On Monday 19th July, all 12 of Exeter Cathedral's bells rang out for the visit of The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall. This was the first time that all 12 bells had been rung since March 2020: quite a pressured ringing occasion. The bell ringers has to arrive early and pass through security checks about an hour before ringing was to commence. This gave time to open the sound control doors in the belfry so that the bells could boom out across Exeter as the Royal party departed from the Cathedral.
Downstairs, outside the Cathedral, Prince Charles and Camilla met representatives from Devon Wildlife Trust, Parklife Heavitree, Exeter City Community Trust and the Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Trust. Inside, they were greeted by the Bishop of Exeter and the Dean of Exeter Cathedral before taking a tour to view a selection of the Cathedral's rare treasure and met with donors, supporters, volunteers, staff, clergy and Chapter members. Matthew Hilling, Ringing Master, was invited on behalf of the bell ringers to be presented to the Duchess of Cornwall. She asked about ringing and how many bells are in the tower and then said she has always wanted to learn to ring.
After the Prince and Duchess signed the Cathedral visitors book and exited the Cathedral the bells rang out, initially to some call changes on 12 followed by some Erin Cinques and Stedman Cinques. Its good to know that we can still do it!