THERE was the second largest attendance at a Central Council meeting when the 27th Council (59th annual meeting) was held at the Council Chamber of Leicester Town Hall on Whit Tuesday. The cordiality of the welcome to Leicester made a deep impression upon all members. The Lord Bishop gave a very gracious message at the opening of the Council meeting and the Lord Mayor, in a homely manner, made members feel welcome at the close of the long proceedings.

Of the business transacted perhaps the most important was the preparations for the retirement next year of Mr. E. H. Lewis from the office of president. A nomination supported by the Standing Committee will be submitted in favour of Mr. Frederick Sharpe as his successor. The Council also felt that it was desirable to have a vice-president, and for this office the Rev. A. G. G. Thurlow will be the official nomination.

The most disturbing thing arising from the reports of committees was the report of “The Ringing World” Committee. The trading for 1955 resulted in a profit of £832 after disregarding donations, but the revised charges for printing introduced recently are so heavy that this favourable result will be nullified and new sources of revenue will be necessary.


The Lord Bishop of Leicester (Dr. R. R. Williams), in a welcome to the Council to the Diocese of Leicester, said he felt that the Council had come to a good centre, where bellringing had a prominent place and was held in high honour.

“I am afraid to talk about bellringing,” said the Bishop, “because it is a world where it is easy to drop a brick or a clanger. When I saw the film ‘Richard III.’ I did not realise all the mistakes in ringing until I read ‘The Ringing World.’”

Ringers in Leicester owed much to the late ex-Inspector Harold Poole. The presence of this conference here was largely due to him, and during the week-end they had placed a plaque in the tower of Leicester Cathedral to the memory of the late ex-Police Inspector Harold Poole, a lay canon of the Cathedral and a prominent bellringer.

On a more cheerful subject, the Bishop said they had some good towers, which no doubt many of them had tried. He would like to mention one - St. John-the-Divine, Leicester. He was particularly interested in that tower because if it had not been for him that tower might not now be in being. When he came to Leicester there was a well-thought-out proposal for the demolition of that church. “I do not know what would have happened to the bells if I had not found some excuses, other than the bells, for keeping the church. If that plan for closure had been approved I might have had the Central Council of Bellringers ‘hollering for my blood.’”

They also had in Leicester in Mr. Morris, of St. Margaret’s, a great exponent of the world of bells. He was an authority on the subject; and he saw from their journal he held the record of having more peals to his credit than any other living ringer.

They also had their foundry at Loughborough. They would realise that they had not come to a diocese where the art was not appreciated. He felt that bellringers had a very vital part to play in keeping a link between the church and the people. It was a national institution - an institution in which he thought that their English tradition was unique and it was something he hoped would long continue.

“I have to do a great deal of peace-making for you sometimes because it is not everybody who appreciates bells and ringing. I always try to do my best to keep the bells pealing and the people from squealing. I think the best way is to have as many people as possible taking part in ringing.”


Wishing the Council and ringers every success in the coming year, the Bishop said the bells were the only part of the Church’s worship that was heard by all the people, and when church-going was not so strong they could let people hear that very outward sound of worship. “I hope you realise that your bells are part of the worship of God and not merely calling people to take part in worship.”

The Bishop then said prayers and pronounced his Blessing on the conference.

Mr. P. L. Taylor, as president of the Leicester Diocesan Guild, also extended a welcome to the conference. He had already written a letter to Mr. Lewis, their president, to say how pleased they were that they were here.

It was 45 years since the Central Council was at Leicester and at that time his father was vice-president of the Midland Counties Association, from which the Leicester Guild was formed. Further, in 1911, “The Ringing World” was started, and it was through Billy Wilson, of Leicester, that it started. There was a lot of talk about what was to happen to “The Ringing World.” They all knew it was going strong, and Leicester had given a hand to keep it going. He welcomed them all to Leicester.


The president, on behalf of the Council, thanked Leicester for its welcome. He remembered being at Leicester in 1911, when they met in the old Moot Hall, and they were very glad to come back because they looked on Leicester as one of the big centres of change ringing for the past 200 years. About 200 years ago there was great rivalry between Leicester and Nottingham as to who should ring the first peal of Grandsire Caters. Leicester won by a few weeks.

The Lord Bishop mentioned the objection that some people had to ringing. He might say that one of the problems of the Central Council had been the modification of the sound of bells so that they should not be noisy to people living near the church. In that matter they had been very successful, but unfortunately there were churches who would not ask them for advice. Where they had asked them for advice they had been successful.


Life members: Mr. E. H. Lewis, Mr. E. A. Barnett, Mr. F. Sharpe, Mr. and Mrs. G. W. Fletcher.
Honorary members: Mrs. E. A. Barnett, Mrs. C. C. Marshall, Messrs. J. T. Dyke, J. P. Fidler, F. I. Hairs, A. A. Hughes, D. Hughes, C. K. Lewis, W. A. Osborn, A. J. Pitman, E. C. Shepherd, P. L. Taylor, W. H. Viggers, A. Walker.
Ancient Society of College Youths: Messrs. A. B. Peck, J. F. Smallwood.
Bath and Wells Diocesan Association: Messrs. S. G. Coles, H. J. Sanger, Miss N. G. Williams.
Bedfordshire Association: Messrs. B. F. Sims, S. Foskett.
Chester Diocesan Guild: Messrs. J. W. Clarke, R. G. Corby.
Coventry Diocesan Guild: Mrs. D. E. Beamish, Mr. F. W. Perrens.
Derbyshire Association: Messrs. A. Mould, W. Robinson.
Devon Guild: Mr. E. F. Biffin.
Dudley and District Guild: Mr. H. J. Shuck.
Durham and Newcastle Association: Messrs. F. Ainsley, W. N. Park.
East Grinstead and District Guild: Mr. C. A. Bassett.
Ely Diocesan Guild: Messrs. P. Border, F. W. Lack.
Essex Association: Messrs. J. H. Crampion, F. B. Lufkin, Miss H. G. Snowden.
Gloucester and Bristol Diocesan Association: Messrs. A. L. Barry, T. Boreham, W. B. Kynaston, F. Skidmore.
Guildford Diocesan Guild: Messrs. A. C. Hazelden, A. H. Pulling.
Hereford Diocesan Guild: Messrs. W. F. Moreton, G. E. Oliver.
Hertford County Association: Messrs. W. Ayre, R. C. Bell, E. Edmondson, C. W. Woolley.
Irish Association: Messrs. F. E. Dukes, J. T. Dunwoody, Miss J. Stewart.
Kent County Association: Messrs. T. Cullingworth, T. E. Sone.
Ladies’ Guild: Miss D. E. Colgate, Mrs. A. Richardson, Mrs. P. J. Staniforth.
Lancashire Association: Messrs. F. Dunkerley, J. Ridyard, Rev. R. D. St. J. Smith, Mr. A. Tomlinson.
Leicester Diocesan Guild: Messrs. S. Burton, P. A. Corby, A. E. Rowley, P. J. Staniforth.
Lincoln Diocesan Guild: Messrs. G. E. Feirn, J. Freeman, J. A. Freeman.
Llandaff and Monmouth Diocesan Association: Miss J. S. Evans, Mr. T. M. Roderick.
London County Association: Mr. and Mrs. H. W. Rogers, Mr. W. G. Wilson.
Middlesex County Association: Messrs. T. J. Lock, R. F. B. Speed, E. C. S. Turner.
Midland Counties Guild: Mr. J. W. Cotton.
North Staffordshire Association: Mr. R. S. Anderson.
Norwich Diocesan Association: Messrs. H. W. Barrett, F. N. Golden, N. V. Harding.
Oxford Diocesan Guild: Mr. and Mrs. A. D. Barker, Mr. A. E. Lock.
Oxford Society: Mr. F. A. H. Wilkins.
Oxford University Society: Mr. R. B. Meadows, Mrs. P. C. Wright.
Peterborough Diocesan Guild: Messrs. P. I. Chapman, G. W. Jeffs, E. Nobles, W. Rose.
St. David’s Diocesan Guild: Mr. J. A. Hoare.
St. Martin’s Guild, Birmingham: Messrs. G. E. Fearn, F. E. Haynes.
Salisbury Diocesan Guild: Messrs. G. H. Harding, W. C. West.
Scottish Association: Mr. R. St. C. Wilson.
Sheffield and District Society: Mr. N. Chaddock.
Shropshire Association: Mr. G. L. Hewitt.
Society of Royal Cumberland Youths: Messrs. P. N. Bond, F. E. Hawthorne.
Southwell Diocesan Guild: Messrs. B. M. Buswell, J. W. Raithby, J. Segar.
Stafford Archdeaconry Society: Messrs. B. G. Key, C. Wallater.
Surrey Association: Messrs. F. E. Collins, W. F. Oatway, H. N. Pitstow.
Sussex County Association: Messrs. R. G. Blackman, F. H. Dallaway, H. Stalham, L. Stilwell.
Swansea and Brecon Guild: Mr. G. I. Lewis.
Truro Diocesan Guild: Messrs. B. Burnett, A. Carveth, Miss M. Lidgey, Mr. H. Miles.
Universities Association: Miss M. R. Cross.
Winchester and Portsmouth Diocesan Guild: Rev. K. W. H. Felstead, Messrs. C. H. Kippin, G. Pullinger, F. W. Rogers.
Worcestershire and Districts Association: Messrs. B. C. Ashford, W. B. Cartwright.
Yorkshire Association: Messrs. W. E. Critchley, P. J. Johnson, L. W. G. Morris, S. F. Palmer.
University of London Society: Mr. D. N. Layton.


The hon. secretary reported that there were 54 Associations affiliated to the Council, having in all 150 members. There were 24 honorary members and seven life members, giving a total of 181. There were two vacancies among the representative members and six among the honorary members. All subscriptions had been paid except from the East Derby and Notts Association.


