Okehampton bell ringers are new garage band

A Devon garage has become the unlikely setting for preserving one of the country's most traditional pastimes.

A detached house in Okehampton is giving young people some hands on experience of bell ringing, thanks to computers which provide the sounds.

Mischa Thompson installed the simulated bells to allow local ringers to practice at any time.

The light weight of the system compared with traditional bells is encouraging young people to take part.

'Very exciting'

Ten ropes are connected to 10 bell wheels in the loft of Mrs Thompson's garage.

The wheels are in turn hooked up to a computer and loudspeakers.

Mrs Thompson said: "You can't ring church bells all the time, you have to get permission. But here you can ring any time."

One youngster who has joined the bell-ringing group, called the Denmisch Ring, said: "It's strange being in a garage, but it's very exciting."

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