Morecambe bell ‘will not be noise nuisance’

Graham Dean, Shane Johnstone, Sian Johnson and Kathryn MacDonald of Morecambe Artist Colony, standing where the Time and Tide Bell could be installed on the Stone Jetty.
Graham Dean, Shane Johnstone, Sian Johnson and Kathryn MacDonald of Morecambe Artist Colony, standing where the Time and Tide Bell could be installed on the Stone Jetty.

A bell which will ring with the rise of Morecambe’s tide will not be a noise nuisance say campaigners.

The Tide and Time bell could be installed on the Stone Jetty if approved by Lancaster City Council.

Objections were initially raised by Morecambe Town Council over noise disturbances for nearby neighbours but they have since pulled out their concerns.

Tests were carried out in the area and the noise produced was described as the sound of “leaves rustling.”

“We carried out some noise tests and the decibels were compared to the noise of leaves rustling,” said Sian Johnson, a member of Morecambe Artist Colony, a community arts group.

“The Stone Jetty cafe, the Midland Hotel and the lifeboat centre are very keen as it will bring people to the town.”

The bell, which is one of 12 across the UK, will be created and built for free by Devon-based sculptor and musician Marcus Vergette. Fundraising is taking place to help towards the cost of the bell’s installation.

“We want people to be able to see it and understand it,” said Sian.

“People who have seen the other bells may come and see this one, it will bring new visitors to Morecambe.

“The designer wants the bell to be the people’s bell and hopefully Morecambe will have a sense of pride and want to know more.”

Played by the movement of the waves, the bell creates a varying musical pattern, striking in time with the water.

Each clapper on the bell will have an inscription designed by the community.

While it is intended that each bell will reflect the local culture through inscriptions on the wave catcher, written by each respective local community, the unifying factor for all bells is raising awareness of climate change.

One objection has been raised regarding noise pollution, potential vandalism and engineering specifications.

The bell application will go before the planning committee on Monday October 16 at 10am at Lancaster Town Hall.