All posts by Debstailend

Seriously having fun with web and Social Media!

Archbishops ask cathedrals and churches to toll bells for Notre Dame

Following the devastating fire at Notre Dame Cathedral, the Archbishops of Canterbury and York are asking cathedrals and churches across England to toll their bells for 7 minutes at 7pm on Thursday.

The Archbishops of Canterbury and York are today encouraging, where possible, all cathedrals and churches across England to toll a bell for 7 minutes at 7pm this Thursday, as a mark of solidarity following the devastating fire at Notre Dame Cathedral. This initiative has been suggested by the British Ambassador to France, Edward Llewellyn, and it is hoped that many will take part.




The ART AWARDS and how to apply.

The ART Awards continue to grow every year – with over £3,000 in prize money waiting to be won. Now is your chance to apply for the 2019 ART Awards!

The teaching awards (the first six listed below) are open to everyone – not just ART Members or those using ‘Learning the Ropes’ scheme – the aim is to encourage and recognise the people and groups leading best practice and innovation in the teaching and development of ringing. The individual ringing awards are open to those who have completed one of the Learning the Ropes programmes (on tower or hand bells) or participated in the Learning the Ropes Plus scheme.

ART Awards 2019

Prizes will be awarded in the following categories:

The Sarah Beacham Youth Group Award
Prize of £400 – sponsored by the Sarah Beacham Memorial Trust

The Sarah Beacham School Group Award
Prize of £400 – sponsored by the Sarah Beacham Memorial Trust

The ART Award for Excellence in the Use of Technology in Teaching
Prize of £500 – sponsored by John Taylor & Co.

The ART Award for Excellence in Recruitment or Retention
Prize of £400 – sponsored by AbelSim

The ART Award for a University Society that has made a Significant Contribution to Promoting Ringing to Younger People
Prize of £500 – sponsored by CCCBR

The ART Award for Inspiring Leadership in Ringing
Prize of £400 – sponsored by Talent Innovations

The ART Learning the Ropes Individual Achievement Awards
Two prizes of £250 – sponsored by the Ancient Society of College Youths
Five highly commended prizes of £25 each

Worried about applying?

The judges (led by Stephanie Pattenden) aren’t looking for the most professional application; what they are looking for is ideas, commitment and results. So if you’re looking at new ways of recruiting it’s not just the idea, but the number of people you recruited and whether they stayed. Easy ways to show that – number retained a year or two later, new recruits coming in (success breeds success), quarter peals, striking competition results, practice attendance, or ringing progress (LtR Levels) and don’t forget photos and quotes. There’s no magic formula; think why what you’re doing has been successful and put it down on paper. Please don’t be modest!

What are we looking for?

Hopefully having convinced you that the ART Awards might be relevant to you or a ringer or group you know, what are the common themes that appear in previous years’ winning applications?

  • Having a vision or passion and making it happen: however big or small, making things happen is what leadership is all about, even if you don’t call it that.
  • Trying out new things: some of which work and some of which don’t. If we don’t move with the times ringing will not flourish, so tell us about the risks you took – what you tried or did differently
  • Getting young people ringing: over-turning all those misconceptions that exist about children seeing ringing as “uncool” and giving up at the first hurdle.

If you recognise and identify with any of these themes, why not consider applying for yourself or a ringer or group you know? There will be an ART Award that’s right for your application….and if you applied and didn’t win last year, how about applying again, now you’ve got another year under your belt – Lerryn School did that last year and they won!

How do I enter?

Further information and application forms are available at

The closing date for applications is 31 December 2018 – so now is the time to make sure that those doing great work don’t miss out!

sent by Louise Nightingale, Communications & Marketing Workgroup Lead



The Call of Bells

For centuries the bells have called
through countless ringers’ hands
To come to worship, prayer and song
the people of these lands

The bells fell silent one by one
as ringers went to war
They’d heard the call to go to fight
the war to end all wars

Four years on the guns fell still
and most of them returned
Their families embraced them back
they went to join their bands

The broken bones that many had
would mend in time they hoped
But those whose limbs were lost in war
would never hold a rope

And men with shell-shock could not bear
to hear the bells again
The sound brought back the crash of shells
the cries of dying men

Now fourteen hundred ringers lie
beneath a distant sky
Though silent, still we hear their call
their spirits ring on high

They call to us to ring the bells
to learn the ancient art
So England evermore shall hear
the nations beating heart


Taylor’s Bellfoundry secures National Lottery Support!

The Loughborough Bellfoundry Trust has received initial National Lottery support* for the restoration of the historic Taylor’s Bellfoundry in Loughborough it was announced on Tuesday 2nd October.

Made possible by National Lottery players, the project aims to restore key parts of the Grade II* listed building which is currently on the Historic England Heritage at Risk Register. The aim is to restore the buildings, enhance the commercial operation, attract more visitors and increase awareness and understanding of the importance of Taylor’s

Development funding of £298,600 has been awarded by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to help the Loughborough Bellfoundry Trust progress the plans. This is the first phase in a bid for £3.7 million from the HLF, which it is proposed will be matched with funding from a number of sources including a fund raising campaign which will be launched shortly. Subject to a successful second round bid, work is expected to start on the Bellfoundry in 2020.

