Category Archives: ROCHRingers

ROCHRingers covers Rotherwick, Odiham, Crondall (Guilford Guild) and Heckfield. Click to visit the ROCHRingers homepage.

No Ringing At Odiham from 10th February 2020

All Saints, Odiham bells will be out of action during refurbishment from Monday 10th February 2020 until end of March/early April, unless otherwise stated. Therefore, practices on Wednesday evenings will be held elsewhere. Wednesday 12th February it will be held at St Mary Herriard, venues of future practices will be notified when known.


For Whom The Bell Tolls – Fundraising for Odiham Bells – Saturday 31st August

The bells of All Saints, Odiham are in need of some TLC. The frame requires some fairly
substantial supports in the form of steel beams, to be installed, and the bells themselves
require attention to various fittings, including some clappers. The report of the survey
carried out also recommended installation of rope guides.
To this end, the ringers of All Saints have been involved in various fundraising events.
This is our latest fun event and we send out a warm invitation to all our bell ringing friends and partners to come and enjoy this classic film so aptly named.


Odiham, All Saints – Christmas Ringing Times

Wednesday 12th, no practice – moved to Thursday 13th.
Wednesday 19th, no practice.
Wednesday 26th, no practice – moved to 27th.

All 19.30 to 21.00.

Morning Service – Sun. 9th. Dec. – 9.45am – ring normal time, 9.15am
Carols in the Bury – Sat. 15th Dec. – 6.00pm – ring at 5.30pm?
Morning Service – Sun. 16th. Dec. – 9.45am – ring normal time, 9.15am
Morning Service – Sun. 23rd. Dec. – 9.45am – ring normal time, 9.15am
Nine Lessons and Carols – Sun. 23rd. Dec. 6.30pm – ring at 6.00pm?
Midnight Mass – Sun. 24th. Dec. – 11.00pm – ring at 10.30pm?
Morning Service – Mon. 25th. Dec. – 10.00am – ring at 9.30am
NO Morning Service – Sun. 30th. Dec.

Pauline Stokes

Odiham, All Saints

Itinerary for Winchester District Mini-Outing Sat May 26th

Dear All,
The details for the District’s Mini-Outing on Saturday 26th May have finally come together.
We have the newly-restored 5 at Newnham to start off with, followed by the 6 at Rotherwick, then lunch at the Vine at Hannington followed by the sixes at Hannington and Church Oakley, with tea at one or other of the equally highly-regarded tea-rooms in Overton.
So we don’t have a crazily early start, and we finish quite early in the afternoon should anyone have commitments later in the day.
Apologies to all those who are either at the CC meeting in Lancaster, on the Bishopstoke tour of Scotland, or the wedding at Stockbridge – but I hope there will be enough others who can come to make a success of the day.
If you would care to let me know your lunch preferences by Thursday 24th May I should be grateful. Soup of the day will be Tomato and Basil, Pie of the day will be beefsteak and Guinness.
Best wishes
District Secretary

Gary Marsh Reports from Crondall

I first became aware of the bellringing at Crondall when I started using twitter to engage with other ringers and towers. The twitter posts from @Crondallbells were enthusiastic (read eccentric) , and it’s profile picture of a dozen ringers all doing the iconic “mobot” pose, after Sir Mo Farah, certainly caught my attention! When I learned that their regular Monday evening practice had almost 30 people going to it I thought that I’d go along to see for myself and take some photos as proof!

I got in touch with Deb Margason-Baker, Crondall Tower Captain, #bellringing social media guru for both and @RingingTeachers ART, and so arranged to pay them a visit. Crondall, if you didn’t know, is just over the northern boundary of the Winchester & Portsmouth guild. Barely ten minutes from the M3 at Fleet.

When I got there, around about 8pm, a gaggle of 5 ringers (a family group of learners as I later found out) were making their way out of the tower, having done their early shift of bell handling and rounds at the beginning of practice.

During this pause in proceedings I entered the ringing chamber and was instantly greeted by several ringers whose names I never took in (sorry!) and also by Deb. She promptly handed me the treble rope before she warmly introduced me to the sea of curious faces. Not name by name fortunately, that would have taken ages. I was there, I said, to enjoy myself with them, to write a piece for and to take some photos, and to apologies profusely for my ropey bell handling. They accepted all of that without question! Now, I’ve only been ringing 18 months, (an excuse I intend to use for at least a full 5 years), and ringing on 8 whilst with so many others present was a little daunting. I ring on Wonston’s 6 in a typically small chamber. But I was made very at ease very quickly, and was well supported by Deb and lots of smiles and obvious prompts from around the ring as I had a go at plain hunting on 7.

