The 20 peals rung by Independent Societies were thus distributed: Derbyshire, 2; Essex, 1; Glamorganshire, 1; Gloucestershire, 5; Lancashire, 2; Leicestershire, 1; Middlesex, 1; Notts, 1; Rutland, 1; Staffordshire, 2; Ireland, 3.

The 161 peals of Treble Bob were rung as follows:- In the Kent variation: Maximus, 9; Royal, 12; Major, 113. In the Oxford variation: Maximus, 1; Royal, 2; Major, 24. There were also rung one peal of Surfleet Treble Bob Caters, one peal of Little Albion Treble Bob Royal, and one peal of Little Albion Treble Bob Major.

The 233 peals of Grandsire Triples may be sub-divided as follows: Holt’s, Original, 42; Holt’s 10-part and variations, 49; Holt’s 6-part, 2; Parker’s 1-part, 1; Parker’s 4-part, 1; Parker’s 5-part, 1; Parker’s 6-part, 10; Parker’s 12-part, 59; other peals by Mr. J. J. Parker, 2; Carter’s 12-part and variations, 7; Taylor’s peals, 21; Hollis’ 5-part, 6; Rev. C. D. P. Davies’ peals, 7; Whittle’s peals, 4; Thurston’s peals, 4; Day’s peals, 3; Vicar’s peals, 3; Aspinwall’s peals. 2; Rev. E. B. James’ peals, 2; and other peals (including 3 unnamed), 7.

The 130 peals in Plain methods comprise: Bob Maximus, 1; Bob Royal, 14; Bob Caters, 1; Bob Major, 109; College Single Major, 1; Oxford Bob Triples, 4.

The 180 peals of Stedman Triples comprised: Thurstans’ 1-part, 2; Thurstans’ 4-part and variations, 158; Washbrook’s peals, 7; Sir A. P. Heywood’s peals, 3; Lindoff’s peals, 3; Carter’s peals, 2; other peals (including 2 unnamed), 5.

The 86 peals of Doubles are shown in the following statement:-

AssociationNumber of Methods.

Bath and Wells4-2----6
Central Northants63-21--12
Devonshire Guild1------1
Ely Diocesan3-1----4
Gloucester and Bristol32--1--6
Hereford Diocesan1415----20
Midland Counties21-----3
North Wales1------1
Oxford Diocesan3--1---4
Peterborough and Districts1------1
Salisbury Diocesan4------4
Salop Archidiaconal11-----2
Archdeaconry of Stafford2-1----3
Sussex County5------5
Towcester and Districts1211---5
Winchester Diocesan1------1
Worcestershire and Districts31--11-6
Independent Societies1-----12


The greatest number of changes in one peal, viz.: 14,000, of Kent Treble Bob Royal, rung by members of the Lancashire Association at Ashton-under-Lyne on April 13th, 1914, constitutes a record, by beating, after an interval of 130 years, the previous record of 12,000 changes in this method, accomplished by the Society of Royal Cumberland Youths on March 27th, 1784, at St. Leonard’s Church, Shoreditch. Other long peals rung in 1914 were: 7777 Stedman Caters by the Ancient Society of College Youths, 7008 (on handbells) of Kent Treble Bob Major by members of the Norwich Diocesan Association, 6356, 6048, and 6000. There were 1409 peals of under 6000 changes.

The number of peals rung on church bells was 1253, on handbells, 162; making a total of 1415.

Among the noteworthy performances of the year, we must not omit to mention the four Surprise peals of Bristol, London, Cambridge and Superlative, rung on April 13th, by members of the Middlesex County Association and London Diocesan Guild.

Owing to the war, there has been a considerable fall in the number of peals rung during 1914; the total being 1415, as compared with 2359 rung in 1913: but if the comparison were confined to the first six months of the year, it would be found that there was a steady increase, the figures for 1913 being 1077, and for 1914, 1129. In order to facilitate comparison, the peals rung month by month in the two years are given side by side:-





Total for the year 1913, 2359; for 1914, 1415, being a decrease of 944.


The conductors of five peals and upwards are shown in the following table. A figure in brackets added to a name denotes the number of handbell peals conducted:-

41Peals:A. H. Pulling (32).
37Peals:W. Pye (13).
24Peals:C. F. Bailey (15).
21Peals:C. Glenn (9).
18Peals:F. Bennett.
17Peals:E. M. Atkins (10), F. W. Naunton (1).
15Peals:E. Barnett, senr., K. Hart.
14Peals:A. C. Wright.
13Peals:J. T. Dyke (3), W. Steele.
12Peals:B. Prewett, S. H. Symonds (5), T. H. Taffender.
11Peals:D. J. Nichols (5).
10Peals:C. R. Lilley, F. G. May, W. Short (1), B. Thorp, G. Williams, S. Wood.
9Peals:G. H. Cross (6), C. Edwards, R. Matthews (1), Joseph Ridyard, C. F. Winney (6).
8Peals:C. W. Clarke, F. Hopper, A. Knights (2), S. Proctor, E. H. Stoneley.
7Peals:J. E. Davis, J. E. Groves, R. T. Hibbert, J. Motts, G. R. Newton.
6Peals:J. Austin, F. Dench, T. Groombridge, senr., A. Harman, Rev. H. L. James (1), J. D. Johnson (4), W. Perkins, W. Poston, G. F. Swann, Edwin Whiting.
5Peals:Rev. A. T. Beeston, F. C. Burrows, W. A. Cave (4); E. C. Gobey, A. W. Grimes, G. H. Harding, G. Hughes, F. C. Lambert, J. R. Mackman (3), J. W. Parker, J. Pigott, J. Potter, G. R. Pye (1), O. Sippetts, G. E. Symonds, A. P. Wakley (1).

In addition to the above, 40 persons conducted four peals; 52, three peals; 100, two peals; and 286, one peal. There was a peal of Doubles, in which two conductors took part. Two ladies appear as conductors of peals in the year 1914, viz.: Miss Parker, who conducted a peal of Stedman Cinques for the Royal Cumberland Youths, and a peal of Stedman Caters and another of Stedman Triples for the Middlesex County Association; and Miss E. M. Johnson, who conducted a. peal of Doubles in five methods on handbells for the Worcestershire and Districts Association.


The 162 peals on hand bells were rung as follows: Treble Bob Maximus, 1; Stedman Cinques, 11; Grandsire Cinques, 1; Treble Bob Royal, 3; Little Bob Royal, 1; Bob Royal, 9; Stedman Caters, 14; Grandsire Caters, 6; Double Norwich Major, 1; Treble Bob Major, 9; Little Bob Major, 3; Bob Major, 30; Stedman Triples, 25; Grandsire Triples, 26; in seven Minor methods, 1; in five Minor methods, 1; in four Minor methods, 2; in three Minor methods, 3; in one Minor method, 7; one peal of Doubles was rung in six methods; one in 5 and 6 in one method, for the following Associations:-

Ancient Society of College Youths10
Bath and Wells Association2
Bedfordshire Association1
Cambridge University Guild8
Central Northants Association10
Chester Diocesan Guild2
Cleveland and North Yorkshire Association2
Ely Diocesan Guild7
Gloucester and Bristol Association6
Kent County Association1
Lincoln Diocesan Guild4
Middlesex County Association19
Midland Counties Association4
Norwich Diocesan Association24
Peterborough and Districts Association3
Royal Cumberland Youths1
Salisbury Diocesan Guild1
Society for the Archdeaconry of Stafford1
Surrey Association1
Winchester Diocesan Guild35
Worcestershire and Districts Association7
Yorkshire Association10
Independent Societies3


The total number of peals, whether on tower bells or on handbells, rung year by year since 1881, is as follows:-

Grand Total, 35,978.

The following tables give the first twenty Societies and their positions since 1903:-

Norwich Diocesan22122221311
Middlesex County11211332222
Midland Counties105554113443
Winchester Diocesan2318151099128174
Kent County69333454556
Central Northants141416222016201612177
Sussex County3771110776738
Oxford Diocesan4886566710910
Stafford Archdeaconry1825212113181819191311
Essex County86671111109111012
College Youths54101116212222161614
London County2821192018172421182615
Gloucester and Bristol711141322121110231216
Lincoln Diocesan2626262529251718172517
Ely Diocesan1516242431283334331918

Note: In the Analysis for 1912 the Societies were placed in alphabetical order, owing to changes in the classification of peals.