There will be a wide range of opportunities for people to be involved with the project at the Bellfoundry, including heritage craft workshops, volunteering and arts and cultural events.

Taylor’s is the last bellfoundry in Britain, the only vestige of an ancient industry that creates bells for thousands of buildings around the world. At least 20 million people in Britain and hundreds of millions worldwide will hear a Taylor bell every day.

However, the purpose-built Victorian bellfoundry is At Risk. Without urgent repairs and fundamental changes to engagement, we will lose this incredible asset and part of our culture; a massive loss to traditional craftmanship and a seismic impact on historic buildings around the world.

This project will; save the site, removing it from the HAR register, secure the future of the industry in Britain and its unique skills, create a National Bell Museum, improve global engagement and ensure Taylor bells are enjoyed by future generations across the globe.

Commenting on the award, Andrew Wilby, a Trustee of the Loughborough Bellfoundry Trust said “ We are delighted that we have received this support, thanks to National Lottery players. We are looking forward to developing our proposals further to save this national gem, securing the future of bellfounding in the UK and underpinning the future of the English Art of Change-Ringing across the world.”

If you would like to support the project please follow our facebook page or twitter feed (Twitter: @Lborobelltrust, Facebook:


Notes to editors

About the Heritage Lottery Fund
* HLF heritage grant applications are assessed in two rounds. Taylor’s Bellfoundry has initially been granted round one development funding of £298,600 by the Heritage Lottery Fund, allowing it to progress with its plans. Detailed proposals are then considered by HLF at second round, where a final decision is made on the full funding award of £3.7m.

Thanks to National Lottery players, we invest money to help people across the UK explore, enjoy and protect the heritage they care about – from the archaeology under our feet to the historic parks and buildings we love, from precious memories and collections to rare wildlife. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and use #NationalLottery and #HLFsupported.

What is the Loughborough Bellfoundry Trust and why was it been set up?

The Loughborough Bellfoundry Trust is a Charitable Incorporated Organisation, registered with the Charity Commission in 2016. It was set up by a number of the John Taylor’s & Co directors to safeguard the future of bell making at the site in Loughborough in perpetuity. The unique collection of buildings, equipment, patterns, machinery and archives from the Bellfoundry have been transferred into the charitable trust to ensure their long-term protection for the nation.

Why are the buildings so special?

The earliest buildings that make up Taylors Bell Foundry date from 1859 and have been developed and changed as the business grew and following a fire in 1891. They are Grade II* Listed and this means that they are in the top 8% most significant historic buildings in the UK from a total of around 400,000 Listed buildings (92% are Grade II Listed and 2.5% are Grade I). It is the only purpose built Victorian bell foundry in the UK and we are pretty sure, in the world, with many areas of interest in architectural and constructional detail.
The buildings are currently on the Historic England (HE) ‘Heritage At Risk Register’ which is a ‘programme which identifies those sites that are most at risk of being lost as a result of neglect, decay or inappropriate development’ (Historic England 2017). In the case of the bellfoundry, it falls within the ‘decay’ category. The Trust and John Taylor & Co have worked closely with HE to identify the most urgent repairs and have secured three HE grants to deliver a series of repairs over 2016, 2017 and 2018. Although these repairs have already had a positive impact on the buildings, further repair is required to ensure the building can be taken off the Heritage At Risk Register and given a new lease of life.

What is the ‘Saving the Last Major Bellfoundry in Britain’ project?

Building on the significant work that the directors at John Taylor’s have undertaken since acquiring the business in 2009 and the subsequent transfer of assets to the Trust, a long-term vision for the site has been developed in the form of the Saving the Last Major Bellfoundry in Britain project. The vision for the project is as follows:

Our vision is for the John Taylor Bellfoundry to become the global centre in the art of bell making and learning. The sound of Taylor bells can be heard all over the planet; our vision is to secure this legacy and make sure future generations on every continent can be brought together by A Ring of Taylor Bells.
The objectives of the project are:

1: Conservation: The project will secure the conservation and enhancement of the Grade II* Listed John Taylor Bellfoundry. It will sensitively repair the Victorian bellfoundry and protect its unique collection of artefacts and archive and facilitate the conservation of historic bells and bell-towers throughout the world.

2: Education: The project will advance education in the history and art of bell making and bell ringing for people of all ages and levels of experience. It will ensure that the unique skills that go into bellfounding are preserved by training future craftsmen and women and enable public access to the world’s most significant archive of bell material.

3: Bellfounding: The project will enable Taylors to become the preeminent centre for bell research, development and manufacturing. It will ensure that processes pioneered by Taylors over centuries are sustained whilst exploring how 21st century technology can add value to this timeless art.

4: Celebration: The project will excite unprecedented numbers of visitors to the site and engage them in its history. It will engage new audiences and help communities to celebrate the heritage of bells across the UK and around the world.

