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Bells and Bellringing

For centuries bells have been an important part of Christian worship. They are used to summon people to worship, to celebrate great events, and at times (during the war) for emergencies. At Bristol Cathedral we have two sets of bells, one in the central tower which are rung electronically, and a set of changing bells in the north-west tower. These were taken out of the ruined Temple Church, which was bombed in the war. They are rung by hand, by volunteers and visiting bell ringing groups.  

However - in the modern era we do recognise that whilst some people love the bells others find the noise more intrusive, so we do limit their use to set times and occasions.  The central tower's bells are automatically rung at the following times:

  • A chime on each quarter hour, to indicate the time
  • Tolling for around ten minutes before the daily services of Morning Prayer (8.00am), the Lunchtime Eucharist (12.30pm) and Evensong (5.15pm during the week and 3.30pm at weekends). 

The bells in the north-west tower are rung on the following occasions:

  • For around half an hour before our 10.00am Cathedral Eucharist on Sundays
  • For special services and events, like weddings, funerals, and school services
  • For practice on a Friday evening.

Please note - visitors to the Park Street area will hear the Cathedral bells, but they will also hear the bells of the University's Wills building further up the hill, as well as the Lord Mayor's Chapel, and even St Mary Redcliffe's bells can be heard.  


2021 - bells will be rung on or for the following occasions

Saturday 3 July Ordination of Priests 10.30am  
Sunday 4 July Ordination of Deacons 10.30am  
Friday  9 July Peal    
Friday 16 July Practice 7.30pm  
Saturday 7 August Peal 9.00am  
Friday  13 August Practice 7.30pm  
Saturday 28 August Visiting Ringers 11.15am  
Friday 3 September Peal 6.00pm  
Saturday 11 September Doors Open Day    
Friday 17 September Practice 7.30pm  
Saturday 9 October Peal 9.00am  
Sunday 10 October Installation of Hon Canons 3.30pm  
Friday 15 October Practice 7.30pm  
Saturday 16 October Licensing of Lay Ministers 12noon service: 10.30am
Sunday 8 November Remembrance Day half muffled 9.30am  
Friday 19 November Red Maids Founders Day 10.15am service: 10.45am
    Practice 7.30pm  
Saturday 4 December Peal 9.00am  
Friday 17 December 1/4 peal Carols by Candlelight 6.00pm  
Thursday 24 December Nine Lessons and Carols 3.30pm  
Friday 25 December Festival Eucharist for Christmas 9.30am service: 10.00am
Friday 21 Jan 2022 UBSCR University Ringers Peal 6.00pm