The war has made the work of the Analysis Committee easier than it would have otherwise have been. There was every appearance that the figures of 1913, huge as they were, would be left behind, and a new record set up. The first seven months showed an increase of 49 peals on the figures of 1913. Then came the war, and after the August Bank Holiday, peals on tower bells practically ceased, except for muffled peals and a few special occasions. The figures which appear under the last five months of the year, omitting the early August peals, are made up of 51 muffled peals, 12 peals on special occasions and 61 handbell peals. Only five peals were rung for which no reasons were given.

The committee have been able to reduce the size of the analysis table by the use of footnotes. Fourteen methods were represented by one peal only, and by including Plain methods with Grandsire Triples they have been able to cut out no less than fifteen columns.

The scale of points for peals of Minor appears to have met with the approval of the Exercise. The committee have not received or heard of any objections.

Reports of peals seem, on the whole, to be sent to the papers fairly soon after performance; one peal, however, which was rung on May 23rd was not published until September 18th. But this example of dilatoriness was eclipsed by the case of two peals published on January 15th, 1915, which were rung on January 19th and February 13th, 1914. A peal rung in the latter half of the year, and not published for twelve months would not be included in the Analysis, and the committee would be glad of some instruction from the Council as to whether there should be a limit of time between the ringing of a peal and the publication of a report. Formerly complaints were sometimes made that peals sent for publication were not printed, but we are sure that there is no foundation for a similar complaint at the present time.


The footnotes to the peals give, as usual, a good deal of interesting information; but, unfortunately, the figures we are able to give are only approximate, as the footnotes are often vague, and cannot always be depended on. As an example, one who appeared in the list of clerical peal ringers in 1913 is stated to have rung his first peal in 1914. Possibly “in the method” was intended to be added in this and in other cases. It would make the results more interesting if greater care were exercised by those who send in reports. That care is often taken we are glad to see; e.g., on more than one occasion we find the note “This is believed to be the first peal on the bells.” The following may be taken as approximate figures: Peals rung for Church Festivals, 32; welcome to Bishops and Incumbents, 11; King’s Accession, Royal birthdays and visits 18; Empire Day, 11; Dorchester Missionary College, C.E.M.S., George Peal (on St. George’s Day), Thomas peal, Navy and Army, Three Towns Amalgamation, Market Gardeners, and four Quarterly Association peals; Welcome and Farewell, 31; Muffled peals, 105 (including five on Good Friday and 28 for those fallen in the war, and for Field-Marshal Earl Roberts). Other muffled peals for the war were rung in January, 1915.

First peals were said to have been rung by 438; first away from the tenor, 16; first with a bob bell, 49; first by local band, 11; first as conductor, 58; first on the bells, 54; first after augmentation, 13; after restoration, 16; and first on handbells, 35.

We find a number of ringers of 14, 15 and 16. One peal of Oxford Treble Bob Major was rung at Saxlingham Nethergate, of which the ringers were from 14 to 20 years of age, giving an average of only 18½. On the other hand a peal of Grandsire Triples was rung at Deptford by ringers of the age of 76 downwards, with a total of 480, or an average of 60, and a peal of Grandsire Caters at Aston, the total ages of the ringers being 653, or an average of over 65! One gentleman rang his first peal at the age of 68, and another conducted a peal at the age of 69. Other ringers of 70 and 76 appear, but the most remarkable achievement is that of Mr. Joseph Bates, who rang the 7th in a peal of Grandsire Caters at Wednesbury, which was his first peal for nearly 50 years, on his 83rd birthday!

The 58 peals which are reported as having new conductors were as follows: Kent Treble Bob Major, 2; Bob Major, 9 (2 on handbells); Stedman Triples, 3; Grandsire Triples, 13; Seven Minor Methods, 3; Five Minor Methods, 1; Four Methods, 1; Three Methods, 2; Two Methods, 2; One Method, 7 (1 on handbells); Doubles in five Methods, 1; in three Methods, 3; in one Method, 11. In 1913 there were 104 new conductors, and if ringing had not been stopped by the war, this total would probably have been surpassed. Only two of these peals were rung after the declaration of war, one being a muffled peal for a former ringer, and the other a handbell peal.


One clerical peal was rung in 1914, Stedman Triples at Lydney, and 30 clergy appear as ringing in 94 peals, six of whom were conductors. The Methods rung were Maximus, Kent Treble Bob, 1 on handbells; Cinques, Stedman 3 (H.B. 2); Royal, Kent Treble Bob 2 (H.B. 1), Little Albion 1; Caters, Stedman, Surfleet and Grandsire 7 (H.B. 2); Major, London, Cambridge, Superlative; Double Norwich, Reddish Court, Kent and Oxford Treble Bob, Little Albion, Little Bob and Plain Bob 30 (H.B. 7); Triples, Stedman and Grandsire 32 (H.B. 3); Minor 16, and Doubles 2; total 94, of which 78 were rung on tower bells and 16 on handbells. The Rev. C. W. O. Jenkyn rang in 16 peals, of which he conducted 4; Rev. A. T. Beeston, 14 (conducted 5); Rev. A. H. F. Boughey, 10 (H.B. 9); Revs. E. B. James (H.B. 7, cond. 2), H. L. James (H.B. 3, cond. 6), and W.C. Pearson, 9; Rev. R. P. Farrow, 7; Revs. H. S. T. Richardson (H.B. 4, cond. 2), and C. J. Sturton, 5; Revs. G. F. Coleridge, E. V. Cox, V. A. Creswell, F. J. O. Helmore, B. H. Tyrwhitt Drake (H.B. 2) and H. B. Wolley, 3; Revs. H. A. Cockey, C. C. Cox (cond. 1), C. D. P. Davies, R. L. B. Oliver, E. S. Powell and E. J. Teesdale, 2; Revs. W. W. C. Baker, R. Bond, C. A. Clements, H. J. Elsee, C. B. D. Farrow, F. G. Hume, A. Rust, W. S. Willett and W. P. Wright, 1 peal.

We find the names of 25 ladies in the records of 61 successful peals in the past year, compared with 30 ladies and 114 peals in the year before. We miss, alas! the name of Miss Margery Sampson, who, in 1913, earned the distinction of ringing her first peal of Stedman Cinques on tower bells. She has been cut off in the flower of her youth; but she has left behind, as a ringer, a glorious record of which the Ladies’ Guild may well be proud. Miss Edith Parker has continued her distinguished career as a ringer by conducting three peals, Stedman Cinques, Caters and Triples, and by ringing in a peal of Superlative Surprise. Miss Elsie Bennett has rung seven peals on handbells, three of Stedman Caters, two of Bob Major, and one each of Stedman and Grandsire Triples. Miss Kate Holifield has rung seven peals on tower bells, one of Grandsire Caters, four of Grandsire Triples, and two of Stedman Triples. Miss Winifred Hague has rung eight peals, five on handbells and three on tower bells, comprising one peal of Stedman Caters, two of Grandsire Caters, one of Bob Major, three of Stedman Triples, and one of Grandsire Triples. Miss. Evelyn Steel has rung twelve peals in all, a very fine record, comprising four peals of Minor, two of Surprise Minor, two of Stedman Triples, two of Superlative Surprise, one of Double Norwich, and one of Yorkshire Surprise. Mrs. Hazelden, Mrs. Whittington the Misses W. Carden, D. Coles, E. Goodship, E. M. Hole, M. E. M. Jukes, R. Johnson, S. Martin, B. L. Mitchell, H. Willson and L. Willson rang one peal; the Misses M. Chillingworth, N. Gillingham, E. A. Jones, O. Lumley, E. Matthews (on handbells), rang two peals; Miss D. D. Steel, three peals; the Misses E. K. Parker, and S. Piggott, four peals; Miss E. M. Johnson, five peals; the Misses E. Bennett and K. Holifield, seven peals; Miss W. Hague, eight peals; and Miss E. Steel, twelve peals. The methods rung were: Cinques, 1; Caters, 9; Major, 16; Triples, 24; Minor, 9; and Doubles, 2. It is interesting to note that no fewer than five ladies took part in a peal of Grandsire Triples rung for the Bath and Wells Association.

E. W. CARPENTER, Boothby Pagnell Rectory, Grantham.
JOSEPH GRIFFIN, 77, Shobnall Street, Burton-on-Trent.
ARTHUR T. KING, 7, Cavendish Road, Southsea.
GEO. WILLIAMS, West End, Southampton.

