Carillon Amersfoort Onze Lieve Vrouwe Tower English Text

The Tower

The construction of the tower probably started around 1444, the tower was finished in 1470. The tower is built in the style of many towers in this region, such as the Domtoren in Utrecht. The church building was demolished in 1787 after an explosion when the church building was used as a storage place for gunpowder. Since that time, the tower has stood alone without a church building.

The OLV tower of Amersfoort – Photo Hans van Dijk 2021

The Carillon

The Amersfoort tower does not contain one carillon, but two! The original Hemony carillon made by François Hemony in the years 1658/59/62 has 35 bells. The heaviest bass bell is a des1 of about 2000 kg. The second carillon was cast in 1997 by the Royal Bell Foundry Eijsbouts and has 58 bells. The heaviest bass bell is a B-flat.

Other bells

Since the year 2000, the tower has had a 7 ringing bells cast by bell founder Hanns Martin Rincker in Sinn, Germany. The ringing bells have a total weight of 7000 kg.


The history of the carillon of the OLV tower of Amersfoort is closely intertwined with the carillon school present in Amersfoort, of course the history of the carillon goes back further. Not much is known about a carillon or grace note that was present before 1600, but it is known that in 1594 a ‘clock setter’ was appointed in the person of master Jacob. This master Jacob was also an organist, it is plausible that he also made music on the bells? In 1647 that is the case, Jacob Tomasz was appointed carillonneur in combination with the position of organist. In 1657, negotiations began with François Hemony about the purchase of a new carillon, but a lack of money limited the ambitions of the Amersfoort city council. Finally, when the city council commissioned Hemony for a new carillon, the expensive bass bells were temporarily scrapped from the plans. It was not until 1953 that the missing bass bells fis1 and gis1 entered the carillon, cast by the Eijsbouts bell foundry. As mentioned earlier, the history of the Amersfoort carillon is closely intertwined with the carillon school that has been established in Amersfoort since 1953. Since 1953, the carillon of Amersfoort has also been the practice carillon of the students, and although the carillon was expanded to a carillon of 47 bells in 1953, this carillon was tuned in meantone tuning restrictions. That is why a completely new carillon was installed in the tower in 1997, next to the Hemony carillon. The new carillon was cast by the Eijsbouts bell foundry.


The students of the Netherlands Carillon School play the carillon on Thursdays from 8 to 9 pm, Fridays from 10 am to 11 am and Saturdays from 1 pm to 2 pm.