Category Archives: Winchester Cathedral

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Ringing cancellations due to COVID-19

Coronavirus: UK ringing should now be cancelled

The UK government has advised against all unnecessary social contact with immediate effect. The Prime Minister advised in a press conference of 16th March that now is the time for everyone to stop non-essential contact with others and to stop all unnecessary travel.

The Central Council has released a statement in response to the UK government. They advise that If you haven’t already decided to cancel ringing activities, it seems that now is the time to do so. The Ringing World agrees with this statement. It is hard to interpret the government’s guidance in any way other than that all planned ringing activities in the UK should now cease.



I have been made aware that ringing has been suspended at the following towers due to COVID-19 concerns:

Alton, St. Laurence, All Saints and Holybourne – all ringing suspended.

Alverstoke – all ringing cancelled until further notice.

Basingstoke, St. Michael’s – all ringing cancelled until further notice.

Blackmoor – all ringing suspended.

Bournemouth, St. John’s, St. Peters and Scared Heart – all ringing suspended.

Bramshott – all service and practice ringing until at least the end of March where the situation will be reviewed.

Brockenhurst – no ringing until further notice.

Buriton – all ringing suspended.

Catherington – ringing cancelled, but may be some limited Sunday ringing if services continue.

Christchurch Priory – all ringing suspended until further notice.

Eling – all ringing suspended.

Froxfield – all ringing suspended.

Havant – all ringing suspended until further notice.

Hawkley – all ringing suspended and the tied practices on 6-8-10th April postponed.

Hursley – all ringing suspended until further notice.

Newport – all ringing cancelled until further notice.

Portsmouth Cathedral – all ringing suspended.

Purbrook – all ringing cancelled until further notice.

Romsey – all ringing suspended until further notice.

Selborne – all ringing cancelled until further notice.

Shanklin – all ringing suspended until further notice.

Shedfield – all ringing suspended until further notice.

Southampton (St. Mary’s, St. Michael’s and Bitterne Park) – all ringing suspended.

Steep – all ringing suspended.

Titchfield – all ringing suspended.

Upham – all ringing suspended until further notice.

Upton Grey – all ringing cancelled until further notice.

Warnford – all ringing suspended.

West Meon – all ringing suspended.

Wickham – all ringing suspended until further notice.

Winchester Cathedral – all ringing suspended until further notice.

Wonston – no practices until further notice.

Portsmouth District – all District events are cancelled including the April QDM.

Winchester District – all District events and the striking competition in May are cancelled until further notice.

Please let me know via of any other cancellations and I will add them to this list.


Andrew Glover

W&P Guild Webmaster




Peals at Winchester Cathedral in 2020

Applications are invited for peal attempts at Winchester Cathedral on Mondays 13 April (Easter Bank Holiday), 25th May (Spring Bank Holiday) and 31st August (Summer Bank Holiday) 2020.

The draw for these dates will be held on Wednesday 12th February, and the deadline for applications is 12 noon on that day.

Further details from Steve Lamb, Tower Secretary, tel. 07508 008864 or email.


Basingstoke District Practice at Winchester Cathedral – Sunday 16th June – 2:00pm to 3:30pm

The next Basingstoke District Practice will be slightly different from normal as we will be ringing at Winchester Cathedral prior to Evensong. Please let Nici – the District Secretary know if you are coming as the Cathedral need a list of names of those attending.

If you are coming we will be meeting at the West door at 2pm as it isn’t certain which entrance will be in use at the time.

Hope to see plenty of you there.


Popeye to the rescue?! – Sunday 19th May – Winchester Cathedral

Thank you to the volunteers who have offered to help erect and dismantle the Chamborough Ring at Winchester Cathedral on 19th May.   We still need another two or three  ‘able bodied and fairly strong adults’ to complete the team.

Should be a good ‘work out’ and fun… further details, including times, available on request!

Tel: 01983 530920

Tommy in Winchester – 11th November 2018

Sunday 11 November 2018

Up early this morning, bit of a shock to the system, arrived at the Cathedral at 8:30am. A long climb to the Ringing Chamber (130 steps).