The Ringing World, May 14th, 1915, pages 244 to 246



The Central Council met on Tuesday for the twenty-fifth time, the assembly being the first session of the ninth Council. As is customary when a new Council meets for the first time, the gathering took place at the Church House, Westminster, and despite the claims which the war is making upon the time of a number of the members, the attendance was quite a good one, there being 74 present during the day. The record of attendance was as follows:-

College Youths.- Present: Messrs. W. T. Cockerill, T. Faulkner, A. A. Hughes and A. Hughes.
Royal Cumberlands.- Present: Messrs. H. Dains, J. D. Matthews, J. Parker and F. Smith.
Bath and Wells.- Present: Rev. C. C. Parker. Absent: Messrs. E. E. Burgess, A. E. Coles and J. Maddock.
Bedfordshire.- Present: Rev. Canon Baker.
Birmingham, St. Martin’s.- Absent: Mr. W. H. Godden.
Cambridge University.- Present: Mr. E. H. Lewis.
Chester Diocesan.- Present: Rev. A. T. Beeston, Messrs. J. Ashmole and J. Morgan.
Cleveland and N. Yorks.- Absent: Rev. W. P. Wright and Mr. T. Metcalfe.
Devon.- Present: Rev. M. Kelly and Rev. E. S. Powell. Absent: Mr. A. W. Searle.
Dudley and District: Mr. W. R. Small.
Durham and Newcastle.- Absent: Messrs. G. T. Potter, C. L. Routledge and W. Story.
Ely Diocesan.- Absent: Mr. T. R. Dennis.
Essex.- Present: Messrs. G. A. Black, G. Dent and W. J. Nevard. Absent: Mr. C. H. Howard.
Gloucester and Bristol.- Present: Mr. J. Austin.
Hereford Diocesan.- Present: Mr. J. Clark. Absent: Mr. R. Marston.
Hertfordshire.- Present: Pte Bertram Prewett.
Kent.- Present: Messrs. E. Barnett, T. Groombridge, senr., and W. Haigh. Absent: Rev. F. J. O. Helmore.
Ladies’ Guild.- Present: Miss E. K. Parker.
Lancashire.- Present: Rev. H. J. Elsee, Messrs. H. Chapman and S. Wood. Absent: Mr. J. H. Banks.
Leeds and District.- Present: Mr. P. J. Johnson.
Lincoln.- Present: Mr. R. Richardson. Absent: Rev. H. Law James, Messrs. G. Chester and J. W. Seamer.
Liverpool Diocesan.- Absent: Mr. W. Bentham.
Llandaff Diocesan.- Present: Mr. J. W. Jones.
London County.- Present: Messrs. E. A. Young and T. H. Taffender.
Middlesex County.- Present: Messrs. W. Pye and J. R. Sharman. Absent: Lieut. J. H. B. Hesse and Mr. A. T. King.
Midland Counties.- Present: Sir Arthur Heywood, and Messrs. J. Griffin, J. W. Taylor and W. E. White.
Central Northants.- Present: Messrs. W. Perkins and F. Wilford.
North Notts.- Present: Mr. H. Haigh.
North Wales.- Absent: Rev. T. Lewis Jones.
Norwich Diocesan.- Present: Mr. G. P. Burton. Absent : Messrs. C. E. Borrett, W. L. Catchpole and J. Motts.
Oxford Diocesan.- Rev. C. W. O. Jenkyn, Rev. G. F. Coleridge, and Messrs. J. Evans and F. W. Hopgood.
Peterborough and District.- Absent: Mr. R. Narborough.
Salisbury Diocesan.- Present: Rev. F. Ll. Edwards, and Messrs. T. H. Beams and W. Hughes D’Aeth. Absent: Mr. A. F. Martin Stewart.
Salop Archidiaconal.- Absent: Mr. J. Bradney.
Staffs Archidiaconal.- Present: Mr. H. Knight. Absent: Rev. E. V. Cox.
Surrey.- Present: Mr. C. Dean. Absent: Lieut. C. F. Johnston.
Sussex.- Present: Messrs. G. Howse, R. Stredwick and G. Watson. Absent: Mr. E. H. Lindup.
Towcester and District.- Present: Mr. J. Slarke.
Warwickshire.- Present: Mr. H. Argyle. Absent: Mr. A. Roberts.
Winchester Diocesan.- Present: Mr. H. White. Absent: Rev. C. E. Matthews, and Messrs. A. H. Pulling and J. W. Whiting.
Worcestershire.- Present: Messrs. A. E. Parsons, T. J. Salter and W. Short.
Yorkshire.- Present: Rev. C. C. Marshall and Mr. C. H. Hattersley. Absent: Messrs. G. Bolland and C. Glenn.
Hon. Members.- Present: Revs. A. H. F. Boughey, E. W. Carpenter, H. A. Cockey, C. D. P. Davies, and Canon Papillon, and Messrs. R. A. Daniell, J. A. Trollope, H. W. Wilde and G. Williams. Absent: Rev. H. S. T. Richardson, and Messrs. J. Carter, J. W. Parker, J. S. Pritchett and W. Snowdon.


The Hon. Secretary temporarily took the chair, and said they had only one nomination for the office of President, and that was Sir Arthur Heywood. They all knew what an excellent President they had had in Sir Arthur who had been President since the Council began.

The Rev. G. F. Coleridge said as he had the privilege of nominating Sir Arthur as President, he had pleasure in formally proposing that he take the chair for the ensuing three years.- The Rev. C. W. O. Jenkyn seconded the motion, which was carried with applause.

On taking the chair Sir Arthur Heywood said it was with mixed feelings that he responded to their invitation for the ninth time. He confessed that he felt it a very great honour to be elected to be President again, and at the same time he felt that he was getting considerably older, and he kept looking round to see who, by-and-by, before he became incapable, there would be to take his place, because when they got, as he was, nearer 70 than 60, one began to think the time was not very far off when, if one was to retire from one’s work with honour, there might, perhaps, not be many more years before him in office. But it was an extreme pleasure and satisfaction to have the honour of again presiding over the Council. He thought they would all admit, and he thought the Associations they represented would admit that the Council had entirely answered to what was hoped of it 25 years ago, when it was founded. He believed by careful attention to every point in connection with ringing and of interest to ringers that had been brought before them they had gradually built up a sense of confidence amongst the ringers of the country, and he would like to take the opportunity of saying how much of that success was due to their being very careful to keep their discussions and their resolutions within the proper confines of the work of that Council. He would solemnly impress on the Council the desirability of remembering that they simply expressed through the various delegates the views of the various societies and associations. They had always been careful in no way to assume the roll of legislators on behalf of the majority of the associations as against the minority. The majority of the associations had no right whatever to impose their wishes or desires upon the rest of the associations because every association had a perfect right in its own district to make its own rules and proceed in the way its members consider best, and for the Council to attempt to legislate and to override by an opinion of the majority of the associations the wishes of the minority of the associations, would be, in his opinion, a mistake. What they wanted there was to try and focus the opinion of the Exercise at large, and so far as they found it to be in agreement to put forward propositions which might be carried for the benefit of the Exercise.


The President, proceeding, said they had next to elect an hon. secretary, and there had been only one nomination, that of his friend, Mr. Davies (hear, hear). He could only say that no President and no body who had the business they had to transact, involving a large amount of pen and ink work, and work requiring a considerable amount of time, could by any possibility have had a man who had been more keen and more active or more successful in the work than their friend Mr. Davis.

Mr. Griffin proposed the re-election of Mr. Davis.- Canon Baker seconded the resolution, which was carried unanimously.

In acknowledging his re-election, the Rev. C. D. P. Davies said he was deeply conscious of the honour that they had done him, and the trust they placed in him in re-electing him to the position. Although the office entailed a certain amount of work it had been a pleasure from first to last.


The accounts presented, which had been audited by the Standing Committee that had met earlier in the day, showed that the year began with a balance in hand of £42 15s. 2d.; affiliation fees received amounted to £12 17s. 6d.; sale of publications to £1 15s. 10d.; interest, £1 0s. 7d., making a total of £58 9s. 1d. The expenditure had been £4 7s. 10d., leaving a balance in hand of £54 1s. 3d.

The Hon. Librarian (the Rev. C. W. O. Jenkyn) reported that since he made his return to the Hon. Secretary, before he left home six weeks ago, a sum of 16s. 5d. had been received from the secretary of the Chester Guild for the sale of publications, making a total from that source of £12 12s. 3d.- The accounts were passed, on the motion of the Rev. G. F. Coleridge, seconded by Mr. J. Griffin.


