The Bells of St. Margaret’s Church
St. Margaret’s Church has fine set of Bells, hung in a tower that was built around 1470 and stands 100ft high. We have a dedicated team of ringers and are often visited by teams of visiting ringers.
The peal consists of eight bells of varying ages, six of which are very old, and the remaining two being relative ‘new boys’.
The oldest surviving bell is the tenor which was hung in 1582 in the reign of Queen Elizabeth 1. This replaced an earlier bell which can be traced back to 1517 but was probably hung sometime before that.
Over the years seven more bells have joined the tenor. Two in 1601 and another in 1618 all being made by Robert Mot.
The next was hung in 1685 and the sixth in 1773, Rainham then had a peal of six bells until 1913 when the treble bells, Nos. 1 and 2, were made to commemorate the Coronation of King George V, they weigh 4 ¾ and 5 ½ cwts respectively.
In 1913 the original six bells were rehung in a new steel frame and the two new bells added to create the current ring of eight. On 29th October 1913, the first peal on the 8 bells was rung and on the same day in 2013 a peal was rung to celebrate the 100th Anniversary.
Other interesting facts:
No. 3 bell has a Charles II inscription reading: “Christopher Hodson made me 1685, John Taylor, Thos.Osbourne, donors,’ and weighs 9 cwt. No. 4 informs all and sundry that ‘Robert’s Mot made me 1601′, and weighs 12 cwt. No. 5 was a repeat order for Robert, as ‘Robert’s Mot me Fecit, 1618′ and weighs 18 cwt. No. 6 weighing 14 cwt informs us that ‘Joseph Hatch me Fecit, 1618′.No. 7 the youngest of the old brigade, tells us that he was made in 1773, the inscription reading: ‘Win. Tuck and Luke Miles, Church Wardens Pack and Chapman of London fecit 1773′ and his weight is 18 cwt.No.8 is the oldest of the bells, and his message has sounded over the surrounding countryside for nearly 400 years, as it is recorded that ‘Robert Mot made me 1582.’ It is 49 inches in diameter, 3 ¼ inches thick, and weighs 24 ¾ cwts.
If you would like to join our team of ringers or would like to know more about bell ringing please contact our Church Office.