Former Milton Keynes mayor’s bell ringing exploits rings up thousands for charity

A bell-ringing former Mayor of Milton Keynes has added thousands of notes to a city homeless charity’s coffers with his rope-pulling exploits.

Cllr Martin Petchey (Lab, Stantonbury) held the position of MK’s first citizen until last week and marked the end of his year in office by handing over a cheque for £7,455.90 to the Bus Shelter MK.

Councillor Martin Petchey in action

Councillor Martin Petchey in action

At the start of his term in office Cllr Petchey set himself the task of completing about 45 minutes of continuous ringing – called a quarter peal – at all 21 available set of church bells in the borough.

And he completed the task without dropping a clanger on his very last day in office, at Old Wolverton. He is pictured at his home tower, Woughton-on-the-Green, where he began the clang-athon.

Cllr Petchey said: “One of the highlights was to ring a new method celebrating the anniversary of the consecration of Christ the Cornerstone Church in Central Milton Keynes – this was at Lavendon, as Cornerstone does not have bells.”

Cllr Petchey, who bell rings in the little spare time he has after carrying out his councillor duties, added that only non-ringers call it campanology.

He said that anyone who wanted to donate to the cause could still do so by making a donation to The Bus Shelter MK via its website.

Cllr Sam Crooks took over the mayoral chain of office last Wednesday at the council’s annual meeting.