It was decided to re-elect the retiring hon. members: Mr. W. Snowdon, Mr. R. A. Daniell, Canon Papillon, Rev. H. A. Cockey, Mr. G. Williams, Mr. John Carter, the Rev. C. D. P. Davies, Mr. J. S. Pritchett and Mr. J. A. Trollope.


After the introduction of new members to the President, Sir Arthur drew attention to the fact that they had with them the grandfather, or the great-grandfather of ringing, in the person of Mr. William Banister (applause). They all knew what he had done for the Exercise, and on behalf of the Council he congratulated him on being with them that day as he was three years ago, and in apparently as good health (applause).

Mr. Banister thanked the members for their kind reception. He was pleased to meet them again. He was, he thought, the oldest member of the College Youths, for he had been a member for 74 years (applause). He was an old man, being in his 92nd year, but he hoped he might meet them again on a future occasion.

Mr. C. H. Hattersley spoke of meeting Mr. Banister at Woolwich as long ago as 1863, and gave reminiscences of his trip to London at that time. Mr. Banister was now the oldest member of the Exercise who had had any theoretical knowledge of ringing, and in proof they only had to look at his records in 1854, and they would see what he knew then about London Surprise (applause).


The Hon. Secretary said apologies for absence had been received from the Revs. E. V. Cox, F. J. O. Helmore, H. S. T. Richardson and W. P. Wright, Messrs. C. E. Borrett, J. Carter, W. H. Godden, A. T. King, J. W. Parker, J. S. Pritchett, C. L. Routledge, and W. Snowdon. The following were absent serving their King and country, and their absence needed no apology: Sapper T. R. Dennis, Royal Engineers; Lieut. J. H. B. Hesse, Army Service Corps; Rev. C. E. Matthews, Chaplain of Forces; Pte R. Narborough, Cambridgeshire Regiment; and Lieut. C. F. Johnston, Royal Fusiliers. These, with the Rev. C. W. O. Jenkyn, Chaplain of Forces, and Pte B. Prewett, London Rifles, who were present, completed the Council’s roll of honour.

The Standing Committee were re-elected as follows: The President, the Hon. Secretary, the Rev. G. F. Coleridge, the Rev. H. Law James, Mr. W. T. Cockerill, Mr. H. Dains, Mr. J. Griffin, Mr. C. H. Hattersley, the Rev. H. A. Cockey, Mr. R. A. Daniell and Mr. W. Snowdon. The Rev. C. W. O. Jenkyn, as hon. librarian, was added.

A full report of the remainder of the Council’s proceedings will appear in subsequent issues, but the following is a summary of the rest of the business.

The Council discussed at length the question of advertising their publications, and decided to issue slips to the associations for circulation among members, giving particulars of the publications.

The report of the Peal Collection Committee was presented by Mr. J. A. Trollope, and the committee were re-elected with the exception of the Rev. C. D. P. Davies, who expressed a wish to retire.

Mr. Lewis reported progress for the Legitimate Methods Committee, which was re-elected.

The Peals Analysis Committee’s report was adopted on the motion of the Rev. E. W. Carpenter, and it was decided that no peal published more than eight weeks after it had been rung should be included in the analysis. The committee was re-elected with thanks for its services.

Mr. R. A. Daniell reported for the Literature Committee, which was re-elected.

Progress was reported by the Towers and Belfries Committee, which was re-elected.

The resolution: “That the Central Council approve and issue a National Badge for ringers,” adjourned from last year, found no proposer, and consequently dropped.

The Hon. Secretary moved: “That it is desirable to reconsider some of the conditions laid down for the Legitimacy of Methods as stated on page 18 of ‘Rules and Decisions,’ 1904.” Mr. Davies spoke at great length, and eventually the matter was referred to the Legitimate Methods Committee for consideration and report.

The Rev. F. Ll. Edwards proposed: “That this Council recognises with emphatic approval the good judgment and consideration shown by ringers throughout the United Kingdom in their spontaneous abstinence from peal ringing since the outbreak of war: but that at the same time (the Council) regards it as the privilege and sacred duty of ringers, wherever circumstances permit, to continue, alike in time of war and of peace, to honour with the music of the bells the Lord’s Day and other Feasts of the Church, as also on Royal and National Anniversaries, to give expression to the thankfulness of the British people to Almighty God for the many blessings vouchsafed to this Empire and for the preservation of His Most Gracious Majesty to preside over its momentous destinies.”- The motion was carried.

By consent the following motion was postponed until next year: “That the Council desires to draw the attention of the Exercise to the increasing abandonment of raising and falling bells in peal, as a result of which a large proportion of ringers do not acquire the necessary skill to enable them to take part in this ancient and musical practice.”

Plymouth was decided upon as the place for the next meeting.

A vote of thanks to the President concluded the meeting.

In the evening members visited St. Leonard’s Church, Shoreditch, for ringing, and there was a largely attended social gathering at “The Coffee Pot,” the headquarters of the College Youths.

The Ringing World, May 28th, 1915, pages 271 to 272



We continue on this page the report of the proceedings of the Central Council at the meeting in London on Whitsun Tuesday. It is reported by our own representative, “The Ringing World” being the only paper represented by a member of its own staff. As mentioned in our summary of the meeting last week, the Council discussed at length the question of advertising their publications, the matter being brought up by the President at the request of the Standing Committee, who had had before them a quotation from “The Ringing World” for advertising. The President pointed out that the income of the Council was not a large one, and the Standing Committee did not feel justified, without the consent of the Council, in undertaking this additional annual expenditure.

Mr. E. H. Lewis proposed that the terms offered be not accepted, and pointed out that association secretaries might follow the course taken by the hon. secretary of the Chester Guild, which had been found an effective way of disposing of the Council’s publications, as was shown by the fact that 16s. had been received from the Chester Guild, against £1 15s. 10d. from the whole of the other associations.- Mr. George Williams seconded. He thought the secretaries were the best men to push the publications.

Mr. G. P. Burton thought they might try a new field of advertising, and proposed that the existing advertisement should be transferred to “The Ringing World.”- Mr. B. Prewett seconded.

Replying to Mr. P. J. Johnson, the Rev. A. T. Beeston said the course which had been followed by the Chester Guild was that the Council’s librarian had entrusted him with a supply of publications on his own responsibility. These he (the speaker) took to the meetings he attended and, in the main, the result was satisfactory.

Mr. G. Watson said the publications were not placed in the hands of other secretaries in the same way, and that was where Mr. Beeston had the advantage over the rest of them.

The Rev. A. T. Beeston said he wrote to the librarian and asked him if he could supply him with a stock.

The Hon. Secretary suggested that the Council might have slips printed, giving the list of the Council’s publications and their price, these might be supplied to secretaries for distribution, and each secretary might have, perhaps, one copy of each publication to show as a specimen. He might take orders and send to the librarian for the books. He (the hon. secretary) knew that ringers would not write for their own copies. He thought the Associations might pay for the specimen copies.

Mr. H. Dains suggested lending a few copies to each of the secretaries throughout the country, but the President said the hon. librarian could hardly, on his own responsibility, distribute stock all over the country, because in case of the death or removal of a secretary they might have a difficulty in getting the books back again. This was not the first time that secretaries had been urged to do more to push the Council’s publications. A lot of the work which had been put into print was not necessarily food for the general public. It was a tabulation of inquiries that it was desirable to have for a record, and they did not offer any special attraction to other than experts in that particular line, but they were none the less valuable.

Mr. Burton said he knew one secretary who would decline to undertake it. He had heard over and over again that secretaries were over-worked, and could not, without difficulty, get through what they already had to do. He thought the suggested slip would not be of much use whereas an advertisement would be seen week after week.

Mr. T. Faulkner suggested, amid laughter, that as Mr. Beeston had been so successful, they might appoint him traveller.

The amendment moved by Mr. Burton was lost, and the suggestion that slips would be provided for distribution was carried, on the motion of the Rev. H. J. Elsee, seconded by Mr. P. J. Johnson, the President incorporating the amendment into the original motion, moved by Mr. Lewis, that an advertisement in “The Ringing World” be not entertained. A further amendment, moved by Mr. Burton, and seconded by Mr. J. W. Jones, that the existing advertisement be discontinued, was defeated.


Mr. J. A. Trollope, reporting on behalf of the Peal Collection Committee, said the section on Treble Bob, which they intended to print and which they were authorised at the last meeting to print, was ready, and would have been in print months ago had it not been for the war, which had given them other things to think about, and had greatly curtailed the time at his disposal. If the Council re-appointed the committee he might make arrangements for the Rev. H. S. T. Richardson to see the final stages through.

