Cheam, St Dunstan
Practice Night: Thursday
Ringing Times: Sunday Service: 8.45-9.30am. Practice: 7.30 -9.00 pm, or 7.15-8.00pm if it happens to be a Red Letter Saints Day
Entry: Entry is via external door at base of tower on the north side of church
Contact: Tower Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org William Scotney
The present church was designed by J.T Pownall and stands a few feet to the north of an earlier Saxon church, of which only the chancel remains. Known as the Lumley Chapel, it contains many monuments to the Lumley family, who were for several centuries “Lords of the Manor of Cheam”. Although the main part of the present church was completed in 1864, due to lack of funds it was not until 1871 that the proposed tower and spire were completed and a ring of 6 bells installed.
However, although the bells were rung between 1896 and 1918, they then fell silent and were condemned as unringable in 1922 by a report from Gillett and Johnston because “The bells all swing in the same direction and there is a crack in the tower”. The bells remained silent until 1974 when a new incumbent arrived and was keen for the bells to start ringing again, although this was limited as the fittings and fitments had fallen into disrepair.
A complete overhaul was carried out for the Jubilee in 1977 at a cost of £4,200, towards which the Surrey Association Belfry Repair Fund made its first ever four figure donation of £1000.