Once again we met at Sopley and had a very productive evening working on some of our normal repertoire. We continue to have a good balance of people wanting to learn the basics of Minor Ringing, and people able to support and ring with them.
Several people wanted to practice ringing Treble Bob Hunt, which is a very useful way of getting practice at 3/4 dodging, and “treble bob” leads and backwork. We built on this to throw 2 of the ringers in at the deep end to ring Little Bob Minor – happily, both of them made sense of the method given 2 minutes to study it, and rang plain courses very successfully.
Not having a suitable band for Kent or Cambridge, we then rang Grandsire Minor (same 2 people, large splash, had to ring it without even looking at the method… and yes, they coped very well indeed!)
All this of course, interspersed with plenty of Plain Bob Minor.
The practice continues to fulfill its purpose admirably – which is to develop Doubles Ringers and help them learn Minor Method ringing up to Cambridge Minor, providing several goes at each method over the evening. We welcomed 2 SDGR members this month, particular thanks to Ross for producing touches tailored to what we were trying to learn.
New ringers, whether aspiring to learn Minor, or wanting to help the rest of us to progress, are welcome. The next one will be on Wednesday June the 22nd at 7.30pm.
The next date for the club is Friday June 24th when we will attempt Yorkshire Major. Any member of C&S District is welcome to join the mailing lisr for the group, and be invited to future events.
Winchester & Portsmouth Diocesan Guild
On Friday, 13 May 2016 in 40m
Tenor: 4–1–12 in B
1260 Plain Bob Minor
1 Rosalind Martin
2 James A Hodkin
3 Alan Bentley
4 Jack R Pease
5 Luke Brooke
6 Tim Martin (C)
1st Minor 5.
1st Minor as Conductor
A band of nine ringers met at Sopley this month to work on various Minor skills.
Highlights were several fairly complex touches of Bob Minor (in preparation for a forthcoming District Quarter Peal) and a fluent plain course of Cambridge.
Efforts with Treble Bob Minor were increasingly successful over the practice and we also worked on our Little Bob Minor and Kent.
The practice is monthly on the 4th Wednesday and all are welcome who are wishing to develop on from Doubles ringing or simply consolidate their Minor ringing. This practice is popular with holidaymakers in the New Forest too.
Contact Tim Kettle
In February, looking towards firsts fortnight at the Town Church we realised that a large majority of our ringers would be away at different times and we would struggle to achieve our firsts in our normal ringing slots.
However, keen to rise to the challenge we all compared diaries and put together a plan of action.
The next attempt had to be changed at the last minute and became M Doubles – a first in variation for all – Duncan Loweth, Mike Bubb Jane Le Conte and Sue Park. Our thanks to Mike Bubb from the Vale calling it for us. http://bb.ringingworld.co.uk/view.php?id=995840
Having rung the tenor for several first QP over the fortnight Janice Firth had not yet picked up her first in the tower. Handbells were the answer where first she rang her first course of Little Bob Minor followed by first of Spliced (Plain and Little).
With various of the band off Island we were lucky that enough were back by the last day to attempt a QP of Barrow-upon-Hummer which has been our special method in the tower for the last couple of months. Considering we had not practiced it for several weeks we rang it very steadily and it was a first in method for all – Duncan Loweth, Paul Lawrence, Jane Le Conte and Sue Park. http://bb.ringingworld.co.uk/view.php?id=998720
We’re very grateful for the help we received from ringers from other towers in Guernsey and further afield in scoring our firsts over the past 15 days.
The Priory Practice kicked off as usual promptly at 6.50 with the “learners and improvers” practice, and worked hard on Rounds and Simple Call Changes, interspersed with plenty of Plain Bob and Grandsire Doubles, partly in preparation for a planned “First QP of Plain Bob Doubles” for Luke.
Work on Stedman Doubles, inspired by Nicola’s enthusiasm having learned it at Hordle, continued with 2 solid plain courses. Just one extra competent ringer makes all the difference – thanks to the usual visitors from Hordle, we even had enough to allow for a stander-behind.
A number of the band attended the District Practice and Striking Competition last Saturday and came back inspired to ring more St. Clement’s Minor. We rang some successful plain courses, and departed intending to thoroughly learn the touches for next week!
“Come bell ringing. You might enjoy it”, said my friend Paul Sims. It wasn’t the first time I had heard it and I knew it wouldn’t be the last if I didn’t do something about it. So it was on August 13th 2013 that I found myself climbing up the stone staircase to the ringing chamber of St Mary’s church in Great Bedwyn. At the top of the stairs, I was confronted by the smallest doorway I have ever seen. As I bent down to get through, I was reminded of something similar from Alice in Wonderland.
Paul introduced me to Dave Haynes the tower captain who took me up to see the bells and explained some simple rules that I should follow i.e. both feet on the floor and don’t touch anything unless I am told to. The ringers then took hold and started ringing. To be honest I still couldn’t see what all the fuss was about – but that was about to change. “Right your turn.” I was told. “Tail stroke first.” I am not sure if it was then or a few pulls later that I knew that bell ringing was for me. I was hooked.
