Bell Ringing in Shipton 2018

At the beginning of 2018, thanks to the generous support of the local community with fund raising events and private donations, the Parochial Parish Council and grant giving organisations, the Bell Restoration Fund has reached £61,000 towards the £70,000 target. The bells are scheduled to be removed from the church tower and taken to the Loughborough Bell Foundry during the last week in September, by which time we need to have reached the target of £70,000. If you would like to help us in achieving the target figure by making a donation to the fund please see the Shipton Bell Fund leaflet available in St Mary’s Church, contact Mike Brooks at, or make a donation by direct transfer payment to:

Account Name: Shipton-under-Wychwood Parochial Church Council
Sort Code: 40-17-19
Account Number: 21044443
Reference: suwbells

November 2018 will see the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War. Among the many hundreds of thousands of people who gave their lives during this conflict were 1400 bell ringers, one of whom was a Shipton ringer, Private Samuel Henry Coombes of the Middlesex Regiment.
He was the son of Samuel and Martha Coombes, born in Milton and baptised on 21st February 1882 at Shipton. Private Coombes died on 22nd December 1917 aged 35 and is commemorated at Jerusalem War Cemetery, Israel.

The Shipton bell ringers dedicated their ringing before the Carols around the Christmas tree on the Green on 24th December last year, to the memory of Samuel Henry Coombes. This action has been recorded on BellBoard, a resource of The Ringing World, which is a magazine for bell ringers, see

To commemorate the 1400 bell ringers who died in the First World War, the Central Council of Church Bell Ringers, together with the Big Ideas Company, and the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, have launched a new campaign, called Ringing Remembers, to recruit 1400 new ringers in 2018. To find out how to take part and become a bell ringer email

Also, as part of this campaign churches are asked to ring their bells at 19:05 on 11th November 2018. However, if all goes to plan, Shipton bells will not be ringing for this as they will be at Loughborough Bell Foundry being refurbished. However, we expect the bells to be returned in time to celebrate Christmas.

Mike Brooks

June – July 2018