Please note there will be no surprise Royal practice in June (due to a few reasons).
I will email out over the next few days about the July practice.
Please note there will be no surprise Royal practice in June (due to a few reasons).
I will email out over the next few days about the July practice.
Sadly due to lots of people being away this month I am going to have to cancel the planned surprise royal practice. There will be no practice in April.
I will make contact again soon regarding a possible May practice. The date would be 27th May.
If the May practice isn’t able to go ahead then I’ll have to review the situation as it may no longer be practical to have these practices sadly.
Thanks to those who are continuing to support the practices. Please watch this space.
Due to a number of people being away, we are too short of people in March for a Surprise Royal practice to take place.
So to confirm – there will be NO PRACTICE in March.
Looking ahead to April things look slightly better, so please use the following link to let me know if you can make the April practice.
Sunday April 22nd – 14:00 – 15:30
I’ll update you in early April as to the likelihood of the practice going ahead.
Thanks to those who attended the surprise royal practice this afternoon. We had enough people to attempt the Superlative a few times, along with some Yorkshire and some less successful 3 spliced. We could have done with 3 or 4 more people, but we managed ok with the number we had.
Next month the practice is scheduled for Sunday 25thFebruary.
People seemed to like not having to go into Southampton City Centre so I will try and find another suitable tower for the next practice.
Please let me know either via the previous doodle poll, or via email if you are hoping to make the Feb practice!
I am now finally able to confirm the location of the next Surprise Royal Practice.
Sunday 26th November 14:00 – 15:30 BITTERNE PARK, Southampton.
Methods as usual to include C/Y/N plus Bristol Royal. If enough we will try some 3 spliced.
I have tried a few other towers this time away from Southampton but they were all unavailable.
Look forward to seeing lots of you on a Sunday!
To confirm the October surprise royal practice will be going ahead;
Sunday 22nd October = 14:00 – 15:30
PLEASE arrive for a 14:00 start, the last few practices we haven’t had 10 until close to half past
Methods: Bristol and C/Y/N spliced and single as required.
I look forward to seeing lots of you then!!
There were 219 peals rung for the Guild during 2016, which is a slight fall compared to 2015; however this total is still significantly higher than any year other than 2015 since the early 1980’s. I said in my report last year that I hoped the Guild would maintain its peal ringing activity and I am pleased to say that we have achieved that. Keep it going!
I must thank Andrew Craddock for sharing the statistics generated by PealBase, allowing me to cross-check the Guild’s records. Finally I would like to thank all those conductors and organisers who submit details, compositions and fees within the one month deadline specified by the Guild rules. Please may I also remind conductors that we do require all compositions in full whether or not they have been rung for the Guild previously. I am also pleased to announce that I can now take peal fees electronically; I would request that conductors email me FIRST for a reference and the necessary account details, even if you already have them, to allow me to monitor what I have and have not received.
There were 142 tower bell peals rung for the Guild in 2016, 14 fewer than the previous year but comparable to 2014. What is of greater concern is the number of ringers taking part in a tower bell peal continued the decreasing trend witha fall to 200, this is 24 fewer than 2016 and 46 fewer than 2013.
Six ringers rang their first peal in a W&P peal during 2016 and the Guild Officers would like to extend their congratulations to Will Stoddart, Martin Willson, Helen Rolf, Janice Firth, Rob Gorton and Gemma Loweth. The latter three actually achieved their first peal in a handbell peal but are included here for completeness. To add to this list Aileen Wilson also scored her first tower bell peal.
Following the ‘First Peal 2015’ initiative it is good to see that the Guild is still introducing ringers to peal ringing and I would encourage all members to think whether you or somebody else in your tower would be interested in attempting a peal. It would be brilliant if we can increase both the numbers of new peal ringers and ringers taking part in peals in general to stem the falling trend.
Malcolm Powell heads the list of prolific peal ringers for 2016 pushing last year’s leader, Edd Colliss, into second. John Dodd and Kathryne Arkless also remain near the top with Gareth Higgs, Jim Twiney and Graham Nobbs joining the list of people to ring 40 or more peals for the Guild in 2016.
