Ringers needed to hold the ropes

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A church in Ripon is appealing for volunteers to ring their bells with a festive taster

session this week.

St John’s Church in Sharow is hoping to attract new ringers with their festive bellringing taster session on Saturday, December 1 from 11am-noon.

The church boasts eight bells intended for use at weddings, Christmas services and other special occasions.

But because of a lack of volunteers to produce a full musical scale, the bells will have to remain silent.

Local bellringer Bridget Connor said without extra volunteers, the church bells won’t be able to ring out for Christmas this year.

She hopes the taster session will ensure Sharow does not go without Christmas jingles as the festive season approaches.

“It’s a great way to start the Christmas season. We want to encourage everyone to come and have a go,” she said.

“We’d really like to ring the bells this Christmas, but at the moment we don’t have enough ringers. It’s easy to come along out of curiosity and get hoooked! And you can discover a natural talent.”

The bellringing taster session is part of the village’s Christmas tree festival which will feature a tree made out of old church bell ropes called ‘Let the bells ring out’.

Festival organiser Chris Hewitt said: “We had a record number of trees last year and would like even more this year.”

Visitors can also enjoy mulled wine, Christmas music and stalls in the church at the event which runs from Friday November 30-Sunday December 3, from 10am-4pm.

lFor more information about bellringing, or to volunteer, contact Bridget Connor on 01765 602402.