Category Archives: Plain Minor

6 bell methods except Surprise Methods

Living on the end of a rope and sally! A weekend of courses and quarter peals!

It has been a while since a ‘report’ as such has featured on our district page.  I’ve been so acutely busy ringing recently, I just had to get down in words what has been going on in district ringing since 2019 new year!

As many of you will be aware, I have been bitten by both the lesser-spotted quarter peal bug, and the greater striped ringing fever.  It is wonderful to be given so many opportunities to gain valuable rope-time and partake in something as close to sporty as I shall ever get.  (Apparently gossiping is not an Olympic event).

January saw the re-installment of the district Quarter Peal Club hosted by our Vice-Chairman, Polly Osborne at Minstead. It was a valuable opportunity to treble at length to a minor method (St. Clement’s).  Here I happened upon a friendly and familiar face to me now, Jack Pease, who has often conducted in the past, but tonight was having a rest and Jimmy Hodkin took the reigns.

Jack was most kind, complimentary, and remarked that trebling to minor seemed “a bit too much within my comfort zone”, and insisted that I ring treble to a quarter-peal of triples in the near future with him, and also attend the minor course Jack was running at Bere Regis.

I felt much happier leaving Minstead tower, than I did arriving, partly because I managed to arrive at Minstead village in the pitch black forest in heaps of time, but then got dreadfully lost within the village for half an hour, and ended up in a strange place called Emery Down, and was then horridly late.  Not the greatest first impression really of myself, appearing to new people, gasping from running at the top of a ladder poking my head through a trap door.

Jack’s Bob Minor Course on the Friday morning was a bright and early start for me, even the New Forest ponies were still sleeping instead of trying to get into my rubbish bins.  We headed to Bere Regis, to a delightful ring of six that went very majestically.  Was a good learning curve to ring at a more relaxed and steadier pace.  I started the course mainly trebling where I felt secure, but as the morning progressed, and as I got to know the band a bit more, I ventured round the circle ringing plain courses on the 3 and 4, and eventually a touch.  I did try the 5 but alas it was a step to far turning in a much heavier bell to method work.

I came away from Bere Regis course refuelled with plenty of kindling to take back with me to my home tower, and many useful tips and tricks, handed down from our brave leader (Jack) and the other helpers.  It was a really relaxed atmosphere too which lended itself to a great learning experience.

Saturday lunchtime saw yet another quarter peal at Sacred Heart, Bournemouth in celebration of Kim Matthew’s retirement from her position as Librarian of the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra.  I shall fast forward to the shock I was in after the quarter peal had finished, when I truly discovered what ‘splicing methods’ actually meant!  I can only compare it to when school used to make me attempt the hurdles…you just have to keep going, even if you knock them all down!  I understood splicing methods to be a few methods rung one after the other after several touches/courses of each method, NOT methods running concurrently, and switching to and fro like an over-excited American pin-ball machine!  Ross made an amazing job of calling this complex quarter, which I can only imagine akin to being like reciting the Bible from memory…..backwards.  I was most fortunate to have Angie Jasper by my side on the 4 sorting my stumbles out very swiftly and efficiently.

From Sacred Heart, I had to hot foot it to Christchurch Priory, for our annual district meeting.  Here I had been roped in (excuse the pun), to playing the little box organ for the Evensong service in the Lady Chapel.  It was a very special atmosphere, especially as the incredible acoustics in there took the little organ and accompanied singing into the rafters.  I wish they would stop putting carpets down in churches.  Kills acoustics!  I faced two problems here. One that the organ had been placed next to the ringers tea table that had enough cake and sandwiches to fulfil even Paddington Bear, and had all been thoroughly wrapped in foil so having a sneaky sausage roll from the kitchen of Rob Skerton, mid service, was impossible.  The second problem was the lady that pulled on my arm during the exit voluntary, to stop me playing, which I dutifully did as I expected there to be an emergency…no such luck…it was an announcement about the toilet, and that vegetarian sandwiches were located on a separate table.  At least that meant this year the egg and marmite sandwiches were nowhere near the salmon paste!  I was also so pleased to matriculate from Acting Webmaster to Webmaster.  I was really very touched when so many raised their hands when asked for nominations.  I’m very much looking forward to arranging the district outing, and the skittles evening post striking competition at Fawley.

