Now this folk tale was handed down to me by the sadly now departed Verger of the Church of St Andrew in Plymouth, whilst I was a chorister there from 1979 to 1986 before leaving for the unholy smoke of Londinium.
However getting back to our tale it concerns a man who was being tried for a crime he said did not commit but despite his pleadings and prostrations was sentenced to hang…and as that dreadful day approached he re-iterated his pleadings and prostrations but also added that he could not have been where the magistrate said he was because he clearly remembered the church clock striking thirteen times at midnight.
A constable was duly dispatched to Plymouth where the townsfolk and the then Verger and Vicar confirmed the mans’ story that the church calling bell did indeed struck thirteen times on the night in question.
And thus a guilty man was found innocent and saved from the gallows pole.
Whether this is true or just a tale to scare choir boys I shall never know, but it does make to an interesting thought.