St Patrick’s Bell, Cemaes

Link to Welsh translation 

St Patrick’s Bell is part of a suite of bells situated around the coast of Britain and rung by the action of the sea twice a day at high tide. The bells were designed by sculptor and musician Marcus Vergette in 2008 and this bell in Cemaes was installed in 2013, with a full inauguration ceremony in 2014. It was the fifth bell in a series of 13 bells – follow the link below for information about them.

The time and tide bells are as permanent as they can be, designed to withstand the rough waves but also to mark the eventual rise in sea level due to global warming. They honour the eternal rhythms of the tides as well as the unavoidable challenges of our coastal communities. 

This bell is named after St Patrick, who is reputed to have come ashore at nearby Llanbadrig in the 5th century. You can visit the church which carries his name.

The bell is cast in marine-grade bronze and the supporting structure was made by Magnox in the workshop at Wylfa nuclear power station.  The inscription on the wave catcher, which activates the ringing, was written by local poet Glyndwr Thomas and reads as follows:

Tawel ei chnul uwch heli,
Enw sant yn ei llais hi;
Cloch a’i thraw yn dweud o’i thrig
Dragwyddol weddi Padrig.

Above the waves, melodiously, sounds
The name of a saint, so fair;
A bell whose knell is here to tell
Patrick’s eternal prayer.

The Welsh and English verses have the same meaning.

With thanks to Helen Grove-White

Time and Tide Bell website – details of all 13 bells and associated events

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