Wellington Cathedral has 14 bells, ranging in size from Little James(4 cwt) to the People's Bell(27.75 cwt). A sharp treble and flat 6th allow us to ring a light six (5 cwts) and a light eight and ten (10 cwts). The bell tower was completed and bells were installed by Taylors of Loughborough in 1984. Seven of the bells were already 100 years old at that stage, being recycled from the demolished St Edmund's Church in Northampton, England.
Each year we hold the Wellington Ringing Festival at New Zealand Labour weekend. In 2014, we welcomed ringers from England, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Hamilton, Auckland, and Dunedin. As well as plenty of general ringing for all levels of expertise, we have a dinner and several quarter peal attempts. All ringers are welcome. For more details see Ringing Festival.
The John David Mini Ring was bought from Matthew Higby & Co in 2015 by the Wellington Ringers. Donations towards the cost were made by many ringers, by ANZAB and by Wellington City Council. The bells were cast Mark Prior and tuned and hung by Matthew Higby. The tenor weighs 9lb 10oz, with a note of F#.
The ring is named after two members of the Caldwell family, four generations of which have been ringers in New Zealand. David Caldwell was a ringer at St Matthew's, Auckland and Hamilton Cathedral. His son John, learnt to ring and his son Andrew is a ringer. John died at a relatively young age.
Each bell is named after a donor. The treble and tenor are named Gill and Gerald respectively, after Gill and Gerald McIlhone. The second is named Rei, after Rei Ngatai. The third is named Jarman, after Chris Jarman. The fourth is named Barrett, after Terry Barrett. Gerald, Rei, Chris and Terry are Wellington ringers. The fifth is named Pleasance, after Pleasance Purser, who was Ringing Master at the Cathedral for 25 years.