The practice continued with much more melody and rhythm once my go was done and I was replaced by someone competent. People quietly milled about, looked up methods on their smartphones, or otherwise made themselves comfortable on the elevated seating platforms that run along two walls. Ringers handed over their ropes allowing others to take over as method succeeded method.

I shifted around, composing my photos from various angles, watching the scene change as ringers moved, turn by turn, in and out of the ringing circle. At the end of the session I had another ring. This time on the tenor. Plain Hunt. I felt completely relaxed. I felt I could get, and take, advice from anyone in the room.

The evening wrapped up with the bells lowered in rounds and Deb doing her best Tinkerbell impersonation trying to get the tenor to chime, head thrown back and feet off the ground.

The Crondall post-practice routine involves a short drive through the village to one of the pubs for chips and a drink. I was grateful that one of the ringers jumped in my car to be my navigator. I’d probably still be circling Crondall without him!

My thanks to Deb and all at Crondall. I had a great evening and I hope to return soon. Maybe get to see your simulator running. Looked like a great setup.

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St Michael’s, Heckfield Summer Ringing Times

Start of the summer monthly practices.

1st Thursday of each month – April to October inc.

7.30 – 9.00 and off to the pub after!

Come and have some fun on these great anti-clockwise 5

The tenor at 15.5 cwt is the heaviest bell in the Basingstoke District.

All lighthearted fun with everything from calls & round changes, Plain Bob, Grandsire and Stedman – something for everyone!

Entrance is via the door at the back of the tower.

Report from Cambridge Surprise Minor Practice – Saturday 26th August

Saint Mary the Virgin, Micheldever held a Stedman and Erin doubles practice on Saturday 8 July 2017. The training day was brilliant. Great support from local ringers and an opportunity to meet new people and have some extended quality rope time. Personally this session really helped me consolidate my Stedman learning resulting in me completing a touch of Stedman and completing a plain course of Erin which was a first for me.

On the day I met Deb Baker, and we decided to arrange a training day for Cambridge Surprise Minor. Debs arranged the bells and I looked to gather a team of helpers.

Last Saturday 26th August (bank holiday weekend) two students and nine helpers from across the district undertook Cambridge Surprise Minor simulator practice at Crondall. Initially the students took turns ringing the method before we advanced to having two students in at the same time. The practice culminated in Debs and me ringing three plain courses together, which was a challenge but completed with some guidance on the second and third courses. It was a brilliant three hour practice with the students walking away with much more knowledge and experience than they had started with and I think the helpers had a good time too.

For a bit of fun the practice finished with a round of quacking ducks on the simulator. If you’ve never tried it you should, it was very funny!

Finally thanks goes to Crondall, for the use of the tower. A big thank you to all the helpers for making this practice such a great success and thanks goes to Roy LeMarechal, who kindly acted as tower captain and structured the practice on the day.

Rebecca Webb

Cambridge Surprise Minor Practice - Crondall - 26th August 2017

Back row
Chris Ford – Sheffield-on-Loddon
Roy LeMarechal – Bishopstoke
Adrian – Eversley
Adrian Lewis – Overton
Kevin Fox – Crondall
Front row
John Young – Frensham
Joseph Sharp – Rotherwick
Rebecca Webb – Basingstoke
Deb Baker – Crondall
Helen Piper – Kingsclere

More Helpers Welcome – Cambridge Minor Practice at Crondall Sat 26th Aug

Dear All,
I wrote some weeks ago about a Cambridge Surprise Minor Simulator Practice at Crondall on Saturday 26th August 2017 10:30-13:00. The practice is still planned to go ahead and if you are able to come along as a helper and support the students your support would be much appreciated and valued.
Hope to see you there.
Rebecca Webb

Students and Helpers invited to Cambridge Surprise Minor Practice – Crondall, 26th August

Following on from the successful Stedman Doubles practice earlier on in the year at Herriard, Deb Baker and myself are organising a Cambridge Surprise Minor, simulator practice at Crondall on 26th August 2017 from 10:30-13:00.

