A while ago I asked what towers had been up to during lockdown. I had a few responses that I have reproduced below:
St Peter’s Bellringers of Titchfield , have been meeting once weekly on Zoom since the lockdown started. We have used our time to catch up with what everyone has been doing, we have also ventured into the Ringing Room with mixed results, we are however becoming used to the software.
One of the upsides of the lockdown is that we have been joined by an ex member at our meetings who is now living in the USA.
Lesley Blackburn – Tower Secretary
The Lockerley and East Tytherley band have been meeting on Jitsi Thursday evenings and Sundays mornings since the start of lockdown. These replace the sessions we used to enjoy in the pub and over coffees. We end each session with some ringing on Ringing Room for those that are interested – we are gradually getting better at it and managed our first 120 of Grandsire Doubles this morning. We also set up a WhatsApp group that gets lots of use by the band.
St Michael’s Basingstoke have a zoom pub night on Wednesday instead of the practice for catch up and recently a quick quiz.
Ringing room practice is late afternoon on sunday. We ate getting better – gradually
Our usual pattern of Zoom meetings continues, Tuesday is quiz night, Friday is round-up of news and Ringing Room, and Sunday morning is another chance to chat – often with a slightly wider group participating.
We have been making a bit of noise on the bells at Hursley. The Hills spent two Sunday mornings chiming four bells, mainly in rounds with a little bit of call changes, since then the Hursley married couples have rung minimus methods on socially distant bells (1, 4, 6, 8 of the front 8) – masked and hand-washed for about 15 minutes before the morning service.
Some of the Hursley and Romsey ringers have joined up on Ringing Room to attempt quarter peals, with limited success. Last week it looked as if we were going to score Yorkshire Major until a frozen screen/ringer stopped the attempt in its tracks.
On a personal note, I was pleased that the family age touch of 63 Stedman Triples eventually came round after multiple starts, although I would have to agree with the footnote – we found this very hard work!
It would be nice to hear how other towers are getting on – I did have the thought that there are now a lot of ringers who cannot ring because of social distancing, but there might be towers that are silent and could use some volunteers to chime/ring for service.
The Cathedral has kept going mainly in the social dimension with walks aranged every – ? – fortnight – but this has all been arranged through the Cathedral What’sApp group, and since What’sApp seems to run only on smart phones and I feel I’m doing quite well if I can telephone people and take the odd ‘photo, I haven’t really got to grips with What’sApp, which also tells me I have a trillion messages and my version of WA is defunct. So no great progress there. We also have a Google Meet session at 7.30 on a Wednesday. That too, I fear, doesn’t work, for me at any rate. All I get is the hula hoop.
We began ringing at the Cathedral last Sunday – with six of us ringing bells #2, 4, 6, 7, 9, 11. Very melodious, in a sort of modal, holy-minimalist sort of way. We rang a touch of PB Minor and a course of Cambridge, a hand-picked team. We came down to the Inner close to a round of applause from the rest of the Cathedral ringers. There should be a photo in the Hampshire Chronicle, courtesy of and (c) Colin Cook.
New Alresford has a social get-together on Zoom on Friday nights
Sparsholt has been hosting a get-together night on Monday eves, with people taking it in turn to organise quizzes. We had a grand finale open-air get together with social distancing at Littleton sports ground yesterday, and I think that will be it until September. There has also been a ringing session (using RR) once a week.
Meanwhile, the King’s Somborne/Stockbridge/Broughton/Houghton axis keeps going with five (YES FIVE) weekday sessions of 3/4-hour in The Ringing Room and Zoom. 5.00 p.m. on weekdays.
If any other tower would like to let me know what they have been up to, please email me here and I can add your report to the website.