Bathurst, New South Wales
The War Memorial Carillon
In 1928 Taylor’s cast and installed a 35 bell automatic carillon with a 28 cwt bass bell as a memorial to the men of Bathurst and District who had served in the First World War. Bathurst’s carillon has subsequently served as a memorial to all Australian soldiers killed in conflicts since that date. As originally installed, the carillon was sounded using a pneumatic pianola system playing tunes from paper roles. An order has now been placed to restore the instrument and complete a four octave manual and automatic carillon as was originally intended. Phase 1, to be completed by November this year, involves retiring the top octave of bells and adding a further octave – casting 25 new bells in total. The retired bells will be permanently displayed as memorials, and the new bells will be hung on an extension to the present bell frame. All four octaves will be sounded using electro-magnetic hammers from a programmable unit, and will also be playable from a piano keyboard. Phase 2, to be completed by November 2019, will see the manufacture and installation of a new transmission system and baton clavier to allow traditional carillon playing. A new practice clavier will also be manufactured and installed to complete the project.
The moulds for all 25 bells have now been manufactured, and the casting of the first ten bells has been completed. Tuning next.