Blockley church bells will be ringing again in December after 8 months’ silence.

To celebrate the return of the bells to the village, Bishop Christopher Hill, an assistant bishop in Gloucester Diocese, will lead a service of dedication at 5pm on Friday November 10, in Blockley Church, followed by a party.

The peal of eight is to be joined by two new treble bells, complete with new headstocks and a new frame.

The service marks the culmination of an 18 month project that involved removing all the existing bells from the tower, transporting them to the world famous John Taylor Foundry in Loughborough for restoration, casting the two additional bells, recasting the tenor bell, and then reinstalling them in the tower.

The Blockley bells are have been rung regularly since the 17th century, and will now form one of the largest peals in the north Cotswolds.

The restoration project has cost £140,000, raised by private donations and grants. Local residents have donated the new bells, the recast bell and headstocks.

The driving force behind the restoration has been Blockley’s vicar Rev Canon Dana Delap: “The bell frame was so badly rusted that we thought we might have to stop ringing the bells”, she said. “It’s such a pleasure to see the community work together to make sure that Blockley’s bells continue to ring out across the valley.

"Church bells have rung from the tower for hundreds of years at national and religious celebrations, and for personal milestones like weddings. Every day, every hour, our bells mark the passing of time.”