5: Resilience: The project will ensure that the bellfoundry is financially sustainable and maintained into the long-term, ensuring bellfounding in the UK continues for future generations.

How can I find out more or get involved?

For more information on the project as it progresses or to get involved please visit or follow the following links:

Twitter: @Lborobelltrust
Contact details: Please contact either Kate Pinnock or Ross Ingham via

Guild says goodbye to Rosalind Martin

To all in Winchester and Portsmouth Guild of Bellringers,

We would like to inform folks that Rosalind Martin has stood down as web-master for the Guild’s website.

Rosalind has been at the forefront of such major change that it is impossible to mention all the areas.

The Herculean task of building our website and future proofing it has led to it becoming a site that has a reputation of excellence in the bell-ringing world.

Now that the building and refining has been achieved and Rosalind is largely living in Birmingham, she feels this is a good time to step away.

There is a plan being drawn up to spread Rosalind’s workload out to as many people as we can in the team but help is being sought by us from everyone reading this.

We need;
• Assistant Webmaster to support Andrew Glover who has taken over the role
• More News Coordinators in each district who can collect ringers’ stories, anecdotes, local news and ringing successes and play at being a new editor ~ Full support will be available

Ros, the Comms Team would like to acknowledge your sustained effort and skills as a website builder and Web-Master.

We know you will join us in wishing Ros all the very best and we look forward to continuing to ring with you.

Thank You

The Team. and Guild Master

Central Council & Big Ideas produce a Ringing Remembers poster to be proud of.

The Ringing Remembers initiative is really delivering in it’s efforts to bring national attention to our wonderful exercise.

The new poster which arrived hot off the press is creating quite a buzz in the bellringing community.  With Facebook frantic and the Twittersphere spinning, people are crying out for copies and trying to get their hands on this ‘striking’ poster.

Happily the wait is over because here is the poster (click image to download pdf) !

Chartered ‘ride & ring’ train raises money for Blood Cancer charity.

All aboard the Strike Back Express!

On Saturday 29th of July Bellringers proved , yet again, how much heart we have by filling 3 carriages of this lovely old diesel train that had been chartered for Julie McDonnell’s charity Strike Back Against Blood Cancer.

The train left Hastings early in the morning and travelled through the countryside stopping along the way to pick up over 100 ringers as well as 2 carriages of train enthusiasts. Droppig us ringers off at Bath the train moved on to the final stop at Kenysham.

Luckily the weather held as we mixed with tourists and walked to the first open tower of St Mary’s, Bathwick (10 bells  18-3-20) followed by Christ Church ( 8 bells   13-0-4).   People enjoyed lunch at various hostelries, well it would have been rude not to.                Our group targeted a pub that sold Bellringers Ale.                                  The afternoon was completed with a ring at St Michaels Without (8 bells  14-1-9) before heading back to the train.

Food and drinks were available on the train, with over half the monies taken going to the charity. Meeting old friends and making new ones made the journey home very enjoyable. I’m so glad we were part of this special day.

Bell Foundry to open its doors on 29th July.

 John Taylor & Co Invite the general public to the Loughborough bell foundry


Saturday 29th July 2017

10:30hrs – 17:00hrs

The Bellfoundry,
Freehold Street,
Loughborough, Leicestershire.
LE11 1AR.

 Tel: +44 (0)1509 212241
Fax: +44 (0)1509 263305

All Welcome – No need to book – Just come along


John Taylor & Co  

Quest TV’s “Salvage Hunter’s” Drew Pritchard and sidekick Tee with Taylor’s Director, Simon Adams during the filming of an episode of the programme filmed on 2nd February 2017.

W&P’s Basingstoke District impress ART 2017 guests with their food making skills. 

Basingstoke District’s volunteers put on a fine spread at this year’s Association of Ringing Teachers Annual Conference.

‘Literally the best ringers tea I have EVER had’! Said a lady on Saturday afternoon when she came into the kitchen just to thank the crew.

Home made cakes, flapjacks, cupcakes, Eton mess and chocolate Mars Bar sauce for the profiteroles complemented an ambitious and tasty lunch for both days and an afternoon tea on Saturday.

Vice Master Pete Jordan co organised with Deb Baker who was set the task of feeding 115 people on Saturday and 70+ on Sunday in quite a short time slot said ‘this absolutely could not have happened without a crew of intelligent, lovely people who could see a task that needed doing and simply got on with it. It was great to have Christine KW’s experience to fall back on and I was not surprised when she decided to stay after her allotted time was up.

I’d like to say a huge thankyou to our volunteers; Nici, Ella, Martin, Fiona, Pauline, Sue, Helen, Heather, Steve, Betty, Mike, Christine and to Pete for sorting out taxis all other practicalities and letting me bend his ear’.

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ART Conference in March is open to everyone and all are warmly invited.

Open to everyone and incredibly good value for money the ART Conference is packed full of inspirational speakers and learning opportunities.

Viv Nobbs  ‘There is so much on offer over this weekend, much of which members have been asking the Guild to provide’

Don’t miss out on the Inspirational speakers sharing their knowledge and experiences in leadership, recruiting, teaching and ‘igniting the spark’ in learners.

