I came along to Leigh tower to ring for the switching-on of the Christmas lights on 24th November 2017. It’s a big occasion with a parade (which I was in a few years ago as a bellydancer!), stalls, all the shops open and giving out mince pies and drinks, some rides for the kids, lots of fun.
The church was open with lots of craft and food stalls inside the main body of the church, and a welcoming Santa at the door.
All the lights shining through the stained glass windows looked so beautiful, lovely to see illuminated in the darkness.
There were a full 8 of us to ring, we rang for about half an hour.
I visited this church on 16th September for an EACR District Meeting, with ringing followed by a service and then tea.
It was a beautiful day, sunny but with rain clouds amassing in the distance, making a wonderful contrast between the bright church and grounds and the dark sky.
The church has a ground floor ring of 6 bells, of which the treble and #2 are very flat (and the #2 is a quarter tone higher in pitch than the treble) and the #3 is slightly flat. Long draught, and the treble ringer is squashed up against the a cupboard!
Lovely situation at the end of the long High Street in Wakering with some old cottages surrounding it.
This church is relatively new, having been built in the 1930s, from brick. It’s not a beautiful church, but it’s in a good location in Thorpe Bay, just a road or so back from the seafront. It is on a traffic island in the middle of the road, but unlike e.g. Hadleigh St James the Less (also on a traffic island), the area is quiet and there is barely any traffic. There are some mature trees around it.
The church has a bell tower with a very fine ring of 8 bells, and also a set of chimes.
These photos are all from 30th June 2017, and there aren’t many. I was actually there to ring for a funeral and didn’t have time to walk all round taking photos.
The ringing room is large and airy, with a comfortable spiral staircase up to it:
I have got photos from a couple of dates: a walk past on the 14th March 2012, and a visit to the church and tower on the Tower Open Day on 25th May 2015. I did get a couple of shots inside but not many. Most of my photos are of the view from the tower . . .
Interior including bell-ringing chamber:
Bernard Sadler on the #3 bell was the Tower Captain at Prittlewell for many years, and he still rings occasionally despite being in his late 80s (May 2017)
St Mary’s in Prittlewell is a Grade I listed building which now comes under the borough of Southend-on-Sea.
I have got so many photos of this church, taken on many occasions between 2007 and now (May 2017) but I haven’t actually got a particularly good one of the whole church! Photos have been taken with a variety of cameras, lenses, and my cameraphone. Anyway, here it is and a selection of exterior shots:
St Laurence is a very old church which now finds itself at the end of a runway at Southend Airport! There is a sarsen stone at the base of a pillar, very difficult to photograph. These pics were taken on a visit to the church on 5th May 2017.
I couldn’t embed a Google map so I will give you the address instead: St Laurence & All Saints Church, Junction of Aviation Way and Eastwoodbury Lane, Southend-on-Sea, SS2 6UN
St Laurence and All Saints
Southend Airport is just the other side of the fence
Tiny door with a scratch dial above it
Looking down the nave to the chancel
16th century silverware
Restoration notebook dated 1873/1874
St Laurence is a ground floor ring of 6 bells, here the ropes are kept up out of harm’s way with a spider
Canewdon is near where I live and I have got photos from six visits, ranging from April 2008 to March 2017. The church is on a hill (all of the village of Canewdon is on a hill) and is clearly visible for miles around. It has 8 bells, and I rang them on March 18th 2017.
Exterior and environs:
Looking down the nave to the chancel
Little turquoise organ
View from the top of the tower:
View from the tower
Bell ringing at an Essex Association of Change Ringers Southern District meeting on 18th March 2017