The hon. secretary said there had been an application from the University of London Society to affiliate. The Standing Committee considered the application and recommended that the application be granted.

Mr. W. Ayre proposed, and Mr. N. Chaddock seconded, that the application be granted. This was agreed to.

The president said the New South Wales Association were anxious to affiliate to the Council. If granted they would elect some representative member in this country who had knowledge of their country.

Mr. R. S. Anderson, in proposing affiliation, said he thought it was the first overseas Association to be affiliated.

Mr. Leslie Morris seconded and the resolution was carried.


Apologies were received from Messrs. F. D. Boreham, J. Bray, T. R. Butler, W. Cathrall, P. A. F. Chalk, G. H. Cross, Rev. F. Ll. Edwards, Messrs. T. H. Francis, R. O. Fry, F. W. Goodfellow, Dr. E. S. J. Hatcher, Rev. J. Kingdon, Messrs. G. J. Lewis, J. E. Lilley, T. G. Myers, H. S. Peacock, C. W. Roberts, Rev. J. G. M. Scott, Mr. C. J. Sedgley, Mrs. P. J. Steeples, Messrs. G. E. Symonds, T. H. Taffender, B. D. Threlfall, Rev. A. G. G. Thurlow, Messrs. J. J. Webb. J. Willis, J. R. Worrall and E. A. Young.

The hon. secretary said the Rev. F. Ll. Edwards, in his apology, wrote that he was leaving Kington Magna after 45 years.

The president said that Mr. Alex. Young was 91 that day and they were arranging that a telegram of congratulations and good wishes be sent to him from the Council.


The following new members were presented to the president: Messrs. B. M. Buswell, Southwell Diocesan Guild; A. Carveth, Truro Diocesan Guild; D. W. Layton, London University; A. J. Pitman, honorary; B. F. Sims, Bedfordshire; P. J. Staniforth, Leicester Diocesan Guild.


The hon. secretary reported that the following honorary members retired but were eligible for re-election: Mrs. O. D. Barnett, Messrs. F. I. Hairs, C. K. Lewis, W. A. Osborn and A. J. Pitman. The Standing Committee recommended that they be re-elected and the six vacancies left in the meantime.

Mr. Leslie Morris proposed, and Mr. J. Dunwoody seconded, their election, and this was agreed to.


The Council stood when the following members of the Council who had died since the last meeting were remembered:-

J. Ashmole, Chester Diocesan Guild; W. H. L. Buckingham, St. James’ Society and Middlesex Association; Rev. W. W. Covey-Crump, Ely Diocesan Association; Clement Glenn, Yorkshire Association and Southwell Diocesan Guild; Alfred W. Groves, Sussex County Association; S. J. Hughes, Dudley and District Association; John W. Jones, Llandaff and Monmouth Diocesan Association; Walter E. Longman, Chester Diocesan Guild; J. Maddock, Bath and Wells Diocesan Association; John C. Mitchell, honorary; Harold J. Poole, Midland County Association and Leicester Diocesan Guild; Mrs. A. S. Roberts, Truro Diocesan Association.

The president said Mr. Buckingham and Mr. Mitchell were the two surviving members who rang Holt’s Original “silent” on handbells rather more than 40 years ago. They also missed very much Mr. Jones, who was such a familiar figure at their Council meetings, and, last of all, it would be in their minds the sad loss of Mr. Harold J. Poole.


The Minutes of the last meeting, as circulated to members, were accepted on the proposition of Mr. C. K. Lewis, seconded by Mr. E. C. S. Turner.


There is little of outstanding interest to report for the year under review. Perhaps the most interesting event was a bequest to the Council by the late Mr. Clement Glenn of the residue of his estate (about £800) for such purposes as may be thought fit.

Members will note the more encouraging results of “The Ringing World” arising from the increased price of 6d. per copy, which made it possible for £800 to be invested at the end of the year in the then new 4 per cent. Defence Bond Issue. It must not, however, be thought that solvency in the future is assured. Disregarding donations, the profit of £832 represents little more than a two months’ printing bill and is less than ¾d. per copy. The new postal rates from June 1st will cost an additional £112 this year if the present postal circulation of just over 2,000 copies per week is maintained.

Were it not once again for the kindness of Mr. Wilson and Miss Groves in undertaking the typing and duplicating work, is might well have been impossible this year for a number of reports to have been circulated before the meeting.

Finally my thanks are expressed to those who very kindly send copies of reports and other publications.

The hon. secretary moved the adoption of the report. Mr. F. I. Hairs seconded, and the report was agreed to.


The income and expenditure account of the General Fund showed an excess of income over expenditure for 1954 of £50 1s. 6d. Expenses were: Biography Committee £4 11s. 1d.; hon. secretary £7 9s. 2d.; Council meeting, Bristol, £1 5s.; stationery and printing £14 12s. 1d.; postage £6 1s.; telephone and telegrams £1 0s. 5d.; typewriter written off £3; bookcase written off £3; cheque book and bank charges 8s. 10d.; insurances £1 16s.; typing £1 1s.

The balance sheet of the General Fund showed cash at bank £176 2s. 9d.; with hon. librarian £53 0s. 5d.

The balance sheet of the Central Council gave its assets as follows:- Goodwill and blocks, “Ringing World,” £200; library £10; bookcases £12 15s.; typewriter £15; stock of publications £323 7s. 8d. debtors £726 2s. 7d.; investments, Defence Bonds, £1,600; cash at bank and in hand £1,638.

The profit and loss account of “The Ringing World” gave the following items of expenditure:-

To Woodbridge Press, printing £3,297 11s. 3d.; blocks £3 10s.; total £3,301 1s. 3d.

Editorial Office expenses £439 7s. 5d.; postal subscribers £861 14s. 1d.; accounts department £166 4s. 10d.; miscellaneous expenses £9 15s. 4d.; audit fee £21; income tax on interest receivable £11 11s. 7d.; making a total of £4,810 14s. 6d.

Income was: Rolls Publishing Co. £2,312 11s. 8d.; postal subscribers £2,419 6s. 11d.; donations £217 4s. 5d.; advertisements £442 3s. 6d.; notices £416 2s. 11d.; sundry receipts £24 11s. 10d.; interest receivable on £800 3½ per cent. Defence Bonds £28 3s. 4d. The profit for the year was £1,049 10s. 1d.

The balance sheet of “The Ringing World” gave Goodwill, blocks, etc., at cost £200; debtors £725 1s. 7d.: investments at cost £1,600; cash at bankers £1,407 17s. 7d. and in hand £1 2s. 11d., making a total of £1,409 0s. 6d.; amount due from General Fund £86 15s.

Upon the president’s suggestion the accounts of “The Ringing World” were considered with the report of “The Ringing World” Committee.

The hon. secretary said the Standing Committee recommended that the accounts be adopted. The General Fund had been audited by Messrs. A. A. Hughes and F. W. Perrens. Members would have noticed that there was an excess of income over expenditure of £50. He hoped no one would feel that they were accumulating funds, as they would require a great deal of money for printing, such as the Council’s handbook, which would have to be undertaken this year. The publications account had made a profit of £18 in spite of the payment of £20 for advertisements in “The Ringing World.” He moved the adoption of the report.

Mr. A. A. Hughes seconded.


The president said he would like to mention two matters. They would see from the secretary’s report that they had a bequest from the late Clement Glenn. That money had been received from the solicitors and amounted to £815 15s. 5d. The money had been placed on deposit at 3½ per cent. and the Standing Committee had asked the officers of the Council to consider a good way of making use of that bequest. It was left to the Council to use as it thought best, There would be some sort of memorial stone to Clement Glenn and it was left to the secretary of the Council to contribute to the cost as he thought fit. Another thing that would come into the accounts next year was that the Standing Committee decided to send ten guineas to the Bow Restoration Fund.

The accounts were adopted.


The hon. secretary, in presenting the accounts of “The Ringing World”, said on the income side members would notice that in 1955 there was an increase of over £500 from postal subscribers and a smaller increase from the Rolls Publishing Company. These were due to the increased price of the paper which followed from January 1st, 1955. Similarly, notices showed an increase because there was a further addition to the minimum charge for notices. On the expenditure side printing costs were a little less due to the fact that in 1954 there were 53 issues. The increase in the number of postal subscribers led to an addition to the cost of dispatch of copies and wrapping. He moved that “The Ringing World ” accounts be adopted subject to audit.

Mr. F. I. Hairs seconded.

Mr. N. Chaddock: Do we pay income tax on the profit?

The Hon. Secretary: That was dealt with last year. We only pay on the investments of the Council and we are liable to any profit from sales of “The Ringing World” to non-members. I estimated that the sales to non-members was one per cent., and that figure was accepted by the Inland Revenue authorities, and, as that was so small, they raised no charge for the fiscal year 1954-55. We are definitely liable to income tax on investments.

Mr. Chaddock: Can you give me the circulation figure and the price of production per copy?

Mr. R. S. Anderson: The circulation figures for April 22nd, 1955, were: Rolls House 3,406; postal 2,144; sundries 22; total 5,572. The figures for April 27th, 1956, were: Rolls House 3,276; postal 2,078; sundries 17; total 5,371. This represented a drop of 200.

The accounts were then adopted.


The report, signed by Mr. J. F. Smallwood, stated:-

Your committee is able to report a more satisfactory year. The measures taken to secure greater financial stability would appear to be satisfactory, and although final figures are not available at the time of writing this report, the indications are that at long last the corner has been turned. There is, however, still much to be done and your committee is of the opinion that the first charges against any profits should be the adequate remuneration of those directly responsible for the production and distribution of the paper. After that has been done, steps will be taken to improve the paper wherever possible Already it has been found that a few illustrations can be included, and it is hoped to increase the number.

The committee is not too sanguine yet for there is the matter of increased costs to be faced, due to the impending increase in printers’ wages. Then there are increased postal charges, which, in the opinion of your committee, should be passed on to subscribers.