Many will have filled in the Central Council’s questionnaires and CRAG’s Philip Barnes will be there to give an update on ‘The story so far’.

The Award Ceremony in the evening will recognise people who have excelled in their contributions to the bellringing community.

And that is just Saturday!

On Sunday we have a rare opportunity to learn about and further our knowledge on hand bells and Pip Penney will be hosting a Mentoring Workshop.

And don’t forget that your £12 for Saturday INCLUDES a cold buffet lunch and Sunday’s £10 ticket includes tea, coffee, cake and a light lunch!

Don’t miss out on this great weekend!                 Tickets can be booked here

Basingstoke’s ADM is this Saturday afternoon (21st Jan) in St Mary’s, Overton.

All Basingstoke District members are warmly invited to attend their Annual District Meeting.

We would also like to remind members that all positions on the Committee are open for election and should anyone feel that they would like to make a contribution to the District by standing for one of the posts, please let me know; elections will be held at the ADM.  The post of Treasurer, in particular, will be vacant from the next ADM, and if anyone is interested in learning more about what is involved and would like to shadow the current Treasurer (if no-one puts themselves forward this year) please let me know.

All the best




The ART Conference 2017 is coming and the call goes out for helpers

This year on Sat 11th -Sun 12th of March we (W&P) will be proudly hosting The Association of Ringing Teachers AGM and Awards Ceremony in Old Basing Hall, Basing, Basingstoke RG24 7DA.

To make sure the weekend runs as smoothly as possible the organising Committee will need volunteers to help move tables and chairs, prepare and set up lunch,clear away and also do teas and coffees in the breaks, so nothing too taxing.

We will need help from volunteers to make good quality sweet treats IE flapjacks and tray bakes all covered in cling film (a small remuneration will be given to cover ingredients costs). Others will help with the buffet lunches making fresh salads and sandwiches on the day.

It would be lovely if you could look in your diaries now and see if you can offer 1 or more time slots on either days and hopefully we won’t have to press-gang too many people… because that would be unfriendly.

Pete, I and will be there from start to finish and appreciate your offers of help.

These are the time slots that need to be filled.

SATURDAY 11th (All times are approximate)

8:00am – 10:00am  4 people to set up venue ( move tables and chairs etc).

10:00am– 2:30pm   4 people to help with teas/coffee and lunchtime.

3:30pm – 6:30pm    3 people to help with coffee and evening reception.


11:00am – 1:30pm  4 people to help with teas/coffees and make sandwiches.

12:30pm -2:30pm   4 people to move tables and chairs around at the end.

These are start times so early arrival will be appreciated. If you can offer your services, have further      questions or want to buy us a beer please feel free to contact us;

Deb at

Pete at


To check out where it’s all happening here is the link

Many thanks in advance.

Pete Jordan, Deb Baker and the ART team.

Breaking News! ART Conference 2017 tickets have gone on sale.

2017 will see Winchester and Portsmouth Guild hosting the ART Conference including the second ART Awards ceremony at Basing in the Basingstoke District.

The ART Conference is once again presenting a packed agenda of speakers sharing best practice from their ringing as well as ideas from other activities and professions.

The Conference is ART’s leading national event and is open to anyone with an interest in ringing teaching and leadership. We would like to invite you to join us at Old Basing, Hampshire on 11th March 2017 for what is sure to be a full and interesting day.

Tickets are only £12 for the diverse and inspiring Conference Sessions and the second ART Awards Ceremony. » Book your place at the 2017 ART Conference now

The day includes talks by two headline speakers, and a range of afternoon sessions to choose from. A number of new ART products will be launched and stalls will be available all day long long selling a range of publications and the latest equipment. The ART Awards Ceremony will be accompanied by drinks and nibbles.

On Sunday 12th March, you will be able to attend one or two ART workshops. Choose from “Learning Handbells”, “Mentoring Workshop” and “Teaching Handbells”. Tickets are only £10 including lunch.

This year’s sessions include…

  • Engaging your Stakeholders
  • Recruitment: The Holy Grail
  • Ringing Culture: Help or Hindrance?
  • Group Teaching & Working Together
  • ART Assessors – the Key to Quality
  • Igniting the Spark: Lessons from Devon
  • Situational Leadership

For more information download the schedule & agenda for the weekend




Deadline 31st December for ART Award Nominations

There is Only 1 month left to apply for the ART Awards.

The ART Awards are a national and international scheme recognising the people and groups who are successful in teaching ringers. Applications are open until 31 December 2016, with the ART Awards being presented at the ART Conference 2017 hosted by the Winchester & Portsmouth Guild .

With the ART Annual Conference being held in our area it would be lovely to have some worthy people or groups put forward for some of the awards

All you need you do is a little explanation of what and why on the form. Simples.

Reward those who strive for better. 

Please look at groups or initiatives in your area – whether ART connected or not – and encourage them to apply. Group awards are open to ALL!

Most prizes for groups are valued at £400 and for individuals at £200.  Find out lots more about all of the ART Awards at  Make your application for one or more of the ART Awards using the pro-formas on the website.

