The first session of the 31st Council (84th annual meeting) was held at the Kings School, Rochester, Kent on Tuesday 26th May, when about 180 members assembled at 9.45 a.m. There was a goodly number of visitors who were seated in the balcony, whilst the Kent C.A., whose invitation the Council had been pleased to accept, supplied many stewards and helpers to ensure the smooth running of the conference. Precisely at 10 a.m. the (retiring) President, Mr. Edwin A. Barnett called the meeting to order and the Rev. J. G. Scott (vice-president) opened with prayer.

The president welcomed the gathering and mentioned particularly the recently appointed Editor (Lt. Col. D. Thorne) who was attending (as an observer) his first meeting. The hon. secretary (Mr. Cyril Wratten) reported as to representation of Societies and to subscriptions. These were 64 Societies affiliated with 173 representatives; and eight Life members and 24 hon. members (with three vacancies.) All subscriptions had been paid.

The secretary then read a list of apologies from members who for a variety of reasons were unable to attend.

The Liverpool University Society had made application to become affiliated to the Council, and after Mr. D. R. Jones (Lancs. Assoc.) had proposed and the Rev. M. C. C. Melville (Universities Assoc.) had seconded and given details enumerating the Society’s membership and progress, the members voted unanimously to accept the application for affiliation.

Mr. J. K. Foot (the Society’s representative) then took his seat on the Council.


In all there were 49 new members of Council, many of whom were present. As each name and their respective association were read out by the hon. secretary the individual members stood to acknowledge the welcome given to each by the President. Announcing that the Rev. John Scott had been nominated as president (1981-84) by Mr. Don Roberts (Guild of Devonshire Ringers) and Mr. Brian Threlfall (Cambridge U.G.), the retiring President then formally handed over the office and the chair to Mr. Scott.

Taking his seat the new President said he could not hope to fill Mr. Barnett’s shoes for he (Mr. Barnett) had served in office the whole time that he (Mr. Scott) had been a member of the Council. He was pleased to have been proposed by a member of his own Guild - the oldest Guild in the Country. He would do his best to serve the Council, but could not guarantee to move around too much, owing to his duties in his parish and diocese.

Before proceeding with the other declaration of officers, the new president announced a pleasing duty he had to perform. Enumerating the many years of service by Mr. Edwin A. Barnett to the Exercise in general and the Central Council in particular, he presented to Mr. Barnett on behalf of the Council a volume of Barclay’s “World of Cricket” in recognition and appreciation of his excellent work. Mr. Barnett had, for approaching 30 years, held an office of one sort or another on the Council and all present were deeply conscious of the debt owed to him.

Expressing his thanks for the gift, Mr. Barnett said he particularly appreciated the help and assistance rendered to him during his presidency of Mr and Mrs Wratten, Mr. W. Cook (librarian) and of his own wife Mrs Olive D. Barnett. The company loudly applauded Mr. Barnett’s comments.

At the Civic and Ecclesiastical Reception of the Central Council in Rochester, Kent on May 25, the President-elect (Rev J G M Scott) with his wife (on his left) met the recently appointed Ringing World editor (Lt. Col. David Thorne) and his wife (l).
John and Mrs. Scott, David and Mrs. Thorne

Other officers declared elected, there being only one nomination for each; Mr. P. A. Corby (Vice-President), Mr. C. A. Wratten (Hon. Secretary) and Mr. W. T. Cook (Hon. Librarian). Mr. Corby took his seat on the platform and was then elected, on the proposition of Mr. John Freeman, seconded by Mr. R. B. Smith to Life Membership of the Council.

Acknowledging the honour conferred on him Mr. Corby said he was deeply conscious of the privilege of Life Membership. He had always enjoyed sharing the work of the Council and appreciated the warmth of the friendship given.

The election of honorary members resulted in eleven names being submitted, each proposer and/or seconder stating the reasons for the nomination. All were elected; viz: Mrs Margery Wratten, Canon Kenneth Felstead, Messrs Alan Frost, Kenneth Croft, Richard Speed, John Hartless, Howard Egglestone, Douglas Hughes, William Viggers, Robert Smith and Miss Jean Sanderson.

The honorary auditors, Messrs M. J. Church and E. G. H. Godfrey were re-appointed on the proposition of Mr. E. A. Barnett and Mr. C. Mew respectively.


