Kirkham’s St Michael’s bells to mark 170 years

The bell ringers of St Michaels Church
The bell ringers of St Michaels Church

A new date has been set for a 170th anniversary celebration of Kirkham’s St Michael’s Church church bells.

Plans to mark the big date with a commemorative quarter peal in March had to be postponed as the fifth bell of eight wasn’t able to be rung because a wheel within it was broken.

It a very exciting time for us at St Michael’s

The ancient bells are due to be replaced shortly and the delayed anniversary celebration will act as a fond farewell for the bells which have been ringing round the town since 1846.

Members of the Fylde Branch of the Lancashire Association of Change ringers will ring the quarter peal on Friday, May 27 at 3.30pm and St Michael’s tower captain Terry Williams said: “It could well be the last peal because a faculty has now been submitted for the project which will replace the difficult to ring, discordant peal of eight bells by a harmonically tuned peal of 10, for which we will be looking to raise funds.

“It a very exciting time for us at St Michael’s.“

There has been a church in Kirkham since at least 684 AD, but no remains earlier than 17th century gravestones now survive.

The present building dates from 1822 and was designed by a Preston architect, Robert Roper. The 46-metre high tower and spire were added in 1844 by architect Edmund Sharpe and the set of eight bells was installed in 1846 by Mears and Stainbank.

Meanwhile, St Michael’s Church hosts a ‘Big Brekkie’ for Christian Aid Week this Saturday from 8.30am to 11am and everyone is welcome.