The Hon. Secretary said the Peal Collection Committee consisted of Messrs. H. Dains, J. A. Trollope and H. W. Wilde, the Rev. H. S. T. Richardson, and the hon. secretary. The Standing Committee were anxious to add Mr. Lewis’s name to that committee. He (the hon. secretary) would like to retire. He had been a member of it since the committee was first appointed at the second meeting of the Council, and he was really the one who did the Grandsire Triples section of the first volume. Since then the collection had gone on to Major methods, in which other members of the committee had had far greater experience and practice, and he thought the Council had better accept his resignation and put Mr. Lewis in his place.

Mr. Lewis said that was the first he had heard of the matter, and if he was to go on to the committee he must ask to be released from one of the others on which he was serving, as he had not now much leisure. He supposed he had finished practical ringing for some years to come, and he might have time for theory, but at present he had other work which was pressing, and there was still a great deal to be done on the other committees.

The Hon. Secretary said in the year which was just coming to a close Mr. Lewis had been doing some of the work, and that was the reason why they had singled him out.

The committee were thereupon re-elected with the exception of the Rev. C. D. P. Davies.


In the absence of the Rev. H. Law James, who, it was stated, was unfortunately unable to be present owing to Church services which he could not possibly forgo, Mr. Lewis reported for the Legitimate Methods Committee. He said that at Winchester the Council decided that they should proceed with the printing of the Collection, which was already considered complete, but he spoke to Mr. James and refused to allow his name to be put on the front page of the Collection until he had had time to check the work which had been done, and make sure of the figures. He proceeded with the work up to the beginning of August, and to mention the sort of work he had been doing he might say he went through 21,834 separate operations three times over to make sure that no methods had been missed. The result had been the addition of between 100 and 150 methods missed previously and the cutting out of some that were already in, so that the work was not wasted. He had brought with him the book, containing 828 methods, which he was satisfied was as nearly perfect as possible. It would be necessary to send it round once more to the committee, but, as they already had authority to print, it was not necessary to ask for that authority again.

The President said the Council were greatly indebted to the committee, and especially to Mr. Lewis for the great amount of work he had done.

Mr. J. Griffin proposed the re-election of the committee: The Rev. H. Law James, Mr. H. Dains, Mr. J. A. Trollope and Mr. E. H. Lewis.- The Rev. E. W. Carpenter seconded, and made an appeal to the committee to consider whether it would not be possible to alter the word which dominated the title, “Legitimate.” If they could get rid of that wretched word it would get rid of a great deal of difficulty.

Mr. Trollope: It is the Council’s word, not our word.

The Rev. E. W. Carpenter said the idea in the mind of a great many ringers was that when the Council said a method was legitimate they might ring it, and when they said it was illegitimate they might not ring it; they seemed to think there was something quite immoral in ringing such methods. Methods were constructed according to certain rules which the Council had formulated, and, therefore, they might call them “regular” methods, but there was nothing legitimate about it at all; they were rules and not laws.

Mr. Trollope said he did not think it would make any difference whether they used the term “legitimate” or “regular,” but it was a question of laws, and, therefore, it was a question of legitimacy.

Mr. Lewis said he was very much in sympathy with what Mr. Carpenter had said, and thought it was a question that might come up later in the day when a certain other question on the agenda had been settled.

The motion re-appointing the committee was then put and carried.


The Rev. E. W. Carpenter moved that the report of the Peals Analysis Committee, which has already been published in these columns, be accepted. He called attention to the committee’s request for a ruling as to whether there should be a limit of time between the ringing of a peal and the publication of a report in order to ensure its inclusion in the Analysis. It was perfectly absurd, he said, that a peal should be reported close upon a year after it had been rung, and then should be included in the Analysis. If the peal had happened to be rung in the middle of the year and then published a year after, it would not have come in. If a peal was worth publishing at all it was worth publishing within a month of its being rung.- Mr. J. Griffin seconded.

The President said, as he had done before, he desired to return on behalf of the Council, their thanks to the committee for the very great labour they had expended. Whatever the opinion might be about the desirability or non-desirability of estimating the value of peals, it was perfectly certain that the Analysis was immensely interesting to the great majority of ringers, and contained an amount of information which if they were going to try to digest it would take hours to do so properly.


The Rev. F. Ll. Edwards moved that in order to obtain recognition by the Peals Analysis Committee, a peal should be published within two calendar months of the date when it was rung.- Mr. J. Taylor seconded.

While the members of the Analysis Committee who were present were considering the suggestion, the re-election of the committee - the Rev. E. W. Carpenter and Messrs. A. T. King, J. Griffin and G. Williams - was proposed by Mr. C. Dean, seconded by Mr. H. White, and carried, with the best thanks of the Council to the committee for their services.

Mr. Griffin said the Analysis Committee thanked the Council for their re-election. They thought a period of two months was quite sufficient time to allow for the publication of a peal. This would enable the committee to finish the Analysis in good time. They would certainly allow no further limit at the end of the year.

The Rev. A. T. Beeston inquired whether it was not a fact that a resolution already existed requiring peals to be published not later than the end of February if rung during the preceding year.

Mr. Griffin replied that that was so, but the Analysis Committee wanted to keep the work up to date, and they could not do it if it were all thrown on to them at the end of the year.

The Rev. A. H. F. Boughey said although the motion was made with the best of intentions, he thought it would entail extra labour on the committee. Under the present arrangement they need not look at any dates until after the end of February, but under the resolution they would have to examine all the dates.

The Rev. E. W. Carpenter said the committee compared notes at the end of the various months, and it was only by keeping the work up to date in that way that it was possible to do it at all. It was very trying, to say the least, when they got the whole of the first six months complete to find, say, in September, a peal published that had been rung in January, for they had to take all their figures and mix them up again. People who held back the publication of their peals like this could not think much of their performances, and in addition it opened the door to unscrupulous people to “fake up” peals, because at that length of time it might be very difficult to dispute them, and the Council ought not to give any chance for that kind of thing.

At the suggestion of the President, the period in the resolution was altered to eight weeks, and in this form the motion was carried unanimously.


After the adjournment for the luncheon interval, Mr. R. A. Daniell reported upon the work of the Literature Committee. He said his report was really in the nature of a personal explanation. Ill-health had prevented him doing anything for himself or anybody else. For a long time he had suffered from a malady which had absolutely incapacitated him from concentrating upon anything at all, and as a result the work of the committee had been at a standstill. He had, however, got a great deal of information by him, and he would have his notes typewritten and send them to the secretary. If he could work further on his own notes he would do so, but if not they would all be at the disposal of the Council.

The President asked Mr. Daniell if he could give the Council an idea as to how far he had got, and Mr. Daniell replied that the catalogue of rings of bells was, he believed, complete. Most of the notes about other ringing books were fairly complete, but they wanted verification, and he had not been able to do this.

The President: The Council will sympathise to the full with you. Would it not be better in the circumstances, however, if you submitted your papers to the hon. secretary and allowed him to deal with them?

Mr. Daniell: That is what I propose to do and to keep my own draft and work upon it myself if possible.

On the motion of Mr. J. Griffin, seconded by Canon Baker, the Literature Committee was re-elected as follows: Canon Papillon, Rev. H. A. Cockey, Mr. R. A. Daniell and Mr. H. Dains


Mr. E. H. Lewis reported for the Towers and Belfries Committee. He said they had made progress during the year. On his way back from the meeting of the Council at Winchester last year he was able to call at one of the towers reported to them as having been damaged by a rigid frame. He made a careful examination, and found it was a spring frame of the very best type. The bells hung on girders standing across the main girders. It was possible to calculate exactly the amount of bending there would be when the bells were rung and the movement proved to be very considerable. There was one rather interesting point. The ringers of the two tenors in that tower had between them, for every round that was rung, to exert a power equal to 40 foot-lbs. for the purpose of moving the frame, apart from the work they had to put in the ringing of the bells (laughter). To put it more clearly, in addition to the work of ringing the bells they had to lift 40 lbs. 1 ft. at every round, or, approximately, 28 times a minute. Blocks of wood had been put in between the walls and the frame to wedge it, while the frame had been put in at least 20 feet higher than it used to be. It was a Norman tower and never intended to carry a spire, but a stone spire had been added subsequently, and the bells were in the spire. There were cracks in the tower, but they might have been caused by some drainage scheme in the parish, and not due to the bells at all. Almost exactly the same thing was present in another tower reported to them. There was considerable movement in the frame, which was an excellent form of spring frame, and it had been wedged to the tower. They had been successful in obtaining publicity in some of the architectural papers. No less an authority than the Architect to the Ecclesiastical Commissioners wrote a review of the book, published by Sir Arthur Heywood, in the Journal of the Royal Institute of British Architects. He made statements which gave an opportunity for reply and two contributors made replies to that review. They hoped that the publicity that was given in that journal would have done some good among architects. The subject had also been discussed in two other architectural papers.