The list of prolific conductors remains largely unchanged with Edd Colliss still heading the list with Toby Arkless and Ben Carey exchanging places behind. Once again, like the total number of ringers the total number of conductors is also down 3 on 2015 to 29.
St Agatha, Portsmouth heads the list of the leading towers again with a similar number to 2015 representing over a third of the Guild’s 2016 total. It is also worth noting that no other tower rang more than 9 peals, the first time this has happened for 9 years.
The first peal on the augmented ring at All Saints Basingstoke was completed with a peal of Bristol Surprise Royal in April.
There were a number of personal footnotes during 2016 and I congratulate Paul Young on his 1200th, Martin Daniels 500th, Graham Nobbs 400th, David Mattingley 300th, Colin Butler 250th and Kieran Downer 25th. Toby Arkless and Edd Colliss scored their 250th as Conductor. Several ringers also reached a milestone for the Guild; Malcolm Powell and Jim Hodkin 500, and Andrew Howes 100.
Roy LeMarechal passed two significant milestones during 2016, ringing his 2000th peal for the Guild with a peal of Cambridge Royal at Bishopstoke in February and his 3000th peal some three weeks later, also Cambridge Royal at Bishopstoke. Roy is only the 49th person to achieve this total.
Peals were rung by the Sunday service band of Vale, Guernsey, who rang a peal of 7 Doubles in January, and Bishopstoke, who rang a peal of Double Norwich in December. I would also like to mention the 7 members of the Catherington Sunday service band who scored a peal of 13 Spliced Surprise Major in January and it was my pleasure to ring the treble for you.
In February a peal of Yorkshire Surprise Maximus was rung at Hursley by a ladies band; this is believed to be the first twelve bell peal rung by a ladies band for the W&P.
Peals were rung in memory of Guild Member and former A&P district Chairman Andrew Barnsdale.
Several peals were rung to celebrate the 90th Birthday (both actual and official) of HM Queen Elizabeth II. Peals were also rung on the 100th anniversary of the Battle of Jutland and as part of the Bell Ringers Strike Back Against Blood Cancer campaign.
|Malcolm M Powell||66|
|Edward P D Colliss||64|
|John A Dodd||56|
|Kathryne R Arkless||46|
|E C Gareth Higgs||42|
|Graham A Nobbs||40|
|James W G Twiney||40|
|Edward P D Colliss||42|
|Benjamin J Carey||17|
|James W G Twiney||6|
|Benjamin D Constant||4|
|Portsmouth, St Agatha||49|
|Basingstoke, All Saints||4|
|Doubles & Minor||1|
|Spliced TD (8m)||4|
|Spliced S (8m)||2|
|Spliced S (41m)||1|
|Spliced S (24m)||1|
|Spliced S (7m)||1|
|Spliced S (8m)||3|
|Double Norwich CB||2|
|Spliced S (23m)||2|
|Spliced S (19m)#||2|
|Spliced S (10m)||2|
|Baltic Wharf S#||1|
|Dodd Fell D#||1|
|Four Score S#||1|
|Hunters Bar S#||1|
|Muppet Show S#||1|
|No. 5029 Nunney Castle S#||1|
|No Hope D#||1|
|Once Brewed D#||1|
|Peterstone Wentloog S#||1|
|Spliced S (21m)#||1|
|Spliced S (17m)||1|
|Spliced S (15m)||1|
|Spliced S (14m)||1|
|Spliced S (13m)||1|
|Spliced S (6m)||1|
|St Agatha S#||1|
|Caters & Royal||1|
|Spliced S (2m)||1|
|Spliced S (2m)|
(* first peal in the method, # first for the Guild)
The strength of handbell ringing within the Guild continues with a slight increase on the 2015 total to 77, again a new record as far as I can ascertain. The numbers of ringers and conductors participating in a Guild handbell peal remained broadly similar to 2015, both being only one fewer in 2016.
