Here’s a health and safety message from a headstone in the churchyard of St. Mary, Hartpury, Gloucestershire. It reads as follows:
In memory of John Hale of this Parish Blaksmith who Deceased Septemb: y g 1692. Aged 25 yrs. 4 Months.
Loe here’s interr’d the muses passive friend
Their noblest science – ringing was his end
His actions just, a martyr of that skill
Crusht by a bell ’twas Heavens sacred will
Melodious bells delighting him on earth
Exchanged terrestriall for celestiall mirth
This fatal stroke in haste did stop his breath
Lamented was his unexpected death’
The stone doesn’t say exactly how or why he was crushed but it’s worth a thought if ever you are tempted to fit muffles with the bells up.