He gave me lots of encouragement and nipped a few handling faults I had already acquired in the bud. So from never ringing, I was ringing 3 times a week and making steady progress.
6 months had gone by and I made the decision to start visiting other towers in my area to gain more experience of ringing different bells. It was on one of my outings, I ended up at Kintbury and here I meet Mike and Lucy Hopkins-Till. Mike is joint ringing master at Winchester Cathedral and Lucy has been ringing since she was 8. If asked, she is adamant it has only been 20 years, but I have my suspicions!
With their help I made good progress and rang my first quarter peal on August 5th 2014. I was very nervous and by the end I was minus several layers of skin on my hands, but it was worth it and as Mike said, the pain doesn’t last forever. I was then forced to take a couple of breaks from ringing due to surgery on both my hands for carpal tunnel problems. Even though I couldn’t ring, I still studied at home and went to practice nights, as I found that I can learn a lot from just watching others ring.
2015 saw me ring 2 more quarters (no blisters!) and I happened to mention to Mike that I had read that they were looking to get 300 new peal ringers. I said I would like to give it a try and he saw no problems with me attempting it.
The beginning of December came and Mike spoke to me and said the peal was on, only the date and time was to be arranged. I wasn’t sure of my feelings at that moment, they were somewhere between cloud nine and Dante’s inferno.
31st December peal day
I arrived at St Mary’s church, Speen at 9.40. The others arrived at just before 10:00. I already knew Helen Piper and Gill Gardner, having rung with them before. Mike and Lucy were on time, and we made our way up to the tower. We were then joined shortly after by Bruce Purvis. I popped a boiled sweet in to my mouth. This is something I had done before while ringing a quarter peal as it stopped me getting thirsty. I mentioned to my friend Paul that the sweet had lasted the full 45 minutes. His reply was that next time I should try taking off the wrapper!
Last thing to do was to take off my watch. Nothing worse than clock watching. We did a few rounds to adjust our rope lengths and then stood. Mike checked we were all ok to go, then we were off. All seemed to be going well until after about 15 minutes there was a hic-cup and we were called to a halt. Undeterred we set off again.
I soon got into a good rhythm 123456 654321 123456 654321…… I was getting the hang of this Bob Minor. I was feeling good about it. Of course having no watch, I had no idea of how long we had been ringing. Then Mike called “3 extents to go”, so I realised that we were over half way and I still had a good portion of sweet left! The time seemed to have flown by. I started to feel a little weary and once or twice my handling left a lot to be desired, but then out of the blue Mike called “This is all.” He then called “Stand” and everybody tied their ropes and walked off. I would have done the same, but for the life of me I couldn’t get anything below my waist to move! My legs were locked solid! Only temporary of course (or I would still be there!) and it gave the others a laugh. Next time I must remember to move every so often.
I had done it! I had rung a full peal. 3 hours and 5 minutes and not a blister in sight! Looking back I still can’t help feeling amazed at what I had achieved. . My thanks go to those that were there that day and for all the nods and winks I received that helped me get to the end.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Surprise Minor: To get the full benefit from this group applicants must be able to ring 2 or 3 methods other than Plain Bob Minor e.g. Double Court, St Clements, Kent TB, and be able to ‘treble bob’ proficiently. The group will study and practise Cambridge Surprise Minor and, depending on progress, may move on to ring other surprise minor methods.
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.
Starting Plain Major: This Group provides an introduction to ringing inside on 8 bells, by introducing Plain Bob Major, Little Bob Major, and possibly other plain major methods. You must be able to plain hunt on 8 and be competent at Plain Bob Minor “inside” to join this group.
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.
Apart from the main Group lectures there will be other lectures on a variety of subjects which may include some of the following:
Calling call changes
Achieving good striking
Tune ringing on handbells
Running a practice night
Raising and lowering a single bell
Raising and lowering in peal A ballot will be held for places in these groups. Details will be sent with your confirmation letter.
Attendance at these is a matter of personal choice. Some sessions will be limited to a number of attendees; lists will be placed on the notice boards to enable you to sign up during the first coffee break.
An outline programme will be circulated electronically to all successful applicants.
The January Sopley Minor practice was well attended, both by experienced ringers and those disposed to learn. At the more elementary level we were able to give good practice in treble bob hunt and Plain Bob, surrounding the learners with a solid band, and it was heartening to see confidence and accuracy improving with each repetition. For the more advanced, there were touches of Plain Bob – we continue with our vocation to abolish the irrational dread of the single – and Kent. Plain courses of little bob and Cambridge were also successfully negotiated.
Our thanks to all who attended, but especially to the experienced
ringers both from C&S and also from East Dorset. At our customary
evaluation session, conducted in the convivial surroundings of the
nearby Fisherman’s Haunt, the majority seemed to consider this a
rewarding and encouraging practice.
There seems to be a lot of variable hunt ringing going on in the Guild at the moment – the Island Ringers have scored a Peal of Plain Bob Minor with the very challenging twist that the “treble” switches between all the bells. A suitable sendoff for Revd Helen as she moves to St. Paul’s Catedral.
