St Peter and St Paul


The church has a western tower containing a ring of six bells.

  Inscription Size Weight
26" 3.3.13



28" 3.3.15



30.5" 4.3.26
4 GOD SAVE THE CHVRCH 32.25" 4.2.16
5 GOD SAVE THE CHVRCH 1638 33.25" 5.2.10
6 in G O LORD SAVE THY PEOPLE   MDCCCXI 35.5" 6.3.16
Old bellframe
photographed in 1985
 before its removal
Current bells
and bellframe

The original four, now represented by bells 3, 5 and 6, (the former 2 is elsewhere) were hung in a low-sided wooden frame of mid nineteenth century date, with wooden headstocks and plain bearings. The fittings dated from 1885. In 1986 the bells were augmented to six. The treble is a new bell. The second bell came from the stable block at Oxton Hall and was donated by Mrs Mortenson. The fourth was formerly the treble at East Leake, Notts until the new ring was installed there, when it was purchased by G.A. Dawson in order that the ring at Oxton could be converted from a minor to a major key.

The frame is now of fabricated steel and the headstocks of cast iron with ball-bearings.

The treble, second and third bells are the work of Taylors of Loughborough; the fourth is the work of Henry II Oldfield; the fifth bell is by George Oldfield of Nottingham and the tenor is by Samuel Midworth of Mansfield. This bell, ie the tenor, is a typical brass founder’s product with mould joint on the shoulder. The inscription was added after casting the bell as each letter is held in position by threaded pins. The last four letters of the date are missing, as is the first ‘O’ of the inscription. Prior to 1885 the treble was inscribed:

IHESVS BE OVR SPEED   (27.75" 3.3.11 )

The previous second is now in the bell tower at Saundby.

There is a framed manuscipt in the church relating to the rehanging of the bells in 1986.

History of the Bells

1280   First mention of bells at Oxton: ‘small bell. Hand-bells for the dead, bells for the belfry’
1552   Edward VI demands surrender of 3 bells and a hand-bell.
1590-1620   Between these dates, the first replacement bell by Henry II Oldfield of Oldfield Bell Foundry, Long Row, Nottingham was erected in the tower and later became the treble bell.
1638   The present 2nd and 3rd bells cast and erected by George Oldfield.
1750   A tenor bell, now four bells
1813   Frame put in thorough order. Bells re-hung. Four new wheels costing £8 10s, with four new oak headstocks at £2. Brasses recast and clappers repaired. Total cost with sundries £36. Gallery built with ringer’s loft at same level. Charges at this time: 4d for passing bell, 1/- for wedding.
1840-43   Replacement tenor purchased for £53 with £30 being allowed for the old one. The Midworth bell is one of only three known to have survived. Ringers paid 15/- p.a.
1885-88   Bells re-hung. Treble recast by John Taylor of Loughborough for £80. A new bell-rope for 8/-. Ringer’s loft removed and bought down to ground level - £150. Ringers paid 10/- each. Ringing of passing bell charged at 1/6d. C19 hand-bells sold to Tom Shipside who resold to Taylors of Loughborough.
1898-1901   Replacement of rotten belfry floor with one of English oak.
1950/51   Festival of Britain. Tower restored and cleaned. The 3rd bell was moving in the frame. Taylors reported that “everything that was possible was wrong with the bells”, and gave estimate of £600 for repairs. Village craftsmen kept the bells ringing.
1984   A survey gave the old wooden bell-frame only a limited future life. A decision was made to organise a DIY effort by the villagers. A professional drawing for a replacement steel frame for six bells was prepared. The bells were re-tuned by Taylors. A bedding ring-beam was concreted in the tower to house the main girders. Foundry fees alone came to £5000. Sir John Eastwood, a former village resident, offered a new treble bell in memory of Lady Constance Eastwood, and Mrs Mortenson and family donated an 1850 bell from Oxton Hall - a wedding present by Elizabeth Pyndar to her husband Henry Sherbrooke. New running wheels for the bell-ropes were turned from seasoned logs given by mine host at Oxton’s Ye Olde Bridge Inn. Ropes were donated by Nottingham Rural Community Council.
1986   A re-dedication service was held in June