All Saints Fulham take Ascension Day literally. For the 7am service the Choir “ascends” up the winding steps to sing from the top of the tower to the congregation below. It will be the final time before renovation on the Tower and Bells begins in June 2013.
Currently the 10 bells, when rung, cause the tower to sway. This is meant to happen, but not as much as it does now! The heavy bells on their ancient bell frame knock against the structure of the tower so that the mortar is loosening, the corners of the tower pulling apart and the four walls splitting.
At this year’s Annual Parochial Church Meeting, the clergy announced that the Church had raised £500,000 from a mixture of grants and fundraising efforts of the congregation to renovate the Tower and Bells.
This Ascension Day morning on Thursday 9 May, the Choir will stand in a semi-circle around Jonathan, our Director of Music, and sing out to the heavens while the congregation listen from the bottom of the tower. The Choir will sing the anthem Above all praise and majesty by Mendelssohn.
London looks stunning from the top of the Tower – we see the red buses pootling down Putney High Street to the South; the vast greenery of the allotments in Bishop’s Park to the North; the unique arch of Wembley Stadium can be seen to the West; and we can even see as far as the skyscrapers of Canary Wharf to the East.
Choir member Hugh attended the service in 2012 and wrote about the experience on his blog. Click the link to read more of his thoughts and see photos.