  • The Sarah Beacham Youth Group Award
  • The Sarah Beacham School Group Award
  • The ART Award for Innovation in the Effective Use of Technology in Teaching – sponsored by John Taylor & Co.
  • The ART Award for Innovation in Recruitment or Retention – sponsored by AbelSim
  • The ART Award for a University Society that has made a Significant Contribution to Promoting Ringing to Younger People – sponsored by CCCBR
  • The ART Award for Inspiring Leadership in Ringing – sponsored by Talent Innovations
  • The Learning the Ropes Achievement Awards (open only to LtR registered ringers)

For the Learning the Ropes prizes you need to ensure completion of LtR Level 5 by the 31st December by ordering the Level 5 certificate for your ringer.

We expect that all ringers who successfully completed their LtR Level 5 during 2016 will be invited to a master-class again (expenses paid from mainland UK)  but to be eligible the LtR Level 5 certificate must be awarded by the 31st December – so get those final quarter peals in NOW.  You can start people on LtR at any level of the course  – but the level must be genuinely completed during 2016.

If you have any questions about the awards please contact Graham Nabb.

Graham Nabb, ART Awards –

Rotherwick hosts a memorial quarter peal to mark 66 years of church service!

A ringer who lives in London had an idea and this resulted in a wonderful testament to the friendly nature of ringers.

Emily Crowder wanted to honour her grandfather’s years of church service. Here is her story.

My Grandfather was a Reader in the Whitewater Benifice for 66 years. I wanted to mark his passing in his local community so contacted Alan through Doves . He invited me to ring.   It was special to be in the Church my Grandad had spent a lot of time and meet more of the church community who knew him.                                                                                                     My grandmother also listened to some of the quarter and was really touched I was involved.

Later Emily posted this on Facebook.

Bellringing is great- you make a few enquiries, reply to a couple of emails and then get invited to ring in a special quarter peal in memory of my Grandfather, reader in this parish. Lovely bells at Rotherwick, I enjoyed ringing them and joining the locals.

Well done Rotherwick.

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Carisbrooke ringers will attempt a peal to honour HMS Hood’s Petty Officer.

** Update – the Peal was successful. Click to see details **
Inspired by the BBC program about raising of the bell from  HMS Hood last year a peal of Grandsire Caters, half-muffled, will be attempted at Carisbrooke on Remembrance Sunday dedicated to the memory of a local lad, Patrick Lewis Dunne who went down on H.M.S. Hood on 24th May 1941.

H.M.S. Hood had been sunk by the Bismarck in the North Atlantic. Of the 1,418 crew on board H.M.S. Hood, only three were pulled from the water alive. It was the worst loss of life from a single British warship. .

A descendant of Patrick’s, Katie Louise Dunne, has said “My great uncle was Patrick Lewis Dunne. He was a petty officer and was only 33 years old when he died; he had recently married. I believe that he lived in Carisbrooke and that his Dad was a farmer, at the farm next to Mount Joy cemetery. Its a retreat for Christians now, I think. Pat was such a brave young man and I gave my son his name in his honour”

Katie and other members of her family hope to listen to the bells and to meet the ringers after the ringing.

For information of Patrick please see:


Applications are open for the 2016 ART Awards

The ART Awards are a new national and international scheme intended to recognise the people and groups who are successful in teaching and training ringers.

Further to the success of the inaugural 2015 ART Awards, nominations are now open for the 2016 ART Awards and this includes two new awards. These awards are open to everyone, not just ART Members or those using ‘Learning the Ropes’ scheme (unless otherwise specified). The aim is to encourage and recognise the people and groups leading best practice and innovation in the teaching and development of ringing.

Applications are OPEN NOW until 31 December 2016, with the ART Awards being presented at the ART Conference 2017 on Saturday 11 March 2017 at the ART Conference at Old Basing, Hampshire.

If you would like to nominate someone for one of the categories or would like to find out more just click on this link  It’s very interesting especially as St Mary’s, Brightone, IOW won The Sarah Beecham Youth Groups Award last year!


Rotherwick and Heckfield’s Tower outing on 1st Oct is a great success.

A wonderful time was had by everyone who joined Rotherwick and Heckfield churches last Saturday on their tower outing to Hungerford, Kintbury, Great Bedwyn and Ramsbury, With breakfast at Cobbs Farm Shop, lunch at The Pelican and tea at The Tutti Pole the band were well sustained.

A huge thank-you to Nici and Martin who are past masters at organising and had thought of everything. We also managed to dodge most of the serious rain downpours until teatime.

