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Loughborough Carillon Tower

Articles 3947 Idg5 JPf25 G UD CarillonThe Carillon Tower in Queen's Park, Loughborough was built after the First World War as a memorial to the local men who gave their lives while serving their country.

Construction ended in 1923 and the 46-metre high tower was officially opened on July 22, 1923. The tower houses 47 bells, crafted by John Taylor Bell Foundry in Loughborough and it is a grade two listed building.

Renowned English composer Edward Elgar composed a piece of music called Carillon Chimes specifically for the official opening.

The tower is also home to the Loughborough Carillon Tower and War Memorial Museum.

During 2018, a £280,000 conservation project is being carried out by the borough council, supported by War Memorials Trust. The work is due to start in March / April and will last throughout the spring and summer. It is due to be completed by the autumn in time for the November 11 Remebrance Day Commemorations which this year mark the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War.

It does mean the museum, which normally opens between Easter and September, will be closed and there will not be any carillon recitals until the work is completed.

The work will see the clavier which chimes the bells fully conserved with the striking elements of each bell refurbished by the foundry and there will also be some maintenance to the workings of the bells themselves. Repairs will be carried out on the stonework, copper roof, bronze memorial plaques, windows and doors.

Scaffolding will surround the tower while the work is undertaken.

Planned conservation work

Below is a broad outline of the planned work which is due to be carried out as part of the refurbishment on the Carillon.

Stone/brickwork 

Repair minor fractures and defects in the Portland stone areas, some repointing and cleaning

Bronze memorial plaques

Cleaning, refurbishment, patination and waxing of six large and six small plaques

Copper sheeting

Repairs to be made to the copper sheeting on the Carillon roof

Windows 

Some of the windows are in a poor state of repair with corroded metal frames and broken glazing. New frames will be fabricated out of stainless steel and powder coated. Some windows will need reglazing

The clavier

The project plan includes restoring the existing clavier as the moving parts are very worn, restoring the decoration of the entire bell frame

The louvres

The existing louvres are in general good order with only minor repairs required to the timberwork.

Timber access stairway and walkway

The stairway and walkway from the third floor to the viewing platform is in reasonable structural order but some decoration is needed and a new bird curtain is required to keep the belfry pigeon free.

Lighting will be improved in order to enhance the bell arrangement so the bells can be more easily viewed.

Other

  • Some internal plasterwork will be carried out and redecoration to access doors and farmes
  • Cracked pavings around the Carrillon will be replaced and some minor repairs carried out to the balustrade walls.
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