After months of silence, bells at York Minster will ring out the joy of the Resurrection this Easter

ReutersYork Minster's were silent at Christmas for the first time since 1361.

After months of silence, the bells of York Minster will sound out the joy of Christ's Resurrection on Easter Sunday.

Volunteer ringers have offered to help out in the belfry for the most important Christian church service of the year.

The Minster is trying to recruit a salaried head or captain of the Bell Tower to find and lead a new team of volunteers, after the last team of 30 ringers was sacked. The former ringers will be welcome to apply to join the new team. 

The row last October centred around 'safeguarding issues' with a member of the team. The team member concerned has never been convicted of any offence.

As a result of the dismissals, the bells were silent at Christmas for the first time since 1361 after neighbouring teams of ringers declined to help out in 'solidarity' with the sacked ringers. Apart from a couple of other occasions, they have been silent for nearly all the time since the row erupted.

The neighbouring ringers refused to help out because they wanted to support their friends and colleagues. Chris Mew, president of the Central Council of Church Bell Ringers, said last year: 'Whilst this may be attractive to the community it has raised varying reaction from ringers approached to help and from the wider ringing fraternity.'

The peal of 14 change ringing bells at York Minster is regarded in the ringing community as among the finest in the country.

York Minster was this week revealed as one of the top 100 most visited attractions in the UK in 2016. It was ranked 60th by the Association of Leading Visitor Attractions. More than 610,000 people visited York Minster last year, making it the third most visited cathedral in the country after Westminster Abbey and Canterbury Cathedral. 

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