The bells are half -muffled; rounds on 14 to start. Stopped for a ringer’s service by the Ringers Memorial, a wreath was laid by the Guild Master and all the known names of the fallen ringers were read out with their Towers. A short but poignant service.

Further ringing including Grandsire Caters, Plain Hunt Cinques and Call Changes on 12 before the Service started in the Cathedral.

Tommy in Winchester 3

The muffles were being removed as I left, there will be some open ringing starting at 12:30pm this afternoon

Winchester District Practice at the Cathedral – Wed 29th August 7.15-9.05pm

Dear All,

Just a reminder, that – as every year – we have the District Practice at the Cathedral, this coming Wednesday, starting at 7.15 p.m. and finishing at 9.05. 7.15 start so everyone has time to get up the stairs.

As last year, we meet – and gain admission to the Cathedral – by the door in the South Aisle, which is in the inner close, between two of the flying buttresses. If you are coming from the outer close, come to the West Front, and go through the passageway to the right, between the start of the south aisle and a high wall. The gentle ramp in front of you leads to the south door.

Please put the word round and encourage as many of your band members to come along.

Best wishes

District Secretary

Strike Back on Fourteen

Winchester & Portsmouth Diocesan Guild
Winchester, Hampshire
Cathedral Church of the Holy Trinity, St Peter, St Paul and St Swithun
Sunday, 10 December 2017 in 0:57 (35–2–6 in C)
1320 Julie Mcdonnell Little Alliance Fourteen
Alex W Tatlow
James A Hodkin
Benjamin J Carey
Ian J Carey
John P Colliss
Edd Colliss (C)
Ewan Grant-Richardson
Roy LeMarechal
Stephen S Russ
10 Daniel Graham
11 Stephen P Noyes
12 Kristian D Scudamore
13 Stuart J Heath
14 David J Mattingley
Rung for the Strike Back Against Blood Cancer Cathedrals, Minsters and Abbeys challenge.
First Quarter in the method.
Julie McDonnell Little Alliance Fourteen
e -1B-56-14

This performance is linked to the event Bellringers Strike Back Against Blood Cancer (SBABC).

Report from Winchester District Practice at Winchester Cathedral

My thanks to the organisers of the Winchester District practice at Winchester Cathedral this last Wednesday 30th August.
There were a few of us who had never been up to the ringing chamber before. The journey to it was up and up the turret steps at the west end of the nave and then out on to the roof for a few paces, pausing to take in an unusual elevated view of the City. Then in through a door and back into the roof space above the nave, along the wooden pathway that leads to the dim lights of the ringing chamber, grabbing the handrails where the planking undulated and flexed under our feet. Once into the light, the ringing chamber is enormous! Someone must have compared it to something accurately. All I can think of is that it’s the size a squash court. Or a badminton court. Not swimming pool size though. Anyway. Big.
The new and most obviously anxious were gathered up by Edmund and rounds were rung, people swapped over and soon all us interlopers could say that they had rung at Winchester Cathedral. High five and selfie time!

More experienced ringers including some from the home band, Bishopstoke and also Hursley treated us and the City at large to some fine ringing, perhaps in part as an apology for the prior rough rounds that I had a hand in creating.

As for my own ringing, well it took many, many minutes to work out that time sort of stands still when ringing more than the six. I’m normally part of at Wonston Church. And once I got settled into stopping the bell on both strokes, it felt a bit better. But still, 6 or 7 strokes a minute leaves plenty of time for errors and not a lot of time to learn to correct them!

Going to new towers has been an essential part of my progress in learning the art of ringing. New churches, new turret steps, new people to introduce yourself (and then later apologise!) to. Wednesday’s District Practice at Winchester Cathedral couldn’t have been easier, calmer or more satisfying. A good way to start the twelfth month of my ringing career!

Gary Marsh


A&P practice at Winchester Cathedral – August 9th

As you know, due to ongoing repairs to the south transept we will not be able to use the door under the slype this year.

Instead we will be going in through the south door  at 7.30pm and using one of the staircases on the west front – inside the cathedral – which leads onto the parapet, from where we will be walking along the nave roof space to the ringing room.

