Ding dong! East Yorkshire rings in London 2012 Olympic Games
CHURCH bells, hand bells and cycle bells rung out as the region celebrated the opening of the 2012 Olympic Games.
People across the region joined the All The Bells event to mark the historic launch of the Games.
In Beverley's Wednesday Market, hundreds of residents and even the Bridlington land train created a mass of noise for three minutes, starting from 8.12am.
Leading the noise was East Riding town crier Michael Wood, who announced the start of the ringing and also led three cheers to the Olympics and team Great Britain afterwards.
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Suffering from blisters on both hands from the ringing, he said: "What a memorable way to start the Olympics. I couldn't have been more pleased.
"It is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and I feel the Olympics is about far more than just the sport. It is bringing communities together."
While the ringing took place in Beverley, there was also garland dancing as the noise was recorded at almost 100 decibels – almost as loud as a jet taking off.
Jo Drew, of the Beverley Garland Dancers, was among those dancing during the three minutes. She said: "It was such a lovely morning and it does bring the Olympics closer to home."
With the official Olympic opening ceremony taking place last night, millions of people across the world will now be glued to their TV screens as more than 10,000 athletes from 204 nations compete for a coveted medal.
Among the region's medal hopes is boxer Luke Campbell.
As part of Beverley's celebrations, Tyler Lane, 15, who fights at the Kingston ABC boxing club and hopes to make it into the next Olympics in 2016 in Brazil, was sparring in the centre of the crowds.
He said: "With all the ringing I didn't know when to stop."
He was joined by coach Steve Pollard who said: "The success of Luke Campbell has been a big boost to the sport in Hull generally.
"In the four months I've been involved at the club I have seen membership increase by 100 per cent.
"The ethos is all about the community coming together and it has had a great positive reaction."
Claire Strawbridge, of town coffee shop Lempicka, even baked a bell-shaped cake for the occasion, which was handed out to the children after the ringing.
It took eight hours and 16 eggs, 2kg of icing sugar and 2kg of flour to make the cake, which was gone within minutes.
She said: "I finished it at midnight the night before but it was definitely worthwhile.
"I served around 50 children pieces of the cake. Apart from being worried the cake would be dropped on the way to Wednesday Market, I really enjoyed the event.
"It was fabulous as it really did bring people together."
The All The Bells event is the latest work from Turner prize-winning artist and musician Martin Creed.
Sally Kidd, 69, of west Hull, was in Beverley with her six-year-old granddaughter Isobelle Plowright.
Mrs Kidd said: "It's a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and it was great seeing everyone smiling. We don't do enough of these kind of events."
Carol Childs, 46, cycled from Hessle to Beverley to take part.
She said: "It was brilliant and nice to think so many people all over the country were doing the same thing at the same time."
Hanging out of a shop window ringing his bell to welcome the Olympics was Beverley and Holderness MP Graham Stuart.
"What a fantastic event," he said. "With Danny Boyle's pastoral opening ceremony theme in London, what better place to ring the bells than in a beautiful town such as Beverley?"
More than 80 people were also ringing bells in Hutton Cranswick.
Reverend Brian Lees, of St Peter's Church, said: "We had a wonderful morning, with residents ringing bells of all shapes and sizes, from glass bells to rattle bells.
"The Hutton bellringers also rung the church bells.
"I suspect some people might have been woken up.
"It was a wonderful start of the Olympics and all the bellringers were treated to well earned refreshments from the local scout group afterwards."
Nationally, the event was triggered by the firing of the cannon on HMS Belfast.
Following this, bells rang everywhere from Britain's most northernmost inhabited house in Skaw in the Shetland Isles, to the UK's most westerly church in Tresco in the Scilly Isles.
Big Ben in London also rung 40 times in three minutes.
Although the nearest anyone came to injury in Beverley was MP Graham Stuart dangling out of a shop window to ring his bell, some participants had a narrow escape when a bell being rung by Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt on the HMS Belfast flew off its handle.
Mr Hunt is said to have looked on, horrified, as the brass bell sailed over the heads of a group of women.