Ever since 1946, the charge in “The Ringing World” for small advertisements has been one penny per word. We have this matter under review and it may be found necessary to raise the figure to 4d.

Since our last report your committee his suffered a grievous loss by the death of Mr. H. J. Poole, whose able judgment and wise counsels are very sadly missed. We tender our heartfelt sympathy to his wife and family.

We desire to place on record our appreciation of the efforts of the Woodbridge Press and its staff, who through a most difficult period during the printing dispute contrived to produce the paper regularly and on time. This speaks volumes for the good relations which exist among directors, editor and employees. If the paper had been produced in London instead of in Guildford it would have had to cease publication until the end of the dispute.

Once again the committee places on record its grateful thanks to Mr. Tom White, the Editor, and his assistant; to Mr. Jeater for his supervision of the accounts; to all literary contributors and district representatives; to Major J. H. R. Freeborn for the gift of blocks; and finally to those who have sent donations towards the cost of producing the journal.


Mr. J. F. Smallwood, in moving the adoption of the report, said as they would see from the report of the committee and the statement of accounts they had made a little progress in regard to profit. But as against that profit they made last year he had some very bad news for the coming year, and already they were paying an increased cost of printing. So far as they could see, against any profit “The Ringing World” would thus cost something like £700 or £800 more. If anyone was feeling smug and comfortable he would dissuade them for they were exactly where they were a year ago.

It was obvious that new ways of revenue must be found and increase charges for various kinds of revenue to try and meet the extra cost. It had been suggested to them that the time was ripe for the reconsideration of the proposition made at Bournemouth when a peal levy was suggested. It remained whether the Council would see fit to consider that matter but the committee made no recommendation about it.

They had also heard that the circulation now was about 5,400 per week, and in his mind that was a disgrace to the Exercise, because they were all aware that the numbers who read the journal was considerably in excess of that number. Why these people did not take the paper was a mystery. “We appeal to all interested ringers to support the paper. It belongs to them and we hope that they will see that there is a very substantial increase in the circulation. As it is not our habit to ask for any subsidy to help ‘The Ringing World,’ we are determined to get this revenue and keep it solvent. We look for support from all who value the paper to help us.”

Mr. R. S. Anderson, in seconding, said the circulation of “The Ringing World” had dropped 200 copies per week and that was partly through newsagents and partly from postal subscribers. In appealing for new subscribers he said there was a bigger margin from postal subscribers than from newsagents.


Mr. P. A. Corby said he would like to pay tribute to the splendid work done on their behalf by “The Ringing World” Committee and congratulate them on the way they had kept the journal solvent. He commiserated with them that in spite of their efforts they were again in for a difficult time. On the question of postal subscribers he believed that arrangements were made that each of the Guilds and Associations should have special representatives whose duties would be to boost the postal sales and report items of news. It seemed to him that some of these people were slacking in their efforts.

Another point he would like to make was that it was rather disappointing to see so little reference to the great amount of new building work to the churches in and around the City of London. In recent years there had been several new rings of bells hung in London. Presumably they had been dedicated, but no news had appeared in their journal. He would welcome the opportunity of reading about these churches and their bells. One was St. Giles’, Cripplegate, where there was a new ring. He was wondering if a correspondent could be found in the London area who would supply the news about these bells and the dedication services.

Mr. N. Chaddock also thanked the committee and Editor for their work. He pointed out that there was a fall in voluntary donations since the price had been increased and felt that something must be done about it. There was an attitude that they were all right now and people need not send donations. Another was the falling off of about 130 postal subscribers and that was a big disappointment. Some people did not like “The Ringing World” because they understood it was a peal-ringer’s paper. If they had articles to appeal to young ringers they might increase the circulation. His experience was that quite a proportion of capable ringers did not like “The Ringing World.”

Mr. A. D. Barker said some months ago figures were given of new subscribers in counties. Perhaps the figures in reverse could be given.

Mr. F. I. Hairs, in a reference to voluntary donations, said they had worked it out that if they made a charge for quarter peals they would not get a great deal of extra money. It was estimated that last year 17,342 names appeared in the peal columns, and voluntary donations from peal ringers did not represent 12 per cent. of that number.

Miss M. Lidgey (Truro Diocesan Guild) moved that the proposition submitted at Bournemouth of one shilling for the publication of peals be adopted for one year.


Mr. P. Johnson said they were in a whirlpool in the world where the continuous change of prices made it impossible for anyone to prophesy. If any of them had experience of the printing trade they would know that it was impossible for them to try to square the circle. He did not believe they could do anything but wait the course of events. As to why people did not want to read the paper the answer was obvious because they would have to pay for it. They had to face the position - if the publication was to cost more they would have to pay more. He had the deepest sympathy with the committee in their work. He thought they should be honest and go to the support of the paper - pay for it and work for it.

Mr. N. Chaddock maintained that “The Ringing World” was a good sixpennyworth. He did not think that peal ringers would be so mean as not to do their full share. They had had mention of one shilling a peal; he would like to see threepence per rope. Even if a charge was made he did not see why voluntary subscriptions should cease. Those who could afford the odd shilling would do so.

Mr. C. K. Lewis said at Bournemouth when it was suggested that people who rang peals should make a donation the statement was made: “You don’t pay people for news.” If they were going to charge for peals they were making a charge for news. It was not often that he agreed with Mr. Johnson but he agreed that the only answer was that they must put up their subscription. Associations had to face the fact of increased prices and had increased their subscription. He appealed to any members who had suggestions to make to send them to Mr. Smallwood or other members of the committee.

The Rev. K. W. H. Felstead: I would deprecate a charge for peals. Think what a calamity it would be if peals were rung and not published. Various records could not be kept.

The Rev. R. D. St. J. Smith said peal ringers were people particularly interested in “The Ringing World.” If they wanted anything they must pay for it. It meant that peal ringers should pay more for their “Ringing World.”


Mr. John Fidler: Let us get down to brass tacks. Bell ringers get the use of valuable instruments for nought. They will spend bus fares to go for a peal. What is another 3d. to that? If a peal it worth ringing it is worth publishing. The other 3d. on your travelling expenses is nothing. But if you go to a ringing meeting and there is a charge of 2s. 6d. for a tea then only half turn up. There are a lot of peal ringers who don’t buy “The Ringing World,” but they are always pleased to look at someone else’s. I am not going to agree it is news. It is only news to the small crowd; it is personal glorification.

Mr. J. Crampion: “The Ringing World” is a good thing. Let us tell all that it is a good paper and what a good thing it is.

Mr. H. Miles: The proposition I made at Bournemouth of a publication fee for peals and quarter peals is now being recommended by “The Ringing World” Committee. (“No.”)

Mr. N. Chaddock asked if the increased charges for notices and advertisements would solve the problem.


Mr. J. F. Smallwood: “The Ringing World” Committee do not say that putting up the cost of advertising will solve the whole problem. Our difficulty is to find the way to meet the extra cost. The Council will agree that the charges for small advertisements are very modest and we feel that it would not be inflicting an undue hardship on the Associations if we ask them to pay a little more, and that we shall, but it will not solve the problem. I hear it suggested that “The Ringing World” is the peal-ringer’s paper. I assert that “The Ringing World” is published for all and sundry interested in ringing. I don’t regard peals as of greater or lesser importance. I would stress with all the force I can that the solution lies in an increased circulation. It is not outside the bounds of possibility for “The Ringing World” to be 10,000 a week, and the fact that it is 5,400 is a disgrace to the Exercise. We are not receiving the support from the members of this Council or the Exercise generally.

Mr. R. G. Blackman: I wonder how many in this room can say they have persuaded one person during the last two years to buy “The Ringing World.” We should resolve as we leave this meeting we shall persuade one ringer to buy “The Ringing World.” Unless we do something ourselves it will not continue.

Mr. Harry Sanger: Very little has been said about voluntary subscriptions. I am rather proud of the fact that if I see a peal or a quarter peal in “The Ringing World” from the West Country I invariably see a small sum in the “Gratefully Acknowledged” column. This problem would be solved if every time a peal was rung there was a small contribution.

Mr. J. W. Raithby: I am not a defeatist in any way. I feel you are going to have a great difficulty in persuading another 5,000 people to take “The Ringing World.” Those who take the journal are those who keep ringing going; the other people are on the fringe. It is very difficult to persuade people to take “The Ringing World.” Not that it is not a good journal. I know a president of a Guild who will not be bothered to take it through the post, but buys it through the newsagent. If you get people like presidents doing that you cannot expect smaller fry.


Mr. Bernard Ashford: One of the principal difficulties is the idea of tower copies, and I have not been able to break it down. I can assure you that in my district of 37 towers quite a lot have only one copy per tower. It is surprising how well-informed they are but they don’t pay for it. In several cases “The Ringing World” comes out of the tower funds - from the 1d. or 2d. fines for being late. I have tried hard to break this down but have not yet found the answer.

Mr. N. Chaddock thought if conductors of peals made it a habit of collecting a contribution for peals rung nobody would begrudge it. It was just the idea that had got to be got used to. He would like to move as an amendment that a charge of 3d. per rope be made for publication of peals.

The President: I think we have had a very good discussion on the report. I put it to the meeting that the report of “The Ringing World” Committee be adopted.

This was agreed to.

The president said in regard to the motion of Miss Lidgey that a charge of one shilling per peal be made for publication, he did not think they should tie down “The Ringing World” Committee on that matter. He did not think they had a right to make the charge. He would ask Miss Lidgey to accept a motion in this form: “That ‘The Ringing World’ Committee be asked to consider once more the question of charging for peals.” He did not think that they ought to tie down the committee.

Mr. N. Chaddock: I agree entirely with that.

Mr. F. I. Hairs: Taking last year’s figures, a charge of 3d. a rope for quarter peals would bring in £120. If we charge 6d. per rope for peals it would produce £433 11s.