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1 Day Wooden Tower Outing

Leckford (5, 8cwt)  St Nicolas. SO20 6JG.  Contact District Sec Maggie Hiller  (01635 297674)

Leckford Photograph by John Palk
Leckford Photograph by John Palk

Kings Somborne (6, 10cwt)  SS Peter & Paul. SO20 6NU.  Contact Tower Sec Sue Spurling  (01794 388266)

Kings Somborne Photograph by Rosemary Oakeshott
Kings Somborne Photograph by Rosemary Oakeshott

Lunch in Kings Somborne.  at  The Crown Inn  Crown Inn KS

Houghton (6, 2cwt)  All Saints. SO20 6LJ.  contact Tower Sec Bob Goss  (01794 388617)

Houghton Photograph by Rosemary Oakeshott
Houghton Photograph by Rosemary Oakeshott

Mottisfont (5, 6cwt)  St Andrew. SO51 0LL.  Tower Contact  M Susan Clutterbuck  (o1794 340475)

Mottisfont Photograph by Rosemary Oakeshott
Mottisfont Photograph by Rosemary Oakeshott

Farley Chamberlayne (3, 7cwt)  St John. SO51 0QP.  Tower Sec  John Rawson-Smith  (01794 368410)

Farley Chamberlayne Photograph by Rosemary Oakeshott
Farley Chamberlayne Photograph by Rosemary Oakeshott

Sparsholt (6, 7cwt) St Stephen.  SO21 2NR.  Tower Sec  Jennifer Watson  (01962 808167)

Sparsholt Photograph by Rosemary Oakeshott
Sparsholt Photograph by Rosemary Oakeshott


Simulator Training Evening held at Bishopstoke is a hit.

The Guild Education Committee held its Simulator training evening on March 22nd.

Downstairs was all about learning what the software could do whilst in the ringing chamber, with bells tied and simulator on, people grappled with ringing individually using no visual clues, only their ears, not an easy task.

Some interested people had travelled quite a distance and one tower will be planning to install a simulator.     That’s a hit then.

Is Charmander in your church?

How about Graveler in the graveyard … no?

Churches and Cathedrals are making the most of the biggest web game released in the last few years.

With the mighty connective powers of smartphones, GPS, and virtual games Niantic have created Pokemon Go.

Pokemon, short for Pocket Monsters is a hugely successful game brought out 2 decades ago by Satoshi Tajiri a Japanese man who as a child loved catching bugs and insects and decided to try and find a way of duplicating that excitement.

When the electronic game was first launched in 1996 it took a few months to get going then 6 months later the cards were developed. Adults and children went crazy buying,collecting,swopping and fighting their Pokemon very much like the old football cards but the genius of Pokemon is that every creature has strengths and weaknesses and in order to do ‘battle’ to capture (win) each others creatures the player has to think very carefully. Each Pokemon belongs to an element or realm IE fire, water, electricity, woodland, day, night etc, there are normally 3 evolutions that can occur, I like to think of them as infant, junior and adult with each growing in strength, power and guile. Carefully thought out battles in Gyms strengthen the Pokemon but if there is a miss-match they are weakened and made easy to capture and are lost to your adversary.                                            See Bulbapedia for more info

With places of interest and landmark areas having a good supply of virtual Pokemon   churches are cashing in on the extra footfall by registering to become a Pokestop, a place where people can gather, chat and replenish depleted stocks. A Birmingham church, for instance, has now placed a sign encouraging fans of the game to come back for Sunday mass.                                                                                                                                                                “You are welcome, visit us again for Sunday morning worship at 11am,” the sign reads.

“Join us for a cup of tea after the service at 12.15. Jesus cares about Pokemon gamers.”

Portsmouth Cathedral were very quick off the mark with their Facebook and Twitter feeds posting pictures of caught Pokemon very early on.

With so many youngsters gathering in churches and Cathedrals the C of E was very fast in bringing out ‘Best Practice‘ guidelines and rules.

Here is what the BBC had to say;

Pokemon Go: Churches encouraged to welcome visiting players

  • 19 July 2016
  • From the section UK

Anglican churches have been urged to welcome players of Pokemon Go who use their premises as Pokestops.

The online game – which is attracting millions of new players – involves finding virtual Pokemon characters in various real locations. Several churches have been designated as Pokestops, which players visit to collect items during the game.

The CofE has said the game gives church communities a chance to meet more local people.   It has issued guidance to churches around the country, encouraging them to welcome players who visit them as part of the game.

Pokemon Go launched in the UK on Thursday, and has proved popular with people around the world.

Church locations which have been registered on the game as Pokestops include St Stephen’s in Rednal, Birmingham, Hope Church in Islington, north London, and St Mary’s Episcopal cathedral in Glasgow.

The Church of England’s digital media officer, Tallie Proud, issued guidance to churches on Thursday.  In it, she said: “Pokemon Go is therefore giving churches around the country a great opportunity to meet people from their area who might not normally come to church.

“You might also spot people standing outside the church on their phones who may be playing the game and at your ‘PokeStop’.”

Church communities have been encouraged to place welcome signs outside and hold so-called “Pokeparties” for players – one is planned for Christ Church in Stone, Staffordshire, on Friday evening.

One Pokemon player, Matthew Newbold, 22, from Peterborough, tweeted: “Pokemon go makes me such a better person. Had a charity coffee on my hunt for Pokemon at the church.”

However, the Church also warned of the potential danger to young people playing the game.

“Whilst we would encourage churches to engage with those playing the game, be they adults or children, we also understand the concerns that the NSPCC have raised with regards to keeping children safe.

