St George, Poynton, Cheshire

I wrote the original page about these bells exactly 20 years ago, in February 2002. This version has been changed to reflect how my understanding has changed in the intervening two decades!

This peal of six were cast as a set by Taylors in 1887, after they rejected the designs imposed by Lord Grimthorpe earlier in the 19 century, and just before their transition to true-harmonic tuning. The tenor is 13cwt 2qtr 17lbs or 693.5kg. The bells hang in a composite timber and cast-iron low-side frame on their original timber headstocks. They are at the base of a sizeable stone spire, which makes the best of their musical qualities. The tenors of the peal have flat crowns and angular shoulders, the trebles have high domed crowns and rounded shoulders – similar to other Taylor peals of this date. I am grateful to Peter Dyson for permission to record these much-rung and much-loved bells. Here is a recording of them rung in rounds, unfortunately with a little rope noise – the recording was taken on the tower stairs.

2298.2-2319538.7-1295678.2-896  1138.07031694.96902327.71239

The figures in this table are all given in cents. For all partials except the nominal, the partials are given from the nominals of the bell. Cents of the nominals are relative to the tenor.

The nominals are tuned to a typical temperament used by Taylors up to the 1920s, with a flattened third interval. The nominal of bell number 3 is a little sharp.

The hums of several of these bells are not so far from true-harmonic. The sixth and treble are best, followed by the second and fifth. The primes are also quite good for the date. In peals from earlier in the century, the primes would get rather flatter in the trebles. In these bells it is the fourth and fifth which have the flattest primes. In consequence, the timbre of the trebles is quite similar to that of the tenors; the trebles do not ‘squeal’ as they sometimes do in 19th century Mears peals. The tierces of all the bells are very consistent and are close to an equal-tempered minor third of -900 cents.

Another article on this site shows how these bells fit into the history of Taylor’s work.

These bells have a lot of characteristics which make for a good sound, especially the near-octave hums and primes which are not too flat. They are a classic and good example of a Taylor peal of the period.