Mr. Walter Ayre: How much would be saved if the Peal Analysis Committee tables were not published?

Mr. Hairs: We should save about £11, The motion that “The Ringing World” Committee consider making a charge for peals was put to the meeting and lost.


Mr. A. A. Hughes reported that during the past 12 months some repairs and adjustments had been made. The machine continued to run very well. Stedman Cinques and Cambridge Maximus had been rung, the latter for the first time. It was proposed to hold demonstrations on Saturday afternoons, and announcements would be made.

Mr. A. A. Walker, seconding, said they owed a deep debt of gratitude to Mr. Douglas Hughes, who looked after the machine. The fact was that it had rung Cambridge Maximus, showing the work of the 11th and the treble. It took 26 minutes to demonstrate, The machine was in very good hands.

The president said that a diagram was available showing the work of the 11th and treble in red and blue lines, and would be passed round the room for the members’ inspection;

The report was adopted.

The Ringing World, June 1, 1956, pages 345 to 348



THE report, which was signed by Mr. E. A. Barnett and Mr. C. K. Lewis, stated:-

We regret that circumstances have prevented us from putting in hand the printing of the Handbook as yet. The final manuscript will, it is hoped, be presented to the Standing Committee at its forthcoming meeting.

The secretary moved the adoption of the report and said they proposed to obtain an estimate within a week or two. The committee regretted the delay. The idea was first mooted in 1950, and the present sub-committee had only been dealing with it for two years.

The report by seconded by Mr. Lewis and adopted.


The year 1955 saw a marked increase in demand for the Council’s publications. The total sales amounted to £107, an increase of over 30 per cent. on the previous year. This was largely due to the publication of a new edition of “Preservation and Repair of Bells, etc.” and the issue of the new book on “Doubles Methods.” I am glad to report a profit of £18 15s. on the year’s working.

This year’s “best seller” has been “Hints to Beginners” - 246 copies, with “Preservation, etc., of Bells” a close second with 243 copies sold. In the last two months of the year 234 copies of the new “Doubles Methods” book were sold. “Village Bells,” which topped the sales lists so many times, has this year made fourth’s place.

Among many inquiries I am constantly asked for (1) a new edition of “Minor Methods,” (2) a new edition of “Triples Methods” and (3) an illustrated book on how to learn to ring a bell, and acquire an elementary knowledge of the rudiments of change ringing. It would greatly benefit the Exercise if these could be published at the earliest possible moment.

The borrowing of works of reference has again increased and, in this connection, it greatly help me if borrowers of Library books who have had these for more than 12 months would write me a note confirming that the books are still required.

During the year the Library has received many valuable gifts. From our president, Mr. E. H. Lewis, we received the magnificent donation of 58 foreign books on bells, and also of two English ones; these have been catalogued, and a list printed in “The Ringing World.” From Mrs. J. Padmore we received 21 books, formerly the property of her grandfather, the late Thomas North, who wrote extensively on bells in the 19th century; a list of these has been published in “The Ringing World.”

In addition to the above-mentioned we have received, and acknowledge with grateful thanks, the gifts of the following works:- From Mr. E. H. Lewis- (1) “Experiments with spring bell frames,” MS.; (2) “Report of experiments carried out at All Saints’, Loughborough,” MS., and two extremely rare and valuable foreign books; (3) “Magius de Tintinnabulis,” 1689; and (4) “ Biringuccio Pirotechnia,” 1559.

We received a copy of “The History and Rules of the London County Association and North Southwark Diocesan Guild”; “Carillon Bibliographies,” from the author, Mr. J. R. Lawson; “The History of Ringing in Hertfordshire,” from the author, Mr. H. V. Frost; “Peal Tablets at Eye,” MS., from Mr. C. Rush; from Miss Jenkyn, the note book of the late Rev. C. W. O. Jenkyn; “Bob Minor and Bob Major,” “Cambridge Minor and Major” and “Grandsire Doubles and Triples,” by I. H. Rowe and M. Broome, from the authors; “The Irish Bell News,” from Mr. F. E. Dukes; and from Mr. B. Glen copies of “The Clavis Campanologia” and “Shipway’s Campanologia.”

The report concluded with appreciation of the services of Mrs. J. Steeples (née Patricia J. Ayris) in connection with the sales section of the Library and to the Rev. E. S. Tarrant for housing the library in Launton Rectory.

Mr. F. Sharpe, in moving the adoption of the report, said they had received requests for all sorts of publications. During the year they had received a considerable number of gifts and they tendered their best thanks to the president for his magnificent gift of foreign books, a list of which had been published in “The Ringing World.”

Mr. Leslie Morris seconded the adoption of the report.

The president said he was very fortunate some years ago in being able through Mr. H. B. Walters, to get the library of Mr. Morris, a clergyman in South Wales, who had been collecting books on bells. He felt that as he was getting rather old it would be well to start getting rid of certain things to the destination he wished them to go.

The report was adopted.


The report of the committee, signed by Mr. F. W. Perrens, stated that the Committee’s terms of reference were:-

(a) To consider nominations for the position of president and to make a recommendation;

(b) To consider and submit to the Council suitable designs for a badge of office for the president;

(c) To consider the appointment of a vice-president of the Council;

(d) To alter any rules that are necessary.

Briefly, the results of the deliberations of the committee on these matters are:-

(a) The committee recommends the nomination of Mr. Frederick Sharpe for the position of president;

(b) Although it is the committee’s opinion that a badge of office for the president is not really necessary, designs for a badge have been considered and two are presented for inspection;

(c) The committee considers that it would be a distinct advantage to have a vice-president of the Council and recommends the nomination of the Rev. A. G. G. Thurlow for the position.

(d) Alteration of Rules- see note (b) by secretary.

In addition, the committee recommends that normally the president and vice-president should hold office for six years, but the members of the committee are most strongly against any rule to this effect.

Note by the Secretary: (a) The other members of the committee are:- Standing Committee: R. S. Anderson, A. A. Hughes; Council: P. A. Corby, J. A. Freeman, T. J. Lock.

(b) Alteration of Rules.- If it is agreed that there should be a vice-president, consideration will be given to the amendment of the following rules:-

(i) Rule 6- Life Members.

(ii) Rule 9- Election of officers.

(iii) Rule 12- Vesting of property.

(iv) Rule 14- Procedure at meetings.

In addition, if the proposed clause (ii) is added to Rule 11 at the forthcoming meeting (see Item 9 on the agenda), this will need further amendment.

Mr. F. W. Perrens, in moving the adoption of the report, asked that the items should be taken separately. On (b) it was for the Council to decide whether they considered a badge of office was necessary. The committee did not think that it was necessary and the Standing Committee also approved of that decision. There was no reason to consider a design if the Council considered that a badge of office was unnecessary.

The hon. secretary said the Standing Committee endorsed the view that it would be an advantage to have a vice-president and recommended the nomination of the Rev. A. G. G. Thurlow for that office.

Mr. R. S. Anderson seconded the adoption of the report.

The Council agreed to the nomination of Mr. Frederick Sharpe as president, of the appointment of a vice-president and the nomination of the Rev. A. G. G. Thurlow for that office. It regarded a badge of office as unnecessary.

In regard to the period of office, Mr. G. W. Fletcher, in answer to the Rev. St. John Smith, pointed out that the president retired every three years. Mr. A. A. Hughes explained that after a period of six years the president was still open for re-election.

The report was then adopted.

In consequence of this decision the hon. secretary gave notice of motion to amend the Rules of the Council accordingly. This was agreed to.


The report of the committee, signed by Mr. H. J. Sanger, stated:-

In this second year of office your committee have to a great extent consolidated their efforts of last year. You will remember that we set out to gain a good system of contact with the B.B.C. and to encourage this body to consult us whenever possible on matters relative to our art. We are pleased to report that, particularly as far as the Publicity Department is concerned, we have achieved this object. The Editor of our journal reports that this department now communicate with him regularly, and have on several occasions consulted him, chiefly in connection with handbell ringing. We feel that this official recognition of our journal by the publicity department is a major achievement. Again we find that the B.B.C. regularly makes an item in its programme concerning Sunday services, of the bells, and includes the name of the captain of the ringers. Descriptive matter, too, is now much more correct; a point which is most important where the general public are concerned, and all of which adds up to the fact that the B.B.C. are taking much greater care than formerly in the presentation of bells and ringing.

During the year many rings of bells have been on the air prior to divine service, and much of the ringing has been quite pleasant for listeners. Some, however, has not been so good and here we would emphasise the point we made last year, i.e., “good rounds are much to be preferred to bad change ringing.” Listeners in general, too, are in the main quite oblivious to any particular changes. If asked, they will either say the bells sounded well or were an awful clatter. May we, therefore, stress the need of making your bells sound their very best when on the air.

Television has featured bells and ringing on a number of occasions. The casting of Gressenhall bells was filmed and televised, the dedication service broadcast and at the opening service later on the ringers and bells were filmed whilst ringing, which film was later televised. The new ring of ten for St. Clement Danes’, Strand, was also shown on television and interviews have been recorded.

The Christmas broadcast was quite good and well presented. In a letter we expressed our appreciation of it to the B.B.C.

An idea in connection with the television “Interval,” which was sent in last year by a member of the Salisbury Guild, and which has been the subject of some correspondence with the B.B.C., has not to date borne much fruit, but the matter is still in hand.

Handbells featured in a number of programmes around the Christmas season in carol services, and the performances were extremely good.

In concluding this report we would mention the old complaint of too little time given to bells prior to divine service. In this respect we have as yet gained no further concession of time; it is, in fact, a very difficult problem. There is, however, one way in which all ringers concerned can help - that is by being most accurate in their timing collaboration with the engineers. It is so easy to lose valuable seconds on the air by bad timing. It should also be borne in mind that incumbents’ wishes are respected by the B.B.C., and if tower captains would always see to it that their incumbents are well acquainted with our views on the subject, namely, the desirability of a reasonable period of uninterrupted ringing, much good would probably be done.