I’m writing to seek your help to support the students. If this is something you would like to help with please let me know.

We have four student places. If this is a method you would like to learn please get in touch. If the practice is over subscribed we will run another practice in the near future.

I look forward to hearing from you all whether you are a helper or student.


Rebecca Webb

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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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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Learn to ring with ROCHRingers

Learning to ring in this atmosphere is a pleasure. They have quite a few new ringers of all ages ( 7yrs – 70yrs) between them and folks thinking ‘Hmm I would like to give it a go’ are always welcome.                                                                                                                                        Please click on any of the tower links to find their contact details,the days and times that they practice.

See you soon.

ROCH Ringers

ROCH ringers are a ‘cross Guild’ friendly bunch who support and ring at each others towers on practice nights and for weddings etc. They can be found ringing the bells at:

They share bells, friendship, fun, beer and outings

  • Learn to ring with ROCHRingers

    Learning to ring in this atmosphere is a pleasure. They have quite a few new ringers of all ages ( 7yrs – 70yrs) between them and folks thinking ‘Hmm I would like to give it a go’ are always welcome.                                                                                                                                        Please click on any of the tower links to find their contact details,the days and times that they practice.

    See you soon.

Proposed Design for Tower Widgets


For discussion, amendment and agreement within the communications team.


Each Tower (or where preferred, cluster) has a “widget” that lives in the right hand column of the website (The WordPress “Content Sidebar”. It will be visible when a user is on the tower’s home page, or on any post that has the tower’s category.

Initial Design

When the website was first developed, the widget was an RSS feed which displayed all posts with the tower’s category. There was no archiving and no distinction between news items and non-news items (such as contact details or bell ringing times).

Intention of the new design

  • Archived news is no longer mixed in with current news as per the original design. It is clearly laid out to separate the two.
  • Towers can have a home page AND as many extra pages (Actually Tower Information Posts) as they need.
  • Ringing Times for a tower are held in a separate post which can be embedded anywhere as desired without being duplicated.
  • Extra Pages for a tower can be added without needing any extra technical knowledge over and above that needed for writing news posts.
  • Menu of extra pages visible with every extra page, without need for programming.
  • The order that they are displayed in, is reasonably easy to control without advanced knowledge.
  • The layout works for towers with multiple pages and lots of news; also for ones with less content, so they can all be created now and the extra pages developed gradually with the bands. Nothing is hard coded.
  • All current news is displayed and the 4 latest posts from the archive, allowing visitors to determine “how active is this band” and “what do they tend to ring” (These were suggested in the survey August 2016)
  • The tower’s home page(s) can be kept for information only, no news.
  • No need to add hot links to towers when posting because using the tower’s category will bring the widget into view and provide the home page link.
  • The single image on the widget draws the user’s eye to the home page first.
  • A cluster may have a home page and this would be displayed at the top of the widget with the featured image. (example bournemouth). The tower categories need to be sub-categories of the cluster category, in order to ensure the news feed works properly.
  • The design preserves the simple Tower URLs.

The Widget Will Contain:

  1. All current (ie non-archived) news. For most bands this is maximum one item and often blank.
  2. Link to the home page in bold type with thumbnail image
  3. List of extra “pages” (Tower Information Posts) ordered by latest modification date.
  4. Up to 4 pieces of archived news with date stamps (To give users an insight into the band’s communications)

Examples: (displayed with this post)

  • Christchurch Priory (9 pages)
  • Bournemouth (3 tower cluster)
  • Tangley (one page one tower)

Your Comments: Are  in the Team Facebook Group

Odiham Practice Night Temporary Change

archPlease note that Odiham’s usual practice night of Wednesday will change this week (for one night only!) to Thursday (21st July) as the church is hosting a choir concert on Wednesday evening. We will be there from 7.30 to 9.00pm. Please feel free to join us. Access is through the church door and bear right.

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.

A mini ring comes to village fête.

This Saturday (19th) The  Vestey Mini Ring from Suffolk will be at Crondall Village Fête.

Our friends and neighbours are promoting ringing and informing the locals to what it’s all about and we, across the divide, have been warmly invited to come and ‘have a go’.

The Fête is from  2:00 – 5:00  Hook Meadow   GU10 5QG