The next day was the forboding quarter peal of Grandsire Triples, and was confirmed by the band around me the evening before.  Off I headed to St. Michael’s Southampton in my Mystery Machine (ongoing joke, as you never know where you’ll end up….especially when I leave the handbrake off and head up tower).  St. Michael’s really is a fascinating place indeed.  Jack shoo’d me up the wooden spiral that winds its way through the innards of the organ (definitely needed going over with my DustBuster TM- poor pipes), and I entered the poshest, loftiest and most spacious ringing chamber I have ever been in.  I later found out that the church is the only medieval structure left within the city walls of Southampton, and that the Luftwaffe used it as a mapping point to their targets, so it never got bombed!

The band were all incredibly friendly and supportive.  St. Michael’s has a gorgeous ring of 10, with a lovely bright Gillet (bell founders) sound.  As a musician, sound is a vital factor to me, and it was a great help to hear each clear bell as I coursed up and down.  We only used the 8 bells for triples, would have loved to hear all 10 going.  The void across the ringing chamber floor between myself and the tenor was such that I thought I was going to have to send up smoke signals to communicate!  Again, it was another tower I left from with a spring in my step, chased back to the Mystery Machine by winter’s icy blast from the docks! Mother told me to put a hat on….why are they always right?

Finally, on Tuesday, I hared across the county to Cerne Abbas for the Hampreston Monthly Quarter Peal Day.  This month’s was arranged superbly by Angie Jasper.  It’s an incredible set up.  I’m unsure what the collective noun for bellringers is, but we all gather in an area with our rosters, and head off to various towers, interchanging bands, some ringing first attempts, crazy methods (Percy’s Tea Strainer Triples, Mental Block Minor etc), practice conducting, trebling, tenoring, ringing inside the method, and break for lunch, then do it all again at churches in deepest countryside for the afternoon shift. Seven quarter peals were rung that day between about 15 people.  Incredible.

I feel very honoured to be made welcome into this group in my early career as a ringer, and there’s always something for me to have a go at and push me.  Finally managed to negotiate my way through 1260 changes of St Nicholas Doubles (failed attempt at Christmas), and the afternoon shift saw me tenoring at Hilton to Eynesbury Doubles.  Sadly we didn’t get the attempt.  Really tricky bells, plain bearings, and keeping the tenor at the back and ‘up’ was a tough job, seeing use of blue inhaler.  Just to round the day off in true Murdock-Saint panache, I managed to fly base over apex down the last part of the tower stairs, my ankle currently doing a wonderful impression of the aurora borealis….well worth it however.  Driving home the 40 miles was interesting on the clutch, fortunately the petrol station had bagged ice for parties, which I strapped to the ankle with a towing rope.  Even though we did not get the attempt, we used the time to ring through a few different touches of the method, and it was great learning experience in handling a big and difficult tenor!

I would like to thank especially the following people in no particular order:

Kim Matthews, Polly Osborne, Ross Bradley, Angie & Mike Jasper, Sally Jenkins, Jimmy Hodkin, Jack Pease, for arranging these incredible opportunities in particular for new ringers.  The bell ringing community is really like a second family.  I must also thank my home tower teachers, David Lay, John and Liz Davey, Tim Kettle for their unending patience, understanding and time.

Looking forward to ringing with many of you over the coming year,

Over and out

Peter

Title photography by Jack R. Pease.

Method Monday at Sacred Heart 7th January 6:00pm until 7:30pm

Happy New Year to Method Monday ringers!

January’s practice will see us launch into 2019 with Plain Bob Minor (with emphasis on Singles), and Stedman Doubles.

Please come along prepared to call and/or ring a touch.

Drinks afterwards.

Next month’s practice will be on 4th February at 6:00pm until 7:30pm.

Contact Kim Matthews

ISLE OF WIGHT DISTRICT PRACTICE 18th Nov

The Isle of Wight District are holding a Plain Hunt Practice this coming Saturday, 18th November.

This will be held at Godshill from 6.30 – 8.00 and will include plain hunting on 5 and 6 bells; trebling to various methods; practice for tenor ringing to Doubles methods.

This is being organised for those who are starting plain hunting and those who need more experience to progress forward.

Please come along and join us as Godshill are easy to ring with a good circle.

