The 13th-century tower of St John's, with its 16th-century "candle sniffer" or “Hertfordshire Spike” spire, houses a fine ring of eight bells. Originally cast by Pack and Chapman at Whitechapel in 1774 the two lightest bells were recast by Taylors in 1926. The treble, still bearing its original inscription "If you have a judicious ear, You'll own my voice is sweet and clear" weighs just under 5 cwt (249.5kg) but the tenor "Procul Esta Profani -- 1774" (Be Distant, O Profane) weighs over 18 cwt (947kg).

An enthusiastic band ring every Sunday morning for 45 minutes before the 10.30 service. Experienced and novice ringers are always welcome, and possible future ringers too at the Tuesday evening practice at 7:30pm

Once a month the band also rings at the Sunday Choral Evensong service, either before the service or to ring a quarter peal afterwards. The band also mark some of the town's important events such as Charter Day, Edwardian Sunday and FEVA with special ringing.

Bells bring people together!

Their call to worship proclaims the Christian message to the world. And the bellringers themselves, as they meet, become united as a team. For more information about learning to become a ringer or if you are a visiting band please contact the Tower Captain: Matt Curl on 01423 868104 or

View here the Youtube video from St John the Baptist produced by PEMCO, Harrogate

Read the story behind it here.