The Hon. Secretary said with regard to the negotiations with the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings, the society gave them six towers which were supposed to have been injured by the more recent manner of hanging bells, and the committee had proposed to have a meeting with the society on the following day, but it had been found impossible to hold it. The secretary of the society was away on service, and they thought, perhaps, things had better rest for the time being. The committee had obtained evidence on their side, which was more or less a reply to the society’s views as to what had happened to the towers in question through modern developments in bell hanging.

The President said that the review of the book by the Architect to the Ecclesiastical Commissioners was one of considerable length. He reviewed it very carefully although, he thought, not altogether fairly to the whole of the book. He laid great stress on one point, however, which was that the real value of the book consisted in Mr. Lewis’s contribution, and recommended every architect who had to do with church buildings to provide himself with a copy of the publication. Mr. Lewis’s experiments, added the President, were still going on, and he suggested that the committee should be re-appointed. With regard to the book itself, he would be very glad to send a copy gratis to any member of the Council who really wished to have it to study. He thought the publication of the volume would do a good deal to wake up architects and church authorities to the view that bells and bell frames wanted treating like any other engineering work, from a rational engineering point of view, and, to that end, Mr. Lewis’s was really a most valuable feature. Before next year they hoped to have a meeting between the committee and the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings, and if they could not dispose of the society’s ideas altogether they might be able to show them that there were two views of the subject, about which they had got only one.

Mr. E. A. Young, who is a member of the Royal Institute of British Architects, said the Committee of the Institute had had a number of meetings at which they had dealt with the subject, and Mr. Lewis had kindly allowed his name to be put down as an honorary corresponding member of the committee to which he was invited by the Royal Institute (applause).

On the motion of Canon Papillon, seconded by the Rev. A. H. F. Boughey, the committee was re-elected as follows: The President, the hon. secretary, Messrs. E. H. Lewis, J. H. B. Hesse and E. A. Young.

The Ringing World, June 4th, 1915, pages 284 to 285

We give below the continuation of the report of the proceedings of the Central Council at the meeting in London on Whitsun Tuesday. At the conclusion of the discussion on the committees’ reports, the Council came to the motions of which notice had been given.


The President said the first subject for discussion was the proposal that was postponed from the Winchester meeting, that the Council should approve and issue a national badge for ringers. The Council would remember that the matter was postponed upon the ground that, before they could come to any resolution in the matter, it was essential they should know the views of the Associations, because it would be absurd for them, who represented, through the delegates, the various associations, to take any steps that were not the outcome of the wish of those associations, and he was rather doubtful whether the subject had been brought before more than a minority of them. However, that, no doubt, would transpire in the course of the discussion.

There was a rather lengthy pause, and the President intimated that if no one had anything to say they would pass on.

Mr. A. A. Hughes said the matter was brought before the College Youths, and the opinion of the meeting was that they did not want a national badge at all; they did not care to be labelled.

Mr. J. Griffin said he thought it was a matter for the individual associations to deal with, and not a matter for the Council at all.

The Rev. C. C. Parker said a great many associations already had a badge. He consulted the Bath and Wells Association, and they had no objection to the issue of a special badge, although they had had one of their own for some time.

The President: What we are short of is some gentleman keen enough about this matter to put his views before the meeting (laughter).

Canon Baker moved that the Council pass on to the next business.

The Rev. G. F. Coleridge seconded, as, he said, amid laughter, it was he who brought the subject up last year. It was, however, not altogether in accordance with his views, but he did it to oblige those who asked him to do so. The only badge, he thought, which would decorate a ringer of suitable age would be the war medal (hear, hear).- The motion to proceed to the next business was carried nem. dis.


The President said they now came to what they had looked forward to as a three-cornered fight, but one of the three corners, the Rev. H. Law James, was not present, so it resolved itself into a duel between the hon. secretary and Mr. Trollope, which they would anxiously await the result of (laughter, and a Member: Do they want seconds?)

The Hon. Secretary then moved: “That it is desirable to reconsider some of the conditions laid down for the legitimacy of methods as stated on page 18 of ‘Rules and Decisions,’ 1904.” Having reminded the Council that the motion was in exactly the same terms as that submitted to the Council three years ago, the Hon. Secretary proceeded to explain that the long delay in bringing the matter up since the publication of the “Rules and Decisions” was that for some years after the report was issued he really did not deeply study the matter, and he took it for granted that the Legitimate Methods Committee had issued some simple statement as to what methods were legitimate and what were not. It was only when he found out that methods which he thought perfectly lawful and right to be rung were taboo that his eyes were opened, and he began to look into it and found things were very different from what he had thought them to be. The statements to which he chiefly took objection were:-

Before he proceeded to argue his position he would like to say he hoped the members of the Council would not think this was an abstruse question. There was an appreciative and kind article in the previous week’s issue of “The Ringing World” in which, however, the writer thought the subject led them into abstruse technicalities. He (Mr. Davies) hoped no member would think this an abstruse question; it was not. It was a question which, he thought, every ringer was capable of deciding for himself. It was a question whether they should restrict themselves, as he thought they ought, to natural place making in a method, or whether they should allow extra places to be made; whether they were, in fact, to regard it as optional whether they upset the order of the in and out of course of the changes or not. In Doubles their rows were in course until they called a single; in Triples they were alternately in course and out of course, because in Doubles there was an even number of pairs of bells, and in Triples there was an odd number of pairs. When they came to ring on even numbers of bells there was a very simple rule, which was that they changed all the pairs at one row, and then they made two places at the next row. That was what he contended the law was, and it was his argument that that law should be retained.


Proceeding, Mr. Davies dealt with some of the terms used in the definitions. In the extracts he had quoted there was the term “coursing order,” and it was well that they should make the meaning clear. Nowhere, so far as he could find in the committee’s report, was there any real explanation of “coursing order,” but it was really used in two senses quite different from one another. One use of the expression was that in which it meant the order in which the bells moved up and down within the lead following one another. Then there was another sense in which the committee had used it, and which was the very opposite of the other. It was used in the sense of the order in which throughout a. plain course the different bells fell into any given position, such, for instance, as the order in which the bells in Bob Major made second’s place, which was quite the reverse to the order in which they followed one another up and down within the lead. Mr. James had used the term “coursing circle” for the order in which the bells fell into any given position. Part of his (the speaker’s) position was this, that it was all very well to talk of coursing order when they were ringing plain methods; in Grandsire and Plain Bob there was a very palpable coursing order, but when they came to anything like intricate methods, he contended that coursing in the sense in which the bells follow one another up and down within the lead practically vanished. Therefore, he held, “coursing order” had no signification when they came to complicated methods, but when it came to “coursing circles” every method must have its coursing circle. The Legitimate Methods Committee wished to tie them down to one single coursing circle. They said that all legitimate methods were to have Plain Bob lead ends, which meant that they were to have one coursing circle and one alone. He objected to being tied to that as obligatory. He did not object to it as an alternative one, he did not wish to rule it out of order at all; but he did not see why it should be the only one. He wanted a little more freedom, and he thought they would gain by that freedom. In change ringing, continued Mr. Davies, they had agreed to ring changes in certain ways; they were not the only possible ways, but still they had been agreed to. First of all there were two rules which neither Mr. James nor Mr. Trollope nor anyone else had attempted to throw over, one was the rule of pairs, which was that bells changed places in pairs, and no bell moved more than one place at a time; the other was the rule that no bell should strike more than two consecutive blows in the same place. That they called the law of places. Then there came, as he thought, naturally from that, the law, which the Legitimate Methods Committee wanted more or less to overthrow and to treat as absolutely optional and which he called the law of succession. This meant that when they were ringing changes on an odd number of bells they should never have more than one bell lying still, and, when they came to even methods, no places made in one row and two, and two only, in the next row. All the rules were perfectly arbitrary in one sense, viz., that they need not have made them, but they had taken certain rules arbitrarily chosen and, having taken them, they had no right to throw them over and, from being arbitrary, they had now become fundamental. The committee had taken one of those rules which change ringers had chosen and, having chosen, were now forced to obey, and in place of it they had put in another which, instead of being a rule at all was a mere resulting phenomenon. It just happened that when they started from rounds and wrote out a lead with all the bells plain hunting that the bells fell into a certain row, and why they should be forced to take that row as a binding obligation in all methods he failed to see. It was not necessary, and it led to the overthrow of that rule which he regarded as fundamental, the law of succession.