Ian Redway and Frank Morton were once again the leading ringer and conductor of Guild handbell peals. Whilst the lists of prolific ringers and conductors look very similar to previous years one name appears much higher than before with Duncan Loweth conducting 14 handbell peals for the guild.
In August John Croft scored his 1000th peal in hand and also reached his 200th peal as conductor in a handbell peal. John Dodd rang his 1000th peal for Guild in a handbell peal in May. Martin Daniels and Trish Spink achieved their 250th and 50th peals in hand respectively.
|Leading Ringers (Handbell Peals)|
|Martin J E Daniels||35|
|John A Dodd||25|
|Frank R Morton||23|
|E C Gareth Higgs||22|
|Brian J Woodruffe||18|
|John S Croft||17|
|Patricia D Spink||17|
|Leading Conductors (Handbell Peals)|
|Frank R Morton||23|
|Brian J Woodruffe||17|
|John S Croft||12|
|Andrew G Craddock||4|
|E C Gareth Higgs||3|
|Benjamin J Carey||2|
|Martin J E Daniels||2|
|Thomas J Hinks||1|
|E John Wells||1|
|Venues (Handbell Peals)|
|Awbridge, The Clock House||20|
|New Alresford, Jubilee||11|
|Guernsey, San Baronto||7|
|New Milton, Milton Grove||5|
|Micheldever, 37 Northbrook||4|
|Chandler’s Ford, 2 Rosemoor Grove||3|
|Dibden Purlieu, 30 Heatherstone Avenue||2|
The Southampton City Ringers and friends marked St George’s day today with two quarter peals successfully scored in the city.
1282 Cambridge Surprise Royal was rung at St Michael’s first followed by 1280 Bristol Surprise Royal at St Mary’s afterwards.
Both quarter peals can be viewed on BellBoard;
St Michael’s – http://bb.ringingworld.co.uk/view.php?id=1169932
St Mary’s – http://bb.ringingworld.co.uk/view.php?id=1169898
The April surprise royal practice will go ahead.
Sunday 30th April, 14:00 – 15:30 at St Mike’s Southampton
Methods will include Cambridge, Yorkshire, Lincolnshire, and new for this month PUDSEY.
(We may also ring Bristol and London if enough people attend but the focus method is Pudsey)
I look forward to hopefully seeing lots of you there!
I am pleased to report another successful year for the Band which has seen further progress and consolidation. My report reviews the activities since our last AGM in early 2016 to date.
Starting first with our most important activity which is ringing for services, we have maintained our record of ringing Sunday by Sunday throughout the year. Unlike the Choir we take no holidays! Support for Sunday morning ringing is very strong and it is now the exception if we don’t ring all 12. The logistics of raising all the bells on Sunday morning does mean we need to work harder on our ringing up skills and I would remind people that ringing starts promptly at 8.45 and the more people who arrive on time the more likely we are to be able to raise the bells in good order.
We have fewer ringers for Evensong, however we do always ring and sometimes we ring quarter peals.
In addition we have supplied bands to ring for numerous weddings during the year, for additional services such as Civic Service and Remembrance Day. This year we rang half muffled for Remembrance and received many favourable comments. We also rang for the Radio Solent Carol service in December and our normal Easter marathon of four services. We are sourcing some new muffles for the whole 12 because the existing set are very worn.
Our band continues to grow as we have continued the tradition, long maintained at the Priory of being a teaching tower. In the last year Graham Green and Jack Brooke have joined our Sunday service band and we currently have four learners receiving one to one training so we hope that some or all of them will join the band in due course. I strongly believe that when we train ringers it is for the benefit of the whole Exercise and I am always keen for new ringers to take their place in the wider ringing community and not see their activities as confined to the Priory. Our band remain strong supporters of District activities with ringers from Christchurch often making up a sizeable proportion of those present. Ringers from the Priory also regularly support the Hordle practice night, Sunday ringing at Sacred Heart and St Peters Bournemouth, the Ringwood Surprise Practice, the Sopley minor practice, the Lymington Doubles and Minor practice and the Guild Surprise Royal practice the District Youth Practice, the District Quarter Peal club and the Guild Education events.
