Central Council comes to Portsmouth May 2016 – Christine Hill Reporting

Over the weekend of 27-30 May, 200+ Central Council members, family and friends came to Portsmouth to enjoy a packed programme of events.

The HQ hotel was the Royal Beach Hotel on Southsea seafront.  Many of the visitors stayed there, and the lucky ones got a seaview.  The weather was sunny and warm all weekend- a real added bonus.01a2947b80fd49bf0d855cb1f5a52d7172bf248ccb

Saturday saw the members out visiting towers from Netley to Havant, and from Privett to Portsmouth.  Some souls ventured further afield and visited Shanklin, Swanmore and Ryde on the Isle of Wight.

W & P members manned a help desk in the hotel for the weekend, answering questions on a wide range of topics. We had bright yellow t-shirts so we were easy for the visitors to spot us!


After the ringing on the Saturday there was a curry and real ale supper in the hotel.  We bought in real ale from three local breweries after much debate about how much ringers would drink.  We worried needlessly about having some left over – the 340 pints were all gone by the Monday………

The real ale ready to go



W&P members enjoying their curry


Sunday morning saw members disappearing off to ring at various local towers, while others set up their various stands and displays.  The real business started on Sunday afternoon with 120 members and visitors attending an Open Meeting.  A panel of six well known ringers fielded various questions on the future of ringing and the Ringing world amongst other topics.

After that, a quick dash to the Cathedral, where two courses of Stedman Cinques preceded a rousing Evensong, with lots of good ringing hymns and a thoughtful sermon preached by Canon Jo Spreadbury.  Then back to the hotel to change for the Formal Dinner, where we were pleased to be joined by the Bishop of Portsmouth and his wife, and the Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress of Portsmouth.

On Monday the main meeting of the weekend was held – the AGM of the CCCBR and also the AGM of the Ringing World.  This took all day and many substantial motions were debated.  Many members then left for their homes, while others stayed on for a few more days to enjoy some sightseeing.

  • CC2016 weekend – photos from the meetings

    Here are some more photos from the CC 2016 weekend’s events.  Unless otherwise stated these were taken by Alan Bentley, one of our stewards for the weekend, who has kindly said we may use them.

    Here is the audience listening intently to the CC meeting.

    CC Mtg Audience 01

    And here are the CC officers on their top table.

    CC Mtg Committee

    At the open meeting on the Sunday, a panellist of well known ringers discussed questions from the floor.  Left to right – Chris Mew, Tina Stoecklin, Andrew Wilby, Elva Ainsworth (chair), Michael Foulds, Pip Penney, Nigel Orchard.

    Open Mtg

    This year the CC leapt into the 21st century and broadcast its meetings to anyone who wanted to tune in via the internet.  After a few teething troubles it all worked quite well.

    Here is the CC IT man, Dave Richards, keeping an eye on the technical stuff.

    LIve Streaming

    A number of people from the W&P (and beyond) very kindly offered to help out and be stewards at the meetings, counting votes and running round with microphones.  They were very conspicuous as we made them wear bright yellow tee shirts.  These were a surprisingly sought after item, and a few surplus ones were purchased by souvenir hunters.  Here are some of the stewards.


    We also had several volunteers who spent time on the Help Desk answering a range of queries from CC reps and other hotel visitors.  While the meetings were going on, and the Help desk was quiet, they took a few moments to update their Facebook statuses. (photo Peter Hill)






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