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Ringing in a flipping tradition

By David Parker

The pancake bell at Newark Parish Church was rung by Gary Jax. 130218LSP2-1
The pancake bell at Newark Parish Church was rung by Gary Jax. 130218LSP2-1

A bellringer marked pancake day with a tradition that dates to medieval times.

Mr Gary Jax, 46, of Newark, rang the Pancake Bell at Newark Parish Church at 11am on Tuesday for 15 minutes.

In medieval times a bell was rung on Shrove Tuesday to call people to confession before the beginning of Lent.

Now, the bell is rung to remind people to get batter ready for their pancakes, hence the term Pancake Bell.

Tower secretary Mr Adrian Sunman said: “When the custom of ringing the Pancake Bell was revived in around 1950, the ringer was paid a shilling (five pence) for doing it.

“That has since increased to £1.”

Anyone interested in joining Newark Parish Church Society of Ringers can contact Mr John Raithby on 01636 815034.


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