“Our first priority as a Church should be to provide a safe place for children and vulnerable adults with regards to Pokemon Go,” said its guidance.

Not only Anglican churches are involved. Earlier this week, City Road Methodist Church in Birmingham signed up to become one of the real-life locations used as “gyms” in Pokemon Go, where users can train virtual monsters.

So there we have it!    Like it or loath it there a thousands more people of all ages outside wandering around our lovely churches and landmarks.  How you choose to engage with them.or not, is up to you.

Happy hunting.      Gotta catch em all!

Screenshot at 2016-07-22 07:39:46

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Condensed Report of Winchester and Portsmouth Guild AGM July 2nd 2016

This year the W&P AGM was hosted by the Winchester District, and held at New Alresford.

On a gloriously sunny morning the Inter-District Striking Competition organised by Greg Jordan was held, where judges Paul and Kate Flavell awarded first place to the team from the Portsmouth District.





Peal Speed




Grandsire Triples






Cambridge Surprise Major





Christchurch & Southampton

Grandsire Triples






Grandsire Triples




This was followed by an excellent Ploughman’s lunch, before the Guild service in St John’s Church and then the business meeting.

61 members attended the meeting, held at the John Pearson Hall, and were welcomed by Viv Nobbs the Master.

A minutes silence was observed to mark the loss by death of Guild members;

Len Barham (All Saints, Alton), Andrew Barnsdale (unattached), Roy Grayson (Purbrook), Roy Howard (Freshwater), Simon Lipscombe-Smith (Ecchinswell), Marjorie Mannering (Buriton), Tom Metcalfe (Blackmoor), Colin Nicholson (first Tower Captain at St Peter Port), Jeanette Palmer (Netley), Martin Routh (former Tower Captain at Amport), Ramon A Stone (LM) (West Meon), Bernard Tilyard (Whitwell), Keith Williamson (formerly of Liss), and David Yates (Arreton).

Barry Fry said a prayer.

This year four members, John Croft, Alan Hoar, Maureen Routh and Ronald Tipper, were presented with Life Membership Certificates by the Master, after each had completed 50 years of membership. The Master then proposed two members to Life Membership in recognition of their exceptional services to the Guild, adding her personal thanks to both Mike Bubb and Tony Smith for their support during her three years as Guild Master. The motion was overwhelmingly carried and there was much applause as both Mike and Tony were presented with their certificates.

Grants from the Bell Restoration Fund were approved to Baughurst, £200, Breamore, £400 and Sherborne St John, £300.

There followed reports about the Central Council meeting which had been held in the W&P Guild area at Southsea in May, and from the chair of the organising committee, Christine Hill, who reported that it had been a great organisational success with many compliments from those attending. She expressed her thanks to all those who had contributed to the success which reflected well on the Guild.

The updated Guild Action Plan was circulated and can be found on our website here at;

Elections of new officers for a triennial period followed and the principal roles were taken by Mike Winterbourne (Master), Pete Jordan (Vice Master), and Ros Brandwood (Treasurer). Unfortunately no-one was willing to be elected as General Secretary at the meeting, so the retiring Secretary, Mo Routh, agreed to continue as Acting Secretary until the next Executive Meeting, by which time it is hoped a new volunteer will have been found.

Future Dates of note;

24 August 2016

Young Ringers’ Day

with the Salisbury Diocesan Guild

24 September 2016

District Officers’ Forum

St. Barnabas’ Church Hall, Southampton

12 November 2016

Executive Committee Meeting

St. Barnabas’ Church Hall, Southampton

26 November 2016

Informal Social Event

To be arranged

11-12 March 2017

ART Annual Conference

Old Basing Hall, Basingstoke

AOB consisted of;                                                                                                                                            i, Robin Milford speaking of his plans for another W&P 200 Club similar to that run by Mark Esbester but to raise money for training and retention rather than bell restoration. Robin would be pleased to hear from anyone interested in joining or having questions.                                                                                            ii, A summary of quarter peals rung in Guild towers between 1960 and 2014 had been prepared by Alan Buswell and would be passed to the Hon. Librarian and Archivist.                                                               iii, Ian McCallion and Michael Church asked for clarification about the 200 Club with respect to it’s intentions and relationship with the Guild. The exec committee are to discuss and present a proposal to the Guild.

Mike Winterbourne thanked all the retiring officers for their hard work and closed the meeting at 4:17pm

Next year’s AGM will be on 17th June 2017 in the Christchurch and Southampton District.

More tea and lovely cake were offered after the meeting to sustain us for our journeys home and the sun was still shining.

Thankyou to Bruce Purvis, Viv Nobbs and Deb Baker for the photos.

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Last few weeks to sign up for September’s drive to open 500 belltowers across the UK

A collaboration with Heritage Open Days, Central Council of Church Bellringers and National Trust mark a welcome shift in bringing bellringing to the attention of the public.

Open your tower to visitors this September, host interactive demonstrations or
become part of a magnificent chorus of ringing bands simultaneously sounding out
across the country on Thursday 8 September 2016, 6-7pm.

