100 YEARS AGO, the D&S Times reported how Mr Barnett and five other campanologists had got themselves locked in the bell tower of Northallerton church during bell ringing practice.

“What was to be done?” asked the paper. “It was very cold and inhospitable up there. The campanologists used their wits to attract attention. They jangled a bell in an irregular manner, but no one understood their SOS. Many scores of people heard and wondered: ‘What’s the bell going for at this time o’night?’

“For two hours the bells sent out their discordant appeal, and in the end help came from Mr Hunt, who lives just under the church tower. He became so puzzled by the mystery that about ten o’clock he went to investigate. Ascending the first flight of steps from the vestry, he found the locked door, from the other side of which he was hauled by a ringer.

“When released, the prisoners were thoroughly ‘starved’.”