For this church:
In 1553 according to the inventory of Robert Pride, Rector of Hawksworth, there were two bells in the church steeple and one little bell. But by the end of the 1600s the steeple had fallen into a state of disrepair and was rebuilt probably in the late 1690s. Now the church of St Mary and All Saints Hawksworth has a brick built tower containing three bells.
The bells are hung in a large wooden frame which could hold four bells. The frame dates from about 1800 and is an Elphick Type ‘V’design (Pickford Group 6.B). It sits on the belfry floor which is supported by four beams which run east to west and below them are two foundation beams running north to south. The fittings for each bell consist of a wooden headstock, iron grudgeons and plain bearings. The gear of the tenor bell dates from 1873 but that of the two lighter bells is earlier and probably around 1800.
The bells are hung for full circle ringing but they have not been rung for many years because the tower structure is not thought to be safe enough to do so. However, the bells are struck to form the chime for the clock. In 1995, the stability of the frame was tested and a report from The Southwell Diocesan Guild of Church Bell Ringers concluded that although there was some frame movement, especially when the tenor was swung, it was not excessive. In their opinion at that time, there was no reason why the bells should not be sounded by swing chiming them but they advised against ringing the bells full circle in their present state because of excess loadings on the frame when rung full circle. To restore the ring, the bells would require re-hanging with new fittings. With bracing the existing frame would appear to be strong enough to hold the ring and enable the bells to be rung full circle. The bells are currently out of tone with each other but by careful tuning they could be tuned as Numbers 1, 3 and 5 of a ring of five and the frame could hold a fourth bell. This major restoration project was put on hold in 1995 due to lack of sufficient funds, over and above the money that is constantly being raised in the village for repairs to the fabric and furnishings of the church.