Winchester & Portsmouth Diocesan Guild
Shorwell, Isle of Wight
Sunday, 24 January 2016 in 2h38 (9)
5040Plain Bob Minor (variable Hunt)
Composed by S P Noyes
1 Stephen P Noyes (C)
2 Vivien C Nobbs
3 Caroline J C May
4 Kieran Downer
5 Revd Barry M Downer
6 Graham A Nobbs
1st variable hunt: 2,3,4,6
Circled tower: 1
Farewell compliment to Revd Helen O’Sullivan, moving to become chaplain at St Pauls Cathedral.
The first Christchurch and Southampton District minor practice of the year will be held at Sopley on Wednesday 27 January at 7.30 pm. Practices will then continue on every 4th Wednesday of the month.
This practice is intended for any ringer who wants to learn or improve minor ringing and also gives an opportunity for more experienced ringers to pass on their skills and knowhow – and hopefully have some fun at the same time. We would hope that as ringers progress they would also be part of the learning chain and help with newcomers while increasing their own abilities. The only requirement is for attendees to be reasonably competent in a doubles method (touch inside).
We intend starting the practices with these core methods
Plain Hunt on 6 (perhaps jumbled up)
Plain Bob Minor
Treble Bob Plain Hunt
Kent Treble Bob Minor
Cambridge Surprise Minor
but can increase the repertoire to include (amongst others)
Double Oxford Bob Minor
Single Oxford Bob Minor
Oxford treble Bob Minor
and anything else on request.
Since this practice first started, a substantial number of ringers have benefited and some have gone on to greater things! To continue this success we need aspiring minor ringers to feel at home and keep coming along (it’s a very friendly atmosphere) and, of course, we need the help of experienced ringers. If you enjoy helping others progress – resident or new to the area, just passing through, or on holiday, we would be delighted to see you.
Ryde saw a large number of ringers present on Tuesday evening. Three Whitwell ringers travelled over to try our bells for the first time, getting used to larger bells needed a little help but I think the experience was enjoyed.
We also welcomed a new ringer, Claire, to our fold. Usual tower tour and a first go at ringing – and still enthusiastic after all that (and a chocoholic) – that’s what I like!
Methods rung, apart from several lots of call changes for the less experienced, were Plain Bob Minor, Grandsire Triples and Plain Bob Major – which the team managed superbly for the first time!
Distances are no barrier to Andrea Falk – despite living in Canada, she is a fairly regular visitor to Winchester and Portsmouth Guild for practices and Quarter Peals, as she doggedly adds to her method ringing skills.
So I am delighted to report that she has scored her First Peal with us.
Angela Athawes scored her 300th peal on the same occasion – congratulations!
It’s a challenge to get a good recording of ringing. It’s also a challenge to conduct a beautifully struck Quarter Peal…but to do both at once??
This Quarter was in memory of Simon Lipscombe, and also the Conductor’s Great Aunt. All photos and the recording used by permission. QP Information from Bellboard
Recording by Jack Pease
Salisbury Diocesan Guild
On Saturday, 21 November 2015 in 0h 53m
Southampton, Hampshire St Mary
Tenor: 21–2–8 in E♭
1440 Plain Bob Minor
Composed by Roger Bailey
1 Polly Osborne
2 Katie Child
3 Ross A Bradley
4 Daniel R C Scott
5 Daniel Graham
6 Jack R Pease (C)
Rung on the back six half muffled to commemorate the life of Lorna Frances Stark, great aunt of the conductor, who died on Friday 6th November in Southampton General Hospital, aged 85 and who lived in Southampton most of her life. Also rung half muffled in memory of Simon E Lipscombe-Smith, who died on 2nd November, aged 26, an active young ringer in this guild.
All the ingredients for a successful practice were present this evening – people keen to learn or consolidate particular methods, and reliable ringers to fill in and provide a strong band. This allowed us to choose freely from our reportoire – we rang plain courses and touches of Plain Bob Minor, a very solid plain course of Kent Minor, and a plain course and touch of Cambridge.
The new content this evening was plain and Little Bob spliced – a new challenge for several of the band, but we made it and it was very enjoyable.
As usual we are grateful for the regular use of the bells at Sopley – they seem to be the ideal weight for this type of learning and are always a pleasure to ring.
The date of the Sopley Minor Practice has moved to the 4th Wednesday in the month from next week 28th October. As a result it no longer clashes with the District Surprise Major practice at Ringwood (first Wednesday) and we hope that this will accommodate anyone who would like to attend both.
To recap, the practice is for anyone who wants to practice Minor methods from Plain Bob through Little Bob, Kent, Oxford to Cambridge and other methods as requested within the ability of the group. So far a number of ringers have gained experience in basic minor and treble Bob minor and we can pack a lot of touches in to an hour and a half due to the nature of the bells. This practice is for any District ringers who want more help with any of the above so don’t wait for a personal invitation!
This month, in addition to any of the usual methods we are hoping to have a go at spliced plain and little Bob Minor. If you want any more information contact the organisers, Tim Kettle, Chris Smithies or Tim Martin.