DO NOT BE LATE. The south door will be locked at 7.45 and you will not be able to get in.


Reporting from the Youth Championships…

Nicola Penny Reports. Photos by Tim Martin

As many of you know, the Ringing World National Youth Contest was at the beginning of July in Birmingham. It was wonderful to see so many young ringers from all over the country taking part. There were 1 8 teams of 10. There were 4 of us from the Priory. The others making up the Winchester & Portsmouth Guild team came from as far as Winchester Cathedral, Basingstoke and Milford.  Our qualifier took place at St Peters in Harborne. The piece itself was good but we didn’t get through to the final. However, this was not necessarily a bad thing as it meant we could ring in more towers! Although navigating round the town to get to them was a challenge for the drivers.

There were towers open all over Birmingham including; St Giles (Sheldon), St Alphege (Solihull) and St Nicolas (Kings Norton), Then there was St Martin in the Bullring with a fantastic 16 bell tower. This being the favourite. It was really good to be able to ring in Birmingham, especially as the bells where so nice to ring and the views from the tower windows were impressive as well!

Nicola Penny




District Practices at Winchester Cathedral during August

These dates are copied from the cathedral ringing diary

Wednesday 2nd Andover District Practice 7.15 – 9.05
Wednesday 9th Alton and Petersfield District Practice 7.15 – 9.05 Click for details
Portsmouth District Practice 7.15 – 9.05
Wednesday 23rd Christchurch and Southampton District Practice 7.15 – 9.05 click for details
Wednesday 30th Winchester District Practice 7.15 – 9.05

Please watch for meetup instructions nearer the time – works on the Cathedral are making the usual rendezvous point problematic.

If you’re planning to park inside the Cathedral close then you will need a parking permit. A limited supply will be available once the door to the bell tower is open.

Here is link to a map of the cathedral and close for reference. Plan-of-the-Cathedral-Close

A&P annual practice at Winchester Cathedral – Aug 9th – 7.30 to 9.00pm

Wednesday 9th August – 7.30 to 9.00pm

District Practice at Winchester Cathedral

Meet at 7.15pm under the Slype

Always a great experience & an opportunity to ring

methods on higher numbers as well as rounds and Plain Hunt.

Whilst everyone is welcome to attend, it is requested that only ringers who are able to

handle a bell competently take a rope. There is also a silent bell for learners to practice on.

We’ll be meeting at 7.15pm under the Slype on the south side of the Cathedral, next to the Dean Garnier Garden.

If you’re planning to park inside the Cathedral close then you will need a parking permit. A limited supply will be available once the door to the bell tower is open.

Non ringers who would like to see parts of the Cathedral not usually open to visitors are also welcome to join us.
Here is link to a map of the cathedral and close for reference.


Look forward to seeing you there.


Winchester Cathedral Ringing Plans over Holy Week and Easter

The information below is taken from the Cathedral Website

Sunday 9th Service Ringing 9.00 – 9.55 (or 9.30 to 10.25 if raining – Palm Sunday – procession 10am) and 2.30 – 3.25

Wednesday 12th

No practice – Holy Week

Sunday 16th

Service Ringing 9.00 – 9.55 (Easter) and 2.30 – 3.25

Monday 17th Peal attempt 11am – 4pm

Winchester Cathedral Access Arrangements

Dear All,

Something you all need to be aware of – which I quote from the Cathedral Diary website:-

“Please note that building works in the south transept now affect how we access the tower. This is likely to be for several months so check here for updates.

On Wednesday evenings, a volunteer will be on duty at the South door (inner close) from 7.30 to 7.45 after which time the door will be locked. Access is then via the south-west turret staircase which is located at the back of the cathedral to the left of, and immediately below the great west window. If you are not familiar with this route, please ascend with one of the cathedral ringers.

On Sunday, and for other ringing when the cathedral is open (e.g. weddings), please enter the cathedral at the west end and then via the south-west turret stairs. The virgers and desk staff will be informed and should allow unhindered access. If you are unfamiliar with this, please contact the Tower Secretary (Bruce Purvis) in advance and he will arrange for you to be met.”

