Church Bells Ring Out To Welcome The Olympic Games

Chiswick takes part in national bell-ringing event

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Fr. Kevin,, pictured with Torin Douglas, gets ready to ring the church bells

Photographs by David Beresford


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Chiswick took part in the simultaneous national bell ringing event to herald the opening of the Olympics today (Friday, July 27).

The unusual event was part of a commission by Turner prizewinning artist and musician Martin Creed for the London 2012 Festival, entitled Work No 1197:All The Bells.

Fr. Kevin Morris, vicar of St. Michael & All Angels is pictured (below) getting ready to ring the church bell at 8.12 a.m. when the nation was invited to ring thousands of bells at the same time for three minutes.

Fr. Kevin commented;"We were delighted to join in with this great community event, celebrating the start of the London Olympics which has so captured the public's enthusiasm."

Big Ben, the hour bell of the Palace of Westminster, chimed more than 40 times – a historic occasion for one of the world’s most famous bells, as it is believed to be the first time that the strike of Big Ben has been rung outside its regular schedule since 15 February 1952 for the funeral of King George VI.

Fr. Kevin putting some muscle power into ringing the bells

Ruth Mackenzie, Director of London 2012 Festival and the Cultural Olympiad, said: 'All the Bells' is London 2012 Festival's biggest community project, and we are incredibly excited that it allows everyone in the UK the chance to be part of history in the making as we aim to set a world record for the largest number of bells to be rung simultaneously.'

The church-bells peal throughout Chiswick for three minutes

A number of Chiswick residents tweeted that they had rung bells from their homes, from roof terraces, or even used their mobile phones to join in.

The start of the Olympics was joyfully rung in at 8.12am at Chiswick Pier on the hall's historic Thornycroft bell.

Pictured here, left to right, are Able Cadet Jaycee Bond-Vaughan and Ordinary Cadet Jessy McCabe, who were there to arrange activities for the many families which thronged Corney Reach to see the Olympic flame pass by on Gloriana.

Bells rang everywhere from Britain's northernmost inhabited house in Skaw, the Shetland Isles, to the UK’s most westerly church in Tresco, The Scilly Isles. Church bells, bicycle bells, Town Hall bells, or even doorbells, were used to create a cacophony of noise to welcome the Games.

July 28, 2012

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