Mr. H. J. Sanger moved, and Mr. J. T. Dunwoody seconded, the adoption of the report.

In reply to a question by Mr. E. C. S. Turner, Mr. Sanger said a suggestion had been made that a film be made of handbells ringing for television interval and only the hands and bells be shown. The suggestion was being gone into.


The report stated: The committee has now the compositions which are to be published in the new “Stedman” book, and while regarding this collection as much more comprehensive than the previous one, still considers that there might be a separate collection of peals of Stedman Caters and Cinques, as there are so many compositions which should be made available to conductors. Some preliminary work has been done on this collection and the time has come to invite those having interesting compositions in their possession to send them to one of the committee. The book would be about the same size as the “Collection of Compositions in the Popular Major Methods,” and it is hoped to include every type of composition.

Mr. C. W. Woolley, in moving the adoption of the report, said to do all this work and turn down publication would be very hard. He would like to know if the Council would publish the work.

The Secretary: The Standing Committee recommended that the collection of Stedman Caters and Cinques be published.

Mr. E. W. Critchley seconded.

Mr. P. A. Corby: Has any question of cost been considered? Personally I think it would be extremely valuable.

The President: It would be about the same size as the book on Major compositions.

The report was adopted and on the proposition of Mr. P. A. Corby, seconded by Mr. B. G. Key. It was decided to print the collection of Stedman Caters and Cinques.


An examination of our record books reveals the names of 715 persons who, in 65 years of the Council’s existence, have been elected to membership. Of this total 320 are known or believed to be deceased. The latter figure is given with reserve because it is likely that some former members have retired and, removed from the scene of their former activity, have died without the news reaching the Council.

At the time of preparing this report about 120 of the biographies are included in our album which is exhibited, a further 100 are complete and are in varying stages of final editing by Mr. Viggers and writing by Mr. Willis. Of the remainder, 20 await only a photograph and a few must be included in our “unknown” class.

With reference to this unknown class, we have a list containing 40 names of those who became members but who never attended a meeting of the Council. The committee recommends that these names be entered in the album in list form only, with an appropriate note of explanation attached.

In the months preceding our meeting to-day, the birthdays of some past, and of one present, members have been passed. A list of nine names is appended, all of whom are over 90 years of age:- H. W. Brown, November 1st, 1862; J. Ashmole, February 6th, 1863; S. J. Hughes, August 19th, 1864; F. G. May, January 4th, 1875; J. A. Smith, December 17th, 1863; C. Willshire, January 8th, 1866; H. W. Tompkins, April 4th, 1862; E. A. Young, May 22nd, 1865; James Parker, March 17th, 1866.

We feel sure that the Council will wish to extend its greetings to these veterans. The Biographies Committee has had indirect correspondence with Mr. F. G. May, per Mr. Sheppard, of Cape Town, and with Mr. C. Willshire (now living in Montreal) per Mr. A. H. Pulling.

Your Biographies Committee again wishes to offer thanks to the many correspondents without whose help its task would indeed be an almost impossible one. We are particularly grateful to Mr. A. D. Barker, who obtained the loan of photographs of the two Groombridges (senior and junior); to Mr. F. E. Dukes, of the Irish Association, through whose good offices a very worthy photograph of the late Mr. G. Lindoff was obtained; to Mr. F. W. Lack and Mr. Ridgman, of Ely Diocesan Association, who obtained for us a loan of a fine photograph of the late Rev. W. W. C. Covey-Crump; and to Mr. Irvin Slack for his assistance in collecting data regarding North Country members.

Members will have noted throughout this report the emphasis on photographs, which are regarded as an essential part of our records. They are also the most difficult to collect. We therefore append to this paragraph a specimen batch of six from the many which we need. All are names of outstanding past members of the Council, and we would be grateful for help in obtaining their photographs:- John Basden, Middlesex County Association (died 1911); C. W. P. Clifton, Lincoln Diocesan Guild (1926); R. A. Daniell, Royal Cumberland Youths (1935); R. G. Knowles, Worcestershire and Districts Association (1942); T. Lockwood, Honorary (1911); T. Walmsley, Chester Diocesan Guild (1933).

Mr. A. C. Hazelden, in moving the adoption of the report, said that two of those of 90 and over had died - Mr. J. Ashmole and Mr. S. J. Hughes.

Mr. W. H. Viggers seconded, and mentioned that the record book was on view.

Mr. W. Rogers, in congratulating the committee on making an excellent job, said that in the record of Mr. John Carter there was no reference to composition.

The president wished Mr. A. C. Hazelden a happy 80th birthday on the following Thursday


The report stated: The Committee again regret a falling off in peals, both on tower- and handbells during the year 1955.

There was a grand total of 2,237, with 2,126 on tower bells and 111 on handbells. The analysis shows as follows:-


Once again the Leicester Diocesan Guild appears at the head of the list, with the Lincoln Guild next, followed by the Oxford Guild. The first six places are:-

Oxford Diocesan116-116

Certain Guilds and Associations have fallen this year and must look to their laurels. No peals were recorded by the Cumberland and North Westmorland Association, National Police Guild or the Scottish Association. Two peals not completed till 1956 (the early hours thereof) are not included in this analysis. A moot point, maybe, but a peal is never rung until it is completed, as many of us know.

There were two outstanding performances on tower bells

(a) A peal in 53 Surprise Major methods by the Yorkshire Association;

(b) A peal in 72 Doubles methods by the Middlesex Diocesan Guild.

On handbells the Minor record “went by the board” with the Yorkshire Association raising the number to 109 after “practice peals” in 72 and 57 methods, surpassing the one, also rung in 1955, of 106 methods by the Lincoln Guild.

With the alteration of rules last year, one might have expected a spate of “unorthodox” peals, but with the exception of a few additional Bob Triples, plus Grandsire Royal and Major, with the inclusion of Grandsire Minor in a peal, the temptation appears to have been resisted.

The committee trust that the decline in the number of peals rung does not mean a corresponding reduction in Sunday service ringing, as that is our essential duty.

The report was adopted on the proposition of Mr. W. Ayre, seconded by the Rev. K. W. H. Felstead.



The year 1955 was marked by no great national celebration or prodigious ringing enterprise such as brought bells and ringers so vividly before the public in 1954. In one or two centres of activity the Press recorded some reaction against what was called excessive ringing. Your committee would commend such manifestations to the consideration of all ringers, and would venture to suggest that these monitory rumblings, although not the prelude to any great storm, should by no means be ignored.

In general, the appeal of the bells remains strong and the articles and news items that have appeared show that public interest is fully maintained. “The Sunday Times” of August 7th, and “The Western Gazette” of October 28th gave us well-written articles on bell customs and their appeal to the people of this country, and in May “The Yorkshire Evening Post” described a visit to the belfry at Armley. The South African National Magazine, “Outspan,” for July 29th, provided a well-illustrated and lively account of the activities at St. Mary’s, Woodstock, Cape Town, and the accompanying photographs were very striking.

From the East there came in September the story of the installation of a ring of five bells in the little Church of St. Martha, near the 38th Parallel in Korea - work that has been carried out under the supervision of Sapper Peter Minchin, of Swindon. An autumn number of “The Illustrated Carpenter and Builder” published photographs of the church and of the bells being hung in their frame.

A moving reminder of the bonds uniting our Commonwealth comes from the leading article in the “Cornish Evening Tidings” of August 17th, where the suggestion is made that the sons of the West Country, now scattered over the world should provide a memorial ring of bells for St. Michael’s, Plymouth.

Articles in three trade journals came to the notice of the committee. In the “Brush Group Publication” Mr. J. W. Gibson gave a light-hearted account of a ringer’s troubles, while, in contrast, the (Irish) “Chamber of Commerce Journal” in a lengthy and detailed article on bell founding provided an interesting reminder of the Fountain Head Bell Foundry of Matthew O’Byrne, Dublin. A second article on the founding of bells appeared in “Jenolite News,” and this excellent thesis may, for its authority, clarity and general interest perhaps rank as the outstanding article of the year. This essay will be found reproduced in “The Ringing World” of August 5th.

Ringers featured in the Press during 1955 have been nicely divided between “ancient” and “modern.” No small amount of attention has been given to youth, and it will doubtless be noted with pleasure that this publicity has not been devoted to the exaltation of the youthful prodigy but to the much more desirable revelation of team work and communal activity among the children and young people.

Considerable activity is reported from schools up and down the country, and there are indications of a growing number of handbell groups in primary and secondary schools. In August “The South Yorkshire and Rotherham Gazette” printed an excellent photograph of the Rotherham High School girls looking very businesslike at their ropes, and in the following month “The Surrey Times” gave us a pleasant picture of 70-year-old Mr. W. A. Goldstone surrounded by a group of his charming young pupils. In March “The Folkestone and Hythe Gazette” visited Cheriton and found young ringers playing a prominent part in the belfry of St. Martin’s Church.

In ringing circles youth is linked with age to a remarkable degree, and it is therefore pleasing to find that the Press has once again shown us some of the vigour and enterprise of the older brethren. In June “The Birmingham Gazette” portrayed Mr. Albert Walker assisting the Rector of Birmingham to ring the new bell at St. Martin’s Church, and in “The Birmingham Weekly Post” of September 2nd Vivien Bird wrote at some length on the churches and bells of Bredon, Worcestershire. The article was well illustrated and included pictures of Mr. and Mrs. John Thomas and Mr. Stedman Devereux. Towards the end of the year “The Kent Messenger” published a photograph of the 88-year-old Mr. E. Ruck, the only surviving founder member of the Kent County Association.

Two photographs of bell rehanging appeared in the Press in January. “The Surrey Times” pictured the bells in St. Nicholas’ Church, Cranleigh, together with members of the Charman family. An excellent picture in “The Birmingham Mail” provided an interesting demonstration of the man-handling of one of the bells in its approach to the tower of Handsworth Parish Church, Birmingham. A new treble for this ring of eight was the gift of Alderman A. Paddon Smith.

