The church has a small bell tower over the main doorway. The tower contains four bells, hung for full circle ringing, but no longer ringable except by the Ellacombe apparatus, and a clock (defunct).
Access to the tower is via a stone spiral stair case from the porch to the small ringing room
The small ringing room holds the four ropes and the Ellacombe chime apparatus. There is a small window overlooking the entrance (through which the ringers can see the bride arriving/leaving)
A central, detachable ladder from the ringing room leads to the clock chamber via a narrow trapdoor.
There is an old clock, in quite good condition, but the cables for the weights are long rusted away. Clock hammers are fitted to some of the bells, but the linkage from the clock to hammers is broken.
A wooden staircase leads from the clock chamber, round the edge of the tower to the belfry, through a hole in the floor of the bellry.
The belfry holds a wooden frame with the four bells. There is wooden louvred structure, from which there are beautiful views. The bells are hung for full-circle ringing, each with wheel and rope.
State of Repair
Unfortunately, the tower is not strong enough to support the horizontal forces generated by ringing the bells full circle, although they could be swing-chimed. They are usually rung from the Ellacome apparatus.
The full-circle fittings have not been maintained, so the wheels are fairly flimsy and worn.
At least one nest of bees is settled in the tower and comes back year on year. So unfortunately access to clock chamber or belfry is only practical during the winter. During the winter is also a good time to clean away the thousands of dead wasps/bees that fall from the belfry to the ringing chamber each year.
The top of the bees nest is just visible from the staircase in the clock chamber (photo below), most of the nest is deep inside the wall and is inaccessible. In Feb 2019, we put a small piece of plywood over the back of the nest in an attempt to block the bees from flying inside the tower. Hopefully there will then be more practical access to the tower in the summer...let's see what happens.
The bells are rung regularly (using the Ellacombe chime) for services and are available for weddings etc. If you would like a go, you would be most welcome! Please get in touch.