A FURTHER £13,000 appeal has been launched in Warminster to enable the complete restoration and repair of the 282-year-old tenor bell at St Denys the Minster Church.

The appeal follows a £40,000 bill to enable seven of the church’s eight historic bells to be refurbished and refitted.

During the process, the refurbishers, bell engineers Matthew Higby and Co, in Holcombe, Somerset, found a crack in the largest bell, known as the tenor.

Tony Wilcox, the parish administrator, said: “The work on all the bells started in January and was progressing well.

“However, the largest bell - known as the ‘tenor’ - and weighing 1,220 kilograms - has been found unexpectedly to have a significant crack which needs repair.

“This work has to be carried out at a specialist workshop at Soundweld in Newmarket.”

The unexpected setback means the church will have to raise a further £13,000 to have the tenor bell repaired, refitted and re-tuned to the key of D major.

It will then be hung alongside the other seven bells, whose weight ranges from 915kg down to 355kg, so it can be rung.

The parish has already raised the £40,000 thanks largely to grants and a generous legacy left by Kathleen Ashworth, daughter of a former bellringer F Ashworth.

Mr Wilcox added: “We are urgently seeking further donations or fundraising of about £10,000 to enable the completion of the repair, refurbishment and refitting of the historic eight bells and in particular the new work on the tenor bell.

“However, we are likely to need another £3,000 to have the tenor bell re-tuned before it can be rung again.”

St Denys the Minster Church is planning to hold a gift day on Sunday, October 13, starting at 3pm with a Warminster ‘Big Sing’ of songs of praise.

If you wish to donate, go to http://www.stdenystheminsterwarminster.org.uk,or visit the parish church office.