Many ringers in the band continue to develop their skills and in particular we should congratulate Helen Penny on her first quarter, Nicola and Luke on their first quarter inside tonTriples and Luke for conducting his first quarter at Hordle. Another highlight this year was the Guild entering a team into the National Youth Striking Competion with the involvement of three ringers from the Priory, Nicola, Luke and Helen. A long but exciting day out in London saw the ringers enjoy a variety of London towers and take part in the competition on the Royal Jubilee bells at Garlickhythe in the City.
In terms of abilities we have continued to develop our Triples ringing and new ringers are also coming up through plain hunt and into doubles. We have made good progress with some minor methods this year including Kent, Double Court, Plain and Little Bob. This builds skills and provides interest for those progressing up the ladder. We took 6 people to the Double Norwich course in the autumn, 4 students and 2 helpers and our students made very good progress with this historic and these days rather neglected method.
I am keen to develop more ringers into potential ringing masters and this year so there may be some occasions when other people are running the ringing and I’m sure you will support them.
I would like to thank all those who have supported me in leading the Tower this year including the office holders, Ian and Rosemary as Deputy Captains, Richard as Treasurer, John as Steeplekeeper and Ros as Secretary/ PR officer. Finally to all of you who support the ringing I thank you for your undiminished commitment and enthusiasm for the Band and your ringing week by week which is appreciated by so many in the Town.
Despite a positive initial reply, sadly it seems that not quite enough people are around this month for a viable Surprise Royal practice. Therefore the practice is CANCELLED.
I did have around 10 replies though, so will contact those people to see if a quarter peal would be of interest.
The next practice is proposed for Sunday 26th February and would be in Southampton. Feel free to indicate availability for this now, however I will email again towards the start of February.
Rung open in memory of Christopher P K Smithies, former branch assistant ringing master, and great friend to many. Chris passed away aged 62 after a long and brave battle with cancer on December 30th 2016. The method was chosen to produce the maximum amount of firsts (9!) to give thanks for all the firsts Chris achieved and helped countless others achieve, not just here in the Salisbury Guild, but with the Winchester and Portsmouth Guild and nationally with the Guild of St Agatha.
Chris is survived by his wife, Joan, who was outside listening to the quarter peal and is pictured with the band above
Salisbury Diocesan Guild
Friday, 13 January 2017 in 1h 01m (26–3–16 in D)
1440 Swindon Surprise Royal
Arranged by Jack R Pease (no. 29)
1 Katie L Child
2 Linda D E Jasper
3 Andrew G Smith
4 Thomas R Garrett
5 Graham A Duke
6 Tim M Martin
7 Jack R Pease (C)
8 Matthew Pike
9 Angie M E Jasper
10 Eleanor G W Wallace
First in the method for all except 5. First on 10: 1
I hope you all had an enjoyable festive break and wish you all a Happy New Year! I hope you are all recharged for more Surprise Royal ringing!
The next date for the Surprise Royal practice is Sunday 29th January 2017. As usual this will only go ahead if enough people say they are free to attend.
Please let me know if you would be able to make this date and time.
I will email again in around a weeks time with an update on the plan.
Eleanor Wallace Writes:
As some of you may know, I have been working with Mike Pitman recently to try and formulate a plan to get the practices and quarter peal nights up and running at Kingston again. They are such a beautiful ring of bells, and being a Kingston ringer myself for years I hate to see them not being rung as much as they should and going to waste.
As I have finally finished university and returned to the area I now have time to dedicate myself to re-establishing a regular practice night. However, I need as much support from everyone as I can and am asking for your help. Mike and I have come up with a concept of having two practice nights and two quarters a month on a friday so that the bells are rung every week, and we hope that it at least one night a month may appeal to all ringers of any standard, so that people don’t feel pressurised to dedicate themselves every single week.
The below is the monthly structure which I am trying to introduce, and I would love to hear what you guys think, advice etc as have never done anything like this before.