An encouraging manifestation of the vitality of the Exercise is provided by the periodicals and publications devoted specifically to the art of ringing. In addition to “The Ringing World” it is pleasing to note the continued publication of “The Belfry,” the quarterly magazine of the Maidstone District, that enterprising little monthly “The Ringing Towers,” which works so gallantly to link the scattered ringing centres of Australia, and the very comprehensive “Irish Bell News.” The year has witnessed also the publication of a new American magazine, “Overtones,” produced as the organ of The American Guild of English Handbell Ringers. The president of the Guild is Mrs. Arthur Shurcliff, daughter of the late Dr. Nicholls, and the magazine reveals that since she formed the Guild in 1937 the movement has grown into an extensive organisation for the teaching and practice of tune ringing in all its stages. The size of the Guild and the scope of its work are indeed astonishing.

Ringing books and pamphlets of the year present both the historical and practical approaches to the art. Mr. J. W. Clarke has published Part IV. of “Cheshire Bells,” and Mr. Ernest Morris’ monumental work “Towers and Bells of Britain” provides an exhaustive survey of its subject. It is encouraging to find Mr. Wilson’s “Notes for Beginners” reaching a fifth edition, while for the young conductor it may be pointed out that C. Chambers’ “Calling Grandsire Triples into Rounds” offers an unusual approach to an interesting technique. Two booklets of considerable interest have been produced by local effort and for local church funds. The first, Mr. H. V. Frost’s “Ringing in Hertfordshire,” should have received attention in the last report, and for the omission your committee tenders apologies. The booklet is attractively produced, with an excellent cover, and contains besides a careful survey of Hertfordshire ringing, much matter of general interest. The second little work “The Bells of St. Mary’s,” issued by the Beddington Band, is a most attractive booklet, which, in the care and selection of its material, may well serve as a model for any pamphlet designed for the general public.

During the year the Central Council has published its fifth edition of “The Preservation and Repair of Bells”; and the long-awaited and very welcome “Collection of Doubles Methods” appeared in November. Messrs. Viggers and Hodgson continue to produce the “Ringer’s Note Book and Diary,” and we are informed that the current issue is sold out.

This report cannot close without reference, to the volume of poems entitled “By Wandering Tempest,” the work of Mr. A. J. Lancefield, well known in Kentish ringing circles. The book contains a number of poems on bells and their nostalgic appeal, written in a distinctive style and with considerable power. Lovers of verse may find this collection a pleasant companion to the more technical books on their shelves.

The adoption of the report was moved by Mr. Edgar C. Shepherd, seconded by Mr. F. E. Dukes, and carried.

The Ringing World, June 8, 1956, pages 361 to 363



The Committee beg to report the following new methods rung during the year ended December 31st, 1955:

1.5184Macclesfield Sur. Maj. (Chester).
3.5056Nechells Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
6.5152Olton Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s)
13.5024Bedfordshire Sur. Maj. (Bedfordshire).
13.5088Witton Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
15.5056Yardley Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
20.5152Icknield Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
27.5024Calthorpe Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
29.5040St. Faith Little Bob Maj. (Norwich).
31.5056Hatfield Sur. Maj. (Yorkshire).
3.5152Deritend Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
7.5024Digbeth Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
19.5056Humberstone Del. Maj. (Leicester).
21.5152Portland Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
3.5056Sudbury Sur. Maj. (Middlesex).
5.5056Feering Sur. Maj. (Essex).
9.5152Bearwood Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
12.5280Perivale Alliance Bob Maj. (Lancashire).
14.5088Kingsbury Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
23.5056Aldridge Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
28.5056Umberslade Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
21.5152Greet Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
23.5056Evenlode Sur. Maj. (Oxford).
28.5152Jaffray Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
30.5024Hanslope Sur. Maj. (Peterborough).
5.5152Weatheroak Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
14.5040London Exercise Royal (Winchester & Portsmouth).
16.5120Ladywood Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
16.5024Queslett Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
23.5056Bournville Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
24.5088Spliced Sur. Maj. (53 methods) (Yorkshire).
14.5120Queensland Sur. Maj. (Middlesex).
18.5024Kenninghall Sur. Maj. (Middlesex).
18.5152Xanthus Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
3.5088Scothorne Sur. Maj. (Lincoln).
10.5376Caerleon Sur. Maj. (Llandaff & Monmouth).
11.5088Walesby Sur. Maj. (Lincoln).
17.5152Dunholme Sur. Maj. (Lincoln).
21.5152Woodstock Sur. Maj. (Leicester).
22.5024Walbrook Sur. Maj. (Middlesex).
8.5088Sleaford Sur. Maj. (Lincoln).
12.5088Arnesby Sur. Maj. (Leicester).
19.5056Bruntingthorpe Sur. Maj. (Leicester).
20.5040Bristol Alliance Maj. (Leicester).
2.5152Countesthorpe Sur. Maj. (Leicester).
5.5088Canterbury Imp. Bob Maj. (Oxford).
9.5184Donisthorpe Sur. Maj. (Leicester).
10.5056Catesby Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
15.5040Hawkhurst Bob Triples (Oxford).
16.5040Tunstead Little Imp. Bob Maj. (Norwich).
17.5152Valbourne Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
26.5024Heydour Sur. Maj. (Lincoln).
8.5152Jesmond Sur. Maj. (St. Martin’s).
17.5184Xavier Sur. Maj. (Middlesex).
31.5152Edmondthorpe Sur. Maj. (Leicester).


13.5040College Triples (Southwell).

In spite of repeated requests for compositions of new methods, one conductor only has sent these along to the Committee; for these we are very grateful, but there are still about 100 outstanding.

Mrs. E. K. Fletcher moved the adoption of the report and Mrs. L. K. Marshall seconded.

Mr. P. Johnson said the Yorkshire Association could produce any composition rung for the Association which the Committee desired.

Mr. W. F. Moreton: Is it not the duty of the conductor when any new method is rung to send it to the Records Committee?

The President: It should be sent to the Records Committee.

The report was adopted.


The report stated: We have little to report this year. After a longer delay than was expected, the book of Doubles Methods was published last autumn and appears to have been generally welcomed. We believe it is filling a long-felt need.

Work has proceeded on revising the Minor and Triple Methods books, but the progress has been slower than hoped for. We trust we shall be able to report that the work has been finished on both these books at the next session of the Council.

Moving the adoption of the report, the Rev. K. W. H. Felstead said they had now had a formal request from the Council to consider the revision of Triples and Minor methods, and if the Council asked them to expedite the matter it would be done.

In reply to questions, Mr. Felstead said they would include Spliced Minor, but they did not contemplate putting in irregular methods.

Mr. R. F. B. Speed said the number of irregular methods was not very large. If people did not know what they were called they would get in a mess. The same applied to Triples. There were quite a number of Triples methods that had never been published. Mr. Trollope put some in “The Ringing World” which he believed were quite well worth ringing. The Triples collection was very poor. These new methods could be put in a tabulated form, as he believed that place notation was now well understood.

Mr. C. K. Lewis said he had access to the late Rev. A. T. Beeson’s collection. There were practically as many irregular as there were regular methods. A lot of the methods had two names. As regards Triples and Mr. Speed’s suggestion, they were in the midst of producing by formula all the six lead Triples methods that had treble and triple changes. As most of them knew, his first love was Spliced Minor, and that would be included.

Mr. John Fidler said it was his privilege to try and sort out Mr. Beeson’s collection.

Mr. G. E. Feirn asked if the Minor Book contained the Alliance methods.


The report stated: The year has been somewhat uneventful since few additions have been made to the collection, which has now reached a total of 315. It is felt that there are still quite a number awaiting discovery, and the Committee makes no apology for renewing the request for co-operation from members of the Exercise. Only by such co-operation can the task be completed.

The Collection has been arranged in two volumes, the first covering the period ending 1799 and the second 1800 to 1825. Where possible, details of interest such as style of lettering and ornament and the general condition of the board have been noted in the record. The bindings are of the “spring clip” type so that pages can be added at any time and in the correct position chronologically without disturbance to existing leaves.

Title pages are in course of preparation and it is hoped that both volumes will be available for inspection at the Council meeting.

Mr. J. W. Clarke, in moving the adoption of the report, said they wanted to emphasise that they did not consider the work finished. If any boards were discovered, would particulars be sent to him. The volumes were in loose-leaf form so that additions could be made at any time.

Mr. Walter Ayre seconded and the report was adopted.


During the past year members of the Committee have dealt with 42 enquiries, chiefly concerning the rehanging of bells and the provision of new frames and gear. Inspections and reports were made regarding the restoration of bells in 29 towers; in ten instances advice was given by correspondence, and in the remaining three advice was sought on problems of sound control. The work of each member is appended.

Mr. J. W. Clarke has made inspections and given advice in three Cheshire towers; in two his advice was taken and bells are to be rehung, but in the third, much against his advice, the incumbent afterwards called in a “local craftsman” to carry out the “restoration” - the result is not known.

Mr. F. E. Collins inspected and advised on restoration work in seven towers. In two the work has now been completed and in the others his advice is being taken and restorations are pending. The seven towers are situated in Cambridgeshire, Essex, Hertfordshire and Sussex.

Mr. J. Freeman has been called in for advice in one Lincolnshire tower. Here it was desired to ascertain whether it was safe to ring the bells, and his recommendations were followed.

Mr. E. H. Lewis has inspected one tower to Hertfordshire and has given advice on the problems of reducing tower oscillation; he has also been consulted regarding the rehanging of a ring in Warwickshire.

Mr. W. Osborn has been consulted in 11 instances. In eight of these he made inspections and reports and in six cases faculties have been granted for restorations on the lines advised by him. In two other instances he has given advice by correspondence; and in the remaining tower he advised on problems of sound control. He reports great interest among Church Councils to put bells in ringing order, and maintain them in good condition. Nine towers dealt with by Mr. Osborn were in Somerset and one each in Dorset and Wiltshire. One involved the rehanging of a mediæval ring of three.