He contended that the Plain Bob lead ends were arrived at by the inventor of the method in a merely haphazard way, for many things, including the Grandsire Single, which was the most unscientific single they could have, showed that people at the start did not begin with a scientific theory, but simply went from stage to stage seeing how far they could get. That was how methods had grown, one being a little improvement on another. It was only in later days that they had been able to sit down, as Mr. James had done, and work them out by wonderful theories. Therefore, he said, Bob Major lead ends were merely haphazard. The plain lead ends failed to keep the bells in coursing order in the more complicated methods, and they were consequently needless, because there were others they could use and use with advantage. Then, too, these Plain Bob lead ends did not secure, as of necessity, the points on which the Legitimate Methods Committee had set their hearts, for there were many methods which would be included in the forthcoming book by the Legitimate Methods Committee which had got the bells out behind out of coursing order. Therefore, not only were the Plain Bob lead ends needless, they were futile. He objected to being tied to the Plain Bob lead ends, because there were other good methods which did not possess them, and which were beautiful methods. He need cite only two, one was Duffield and another was the well-known method of Union Triples, which was one of the most beautiful methods to ring that they could possibly have. But Union Triples did not fall in with the Legitimate Methods Committee’s requirements; the lead ends were not the lead ends which the committee had declared to be necessary, and so, he said, tying themselves down to the Plain Bob lead ends was mischievous, because they debarred themselves from using many methods most beautiful and most useful. Then he objected also because it was a perfectly new-fangled idea.


Proceeding, Mr. Davies said that, as he was trying to overthrow the definitions which had been laid down, it was only fair and right that he should propose something in their place. Before, however, they could attempt to define a plain lead or a bob lead, they must define “treble lead.” It was a very unfortunate phrase, for it was used in at least four different senses. First of all they might mean by “treble’s lead,” the two blows at which the treble was leading, and he thought that was the best sense in which they could use it. The next sense in which it was used was to represent the whole number of rows between the times when the treble left one lead and came to lead the next time. In that sense he proposed to use the word “section.” There was a difficulty about that, as the treble lead was not always the same, for, if they had a bob at the end of the lead in plain Bob Major, the last row was different, and in Grandsire Triples the last two rows were different to what they would be if they had no call. They must, therefore, have words to show which they meant, and one he called a “plain section” and the other a “bob section.” But they wanted also a word to express the set of rows which were always the same, and which could not be cut up in the way he had just described. In Plain Bob Major, if they started with the back-stroke lead of the treble and wrote out the hunting lead until the treble led at hand-stroke, they got a set of sixteen rows which never could be altered; in Grandsire the division occurred a row earlier. The real and practical division was at what they knew was the bob change.

Mr. Trollope: What about singles?

The Rev. C. D. P. Davies said he was not talking about singles; the Grandsire single was a most hideous thing. These sets of rows, which could not be altered, he would call a “block.” When they had got a block, it could be followed or preceded by only one of two others, either by a plain lead or a bob lead. There was one other sense in which they used the term “treble’s lead,” and they meant by it the back-stroke lead of the treble. It was immutably tied, in Grandsire, to 13 other rows; he called it the, characteristic of that block, because when they used that row they had to use all the other rows that must go with it.


Next, continued the speaker, they must come to a definition of “plain lead” and “bob lead” in the sense in which he had always understood the words. The blocks were immutable, and when they passed from one block to another, they did so by what he called a “link.” If it was a plain lead, he called it a “plain link,” which, in Grandsire, was 7th’s place. If it was a bob lead he called it a “bob link” and, in Grandsire, it was 3rd’s. These links were the mode of passage from one block to the other. Now they came to the effect of a bob. The Legitimate Methods Committee said that a bob altered the relative position among the working bells, leaving three of their number in different coursing order. He had always regarded a bob as a simple alteration in the paths of three of the bells. It did not matter what the method was or how the bob was made, they must have at least three bells, but in Grandsire and Treble Bob they had more bells because they had a mixed bob. In Plain Bob the bob was made two places from the place made at the plain lead. He did not see that a bob had anything to do with the coursing order at all, it was simply an interchange of work between three bells, which might have been coursing one another or might not. In the course of further argument, Mr. Davies said the committee had made themselves slaves not only to a particular coursing order, but to a particular coursing circle, and it was because Stedman, which consisted of two kinds of sixes, did not fall in with this view that Mr. James had told them that Stedman Triples, as it was now rung, was not real Stedman Triples, and maintained that the quick six was a bob.

The President: We as a Council have never assented to Mr. James’s theory on Stedman, and I think you should confine yourself to what we have decided in print.

Mr. Davies then proceeded at length to answer certain statements made elsewhere by Mr. James, and was eventually asked by the President if he thought it worth while to go on controverting Mr. James’s statements when he (Mr. James) was not there.

Mr. Davies: I wish he had been here.

The President: But is it worth while spending much time over them?

Mr. Davies said he had nearly finished, and after further challenging some of Mr. James’s arguments formally moved his motion, having spoken exactly an hour and twelve minutes.


The Rev. E. W. Carpenter seconded the motion. He had hoped, he said, to have been able to say something more about the word “Legitimate,” but he would not do so at that hour of the afternoon.

The President drew the attention of the Council to the position they were in with regard to the resolution. It was entirely within the rights of any member to draw attention to the desirability of reconsidering a matter which they had printed as the outcome of the careful opinion of the Council. He had listened with very great interest to Mr. Davies as he set forth his objections to some of the definitions that had previously been come to by the Council and printed, but he would like to point out that it was quite useless to enter upon a discussion of what Mr. Davies had advanced in that Council. There was only a limited number of gentlemen in the Council who had been at pains to acquaint themselves with the principles that underlay what Mr. Davies had been talking about, and their usual course had always been to refer such matters to their expert committees, who were carefully selected in order to deal with specific points, to let them sift the matter out and then bring it before the Council. If they carried the resolution, and he thought himself that Mr. Davies had made out a case for reconsideration, it seemed to him that the proper thing was to refer the matter to the committee. Mr. Davies would then be in communication with the committee, and they could argue the matter among themselves. If they came to a decision that certain alterations were desirable, they would put those alterations before the Council, who would or would not confirm them. He submitted, however, that it would be quite useless and a great waste of time to enter into an argument on the great many points which Mr. Davies had raised that afternoon (applause).

The suggestion to refer the matter to committee was carried by acclamation.

The Ringing World, June 11th, 1915, pages 296 to 297

We conclude in this issue our report of the Central Council meeting in London on Whitsun Tuesday. “The Ringing World” was not merely the only paper represented by a member of its own staff, but our reporter was the only shorthand writer present taking any note of the proceedings, and any report of the speeches appearing elsewhere has been taken, without our consent, from our columns.

Mr. J. A. Trollope, alluding to the motion, which had been passed, referring to the Legitimate Methods Committee the reconsideration of the rules laid down for the legitimacy of methods, said if all the points which Mr. Davies had brought up were to be accepted it would mean reconstructing the whole thing from the bottom, and meant undoing the work of 15 years. He did not know what other members of the committee were prepared to do, but he should not do it. They had got now far beyond rudimentary things, and he had made up his mind that it was not a question to be reconsidered from Mr. Davies’s point of view. He meant it as no personal affront, but if it had to be done he would not be of any further use on the committee.


The President said there was no reason for any member of the committee to resign. If a member of the Council made a motion that certain expert matters wanted reconsidering, and if he submitted his views to the expert committee, and that committee did not think there was any ground for alteration, then the committee would report to the Council that they were agreed that things should stand as they were, and upon their judgment, in all probability, the Council would decide. They would probably prefer to take the expert opinion of a number of gentlemen who were on the Committee to the opinion of one gentleman outside it.

Mr. J. Trollope: It means really that we shall have to justify what we have been doing for 15 years. As far as I am concerned, I have done that elsewhere and if that won’t carry conviction I don’t know what will. The majority of people who talk about Bob Major lead ends and coursing order have not a rudimentary idea what is meant by it. It is not a question whether you are compelled to have certain lead ends, but of the truth which lies behind the whole thing, and until you know it you are not competent to express an opinion upon it. These arguments are based merely on want of knowledge.

