Welcome to Vernet Bells
10 Bells, 5-0-15 in C (John Taylor & Co, 2019)
The second lightest ring of ten in a church in the world.
Services are held at 10:00 every Sunday, with ringing from 09:30.
Practices are on Saturdays at 17:00.
Visitors are welcome, but you should please contact the Tower Captain in advance and, of course, take all necessary Covid precautions.
The ten bells at St George's Anglican Church, Vernet-les-Bains in the Pyrénées-Orientales are the first English change-ringing bells in France. They are also mainland Europe's first ring of ten and one of only four ringable peals there, two in Dordrecht (Nethlerlands) and the other in Ipres (Belgium)..
St. George's church was built by the English in the early 20th century. The church has always had a tower but no bells were ever installed. The project to install the bells was the driven by dedicated bell ringer, Jeff Ladd. Thanks to the help and co-operation of the commune of Vernet-les-Bains, the Fondation du Patrimoine, La Direction Régionale des Affaires Culturelles and the generosity of individual and corporate donors, the bells were cast by John Taylor & Co at their foundry in Loughborough and installed in April 2019.
The first service ringing was on Palm Sunday 2019, when eight bells were rung. The first quarter peal on the bells, 1296 Plain Bob Caters, was rung on Maundy Thursday, 18th April 2019, as we joined with our fellow ringers back in the UK in marking the terrible fire that broke out at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris on 15th April.
Service ringing is at 9:30 am every Sunday; however, you are strongly recommended to contact us in advance to check that we have enough ringers to welcome you.
Practices are held on Saturdays at 17:00. Anyone wishing to book for a visiting band, general ringing, peals or quarter peals should contact the Tower Captain, Jeff Ladd.