The names of members who had died since the previous Council meeting were read out by the Chairman, and these were: Mr. T. W. White (Sept. 80), J. P. Barnett (Sept. 80), W. B. Kynaston (Sept.), C. W. Pipe (Oct.), Rev. P. Bond (Feb. 81), J. A. Acres (March) and T. Cooper (May). The president spoke of the work as Ringing World editor of Mr. White. The meeting stood in silent tribute and Canon E. G. Orland then led in prayer.

The minutes of the 1980 meeting having been printed in the Ringing World on 6th February, and circulated to members, were approved on the proposition of the hon. secretary, seconded by Mrs Olive Barnett.

Among matters arising was the announcement that for the Bell Restoration Fund a survey had been sent out to Societies last September. The Library insurance was dealt with in the Administrative Committees report, it was stated.

Presenting his report and proposing its adoption, the hon. secretary gave several amendments caused mainly by typing errors, and after Mr. F. Dukes had seconded, the report was accepted.

It was pointed out by Mr. Sibson that the St. David’s Guild appeared to have only 66 members and if correct would not be eligible for membership of the Council: after Mr Wratten had said he would look into the matter, it was stated that it would be unfortunate if this Guild, which is situated in such a scattered area with few rings of bells were to be lost to the Council because of reduced membership.


Presenting the accounts for 1980, Mr. Wratten said that the position was, generally, satisfactory but there was a deficit of £270 on the general fund. Budgetting for this year, there would it appeared be a further loss and that position could not continue. The cost of the Councils meetings had risen, for in 1976 it was £120. Last year it was £256 and this coming year it could be around £300. The growth of Committee work involved more expenses, and so he proposed that as from January (1982) the fee per representative be increased from £3 to £5. It might be that in three years time there would have to be a further increase.

Mr. B. D. Threlfall seconded and this proposal was carried.

Stating that there was nothing to add to the printed report, in the hands of members, regarding the Carter Ringing Machine, Mr. Douglas Hughes proposed that the report be adopted and Mr. W. Dobbie seconding, this was agreed.

The two trustees (Messrs D. Hughes and W. Dobbie) were re-appointed on the proposition of Mrs Olive Rogers, seconded by Mr. D. Joyce.

The Trustee of the Rolls of Honour (Mr. W. T. Cook) began his report: “I have nothing to report. The Rolls are in St. Pauls Cathedral and are in good order.” He said: Photo copies are on display.

Mr. A. Wilby suggested, amidst laughter, that as something had been reported the first sentence be omitted, this was agreed. The Trustee’s (brief) report was accepted.

(to be continued)

The Ringing World, June 12, 1981, page 506

At the Central Council meeting held in Rochester, Kent on May 26, the newly-installed President (the Rev. John G. M. Scott) presented the retiring President (Mr. Edwin A. Barnett) with a volume of Barclay’s World of Cricket in appreciation, and as a memento of Mr. Barnett’s 29 years’ service to the Council, first as hon. secretary, then as Vice-President and for the past six years as President.
John Scott and Teddy Barnett

The Ringing World, June 12, 1981, page 509

Central Council Meeting


The Kent C.A. organised a coach tour on 25th May for 23 of the members attending Central Council activities. First stop was Cuxton, a pleasant six, which encouraged some enjoyable ringing (members did however need to consult diaries when Norwich was called for.) The light eight at St. Michael’s Maidstone caused a few initial problems but both here and on the ten at All Saints some good ringing took place. After lunch the lighter ten at Leeds were sampled and the day’s activities were concluded on the steady six at Hollingbourne. A most enjoyable day and our thanks to David Joyce for his very efficient organisation.


At the Civic and Ecclesiastical Reception on Bank Holiday Monday, (l to r): Mr David Manger (Chairman, Kent C.A.), Mrs. Olive Barnett, Mr. Edwin A. Barnett (President C.C.) and the Mayor and Mayoress of Rochester, Councillor and Mrs. Cox.
David Manger, Olive and Teddy Barnett, Councillor and Mrs. Cox

The Ringing World, June 19, 1981, page 527

Central Council Meeting



Dr. J. C. Baldwin opened the discussion on “Recruitment and Sunday Service Ringing in the 1980s” and listed three main reasons why this subject had been chosen. Firstly: that the ringing of church bells on a Sunday was the prime function of the Exercise. Secondly: that considerable confusion of terms existed. Finally: that there were indications that the existence of a good local band depended, in many cases, on the presence of a good tower captain. He then introduced Mr. H. W. Rogers to lead the discussion.