Mr. S. Wood: The best way would be to engage a room for them until the next Council meeting. Perhaps they would have finished by then (laughter).

Mr. H. W. Wilde asked whether the committee would reconsider the word “Legitimate.” It was not a very desirable title.

This was accepted as part of the reference to the committee, and the Council then passed on to the consideration of the next motion on the agenda.


The Rev. F. Ll. Edwards then moved: “That this Council recognises with emphatic approval the good judgment and consideration shown by ringers throughout the United Kingdom in their spontaneous abstinence from peal ringing since the outbreak of war: but that at the same time (the Council) regards it as the privilege and sacred duty of ringers, wherever circumstances permit, to continue, alike in time of war and of peace, to honour with the music of the bells the Lord’s Day and other Feasts of the Church, as also on Royal and National Anniversaries, to give expression to the thankfulness of the British people to Almighty God for the many blessings vouchsafed to this Empire and for the preservation of His Most Gracious Majesty to preside over its momentous destinies.” He said he was quite aware, as everyone else was, that that Council had no power whatever to regulate the ringing in any belfry in the kingdom, nor had any of the associations. The only persons who could really regulate the use of bells were the clergy responsible for each belfry. But as a matter of fact, it was the truth, though a deplorable truth, that the vast majority of the clergy responsible, not being ringers themselves, were not really competent people to direct the use of the bells, and the result was that a matter of this kind was practically left to the ringers. It was quite natural, therefore, that the ringers throughout the country should look to that Council for some guidance in the matter, the fact being that ringers were largely left to their own devices. During the war the ringers had taken their patriotism into their own hands. At Newcastle the Council discussed the question of peal ringing, and there were some of them who advocated the restriction of peal ringing in normal circumstances to occasions when they would have good ground for justifying the ringing. The war, however, had settled the question for the time being. Ringers had taken it upon themselves to abstain with one accord from ringing peals during the war. That showed the very important point that ringers realised the fact that peal ringing was not of the essence of their vocation as church officers, and should be relegated to second place. All would agree that the Council would be right in according their emphatic approval of the attitude adopted by ringers in regard to peal ringing during the war. That ringers had shown this sense of restraint was due to the fact that they possessed a feeling of responsibility, that they realised that they were a body of public officers, officers of the Church and the whole Christian community, and that, therefore, the use of the bells was not primarily for their delectation, but to give expression to the feelings of the Christian community which they represented. While the Council would, therefore, accord its approval of this restraint by the ringers, he thought the Council should give some word of guidance as to the use of the bells which they considered legitimate during the war.


Some of the authorities seemed to have gone off their heads over the war. He knew of churches where the bells were not even allowed to be chimed for services. That seemed to him to be a very wrong-headed attitude to take. Primarily the bells were put into the belfries for use on Church Festivals, and as an adjunct to public worship. Why in the name of common sense, because we were at war, should this particular function of the Church be entirely suspended? It was said that feelings of joy, during the present great national anxiety and the desolation of many homes, were out of place. So they were, from that point of view, but the expression of joy of those who held the Christian Faith was always in place as relating to the essence of their faith. The Bishops of the Church had not given orders that the “Te Deum” or the “Magnificat” should not be sung or that choirs should not take part in the services, and no clergyman had given orders that the organ should not be played. Why then should the bells cease to ring? It was the duty of the ringers to ring the bells for the Lord’s Day, which was a weekly festival, and for the other Feasts of the Church as they occurred in rotation, and he held very emphatically that ringers had a great duty to perform, and had a privilege accorded to them in being able during a time of war, when there was much cause for anxiety, to remind the people by the music of the bells that there was cause for joy in the great fundamental truths of our religion. It was for ringers to set the key note of Christian worship in war time just as much as in peace time. The position of ringers was an especially honourable and useful one in war time, because by the regular ringing of bells they bore constant testimony to the fact that the great truths of the Christian religion were immutable and could not be impaired or destroyed by any of the vicissitudes of mundane affairs. Continuing, Mr. Edwards said that never before in the history of this nation or any other had there been such a grand and striking outburst of loyal devotion to the throne and person of the Sovereign as there had been in this Empire since the outbreak of war, and it seemed to him that for that very reason, during the period of the war, there was at least an emphatic reason for ringers to give expression to that loyal devotion on the royal anniversaries, and also to give expression to the thankful joy of the people in the preservation of His Majesty’s life. In conclusion, Mr. Edwards said he hoped that resolution would act in some measure as a guide to those clergy who did not themselves take any action to regulate the ringing of the bells during this time of war.

Mr. A. Hughes D’Aeth seconded, and the motion was carried unanimously, without debate.


The President said, with the consent of the gentleman who was going to speak on the remaining motion which was on the agenda, he would suggest that it be postponed until the next meeting. The motion was: “That the Council desires to draw the attention of the Exercise to the increasing abandonment of raising and falling bells in peal, as a result of which a large proportion of ringers do not acquire the necessary skill to enable them to take part in this ancient and musical practice.” This was a question, said the President, which ought not to be put too lightly aside, and it was for that reason that he would suggest, with the consent of the gentleman who was going to propose it and with the consent of the Council, that it be postponed until next year.

This course was agreed to.


The President said the last business was the fixing of the place of next meeting. This triennium was the turn of West and East, and next year it was the turn of the West. The year after it would be the turn of the East, and he thought there was very little doubt that Ipswich was absolutely the place they must go to, for not only had it been a centre of progress for many years, but it was one of the places in the country that they had not been to, but to which they ought to have gone before. The immediate point before them, however, was the western place for next year. The Standing Committee had very carefully considered the matter, and suggested Plymouth. It was a very long way off, but Plymouth was a very old centre of ringing, and there were still a great number of ringers there. The Council had found, moreover, that the very distant places were not the least well attended, therefore he ventured on behalf of the Standing Committee to suggest Plymouth to them.

The Rev. M. Kelly (President of the Devonshire Guild) said he need hardly say what a hearty welcome they would give to the Central Council if they came to Devon next year, but he thought it was only right to say they had got to face this fact, they could not look into the future, and if the position next year was the same as it was at present he must warn members of the Council that there was not any likelihood of the bells in that neighbourhood being available for peals or for prolonged ringing. As it fell within the Whitsuntide festival, there would be no difficulty in having short ringing, but he was convinced that the incumbents would not grant permission for any prolonged ringing, and it was a very long way for ringers to come and then not have a chance of having any peals.

The President pointed out that, as a Council, they recognised that they did not have their meetings in order to ring at them. The members were sent at considerable expense, and at considerable personal trouble by their various associations to represent their interests, and at the original formation of the Council it was carefully argued that, while it was eminently desirable to meet in London, it would be extremely beneficial if a certain number of meetings could be held in different parts of the country. The meetings of the Council in different parts of the country, his experience was, was doing an immense deal to help ringers and encourage them, but any ringing that took place at the time was merely a matter of pleasure for the ringers themselves, and in these times they did not think much about pleasure.

The Rev. G. F. Coleridge pointed out that, in regard to ringing at the present time, the same argument would hold good in any part of England.

Mr. J. Griffin formally proposed Plymouth, and the Rev. G. F. Coleridge seconded.

The Rev. H. J. Elsee said he had some diffidence in suggesting an alternative place, but he thought there was another consideration, and that was that, under present conditions, there were no cheap fares, and that did make a difference to representatives who had to travel a long way. The place which he would suggest as an alternative would be more central, viz., Gloucester. They had never been to Gloucester, and that would be a good deal nearer to some parts of England than Plymouth. In ordinary times Plymouth would be a good place to go to.- Mr. J. Austin seconded.

It having been pointed out that Gloucester was counted in the Midlands, the President said it would be rather a pity to break through their scheme of rotation.

Gloucester being dropped, the Rev. F. Ll. Edwards proposed Bath, and this was seconded by Mr. J. D. Matthews.

On being put to the vote, Plymouth was carried by a large majority.


On the motion of Mr. H. E. White, seconded by Mr. C. H. Hattersley, a vote of condolence was passed to the relatives of the late Mr. Sam Reeves, of West Bromwich, and Mr. Rowland Cartwright, of Wombourne, who were former members of the Council, and who had died since last the Council met.

On the proposition of the Rev. G. F. Coleridge, a vote of thanks was accorded to Sir Arthur Heywood for presiding. This was acknowledged by the President, who expressed the hope that next year they might meet under happier circumstances.

The meeting then terminated.

The Ringing World, June 18th, 1915, pages 308 to 309

Valid HTML 4.01 Transitional