When we lived in the city we didn't hear church bells unless we were near the cathedral. The local church was modern and only had one bell which tolled to summon worshipers. When we moved to the country we were pleased to discover that the local parish church has working bells. The bells have an automatic chime that marks the quarter hours each with its own individual chime. The chimes getting more complex as the hour advances until the hour is struck. These ring from nine in the morning until nine in the evening. The bells are rung for services and the bell ringers practice on Friday evenings.
Since I was ill, the bells have punctuated my days. Often when stuck in bed the chimes would mark the passing of time and were oddly comforting. As our three storey house is situated up a hill, our top floor bedroom is level with the ringing chamber of the church. This means we hear the bells clearly. This is a blessing until the ringers have a bad practice session!
Mr G and I were recently out on a walk and heard the chimes that preceded the striking of the hour. But the hour did not strike. The mechanism must have broken. The bells limped on through the week constantly chiming the quarters and never reaching the hour! When the bell ringers assembled on the Friday, they rang for a couple of hours as usual. On Saturday morning we awoke to silence, no chimes, no striking the hour... the bells had been silenced. It is now several weeks since the bells chimed through the day and we miss them.
I really hope that the bells are fixed soon, I miss them marking my days.