Mr. F. Sharpe dealt with 16 enquiries. They were situated in Bedfordshire, Berkshire, Cambridgeshire, Cumberland, Gloucestershire, Lancashire, Norfolk, Northamptonshire, Oxfordshire and Yorkshire. Inspections and reports were made in eight towers, and in each instance the work is either in hand or pending; in six cases, chiefly with Diocesan Advisory Committee secretaries, advice was given by correspondence, and in the remaining two advice was sought on sound control. He has given many lectures to Diocesan Authorities and Church Authorities, and he has had correspondence with the Principal of the Royal Academy of Music on the subject of bell tones and tuning. In one instance he advised against a proposal to weld a mediæval bell.

Mr. E. A. Young’s advice has been sought regarding the restoration of two rings in the City of London. He dealt with enquiries regarding these by correspondence, and the Convener has also had correspondence with him on matters concerning bell and tower restoration.

The new edition of the Council’s handbook on “Preservation and Repair of Bells, etc.” has proved to be one of the library’s “best sellers” during the year.

Mr. F. Sharpe, in moving the adoption of the report, said the report of the Committee was very condensed. If the reports were written out they would amount to many hundreds of sheets, and members of the Committee had done a great deal of work. They had had much to sort out between Parochial Councils and Diocesan Advisory Committees as to the manner in which bells should be rehung. Mr. Clarke had had a difficult case in which the advice he gave was not accepted. Instead of a bell-hanger a local craftsman was called in, but they did not know the result yet.

Mr. J. W. Clarke seconded.

The president said there was one case mentioned of a tower in Hertfordshire where the bells were hung in a wooden tower built up inside a Norman tower. He was able to convince the architect, although terrified at the time, that he could anchor the frame to the stone walls.

Mr. Clarke said he had given advice when it had been asked for, and it had not always been accepted. He went into a great many towers in the research work he was doing. “One of the worst troubles was birds getting into the tower, and the other was that incumbents thought that the bell room was a place where no one should go, and if it was suggested that money should be spent on the bell room hands were raised in horror.” There was a great deal of neglect of bell rooms, and one of the reasons was the statement that bells should receive attention once in ten years. He had done his best to get incumbents and churchwardens to give attention to bell rooms, but it was a hard job.

Mr. N. Chaddock asked if the bells were rung regularly in these towers.

Mr. Clarke: With most of them they are a stoney band.

The report was adopted.


The following amendment of Rule II, of which notice was given last year. was submitted to the Council.

(ii) The Standing Committee shall consist of

(a) Past and present holders of the office of president, hon. secretary and treasurer, and hon. librarian of the Council.

(b) Honorary auditors and conveners of committees, ex-officio.

(c) Twelve elected members (chosen by ballot if more than 12 names are proposed). The 12 retiring members to be the first names to be proposed.

The committee shall have power to co-opt not more than two other members of the Council.

(iii) At the annual meeting next after each Triennial Election members of any committee who have not been re-elected to the Council shall (when such a committee has a report to present) have the right to attend and vote on any matter arising exclusively out of that report.

The hon. secretary said at the standing committee it was agreed to amend (iii) to read “have the right to attend and speak on any matter arising exclusively out of that report.”

Mr. P. Corby moved as an amendment to clause (c) that “The 12 retiring members to be the first names to be proposed” be deleted. Mrs. Staniforth seconded and this was agreed to.

The other alteration to rules, including the recommendation of the standing committee, were agreed to.


Miss M. R. Cross moved: That the Central Council publication “Hints to Instructors and Beginners” be revised in the light of recent advances and experiments in teaching technique, and that such revision should contain not only sections intended primarily for instructors on the teaching of handling a bell, instruction in ringing rounds and method ringing in its early stages, but also a section on these matters which can easily be understood by beginners.

Miss Cross said last year they sold 246 copies of “Hints to Instructors,” and there were at present 287 copies in stock. If they did not do anything about reprinting they would have no books in 1958. There had been experiments in new teaching technique in various parts of the country, and further, the book should be enlarged to include rounds and early stages of change ringing. The book was not suitable for beginners: she thought that a book for beginners should be written.

Mr. R. F. B. Speed seconded the motion.

Mr. C. H. Kippin: After what happened in Leicester Cathedral belfry a night or two ago can we know what is a beginner? [Laughter.]

Mr. F. Sharpe said he was constantly being asked for a book for beginners. The book they had was primarily for instructors. Twice young people had sent the book back, saying: “We don’t think it is suitable for beginners.” He thought the book should contain a section for beginners, giving them a definition of the rudiments of change ringing and the technical terms used.

Mr. Wilfrid Wilson said he lost on every copy of his book. If such a section was included he would be pleased to stop producing his. He was sure there was a market. In two or three years he had sold between 2,000 and 3,000.

Mr. Walter Ayre: Do we want a book for instructors or beginners? As we go round we all see faults in handling. He suggested that a film strip be made on the handling of a bell.

Mr. Clarke: I think it is an excellent suggestion. The only snag is getting a projector to show the film. I know schools have them. Whether we can get the loan of a projector I do not know. I feel that a film strip is the real answer.

The president said there were photographs but they were static, taken by Mr. Jenkyn. The photographs were of old Mr. Hibbert. The book arose from a matter he brought up, and Mr. Jenkyn, Mr. Dyke and Mr. Hibbert were responsible for its production.

Mr. John Fidler: As one gets about the country one feels that it is the instructors who want instructing because there were very few who could impart their knowledge.

Mr. N. Chaddock said he agreed entirely with the motion and suggested that ideas for beginners be invited to be published in “The Ringing World.” He thought the film strip was a good idea. As to projectors, the more they got in touch with education authorities the better. Many of their instructors today were in the teaching profession.

Mr. W. F. Moreton said they wanted a book to teach instructors how to teach, and secondly a book to teach beginners. He did not agree with the advantages of a film strip. These pictures could be put in a book. He thought a proper film would be very useful. He did not think a projector would be so difficult to obtain as some people imagined.

The Rev. K. W. H. Felstead suggested that Miss Cross and Mr. Speed should work out something on the lines suggested by the motion.

Mr. C. K. Lewis supported Mr. Felstead’s suggestion and said he would like to recommend to beginners “Village Bells.”

The hon. secretary said the standing committee supported the resolution and suggested that Miss Cross and Mr. Speed be asked to draw up what they consider to be required.

Mr. F. E. Perrens suggested that Mr. Wilson be added to this sub-committee.

The Council unanimously agreed that Mr. W. Wilson, Miss Cross, Mr. Speed and Mr. Dyke be appointed a committee to produce a book on the lines suggested, including hints for beginners.

The Ringing World, June 15, 1956, pages 377 to 378



The next motion debated was

1. That no peal of Doubles or Minor shall be recognised in which, for any reason, the bells strike in rounds other than

(i) at the beginning and end of the peal;

(ii) at the beginning of each extent;

(iii) when round-blocks of two or more extents are used, at the appropriate places in the round-blocks.

2. That no peal on higher numbers of bells shall be recognised in which for any reason the bells strike in rounds other than at the beginning and end of the peal.

Proposing the motion, Mr. E. A. Barnett said there were two reasons why he put it on the agenda. One was that they had not a lot to discuss that day, and secondly that 15 or 16 months ago somebody in the Ely district rang a peal in which, one gathered, rounds came up in the middle, and the conductor quite rightly said that the Central Council had never made provision when such an event occurred. This was not a matter of life or death, or a matter in which he would lose any sleep.

He was a little surprised to find three letters in “The Ringing World” deploring the fact that they proposed to reject peals in which rounds came up in the middle. He could recall three times in which rounds occurred when he had been ringing and on each occasion they stopped immediately. He really believed that most of the Exercise would stop if rounds came up.

He noticed that two of the letters were concerned with peals in which rounds came up in the middle, and he could not help feeling that the writers had a vested interest in the matter. A further point was that two of the people came from East Anglia. He wondered if there was a different standard of peal ringing morality in East Anglia.

Mr. C. K. Lewis, seconding, said when he started to ring it was stressed on him that rounds had a special significance, and if rounds came up that was the end. He persisted in this belief for five or six years and then he read the book of Decisions. He read there that a peal should begin and end with rounds, and later that one could have a trip and if it was corrected immediately it was all right.

Mr. Peter Border said as most members knew he knew a good deal about ringing in East Anglia, and he could assure the Council that ringing in East Anglia was no worse than in any other part of the country, and it was better than in some.

The matter referred to was a peal at Iggleton and the information submitted to “The Ringing World” was third-hand at the very least. He wanted to make it clear that rounds did not occur at any place. When the trip occurred there was a mix-up, but it was not rounds. The bells 3 4 5 came down in a heap. He told the ringer what to do. The next change he was nearly right and the following one he was right. “I had no doubt about the validity of the peal at the time.”

As to rounds in the middle of a peal, he thought they should know what was meant by rounds - l, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. If they came into rounds as the result of a trip they would come down in a haphazard fashion and not in perfect rounds.

The Rev. R. D. St. J. Smith moved the rejection of the motion and the closure of the debate. It was childish in the extreme. If they got 1 2 3 4 at back stroke and 5 6 7 8 at hand stroke, would that be rounds?

Mr. P. Johnson, supporting the rejection, said if the Council were to tie themselves down to the motion they would bring themselves into the derision of the whole of the Exercise.

Mr. J. H. Crampion: I deplore that such a thing should be brought up before the Council.

Mr. John Freeman said as ringers they should be practical. He had rung in a peal in which rounds occurred. There was a mistake and it was recorded as a peal. It happened to have been rung in the south of England. It had been suggested that if the bells were fired and the conductor shouted “Keep them going,” and the position was righted, it should be called a peal. He did not think they should pass that out of hand. He suggested that they move on to the next item on the agenda.