**Updated** – Winchester District Quarterly Meeting and Training Afternoon Sat 11th Nov – Owslebury

At St Andrew’s, Owslebury:

Kent and Oxford Treble Bob Minor

led by Edmund Wratten, District Ringing Master

 

Programme of Events

2:30 – 4:30 p.m. Kent and Oxford TB Minor

4:30 – 5:30 p.m. Tea

5:30 – 6.15 p.m. Quarterly District Meeting

6:15 – 7.00 p.m (approx.) Open Ringing

Names/numbers for tea to Liz Manship, ( 01962 777264) or e-mail , by Weds. November 8th.

Names for training places and for offers of help to Jenny Watson,  by Weds. November 9th.

N.B. PLACES MUST BE BOOKED IN ADVANCE

Postcode/NGR for the Church: SO21 1 LU, SU 515234
Postcode for the Parish Hall: SO21 1LU

Email from Bruce – 04/11/2017

Dear All,

Please find attached agenda for next Saturday’s quarterly meeting at Owslebury, and the unconfirmed minutes of our last quarterly meeting, at Houghton, back in August. Please bring to the attention of your members and anyone else you think would like to come along to what will be a grand afternoon out.

Please find also a copy of the poster for the day, in which I have corrected a minor and inconsequential typo.

The venue and the subject of the training part of our meeting is, please note, a change from what we had planned, in consequence of our having only a six-bell tower available to us in the area for the day. We shall be learning and rehearsing our skills in Treble Bob Minor, in the Kent and Oxford variations, Kent in particular being a valuable stepping-stone between plain minor methods and treble bob, including delight and surprise methods. Oxford is always a useful extra string to one’s bow.
Look forward to seeing you next Saturday, best wishes meanwhile,

Bruce – District Secretary

Link to Poster for Winchester District QDM – 11th November 2017

Link to Agenda for Winchester District QDM – Saturday 11th November 2017

**CANCELLED** Sopley Minor Methods Practice Weds 27th Sept

Hi everyone,

Our next practice is currently scheduled for 27 September. Would you please let me know if you are likely to be there and what you would like to practice/ring so I can match objectives with capabilities?

I look forward to hearing from you.

Best wishes,

Tim Kettle

Quarter Peal in memory of Brain Orange, ringer at King’s Somborne

Winchester & Portsmouth Diocesan Guild
King’s Somborne, Hampshire
SS Peter and Paul
Tuesday, 23 May 2017 in 45m (10–1–9 in F)
1260 Plain Bob Minor
Jen Churchill
Sue Spurling
Ron White
C Hugh J Hill
Edmund J Wratten
Graham J Wright (C)
In memory of Brian Orange. A member of the local Sunday service band.

Bournemouth Sacred Heart “Method Monday” Confirmed May 1st

headlThe Sacred Heart band  are practising on Monday 1st as it will be a “Method Monday” Double Court Minor and touches if possible. If the right people turn up we could have Cambridge and touches of Kent. Also welcome people that would like to try calling touches and don’t normally get the chance.

Kim Matthews

Christchurch Priory 30th April – Quarter Peal Attempt for Evensong

A Quarter Peal of Kent Minor will be attempted for Evensong on the 30th. There will be no general ringing.

For all ringing times please check our calendar.

Invitation to ring at Abbotsbury on Sept 23rd plus other practices (from Dorset County Association)

DORSET COUNTY ASSOCIATION OF CHURCH BELL RINGERS

Six-Bell Practices for 2017

Saturdays: 7-9pm

Abbotsbury                Sept 23rd – Kent Treble Bob Minor

Martinstown              Dec 16th – Double Oxford


Also your choice of Doubles; from Plain Hunt, Slow Course methods, Grandsire etc         

For more information, please send an e-mail or visit the DCA website  

POSTER

Bournemouth Sacred Heart – Method Monday – 3rd March

Just a reminder that it is ‘Method Monday’ at Sacred Heart this coming Monday – Methods Double Court Minor and St Martins Doubles and beer to follow. See you there!

And yet another “first” in Guernsey

There’s no chance of Helen feeling unwanted when she’s in Guernsey or getting withdrawal symptoms from lack of ringing! Duncan can always find just one more QP for her to ring.

Congratulations to Alexander for ringing his first quarter of minor in hand.

