Clock & Chimes
The Carillon operates like a giant musical box. The large cylindrical drum with pegs rotates to trip levers connected by wires to hammers which strike the outside of the bells. Two hammers are required for each bell as some tunes need the same note struck twice in quick succession.
The Carillon plays a 9 am, 12 noon and 6pm. The array of trip leavers moves axially to a fresh set of pegs so that a different tune is played each day. The tunes are:
Tuesday The Shady Bowers
Wednesday All Saints
Thursday The Lass of Patties Mill
Friday Highland Laddie
On Saturday the tune is the Derby Ram – the regimental march of the Sherwood Foresters. We hope it also inspires Derby County Football team.
The Clock Chimes
The same ten bells are used for the clock, the carillon and for change ringing. Hammers, operated by bellcrank levers and wires, strike the sides of the bells for the clock and carillon. These hammers are pulled out of the way to allow the bells to turn full circle for service ringing. At appropriate times the clock sends signals to strike the hours, quarters and to cause the carillon to play.
The tubes which go through the walls to drive the hour hands of the clock are cavalry carbines from the 1745 uprising when Bonnie Prince Charlie came to Derby.
Until 1976 the clock and carillon were driven by heavy weights which had to be wound up twice a week. They are now electrically driven.