An audience of about 150 packed into the Green Room at the King’s Head Hotel, Rochester (many more found it impossible to get into the meeting and so contented themselves in the vicinity of the bar, able only to pick up odd snatches of the discussion). Mr. Rogers opened with the comment that in 36 years as a Council member nothing had been required of him, doubtless due to his well-known reticence to speak in public. At last he had been caught and persuaded to open the 1981 discussion. His main contention was that society was changing rapidly. Micro-chip technology, increased leisure time from earlier retirement and the many counter attractions of sport, television and other leisure activities, meant that ringers should seriously consider whether the traditional ways by which recruits are obtained and trained should be questioned. The main aim must be to get more ringers to attend regularly and ring better on Sundays and for special occasions.

Recruiting he considered to be no real problem. A more difficult problem was to retain recruits’ interest once they had started to ring. Mr. Rogers considered that an ideal mix of learners included two or three adults and five or so of school age. He also suggested that the possibility of arranging afternoon practice sessions or sessions during school holidays should be considered. He questioned the timing and form of Association meetings. Where the traditional meeting was well received it was clearly foolish to change for change’s sake. However, where attendances were falling off or only spasmodic, perhaps alternative programmes should be considered. For instance: he asked whether any serious thought had been given to holding Association meetings on Sunday afternoons in areas where the traditional evening service was being phased out. Finally, Mr. Rogers said that innovations such as Mr. Tyler’s “suggestions for graded ringing assessments” (RW 17th April) were to be welcomed. He considered it an excellent guide for both trainee and instructor.

Two wall charts summarising Mr Rogers’ talk were then balanced somewhat precariously at the front of the meeting and Dr. Baldwin then invited general discussion.

Opinions on the best source of recruits varied. Mr. W. F. Moreton stressed that in order to retain recruits it was essential that early instruction should not be rushed. Mr. D. Struckett considered that recruiting strategy varied, depending on whether or not an active band already existed. His somewhat provocative statement that men should be recruited since they made the best ringers received a mixed reception. Mr. W. Butler wondered whether more care should be taken in the selection of recruits, perhaps based on intelligence. This idea was strenuously opposed by both Mr. D. Potter and Mr. F. Lufkin. Several speakers agreed with Mr. D. Jackson that the best recruits come from active members of the church, are recruited as a group and, where possible, are recruited as a family.

Discussion on training tended to emphasise again the role of the Tower Captain and suggested that this was perhaps the area which should receive attention. Reference was made to the excellent series entitled: “Tower Captaincy without Tears” which appeared in the Ringing World a few years ago.

The use of “badges” for ringers was discussed and, although useful in certain circumstances, it was felt that any general attempt to impose such a scheme would be detrimental.

Several speakers spoke of the changes which had already taken place in the conduct of Association meetings. Interest was shown in Mr. Campbell’s description of the Junior Committee of the Beverley and District Association whereby young ringers could express their needs and requirements for special events (e.g.: lectures on aspects of ringing) to be held at Association meetings. Too often learners found that the amount of ringing they managed to get at meetings was very limited. Mr. Massey commented that, whatever was thought of striking competitions, such events often produced the largest attendance at meetings and included ringers who otherwise never attended Association events.

Dr. Baldwin then invited Mr. Rogers to comment on the evening’s discussion. Mr. Rogers expressed disappointment that there appeared to be a feeling of self-satisfaction and a reluctance to try anything new. The reception afforded to this comment seemed to indicate that the meeting thought otherwise and that Mr. Rogers had in fact stimulated some very useful discussion.


The Ringing World, June 19, 1981, page 529

Central Council Meeting (Part II)


The agenda had now been dealt with up to and including item 15. The next was: “To receive, discuss and, if thought fit, adopt the reports of the Council’s 15 elected committees; to pass such resolutions as may be necessary or matters arising from the reports; and to re-appoint the committees under the terms of Rule 12: The committee members all retire but, if still members of the Council are eligible for re-election.”

The Administrative Committee report was presented by the hon. secretary (Mr C A Wratten) who proposed its adoption, Dr J Baldwin seconding. It was stated that a report on Insurance would be circulated to all affiliated societies in due course. Tribute was paid to Messrs Church and Godfrey for the work they had put in regarding the Ringing World’s finances.

A full discussion followed and Mr C Groome said he was disappointed that it had been decided not to do anything about making the Ringing World into a Limited Company. He pointed out that if the Ringing World failed financially, each individual Council member would be liable for any loss and would be charged accordingly. He hoped the new Administrative Committee would rethink the Limited Company question. It would protect such bequests as the Thackray and Clement Glenn bequests.