From Friday 3rd March practice nights and quarter peal nights will be resuming at Kingston from 7:30 – 9:00 pm, and we would really love for you to join us. We have a lovely sounding and very easy-going ring of ten bells (tenor 26-3-16) and we want to get them ringing regularly again with the long-term aim
of becoming a supportive teaching tower. We are aiming to create a monthly structure that caters for ringers of all abilities; whether you are a called change ringer or a surprise ringer we hope to provide something for everyone.
Any ringer of any ability who is interested in getting practice at ten bell ringing is more than welcome. Ringing will range from Rounds and Called Changes to Plain Caters and Royal, as well as any six to eight bell ringing if its requested. Whatever you’re learning, come along! Any more advanced ringers who can help out will also be very much appreciated too.
For ringers who want to challenge themselves learning Surprise Royal or just want to keep the cobwebs off. We will be practicing the Standard Eight Surprise Royal methods (and others as time goes on) with a special method to focus on every week.
Whatever the method or number of bells, if you fancy ringing a quarter peal then let us know and we will try to organise it for you. This night is aimed at giving people of all standards quarter peal practice and achieving firsts in method etc. Just pop an email to Eleanor Wallace (form below)
We will be working through the Standard Eight Surprise Royal (and others afterwards) quarter peals. If you’re interested in getting involved, achieving firsts in Surprise Royal etc. just send an email to Eleanor:
Ringwood Advanced Practice – First Thursday of the month, 7.30 – 9.15 pm, commencing October 7th.
The Ringwood ringers are happy for the advanced practices to re-commence in October albeit on a different evening. The change of evening has been set down so that all the local ringers will be able to attend all their regular practices, hopefully this will not impact significantly upon the advance practice and we can continue to ring the range of Surprise Major methods as in the past.
The local band are ringing with both stair doors open and the hatch to the chamber above the ringing chamber partly open, this appears to create a reasonable level of ventilation, I’ll be bringing along a CO2 meter so that we can monitor actual ppm levels during the practice. Wearing of face masks within the ringing chamber will be optional for everyone double Covid vaccinated, otherwise we would prefer ringers to wear one unless they have had a negative lateral flow test 2 days beforehand.
Looking forward to seeing everyone again.
PLEASE NOTE: THE TEST VALLEY RINGING FESTIVAL ON 18TH SEPTEMBER HAS BEEN POSTPONED UNTIL SPRING 2022.
THE OTHER EVENTS ARE STILL GOING AHEAD.
Historic bells across the Winchester District will ring out for this year’s Heritage Open Days Festival. Because of Covid restrictions access to come and meet the ringers is limited to certain towers, but you are welcome to come and listen at all towers.
Saturday 11th September 2.30 – 4.45pm, St John’s New Alresford: Tower Open Day
Friday 17th September, 2.00pm Twyford St Mary
The Mayor of Winchester, Councillor Vivian Achwal, will be visiting the church of St Mary the Virgin, Twyford at 2pm on Friday 17th September. The Mayor’s Escort will be Dr. Sudhaker Achwal. They will hear ringing performed on the eight bells by a team of ringers drawn from across the Winchester area. The Mayor is offering her support to the team of ringers of Twyford, who are currently raising funds to restore their bells, and to the bellringers in other nearby churches in the Winchester District who are opening their towers to members of the public as part of the Heritage Open Days festival.
****POSTPONED UNTIL SPRING 2022****:Saturday 18th September – Test Valley Ringing Festival
The following towers will be ringing at various times during the day for the Test Valley Ringing Festival. Exact timings for each tower to be confirmed nearer the date
East Tytherley (8 bells, tenor 14-1-5 in F#)
Ground floor ringing room.
A relatively modern ring dated 1897 and 1999 by John Taylor & Co.
Mottisfont, St Andrew (5 bells, tenor 6-0-23 in Ab)
Ground floor ringing room
The bells are dated 1663, 1675, 1678, 1718 and 1891.