On Friday, 17 March 2017 in 37min
Guernsey, CI Elizabeth College Tenor: size 10A#
1260 Plain Bob Minor

1–2 Duncan Loweth (C)
3–4 Helen M McGregor
5–6 Alexander Mann

First on 6: 5-6

CS District Sopley Minor Methods Practice Weds 22nd of March ***CANCELLED***

Dear All,

A quick check of some of the group has shown that we will be slightly short in the expert department on Wednesday so it looks sensible to concentrate on our basic trio of methods:
There will be plenty to challenge us – if you want to practice calling some touches please come prepared! If you want to ring Treble Bob Hunt from a new bell, then look it up in advance. If you have not tried Little Bob Minor before, then have a look at it, as it really is just one logical step up the ladder from Plain Bob Minor.
So – please RSVP, we will go ahead if there are a minimum of 8 people keen to ring.  New people are very welcome.
Regards
Rosalind

Bournemouth Sacred Heart “Method Monday” 6th March

Sacred Heart Bournemouth are starting up a “Method Monday” on the 1st Monday of each month, methods will be similar to the minor method practiced at Sopley each month, so you can get even more practice?

March Method Monday will be Double Court Minor and touches of St Simons Doubles. Practice is from 5.45 – 7.15 followed by beer!.

Sopley Minor Methods Practice Report – Feb 22nd 2017

Ten people met at Sopley on Wednesday to engage with the project of improving our Minor Methods expertise.

We focussed on Singles in Bob Minor, Treble Bob Hunt, and Double Court Minor which was the top request of the evening, and was a first for one of the band.

We also rang Kent Minor.

To assist preparations for the next practice on 22nd March, you may find this new website page helpful. (for other news on Double Court Minor, please click here)

A Simple Touch of Double Court Bob Minor

B-B-B- (out make in)

This touch comes from this useful document on the Essex  Guild website.

You may find the following pdf’s useful as you prepare to ring this touch:

dcbm-plain-course

Practice Night Report – Christchurch Priory Monday 13th Feb

Last night 15 members of the Priory Band welcomed 6 visitors at the Priory and (in the words of Alastair from  Dorchester):

had a cracking evening in the far east … with a very varied selection of ringing, from rounds and call changes on 6, 8, and 12, to Plain courses of Double Court Bob Minor (a first) and Cambridge Minor (first for a while), and a touch of Stedman Doubles.

The two visitors who requested Grandsire Triples picked a good evening to come as we rang several plain courses and a 6-single touch that was new for a Monday.

Photo by Alastair Simpson

Words by Rosalind

 

 

Confirmed: Sopley Minor Methods Practice Weds Feb 22nd 7.30pm

After January’s practice, the consensus of the band is that for February 22nd we would like to stay with the same methods:

Please can the conductors come prepared to call some short touches of Double Court and simple Single-only touches of Bob Minor?

It’s a good practice to work on your Ringing Master skills as well – anyone want to do all or part of the job in February?

Once again I am hoping to get 9+ firm replies in order to go ahead with this practice. RSVP please by Friday 17th Feb and I will send out a confirmation.

Or download a poster: sopley-minor-methods-practice

Rosalind

SDGR Methods Practice Fordingbridge Monday February 6th from 2pm -3.30

SALISBURY DIOCESAN GUILD OF RINGERS
SALISBURY BRANCH
METHOD PRACTICE

The next one of  these will be this  Monday February 6th from 2pm  to 3.30pm.. The practice will be for those wishing to move on to methods beyond Bob Minor up to 6 and 8 bell surprise.

Other practices will be on May 8th (second Monday), August 7th and November 6th.

Please let me know if you intend to come as it would be useful to have an idea of numbers beforehand.
Pat Davidson

Canford Minor Practice (SDGR) Weds 8th Feb 7.30pm

Our next minor practice will be on Wednesday 8th February when we will be ringing all the methods learned so far:

  • St Clements College Bob,
  • Little Bob,
  • Single Court and
  • Double Court Bob Minor.

Although we managed without ‘helpers’ last time, we would really appreciate experienced ringers to help us – especially with calling touches.

Hope to see as many of you as possible!

Marisa (RSVP using email form below)

Essex Course 6th-8th April – Applications must be in by Friday 10th February

This year’s Essex Ringing Course runs from Thursday 6th to Saturday 8th April. The closing date for applications is Friday 10th February.