Messrs R B Smith and B Peachey supported Mr Groome’s point of view and the president asked if anyone had any idea how much it would cost to get Counsel’s advice on the matter.

Mr W Cartwright (legal adviser to the Council) said it was impossible to say what such advice would cost but it could be £1,000 or more. He suggested the report be referred back to the Administrative Committee.

Mr P Gray said it was a pessimistic outlook that was being taken. If the Ringing World was at any time in severe financial difficulties he thought the Exercise would find a way round it and come to the rescue.

Mr J Barnes suggested it might be prudent to spend £1,000 for advice. Mr R Cooles, a qualified solicitor (who added that he liked to keep that information to himself - a comment which caused laughter), said he felt confident that there was plenty of expert advice available from Council members at a reasonable cost.

Mr J Freeman said the report should be referred back, whilst Mr G Massey criticised the Ringing World Committee for having done nothing about maintaining its reserves. The cost for advice, he added, was relatively small. If necessary, subscriptions should be increased.

Mr H Rogers said the Administrative Committee had not given their reasons for the decision they made, and he thought the report must be referred back for more information to be made available to the Council.

When Mrs J Wilkinson proposed the motion be now put and after Canon Felstead had seconded, it was decided that the paragraph (e) in the report that was in dispute should be referred back. There were six votes against this.


Presenting the report of the Ringing World Committee, Mr R F B Speed firstly welcomed the recently-appointed Editor (Lt-Colonel D Thorne), whom he said would take up his duties in November. The present Editor (Charles Denyer) had agreed to continue until the Christmas issue was published in December, and this would assist in the take-over which should therefore be a smooth one.

Mr Speed continued: “We increased the price of the journal as you advised last year. This had brought a drop of about 400 in circulation, which is now around 5,000 - the lowest it has been since about 1972. It was possible that there would soon be an increase in printing costs of up to 14 per cent, according to the latest information from Seven Corners Press.”

Mrs J King and Mr D Bayles were no longer members of the Council and were therefore not eligible for the Committee. He thanked them and the other members for their help and support.

Mr A Stubbs seconded the adoption of the report and said there was a gradual move away from postal subscribers to the newsagent. There was soon to be a survey to get some idea about what readers wanted from their journal. He asked members to ensure that this questionnaire was filled in and returned without undue delay.

It was agreed that six members for the Ringing World Committee were enough, there being several ex-officio members of the Council who frequently attended.

The accounts of the Ringing World were then discussed, it being pointed out that there had been a change in one item. Editorial assistance and rent had been separated this year from the printing costs where they had appeared last year. It was gratifying that donations were up, and Mr Speed expressed thanks to all who sent donations to help with the costs of producing the R.W.


It was stated, after a question had been asked, that it was not possible to separate “fees” for quarter peals from other donations; whilst in answer to Dr Baldwin, Mr Church gave the market value of investments: i.e., £24,885 at cost; market value £27,115. As regards the relative return from postal as against newsagent purchases, it was said there was little difference.

The report and accounts were adopted and, following a ballot, Messrs M J Church, R F B Speed, H Egglestone, C J Groome, A Stubbs and A Wilby were elected to the R.W. Committee.

The Peals Analysis Committee’s report, proposed for adoption by Mr F Lufkin and seconded by Mr C Rogers, brought considerable discussion into the deliberations. Several corrections to the report were stated at the outset, and the omission of three peals from the report, viz.:

All Saints’, Basingstoke (on August 27); Broughton-in-Furness (September 12) and All Saints’, Leicester (December 11), were contended; those taking part in the debate being Messrs Threlfall, Clarke Walters, F Blagrove, B Peachey and A Wilby.

The president said, amidst laughter, that it was time Basingstoke bought another bell!

Upon being put to the vote, the peal of Qualis (alternate leads of P. Bob Major with a cover bell and Grandsire Caters) was not accepted.

The peal of Grandsire Caters at Broughton-in-Furness on nine bells was rung when there was one new bell added to the eight, there being no possibility then of a tenth bell.

After Messrs Kershaw, Wratten, Pett and Lufkin had taken part in a debate, the peal at Broughton was accepted on the proposition of Mr D Sibson, there being four dissenters.

