Surveys of Devon Bells

Ellacombe's Church Bells of Devon

 The earliest published comprehensive survey of the church bells of Devon was that by Rev.   Henry Thomas Ellacombe published in 1872. Ellacombe visited all the towers in the county bar  one and recorded details of the bells including their inscriptions. 

Many editions of the Church Bells of Devon also have bound in copies of The Bells of the Church and others of his general writings about bells and bellringing.

You can access the copy of the Church Bells of Devon made available by the Whiting Society. Dr. John Eisel has written paper in the Friends of the Central Council Library Essay series about Ellacombe's publications.

The "Jerram" Survey

The Guild has acquired a copy of a slightly later survey compiled by bell historian,James R. Jerram of Salisbury. We think the manuscript was compiled in the 1880s and 1890s but was updated with some of the subsequent changes to rings in the early 20th century. How Jerram compiled his survey is not known – much of the information appears to have been transcribed from Ellacombe. An index to the listingis available using modern forms of the Devon placenames and the entries are contained in two pdfs with entries numbered 1 – 110 (Part 1) and 111 – 261 (Part 2). Illustrations of bell stamps and decorations are included along with a few drawings and photographs of towers.

Pearson' s A Ringer's Guide to the Church Bells of Devon

Published in 1888, Charles Pearson's guide makes full acknowledgment of its debt to the work of Ellacombe, updating it where necessary. Supplements to the Guide were published in 1900 and 1927. Copies of the 1888 Guide and the 1927 supplement are available in the Guild Library.

Scott, Mack and Clarke – The Towers and Bells of Devon.

 This two-volume work published in 2007 is the definitive listing of the bells in Devon and updates are still being published on the Guild website.

Copies are available in the Guild Library and can still be purchased from Stevens Books in Exeter.

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