Houghton, All Saints (6 bells, tenor 2-2-21 in E)
Ground floor ringing room
In contrast to the other rings on this open day, this is not only the lightest ring of bells, but also a relatively modern one, with bells by John Taylor & Co (1950 and 1975) and four by Matthew Higby & Co (2015)
Broughton, St Mary (6 bells, tenor 11 cwt in G)
Ground floor ringing room
The oldest bell is by an unknown founder and dated 1617. Another by Clement I Tosier was added in 1681. Three more were added in 1720, 1763 and 1774. The last was added in 1934.
Nether Wallop, St Andrew (6 bells, tenor 14 cwt in F)
Ground floor ringing room
The oldest bell is dated 1585 by John Wallis and two more were added by John Hidgen in 1642.Two more were added in 1702 and 1770, with the final bell added in 1992.
Over Wallop, St Peter (5 bells, tenor 7cwt in A)
Upstairs ringing room
One of the bells is dated 1599, two others dated 1631 and 1636 are by John Dawton. A fourth was added in 1776 and the final bell added in 1875.
Stockbridge, St Peter (6 bells, tenor 7-0-20 in Bb)
Upstairs ringing room
Three of the bells are by Samuel Knight and dated 1691. The other three are by Mears & Stainbank of Whitechapel and are dated 1887.
Longstock, St Mary (5 bells, tenor 8cwt in A)
Ground floor ringing room
The oldest bell is by John Wallis and is dated 1593. He also cast another in 1617. The other three were added between 1879 and 1893.
Leckford, St Nicholas (5 bells, tenor 8-2-4 in A)
Ground floor ringing room
Three of the bells date from 1582, 1595 and 1629. The other two date from 1934 when they were added by Mears and Stainbank of Whitechapel
Goodworth Clatford, St Peter (8 bells, tenor 7½cwt in A)
Well ventilated upstairs ringing room.
The ring of eight bells includes a bell cast in 1622 by John Wallis, one cast by John Dawton in 1627 and one in 1700 by Robert Cor. The others are by John Taylor & Co and the Whitechapel Bellfoundry.
Upper Clatford, All Saints (6 bells, tenor 9-0-16 in F#)
Ground floor ringing room
Five of the bells are by various founders from 1621 to 1721. They were augmented to six and hung in a new frame by John Taylor & Co in 1967.
Please revisit this page nearer the date to check the timings.
All towers will be open for 45 minutes general ringing. After this, slots will be available for pre-booked bands. All ringers are encouraged to let us know which towers they intend to ring at by submitting a booking form. This will also help with track and trace.
There is no charge for the open day, but it is suggested that visiting ringers leave a donation of at least 50p per ringer at each church for local tower/church funds.
Visiting ringers need to adhere to Covid protocols. Do not come if you are feeling unwell, and wear a face mask if unvaccinated ringers are present. Any unvaccinated ringers or those who have only had one dose should also take a lateral flow test beforehand. Hand gel to be used each time a new ringer touches a rope.
Members of the public are welcome to come and listen, and may watch the ringing from the nave in those towers where the bells are rung from the ground floor. However, it will not be possible to have a go.
An online presentation introducing beginners to the plain course, explaining bobs and singles for those wanting to ring touches, and giving guidance on calling to those who want to call touches. A useful refresher on Grandsire Doubles as we return to our towers.
Zoom link open from 14.15
The presentation will be given by Edmund Wratten, Winchester District Ringing Master
As restrictions are lifted and ringing is able to resume, please note that not all towers are able to begin ringing again. Some may have restrictions in place whilst COVID infection numbers are still high. Many are still observing social distancing and require face masks to be worn. Others are restricting numbers that attend, or limiting the number in the ringing chamber at a time. There are also towers with insufficient number of ringers.
I recommend that if you intend to visit any tower as a visitor, you contact that Tower Secretary in the first instance to check if ringing is taking place and if there are any restrictions in place. Do not assume all towers have restarted. I would hate anyone to have a wasted journey.
If any towers wish to let me know their situation, I can update the website. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Great to be back ringing again but stay safe!
W&P Guild Webmaster
Email: Use Form
Isle of Wight Half yearly meeting and Centenary Celebration
at Newchurch from 3 pm on Saturday 24th July
Please contact Mary Tester, District Secretary, to get all the paperwork for the meeting.