The lunch-break was then announced, and on resumption a one-part peal of Cambridge S Minor at All Saints’, Leicester, composed by Mr H Chant, was discussed. It caused some amusement in debate when Mr C K Lewis said he would not want to be associated with it, and Mr Chant himself added that he only composed and published it in 1973 or -74 as a challenge and to show how terrible it was. He didn’t think any band would be daft enough to ring it!

The meeting declined to accept the peal.


Mr M Church, who said he valued his membership of the Council, pointed out that about 45 minutes had been taken discussing the three peals. The Council would lose credibility if it continued to spend time on such matters when there were many more worthwhile things to be dealt with, such as recruitment, bell restoration and redundancies. He suggested the Administrative Committee consider ways of saving time in future and for the Council to debate more worthwhile objectives for the benefit of the Exercise as a whole. [Applause].

Mr G Halls said he would like to see peals, rung entirely by local bands, put in the statistics, and for the Council to encourage local bands in this with more publicity. He suggested the R.W. editor, too, could help in this matter. [A footnote containing this information would certainly be included in any peal (or quarter peal) report. Ed, R.W.]

Mr H Rogers endorsed the previous speaker’s remarks and appealed to conductors of peals to submit peals to the Ringing World without delay - within 24 hours if possible, and not leave it for several weeks as many apparently did at present.

The report was adopted, nem con, and Messrs F Lufkin, C H Rogers, O Webster, Dr T Pett and Canon K Felstead were elected to the Committee, after a ballot.

Mr D Sibson, proposing the adoption of the Records Committee report, first gave several amendments to the details therein, and Mr G Dodds then seconded.

An “explanation” about Carter’s Triples and Doubles, after a query raised by Mrs Martin about the method, became so involved that it is doubtful if the majority in the hall could decide what the answer would be. “It depends …” one speaker started, and Mr Blagrove added that the method was rung before Carter’s time and was then called “Accident Doubles” - this comment bringing forth roars of laughter.


In view of the doubt about the authenticity of the method rung being pure Carter’s Triples, Mr R Pipe said he felt sure the band that rang the peal would not be prepared to change the name of the method. It was pointed out that it was not suggested that the name be changed.

Mr A Smith felt that Double Coslany Court Maximus was not a true extension and did not comply with lead-end proof, but Mr Sibson said it was a true extension of the Major method.

The Council accepted the report and the Committee was re-elected en bloc., viz: Messrs D E Sibson, F T Blagrove, G Dodds, J R Mayne and C A Wratten.

Mr M C W Sherwood proposed the adoption of the Methods Committee’s report, Mr F Blagrove seconding.

When Mr D C Jackson took the stand he said he had conducted four 100-method peals of Doubles for the Winchester & Portsmouth Guild last year during that Guild’s centenary. The ringing was identical, but when the peals were published the third and fourth peals had different names for 10 methods because method names had been changed in the Council’s 1980 book of Doubles methods. He thought the alterations should first have been put to the Council for approval before publication.

Mr A Smith (W & P Guild) said he could get no satisfactory answer to his queries about the alterations, and this brought a response from Mr Blagrove, who gave a definition of “Reverse” and the real name of such a method.

The debate then took on a three-cornered cross-talk, the arguments becoming more difficult and technical to differentiate. Dr Baldwin intervened to suggest that Messrs Smith and Blagrove be elected to the Committee to work out their differences in committee. [In fact this was brought about. Ed, R.W.]

Mr D Joyce proposed and Mr B Peachey seconded that before Part II of the Doubles Collection is printed the names of methods be studied carefully to ensure correctness.

The report was accepted nem con. After a ballot, Messrs M Sherwood, F Blagrove, A P Smith, C K Lewis and S Humphrey were elected to the Methods Committee.

(to be continued)

The Ringing World, June 19, 1981, pages 540 to 541

Central Council Meeting



Despite the torrential rain which fell all day on Bank Holiday Monday (25th May) there was no sign of gloom when the Central Council members and friends met in the hall of Kings School, Rochester, to receive a welcome from the Kent C.A., their hosts this year, and from the Religious and Civic dignitaries. A company numbering around 260 were greeted with a glass of wine, and at an appropriate time the recently elected chairman of the host Association (Mr. David Manger) called the company to order.

Mr. Manger said that Philip Corby, his predecessor as Chairman of the Kent CA, had extended a welcome to all in their printed itinerary. It was his privilege to be able to do so today, on behalf of all the members of this Association. It was a pleasure to welcome everyone to the County.

