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Marathon peal of bells rings out for Magna Carta
15 June 2015
The second longest peal of bells ever heard at St Paul's has rung out to mark the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta.
Thirteen ringers took to the bell tower on Saturday 13 June 2015 to complete the marathon peal which lasted a gruelling four hours and 35 minutes.
Most full peals rung at St Paul's involve around 5,000 'changes' but this attempt involved 5,800, making it only second to a peal rung to mark 2,000 years of Christianity on New Year's Day in 2000 which involved a staggering 6,437 changes.
The ringers, all members of the St Paul's Cathedral Guild, rang non-stop for the duration - any mistakes would have meant the peal was unsuccessful. In a peal of 'Cinques' there are 11 working bells that ring the changes while the biggest bell, the tenor, always strikes at the end of the row, giving a pleasing rhythmical effect. This huge tenor bell was rung by husband and wife team, John and Ann White.
Magna Carta was signed by King John in 1215, and enshrined into law the rights of individuals. In the run-up to the signing St Paul's was a pivotal location as it's where John's barons rounded on him and where he was forced to cede the power of the English crown to the Pope.
Saturday 13 June 2015 in 4h35min (61-2-12 in B♭)
5800 Stedman Cinques
Composer: P N Mounsey
Treble. Paul J Tieboult
2. Paul N Mounsey (c)
3. Andrew J Graham
4. Gwen Rogers
5. Claire F Roulstone
6. James H Foster
7. Martin C Faulkes
8. David I Bassford
9. Martin J Cansdale
10. Ian Roulstone
11. Paul L Carless
Tenor. John I White and Ann White
Listen to the last peal, rung for the birth of Princess Charlotte in May 2015