A church in Richmond is chiming in to a worldwide celebration of bellringing.

St James's Church in Hampton Hill will be making noise on Saturday (26 June) to mark the 200th anniversary of a unique bellringing invention.

Bells will ring throughout four continents, played at noon local time in each location, to celebrate the bicentenary of Ellacombe Chimes, a special chiming system.

Invented in 1821, by Rev Henry Thomas Ellacombe, of St Mary's Church, Bitton, South Gloucestershire, the apparatus has been crucial to church bellringing ever since.

The apparatus, now used in many bell towers around the world, enables all the bells to be rung by one person instead of one ringer to each bell.

Richmond and Twickenham Times: Bells at St James's Church, Hampton Hill Bells at St James's Church, Hampton Hill

Ellacombe originally invented the system so that all the bells could be rung from the vestry by one trusted ringer, as he was dismayed by the unruly and sometimes drunken behaviour of the ringers up the belltower.

But in the pandemic, this has had another advantage, as bells can continue to be rung while respecting social distancing rules.

At least 100 churches and towers will be participating in The Chimes Around the World celebration, which crosses 11 time zones, will start in New Zealand and finish in Vancouver, Canada 17 hours later.

St James's joins Bath Abbey, Dunblane Cathedral and Llandaff Cathedral in the UK churches taking part in the event.

Bitton Parish History Group is organising the event jointly with St Mary's Church.