Details are at <https://eacr.org.uk/course>

The following is reproduced from that page:

PRACTICAL RINGING SESSIONS

GROUP A — Improving foundation skills.
Have you reached the stage in your early ringing career where even if you understand the theory of what you are meant to be doing you are finding doing it an entirely different matter? If so this group is for you. Students in this group will work on their individual ringing skills so that they can improve their bell control, listening and ropesight. This may require time working alone on a bell as an individual with the advice of your tutor, as well as ringing with other ringers. Students will also practise raising and lowering a single bell.
GROUP B
A Group for those who can ring Rounds competently and who are ready to take their first steps in call changes and then, possibly, in change ringing on 3 or 4 bells. If you are in any way doubtful about joining Group C, then join Group B; you will still find something to learn and will have the opportunity to fill in steps in your ringing education you may have missed or not appreciated.
GROUP C
A Group for those wishing to plain hunt on 5. The opportunity to practise on different rings of bells and in different orders both on the treble and “inside” will be provided. The Group will emphasise the skills required for change ringing and will be learning ropesight and considering striking, as an essential preliminary to ringing the treble. Practice may be given at ringing the treble to Bastow, Minimus and Doubles, to “Stedman Quick Sixes” and to Plain Bob Minimus as appropriate, before progressing to ringing the treble to Plain Bob Doubles.
GROUP D
A Group for those who really have ropesight and bell control and are ready to ring the treble to Grandsire Doubles and Plain Bob Minor. It is intended to progress to ringing the treble to touches in both these methods. A number of other methods may be rung to practise the different rhythm of change ringing with six bells.
GROUP E
A Group for those who are competent in ringing skills as outlined in the above groups and wishing to learn Plain Bob Doubles on an “inside” bell.
GROUP F
A Group for those who are already competent in ringing skills as outlined in the above groups and able to ring touches of Plain Bob Doubles and who wish to learn Plain Bob Minor “inside”. You should be able to treble hunt reliably to touches of Bob Minor before applying for this group; if in any doubt consider applying for Group D.
GROUP G — Grandsire
Starting with Doubles and progressing to Triples with calls. Applicants must be proficient in ringing the treble to Grandsire and be able to ring touches of Bob Doubles “inside” to get the full benefit from this option.
GROUP H — Doubles Beyond Plain Bob & Grandsire
Would you like more variety on Practice Night? Explore Reverse Canterbury, St Simon’s and other methods or variations which contain a number of different ‘works’ which will be useful in your future ringing career.
GROUP I — Beyond Bob Minor
The Group will study and practise several Plain Minor methods (Single / Double Court and Oxford) which introduce many of the building blocks and concepts needed before progressing to Surprise. Methods such as St Clements and Little Bob may also be included. Applicants must be able to ring touches of Plain Bob Minor on an inside bell competently.
GROUP J — Stedman
Starting with Doubles and progressing to Triples with calls and theory on extension to Caters and Cinques. You should be proficient in ringing up to Group G to get full benefit from this option.
GROUP K — Surprise Major
To get the full benefit from this group applicants must be able to ring Plain Bob Major “inside”, be able to ‘treble bob’ proficiently and have some experience of Treble Bob or Surprise Minor. The Group will start with Cambridge Major and move on to Yorkshire.
GROUP L — Calling & Conducting Touches
This Group will start with calling Plain Bob and Grandsire Doubles, and progress to Plain Bob and possibly other Minor methods. Students will be actively involved in calling a variety of touches, and will be expected to ring whilst others of the Group are calling. No previous experience of calling is required, but you must be able to ring touches of Grandsire Doubles and Plain Bob Minor “inside” competently.

Double Court Bob Minor

Blue Line

Double Court Bob Minor

News and Information

CS Sopley Minor Methods Practice – Report of January 25th 2017, & plans for February 22nd

Another well-attended practice with lots of hard work and progress made. Some highlights were:

  • First go at Double Court Bob Minor for 2 of the ringers, and the method has once again succeeded in being a  novel challenge, without being too heavyweight. It was also good practice for those Christchurch ringers who have been working on it for a few weeks already.
  • Good progress with Kent Inside, consolidating a long term learning effort for several of us. Next time, can people aim to ring a new bell as well as their “comfort blanket bell”?
  • Useful practice for the Bob Minor Conductors in the group, both of whom were able to try something new. Mostly we rang it accurately enough to come around but we need to do more homework on the Singles for February.
  • Very tidy Treble Bob Hunt practice which was a help for the aspiring “treble-to-Kent” ringer.
  • Yes, we missed Chris!

Consensus of the band is that for February 22nd we would like to stay with the same methods:

Please can the conductors come prepared to call some short touches of Double Court and simple Single-only touches of Bob Minor?

It’s a good practice to work on your Ringing Master skills as well – anyone want to do all or part of the job in February?