Church bells to ring out in Hastings to mark National Day of Reflection on anniversary of first lock down

As the town observes a National Day of Reflection to mark a year since the first lockdown was imposed and commemorate those who have died from Covid, church bells in Hastings and St Leonards will be ringing out to mark the occasion.

Tuesday, 23rd March 2021, 9:44 am

The bells of the Old Town’s medieval churches have been rung on many national occasions over the centuries. A single bell at both St Clement’s and All Saints will toll for two minutes at 12.01pm following the national silence at 12 noon.

Paris Nolan will be ringing at St Clement’s and Sue Wells and Rosemary Smith will be at All Saints.

“It’s so important that we remember all the victims of Covid-19, not least the 271 Hastings residents who have died,” said Rosemary, the Bell Tower Captain. “We look forward to a joyful peal of bells when it is all over.”

19/11/13- St Clements Church, Hastings Old Town. ENGSUS00120131119171158

Christchurch St Leonards, Christchurch Blacklands and St John’s Pevensey Road are among the other churches who will be tolling a bell.

“John Donne preached that no-man is an island,” said Old Town Priest-in-Charge Paul Hunt. “Donne said that when we hear the bell toll for someone’s death we shouldn’t enquire for whom the bell tolls because it also tolls for us. Every time someone dies we lose a little bit of ourselves by virtue of our common humanity.”

St Clement’s is the borough church and a civic service to mark the pandemic is being arranged with a provisional date of Sunday November 7.