about the tower, its bells and ringers.

Some of this has been provided by local ringers, but most is historical and has been gathered by the ANZAB Webmaster since 2002.

Tower officers are encouraged to submit material for inclusion on this page, or suggest changes to its content.

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