Magellan was recently tasked with a very delicate job at a very special building – St Mary’s Cathedral. The brief was to install Peal Boards into the central bell tower.  These large boards were the backings for plaques which would name the bell ringers of celebratory bell ringing.

Standing in the Cathedral, one can’t help but be in ore of such a magnificent building.  The architectural features are inspiring.

Looking up at the ceiling some 21 metres away, it’s easy to feel humbled by your surrounds and the enormity of the job at hand.  For these peal boards needed to be pulled up thought a hatch in the ceiling and into the main bell tower room.

The Prep Work

To reach the central bell tower required a steep 120 stair climb up the original sandstone stairs.

Preparing to pull the peal boards up required rigging hauling lines through a heritage trap door system.  This intricate door system comprised of 3 trap doors: the central bell tower flooring; the trap door between the ceiling of the cathedral and the flooring of the bell tower room; and finally the trap door which is the ceiling of the Cathedral.

Scope of Works

Originally the scope of works was to pull four peal boards up through the trap doors into the central bell tower.

However, the scope of works changed slightly, as news travelled to those that work in the central bell tower that the hatch would be opened, and a new fridge and shelving was purchased.

For this was the second time in nearly forty years that the hatch had been opened and bell ringers needed to take the opportunity to remove an old fridge and replace with a new one.

Watching the old fridge carefully being lowered down and a new one being pulled up required much precision and skill, being that it was undertaken in such an historic building.

One of the challenges faced by the team was timing, for all of these works had to be completed between mass times and with pews being put back into the original position in time.


The job was completed within the time frame required and always ready for a challenge, the Magellan team were able to accommodate the request of the fridge and shelving using their expertise all before the afternoon mass.

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