The Cruise of the Dondevoy


Today, someone told me of a dig at Tamworth, which pays more than the one pound fifty per day I am getting here. Tamworth is near a canal, and is on the other side of Coventry, my next goal. It sounds ideal, so I shall probably move on as soon as it is convenient.

I spent the day scrubbing bits of pot and bone (very boring work), after helping to measure the spot where I found the knife blade yesterday, and telling John what needed to be done to the hole. I decided to go bell ringing in the evening, as my handbook on bells told me that there were two churches in Northampton which had Tuesday as a practice night. The first church, St. Peter's, which has a light ring of eight, was deserted, and after enquiring at the churchwarden's house, and being told that there was no regular band at the tower, I set off for All Saints' in the city centre, where the bells are heavier.

All Saints' Church, Northampton.

Picture from Wikipedia user Thorvaldsson and published under this Creative Commons licence.

At eight o'clock the practice started; the band consisted entirely of young girls of school age, none of whom were much good, and a small middle aged man who was teaching them. All they could ring were rounds and simple call changes, so I was in no fear of being shouted at for being slightly off stroke. However, the call changes got thoroughly "imbrangled", but only partly through my fault. During the hour in which we rang, I was taken up the tower to look at the clock, and further up to see the bells. They are badly hung, as the two deepest bells are hung side by side, swinging in the same direction, which makes the tower rock alarmingly. They were all cast together in the eighteenth century, which makes them all combine pleasantly, despite the bad ringing.

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