“Bailey Day”: bell-ringers in Suffolk paid tribute to a band of bell-ringing brothers on Saturday.
Ringers from the Suffolk Guild of Ringers replicated the full peal carried out by eight brothers, aged between 15 and 36, from the Bailey family in October 1911 (below), to mark the 100th anniversary of their achievement. Using the same bells at St Margaret’s, Leiston, the modern-day group, which features ringers aged between 17 and 76, but no brothers, completed the peal of 5024 changes in two hours, 51 minutes.
Richard Munnings, who conducted the peal, said that there were in fact 11 brothers in total who used to ring the bells at Leiston, and they have gone down in Suffolk bell-ringing history.
“It was a unique achievement and it’s never been done again by a band of brothers, and it will be difficult to do again.
“We had a number of events going on, and dubbed the event ‘Bailey Day’. It was a demanding peal as the bells are fairly big, but it was exactly the same composition as 100 years ago, and the same sound people would have heard in 1911.”
One of the ringers, Adrian Knights, aged 64, was taught to ring by Ernest Bailey.
As part of the celebrations, quarter-peals also rang out at Southwold, Saxmundham, Theberton and Kelsale.