The bells at Hallgrímskirkja church are ringing again following more than a year of silence, Vísir reports. The bells fell quiet in August of 2016 when the equipment which operates them broke. Hallgrímskirkja church is a Reykjavík landmark and a sound stop for any tourist in the city.
Jónanna Björnsdóttir, the managing director of Hallgrímskirkja, says the church staff are overjoyed at hearing the bells again. Neighbours and visitors to the church have also chimed in to express their happiness at the bells’ return.
According to Jónanna, the process of repairing the bells began in January. Many parts were sent to the Netherlands to be fixed, which took three or four months. Others needed to be replaced entirely, such as the main computer system which runs the bells. There are three bells in the tower, as well as a carillon, an instrument which contains bells played from a keyboard. The bells have been tuned but their operation is still in the test stages.
Dutch company Eijsbout has been instrumental in the repair process, repairing the broken bells and sending an engineer to the church last week who finally put the bells to work. The ISK 15 million (US 142,000/EUR 121,000) price tag must have taken a toll on the church budget.
The bells now ring every quarter hour, with longer chimes on the hour. Cantor Hörður Áskelsson echoes the general happiness that the bells are chiming once more: especially since he can now control them using an app on his phone.