The Council decided to pass on to the next item, the chairman remarking that he felt that the discussion had been of some value.


A motion was submitted by Mr. J. Segar: “That this Council disapproves of the twin bob mark ‘X’ being used to indicate one bob only in compositions printed in ‘The Ringing World’”

Mr. Segar said when he was young nobody thought of twin hubs except in Stedman. The more recent use of twin bobs was in the Major methods, especially London. Calls could be made in London at Middle, In, Fifths, Wrong and Home, and is was under In and Fifths that they found the twin bob. The legitimate use was under 5th and 4ths.

“I would like to introduce a few young students of more advanced methods who will be the peal secretaries of the future, and I am pleased to say that some of them write to me. If I am asked what is a twin bob, I ought to give a straightforward answer. If the student friend approaches with ‘The Ringing World’ in his pocket, I would say: ‘Let me look at the figures, then I will tell you what the cross indicates.’

“The amount of notice Mr. Barnett told me would be required for this motion took me back to a composition of the Double Norwich type. It is a transposition of the Double Norwich type. In this there is 1, 4, 5 and 6, and no one is taught to distinguish the difference. A ‘X’ at 5 shortens the course. We have got two bobs at 5, as distinguished by the even bob mark. The double bob mark appears to be used for one bob only.

“It would be unfortunate for any young student if he turns to another page - a peal in a second place method - where the X occurs in the befores. In this composition the figure 3 is sufficient for three befores and 2 for two befores. The student was definitely confused when he saw a twin bob meaning one bob.”

Mr. P. A. Corby seconded the motion.

Mr. Peter Border: Does Mr. Segar deplore the use of twin bobs in various treble bob methods?

Mr. P. Johnson said the X which Mr. Segar referred to was much older than the speaker. In “Clavis” the X was in all the bobs before, and the idea of the X indicating two bobs was in the minds of people who were specialising in Stedman Triples. “I can see little or no use for it. A straight dash means one bob, and if you get people who don’t know that and put an X in blind ignorance, their ignorance is not our fault. There is no doubt the X comes from Stedman Triples.”

Mr. C. H. Woolley: If this X causes any contention then I would be all for abolishing it. I don’t know. In my profession X can mean anything you like.

The motion was lost.


The hon. secretary said an invitation had been received from the Oxford Diocesan Guild to visit Oxford in 1957, and an invitation had also been received to visit Essex.

Mr. P. A. Corby asked if it was intended to revert to the pre-war arrangement, to visit London every third year.

The president replied that each three years the standing committee considered very carefully whether it would be possible to go back to London. In their opinion the time had not arrived when they could find suitable accommodation.

Mr. A. A. Hughes said he would have no difficulty about getting a hall - the difficulty was in getting accommodation for headquarters like they had in Leicester and other provincial towns.

After discussion the Council decided to go to Essex for their 1957 meeting.


At the close of the meeting Mr. H. W. Rogers said he felt that the discussion on “The Ringing World” was left in a very untidy state. They must make it very clear to ringers throughout the country that the circulation must be increased. He begged to move:

Following the report of “The Ringing World” Committee, to the effect that under present circumstances and circulation a deficit is likely to be encountered in 1957, the Council urges:

(1) That all ringers, and particularly Association officers and peal ringers, endeavour to increase circulation by encouraging many more ringers to purchase regularly copies of “The Ringing World.”

(2) That all peal ringers should be asked to send voluntary subscriptions with peal reports.

Mr. R. G. Blackman seconded and the resolution was carried.


The hon. secretary reported: 33 Associations fully represented - 76 members; 17 Associations partly represented - 40 members, 25 absent; 5 Associations not represented - 8 absent; life members - 5 present, 2 absent; hon. members - 14 present, 4 absent. Total: 135 present, 39 absent.

This was the second largest attendance in the history of the Council.


Mr. R. S. Anderson said for two or three Council meetings he had had the very pleasant duty of proposing a vote of thanks to the president. During the day the thought frequently occurred to him that this was the last Council meeting at which Mr. Lewis would preside. For many years he had graced the Council by the dignity, authority and wisdom with which he had presided.

“I ask you to rise and show by acclamation our appreciation of his services from the chair.” The meeting received the proposition with great cordiality.

The president, in thanking Mr. Anderson and the members for their tribute, said it was next year before he finally vacated the chair, and he would then take the opportunity of saying a little more.


The president said that his son-in law, the late Wilfred Hooton, was very anxious that something should be said about four-bell towers. In all associations there were four-bell towers, but they were never put in the list of towers. He thought it would be worth while because one of his best pupils came from a three-bell tower - Mr. Ted Gobey, of Ilkeston. If they had any four-bell towers in their areas he asked them not to neglect them.


The president asked the Council to pass a vote of thanks to the Lord Mayor and Corporation of Leicester for the use of the Council Chamber. They would also like to thank the Lord Bishop of Leicester for his welcome, and the president of the Leicester Diocesan Guild for his welcome on behalf of the Leicester Guild, which was very much appreciated. They also wished to thank the Provost of Leicester, the Very Rev. Mervyn Armstrong, for officiating at the service that morning, at which some 70 members were present. They also thanked the Leicester Entertainment Committee for the splendid local arrangements, and Mr. Shirley Burton for arranging the peal attempts, and all local incumbents and steeplekeepers for allowing them to ring on the bells, and in having the bells ready. [Applause.]

Mr. J. Dunwoody proposed a vote of thanks to Mr. E. A. Barnett for the way he had carried out his work as secretary, which was carried with acclamation.


The meeting was followed by a civic reception, held in the town, by the Lord Mayor (Ald. Samuel Cooper). The Lord Mayor in his welcome said that before he came to Leicester he used to pull a bell in a four-bell tower, but he never aspired. He hoped they would take away with them happy memories of their visit.

The president thanked the Lord Mayor and the officials of the Corporation for permitting the Council meeting to be held in the Council Chamber. It was much nicer than the Old Moot Hall where they met when they last visited Leicester in 1911.

In the evening a social and dance was given by the president and members of the Leicester Diocesan Guild in the Bell Hotel. It was a very happy gathering and made a pleasing conclusion to an excellent weekend.


The report of the Methods Committee (see page 377) was adopted after further discussion, during which Mr. Eric Nobles asked where Plain Bob with a Grandsire Single was rung were they to call it April Day or Plain Bob?

The Rev. K. W. H. Felstead replied that the Council had accepted for a long time that the Bob did not alter the method and the answer was that it was Plain Bob and not April Day.

The hon. secretary said he did not think there would he much harm done if Plain Bob with a Grandsire Single was called April Day.

The Ringing World, June 22, 1956, pages 393 to 394


I’ll tell you a bell ringing story
Of a lad that won honour and fame,
Wi’ Shirley at bell ringing practice;
Pat Cannon, that were ’is name.

He was one of this ’ere Central Council,
And Pat’s work when ringing begun
Was to take ’old of end of bell rope
And pull it like fury and fun.

One day ’im and Hilda were ringing
The bells at Cathedral with band.
When Pat tried to set it at finish
He found that ’is bell wouldn’t stand.

By gum there weren’t half a commotion,
Ringers was filled wi’ alarm
As rope flopped round about belfry
And Pat got a coil round each arm.

Of course, towerkeeper ’ad to be sent for.
He came, and said: “What’s to do?”
Ringers said: “Pat’s bust a bell stay,
And in his Sunday clothes too!”

Pat said: “Right’s right, young fellow,
I think it’s a shame on you all,
For someone to go and blame me
When I’m not the one’s done it at all.

“I’d only just got ’old of bell rope
And pulled it so gently and mild,
And to blame me for all the commotion,
It doesn’t seem right to this child.

“You see, someone’s been ’ere before me,
And clouted it ’and stroke and back,
It only needs touching to break it,
The thing’s ’ad a terrible crack.”

But nobody believed what old Pat said,
They knew he’d given it a bang.
And so for the rest of the meeting
His ringing suffered a clang.

But when the meeting was’ over
And ringers ’ad gone, ’cept a few,
Old Pat went away very thankful
That ’e still ’ad ’is raisins to chew.

K. W. H. F.

The Ringing World, June 22, 1956, page 394

‘The Ringing World’ Balance Sheet - December 31st, 1955

Sundry Creditors511411
Amounts Received in Advance-
Postal Subscriptions and Notices76009
Provision for Income Tax---
Capital Account-£s.d.
Balance at 31st December, 19541699114
Add Profit for the year as shown by Profit and Loss Account105003



Woodbridge Press-

Editorial Office Expenses-
Editor’s Fees and Expenses28676
Clerical Assistance13938
Postage, Stationery and Sundries13163

Postal Subscribers-
Despatch of Copies166100
Postage and Wrappers69541

Accounts Department-
Clerical Assistance12500
Stationery and Sundries1832

Miscellaneous Expenses9154
Audit Fee2100
Income Tax on Interest Receivable11117

Profit for the year105003


Goodwill, Blocks, Etc., at Cost20000
Investments at Cost£s.d.
£800 3½% Defence Bonds80000
£800 4% Defence Bonds80000

At Bankers1407177
In Hand1211

Amount due from the Central Council of Church Bell Ringers66150


Rolls Publishing Co.2312118
Postal Subscribers2419611
Sundry Receipts241110
Interest Receivable on £800 3½% Defence Bonds2834



I have audited the above Balance Sheet and have obtained the information and explanations I have required. In my opinion such Balance Sheet is properly drawn up so as to exhibit a true and correct view of the state of affairs of ‘The Ringing World,’ according to the best of my information and the explanations given to me and as shown by the books.

(Signed) J. LUNNIS,
Chartered Accountant.

Thames House, Queen Street Place,
London. E.C.4.
December 17th, 1956.

The Ringing World, March 15, 1957, page 175

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