Best wishes, and we look forward to seeing you, as always ….

Secretary,  Winchester Cathedral Bellringers

PS. You get a wonderful view from the nave parapet before you walk along the nave roof-space.

Ringing at Dummer to commemorate Royston Bishop (died 16/11/16)

Ringing to commemorate Royston Bishop, died 16 November 1916, took place at All Saints’, Dummer on Wednesday 16 Nov 2016 at 7pm.
Ringers included Sheila Harden, Ian Robertson, Paul Lyndon, Tim De’Ath, Stafford Napier and Trish Willats.
Royston was a Dummer resident who also appears on the Bell Ringer’s Memorial in Winchester Cathedral.
He died after being wounded at the Battle of the Ancre (the last engagement in the Battle of the Somme).

Winchester Cathedral 12-bell Practice – Wednesday 28th September

There will be a 12 bell practice at Winchester on the last Wednesday of the month, 28th September, at 7.30pm. Usual methods – Stedman, Grandsire, Yorkshire, Little Bob, Bristol, Cambridge. If we have enough we will ring Yorkshire 14. 

This practice is open to anyone who would like to practise 12/14 bell ringing.

The last few practices have not been well attended so we need to decide whether this special practice is still needed. I have been running this for many years and would like someone else to run it if it is still wanted.

 John Colliss

Winchester Cathedral Peal Dates 2017 – Deadline for Applications is Sept 28th

Dear All,

Applications are invited for peal attempts at Winchester Cathedral on Monday 17th April (Easter Bank Holiday), Monday 29th May (Spring Bank Holiday) and Monday 28th August (Summer Bank Holiday) 2017.
The draw for these dates will be held on Wednesday 28th September, and the deadline for applications is 12 noon on that day. Further details from …

Bruce Purvis,
Tower Secretary
Tel. 01962 885234 or email

Andover District’s Annual Practice at Winchester Cathedral – Weds August 10th

Access Arrangements:
Mike Till will be unlocking for us on Wednesday.  He has very kindly offered to have someone stay behind at the tower entrance to let in latecomers if they are unable to get to the practice by 7.15pm.  Many thanks Mike.
These notes were originally written by Lizzie Hough:
To access the tower, you need to go through the tunnel in the south transept. There a door at the other end, hopefully manned by Mike Till.
Anyone planning on parking in the Cathedral Close, please be aware you will be required to obtain (and return) a parking permit from behind the door to the staircase. The doors to the Close are locked at 10pm so please make sure your car is out of there by then! Other parking is available behind the Guildhall, for free, and there is a short walk to the Close, arriving the other side of the tunnel

Winchester District Practice at the Cathedral – Wednesday 31st August

Wednesday 31st August 2016

7.15 p.m.-9.05 p.m.


Winchester Cathedral

(14 bells, tenor 35½ cwt)

Huge Variety of Rings up to the Celebrated Fourteen, including tens in G (11 cwt) and in F (14¾ cwt)

All Welcome


Bruce Purvis

Winchester District Secretary

23rd July 2016

Opportunity to ring with your District at Winchester Cathedral

In August, the Winchester Cathedral band takes a break and lends the Wednesday Practice Nights to some of the Districts. It is a golden opportunity to try these great bells (There are 14 of them!) among friends. In the past we have taken learners from our tower and they found it incredibly inspiring, even ones who were not yet expert enough to ring.

If you can’t make your own District’s event then it is worth contacting another District’s Ringing Master because many of them welcome extras, it depends on their anticipated numbers.

Please arrive on time – the door is locked once the practice begins.

This year the dates are:

Wednesday 3rd Alton and Petersfield District Practice 7.15 – 9.05
Wednesday 10th Andover District Practice 7.15 – 9.05
Wednesday 17th Portsmouth District Practice 7.15 – 9.05
Wednesday 24th Christchurch and Southampton District Practice 7.15 – 9.05
Wednesday 31st Winchester District Practice 7.15 – 9.05

Photo by Deb Baker