Hope to see lots of people.
There will be ringing from 3pm, all necessary precautions will be in place.
And a traditional tea with cake!
Ringing guidance for England for the period from 19th July onwards has been agreed with the House of Bishops Recovery Group today and can be found here. The lifting of any restrictions on how long we ring for and with how many other ringers is welcomed, although we need to be mindful that at a time of greatly increasing infection rates, and big regional variations, many ringers will still be cautious in terms of how much ringing they do. Some towers are actually discussing reducing the amount of ringing they do because of the rise in infection levels, not increasing it.
The Church of England’s own guidance has not been published yet, but should be later today. It includes a paragraph referring to the Central Council’s guidance.
Although the wearing of facemasks is no longer mandated in places of worship, and will not appear in the Church of England guidance, we have included a number of situations where due to the particular nature of ringing we would expect masks to be worn, including close face to face teaching, and ringing with unvaccinated children. Some clergy may retain a policy of facemasks in their church or cathedral, and if they do then their wishes take precedence.
The Government now wants us to take responsibility for our own actions. If you don’t think you should ring for as long as you are allowed to – don’t. If you want to wear a facemask when ringing – wear one. If a member of your band wants you all to wear facemasks to protect them – discuss it as a band and come to an agreement. Bellringing is a group activity and we are responsible for each other not just ourselves. The virus has not gone away by any means – we are learning to live with it.
This seems like an ideal time to thank the rest of the Covid guidance team – Phil Barnes, Mark Regan and David Pouncey – who have helped navigate this difficult process over the last 16 months, and the large number of ringers who have given their quiet support behind the scenes. As a team we would like to thank Mark Betson and Brendan McCarthy, the members of the House of Bishops Recovery Group, who have had an extraordinary burden put on them.
When my parents chose the name Simon it was because it was unusual. Lots of other parents around the time thought the same and there was a bulge in Simon production, with three in my class at Junior school. But we are now a long way past Peak Simon, and the name languishes outside the top 100, replaced with the likes of Maverick (a famous Tomcat pilot at 73) and Leonardo (a famous turtle at 93). Bellringing Simons are a select yet strong group, with some perseverance enabling us to ring a quarter of Little Bob 14 in hand on Ringing Room. A last hurrah for the Simons on the platform? No – which shows how Ringing Room is going to continue to have a place in bringing groups of ringers together who might not otherwise meet easily and help develop progress in change ringing. As well as keeping many of us sane for the last year, Ringing Room and Ding’s ability to bring ringers together will be one of their legacies.
One of the joys of ringing is that so many resources are developed and provided by so many different people and without charge. Every so often something that is valued is at risk or possibly even lost. So we have a team led by the T&T workgroup looking to identify all the software programmes and assets that we as ringers care about and seeing what can be done about making sure they are as safe as they can be. What would you miss if it went down? I am not missing the Bellringers Facebook group, but would miss BellBoard, Ringing Room, and the Changeringing Wiki, which is the easiest place I can find my PPE articles. You can email the team at email@example.com and watch out for their forthcoming survey.
Ringing for the birthday of the NHS was well supported and covered by the media – quite a few towers managed to get TV coverage. We had been a bit sceptical when Bruno Peek had first mentioned this about nine months ago. The practicalities of ringing 73 times were mere detail when we didn’t really know what sort of ringing would be possible. Thanks to all who took part and registered their events. It’s supposed to be annual now, but I bet this is something that will wear out.
Unlike the Fourth of July, which will no doubt last forever! Washington ringers celebrated Independence Day with a full peal at the Cathedral – the first ten bell peal outside Australia since March 2020. Five years to the big 250 – the US Semiquincentennial Commission has already started a countdown https://america250.org/
Sadly, questions on whether it was appropriate to dedicate ringing performances to England’s win over Italy in the Euros became academic late on Sunday night.