Kate Flavell Central Council’s PR Officer has said   “This is a fantastic opportunity for us to get plenty of publicity for ringing, open up our towers to a huge public to show off ringing, and possibly to gain some recruits, although this is not necessarily the prime purpose of this particular exercise.  (But it could be the first step.)”

Please encourage your towers to register for Heritage Open days so we can reach our target of 500 churches open for ringing-related events and so that towers opening receive the support package from Heritage Open Days.  Registration closes at the end of July and the sooner you register the better.  When you  Register for Heritage Open Days  make sure you tick the box to indicate there are ringing-related activities included, otherwise you won’t be counted towards the 500!

You don’t have to open all weekend – at my tower we are doing just three tours on the Friday.

 Heritage Open Days are planning a big local media push on 17 July.  Make sure you are ready for that and that your association or towers have their own press releases out with their local media.  There is more information on the Council’s website here: 

 Please do see what you can do to help your towers join in, perhaps by  joining together to create a ringing event.  Thanks so much for your help with this and all good wishes,


Public Relations Officer

Central Council of Church Bell Ringers

Registered Charity number 270036

 Ring for Heritage Open Days 8-11 September

Click to access Challenge_500-_wales_updated_webs.pdf

Hartley Wintney Remember their WW1 fallen.

Today (1st July) we tolled the church bell 100 times each for two fallen soldiers Walter Beagley and Oliver Neville.
Walter Beagley who died on 1st July 1916. Walter was the son of Esau and Caroline Beagley and born in Odiham in 1882. In the 1901 census the family are living in Phoenix Green and Walter is a carpenter like his father. By the time of the 1911 census he has already enlisted and gone abroad. He served with the Hampshire Regiment and was killed in action on the 1st July 1916. He has no known grave and is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, the Somme.
Oliver Neville was born in Hartley Wintney in 1892 to Harriet and Samuel Neville. In the 1911 census the family are living at The Lake in Hartley Wintney and he is an agricultural labourer like his father. In 1915 he married Daisy North. He served with the Hampshire Regiment and was killed in action on the 1st July 1916. He has no known grave and is remembered on the Thiepval Memorial, the Somme.    By Beverly Gall.



First A.R.T. training in the Guild goes well.

ART Training Day Module 1.

As part of their amazing commitment to training in the Guild and ringing in general Andy and Sallie Ingram held Winchester and Portsmouth Guild’s first Association of Ringing Teacher’s (ART) Module1 – Teaching bell Handling day course on Saturday 25th June.

The day started at 09:00 in The Kings Head at Hursley with the introduction and coffee followed by a practical session across the road at All Saints Church and then back to the pub’s skittle alley for more theory. We continued this way with us cleverly dodging all the thunderous downpours.

9 students attended from 6 different towers of Ecchinswell, Hursley, New Alresford, Romsey, Rotherwick and Winchester.                                                                                                             Different ages and abilities from 3 districts were all there to learn about becoming a teacher on the ART Scheme, how ART approaches teaching others and then hopefully move on to teach their learners about bell handling and bell control to complete Module 1.

The course showed us how to approach learners, hand them a rope for the first time, start backstrokes then handstrokes with bells both up and down and then safely join hand and backstrokes together whilst imbuing them with confidence.


After a lovely pre ordered lunch , more theory followed. The practical lesson of teaching ringing up and down made us look at our own practices with surprising little tweeks here and there. Solving Handling Problems theory followed by the practical, again examined our own practices with most people needing very little correction and having left egos at the door this proved very well humoured.

Starting on an accredited teaching journey may seem at odds even superfluous to a few of the ‘old guard’ who have taught for many years but having a planned path of progress also has it’s place. Keeping a standard, planned learning path allows for a gradual reduction in ‘bad habits’ being taught and good practice being maintained .

ART say ‘National ringing institutions recognised that the ageing population of Tower Captains meant that the old ways of teaching had to change. As often happens at such times, along came individuals who had the knowledge, skills and time to be able to develop a new way. It has grown because it is the right thing being done at the right time’.

Without practice, feedback and reinforcement, basic human nature kicks in and people revert back to their old ways of doing things. That’s what we as teachers need to do to – practise until it becomes second-nature and practise it right. That’s what the ART Training Scheme does for you – it has processes and support to help you change your behaviours’.

A huge thankyou to Andy and Sallie for their relaxed and fun way of teaching and to All Saints Church, Hursley for the use of their bells.

I can’t wait to get back to my new ringers and use them as guinea pigs knowing I have a mentor to fall back on….. priceless..                                                                                                Deb Baker.

Central Council Day to strengthen Guilds PR knowledge

PR Officers – Save the date! – Saturday 25 February 2017

The Central Council’s Public Relations Committee is holding a special day for Public Relations Officers of ringing societies on Saturday 25 February 2017 at Wellesbourne. There will be something for everyone, including the opportunity to share good practice, to get to grips with the role if you are new to it or have questions and to hear from experts about working with the media and other PR issues.

Further information to follow but meanwhile please do make a note of the date!