Master’s Update on the Guild Action Plan (Nov 2015)

This was shared at the Guild Exec meeting on Nov 21st 2015

The Action Plan was drawn up after much discussion with many District and Guild Officers and members across the Guild over a considerable time. Many views have been taken into account. We are still very aware that, to get the maximum benefit from the focus that this working document provides, we need to work hand-in-hand with Districts and to actively seek more volunteers.

We do realise that many members are working very hard indeed already – thank you to all. We do believe it’s essential we understand that potential volunteers need to know where we’re heading as a Guild, that any further input they might offer is appreciated and effective. None of us wish to invest our personal and precious time if it is to be wasted or not appreciated. If volunteers enjoy what they do, hopefully that will be rewarding and will result in their continuing to help us.

Since the Action Plan was agreed at the July 2015 A.G.M., we are well underway with the work of the newly formed committees. There has been a great leap forward in Communications..we will hear more about the new website from Ros Martin later on in this meeting.

I’ve asked Deb Baker, Convenor, to prepare a presentation for the Executive  Committee Meeting next March, regarding the potential benefits to us all with the use of Social Media in ringing. When Christine Hill and I had an initial meeting with Bishop Tim of Winchester, in the summer, he was suggesting that we actively consider using “Apps.” more, for example, and to consider how our Guild website might reach out to a wider community. He is likely to consider my request, favourably, to have our new website linked to the Winchester Diocesan website, in due course. He suggested an idea for recruitment leaflets as well. The Dean of Portsmouth Cathedral, when we met, said he was actively considering including video footage of ringing in the rolling “Welcome” video presentation in Portsmouth Cathedral. This is all very positive indeed.

Before leaving Communications here, I would like to formally record our immense thanks and gratitude to all three Communications Committee members that retired in July – David Forder, Rosemary Oakeshott and Ian McCallion. They not only worked extremely hard for the Guild over many years but they continue to offer their help, expertise and advice to the new Communications Committee and the Principal Officers to effect a smooth transition; it’s all very much appreciated. Thank you.

Two other key projects then are in the areas of Education and Belfry Stewardship.


  • the specific item “ support educational initiatives, especially those improving the quality and sustainability of ringing and ringing teaching in the Guild area.”

In the October 2015 Master’s Message, Section 2b of the Action Plan was highlighted, reminding of the potential financial benefits to Districts and members.

We have aimed to keep the whole application process simple and based on common sense here:

So, for two individual members annually from each District who are supported by their District in considering teaching new ringers, if they wish to apply for up to the maximum funding of £30 for each ringer on an ART Training Sceme place:

  • The starting point is the application to the Education Committee for the relevant course in the normal way
  • The Education Committee will deal with the subsidy; the Education Committee will be reimbursed from central funds.

Regarding any alternative course, the ringers will be able to apply to the Guild Secretary. The four Principal Officers and the Education Committee Chairman will review and use their discretion to make a decision.

The maximum funding of £500 for one District each year, specifically “ improve the accessibility of, or the provision of, some sort of training scheme.”

We ask that the District Secretary writes to the Guild Secretary, by 28th February, with a basic outline of the project with estimated timescale and costs, listing the anticipated results and benefits and explaining how the project would improve the access or provision of a training scheme.

The four Principal Officers will review applications and make a recommendation  to the Executive Committee in March for a final decision to be made. Subsequently, the Principal Officers would be permitted to use their discretion in when to make payment, including a payment on account, if it was deemed necessary, rather than waiting for the whole project to be completed.

Belfry Stewardship:

the new committee has drawn members from several Districts. It is busy already! New members have needed to take on board all that has gone before, all that might be  required and what tasks need to be undertaken and prioritised. Once again, we’d wish to record our sincere thanks to Roger Barber who has worked so hard leading the committee for so many years and continues to help by guiding and supporting the new committee informally but very effectively.

There is a great deal of content in the Action Plan and in trying to execute the various items listed, aims and work are likely to overlap to some extent. A few more items here but as time is limited today, we will follow up with emails and website postings for further information.

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