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Bremilham Church Basher Eyre.jpg
Church News

Bell from England's smallest church stolen

by Ruth Sax

England's smallest church has had its bell stolen. 

Thieves broke into Bremilham Church, near Malmesbury, Wiltshire, which is just 10ft by 11ft and has room for only ten people, last week.

The 3ft brass bell is 291 years old and weighs 16 stone (101kg).

Bremilham Church on Cowage Farm holds the Guinness World Record as the smallest "in service" church in the country.

Farmer Tom Collins told the BBC: "It would take two or three men to lift it or move it, but once you get it on the floor you can roll it."

"The church is too small to have a bell in its tower, and it doesn't have a tower, hence why it's on the floor by the door on an oak stand where it sits," added Mr Collins who was married in the church.

The grade II listed building has just one small pew and can fit a congregation of up to ten people inside.

For years, it was used to keep turkeys but the present farmers cleaned it out and it was reconstituted as a church.

Mr Collins is not optimistic about the bell being returned, he said: "I'm going to buy a lottery ticket instead."

Wiltshire Police is investigating the theft.
 

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