Meanwhile quite a few peal bands are lining themselves up to ring peals on 19 July, on the reasonable expectation that restrictions are going to get relaxed. When I received an invitation for a 9am start for a peal of Bristol Maximus I assumed it was a joke! But no – some people really are that keen, and will be reminding local populations that have missed their bells quite how long they sometimes get rung for.
Personally, I am going to stick to handbell peals for a while. Making a late entry into the world of handbell ringing has made me realise how much more difficult it is to learn when you are older. For all those who have learned young and found making progress in ringing easy, discovering that learning can be quite hard when you’re just the wrong side of 50 is a good lesson.
I still haven’t finished the Cornwall edition of the Ringing World, despite it being kept handily in one of our rooms of quiet contemplation. Presumably we are now working on County issues and will be working north? I hope Rutland is going to manage a complete issue. I was fascinated by the article in the Cornwall edition about Rounds ringing. I was aware it was ‘a thing’ but not exactly what people do, or that there was a complete society dedicated to it.
I also liked the alternative vocabulary. I would be interested to know of regional variations in other distant outposts of the Exercise. When I learned to ring at Cannock the signal to start ringing down was “Look to the fall”. Who else says that? I only realised that wasn’t universal when I said it in Essex and no one knew what I was talking about.
Picking up on a thread from Ringing Chat (sent to me by my in-house social media monitoring team) there is a lot of discussion about how churches might be used more. In my business life I am close to this subject as I am working with the Church of England on the development potential of church buildings. Churches are often simply too big, and using the space better, or using less of it, is high on the agenda (see what the CCT did at All Souls Bolton – perhaps the best example of creative reuse). If a building can still maintain some worship space but with the rest put to good use this would be a welcome outcome. Bells are now seen as part of the solution. If we can attract visitors and use for buildings that is welcomed.
Once a year the Council has a meeting with Historic England and the Church Buildings Council to catch on various matters churches and bells. The relationship with them is as strong as ever but it was still useful last week to discuss such matters as church closures, historic bell frames, progress on the Dove database project, the Clerical Guild’s proposed ‘Theology of Ringing’, and how ringing is part of the fabric of the church.
Diana Evans of Historic England followed up with “How positive the CCCBR’s approach is. The amount of energy you are all putting into recovery from the pandemic is amazing. Bell ringing is an important part of the life of many historic places of worship and Historic England is keen to encourage the continuation of this tradition.”
Content taken from https://cccbr.org.uk and logo used with permission from Central Council of Church Bell Ringers
Bells on Sunday for January 2017.
1st. Denton, Manchester. Grandsire Doubles.
15th. Maidstone, Kent. Plain & Little Bob Royal.
22nd. Woodchurch, Wirral. Cambridge Surprise Major.
29th. Barnoldswick, Lancs. Barnoldswick T B Minor.
A quarter peal was rung to remember with gratitude, and to honour, those Island ringers who died during WW1.
Taken from the Hereford Ringing Course Website:
- Applications for the 2017 Course are now open. Please ensure your application reaches us by the closing date of 31st January 2017.
- Download the 2017 student application pack containing the application form and notes to help you fill in the form here.
- Download the 2017 Course Programme: a version optimised for printing here; or a version for reading on screen here.
- Cheques should be made payable to HEREFORD RINGING COURSE.
- You will need Adobe Reader to be able to view and print pdf files, which can be obtained free from Adobe’s site here.
Daniel Graham writes:
A final reminder that the November surprise royal practice is taking place this weekend, details as below;
When: Sunday 27th November at 14:00 – 15:30
Methods: Special method will remain as Bristol Royal, but we will also ring Cambridge/Yorkshire/Lincolnshire as required.
An enjoyable and rewarding practice night in Southampton last night at St Michael’s with a particularly good half course of Cambridge Royal and a nice touch of 8 spliced surprise major. Lots of other ringing too including Grandsire Triples/Caters, Stedman doubles and 4 spliced (CYNS) surprise major.
Next week, at Bitterne Park, we start our new venture of increasing our 8 bell repertoire, by starting to work through the methods in ‘Smiths 23’. First method is Cray Surprise Major.
As always all ringers welcome at any of our practices 🙂