Mr Manger continued: You will have, by now, sampled some of our bells and hopefully seen some of the attractions Kent has to offer. Many of you will, no doubt have been to the county before, possibly when the Council visited Folkstone in 1960, I hope you will have found that despite its proximity to London, our county has a variety of interests not equalled by many counties in the country.

Over the years, Kent has produced its fair quota of well known and respected ringers, but I think it is fair to say that none more so that your current President, Teddy Barnett. To me and to most ringers in the county, the name of Edwin A. Barnett is synonymous with bellringing in Kent and I find it difficult to remember that he no longer resides within the county boundary. It is always a pleasure to see them back here, but never more so than now, Teddy’s final year as President of the Central Council.

Last year was our Centenary and throughout the year this event was celebrated by the county’s ringers in a variety of different ways. The most notable being the marvellous service held in Canterbury Cathedral on 17th May - an occasion at which those who were fortunate enough to be present will never forget. If the organisation of bellringing is to continue as we know it for another 100 years, the responsibility is in your hands. I wish you all an enjoyable and highly successful meeting and trust that when you finally leave Rochester you will have memories of having spent an enjoyable weekend and of having accomplished something for bellringing.

Old friends meet - a silhouette of Mr. F. E. (Ted) Collins and Mrs. Cyril Johnston. Mr. Collins was employed, at one time, by Gillett and Johnston at the Croydon Bell Foundry. It was many years since these two people had met, and Mrs. Johnston certainly shows her pleasure in her smile.
Ted Collins and Mrs. Cyril Johnston

He then introduced the Rt. Rev. David Say (Bishop of Rochester) a very good friend of bell- ringers in Kent who, in a jocular manner extended greetings to all on behalf of the Archbishop of Canterbury, the Canterbury Diocese, and his Diocese of Rochester. He spoke of his experiences with bellringing whilst still a boy and living in Croydon and said he had not then and still did not understand a thing about ringers and their jargon (laughter). He hoped the visitors would enjoy the beautiful Kent countryside and the many lovely churches and that their conference would be a happy and successful one.

The Chairman then introduced the Mayor and Mayoress adding: “It was difficult to find someone who had held his office for a shorter period of time than I have - but we succeeded, for the Mayor has only been in office for ten days or so. I will ask Councillor Cox to welcome you on behalf of the Medway Towns.” Firstly thanking the ringers for inviting him and his mayoress to attend the function that evening, Councillor Cox said it was an honour and a pleasure to have the Central Council of Church Bell Ringers visit the Borough for their conference. It was the largest gathering he had addressed since his inauguration last Wednesday. Thank you all for coming and best wishes for your meeting, concluded the Mayor.

Lost for words! Mr. Philip Corby hands to Mr. Edwin A. (Teddy) Barnett a cricketing book: Wisden’s Anthology of Cricket 1900-1940, whilst Mrs. Olive Barnett applauds.
Philip Corby, Teddy and Olive Barnett

At this juncture Mr Philip Corby was introduced and in a well chosen speech detailed briefly the work and service given over the years by the Barnett family. Now that “Young Teddy” had left the County and although still a vice president of the Kent CA., was not actively connected with the ringing there, the Association wished to mark Teddy’s long and active services with a presentation.

Mr. Corby then handed to Mr Barnett a volume of Wisden’s Cricket Anthology 1900-1940.

Taken by surprise Mr Barnett was “lost for words” but then briefly and sincerely thanked Mr. Corby and all the officers and members for their kindly thought and the gift which would give him many hours of immense pleasure as he perused its pages.

As president of the Central Council he then thanked the Kent C.A. for their welcome and hospitality and also expressed appreciation to the Bishop of Rochester and the Mayor and Mayoress for their kind words.

Mrs Olive Barnett then received a basket of flowers from Mrs Cox. Mr. Manger expressed thanks to Mrs Marjorie Matthews and her team of volunteers who had put in an enormous amount of work preparing the buffet supper laid out before them. Mrs Cox came forward once more and handed Mrs Matthews a basket of flowers in appreciation of her work.

After a final greeting and wish for a happy meeting and a safe return home given by Mr Manger, the remainder of the evening was spent in the way to with which bellringers everywhere are well acquainted - It was a pleasant and happy evening.

The Ringing World, June 19, 1981, page 547



Expressing his thanks to Mr James Taylor for checking the peal compositions, and the R.W. editor for his co-operation in publishing them, Mr R W Pipe proposed the adoption of the Composition Committee’s report. He felt there was a need for Multi-Minor compositions. Dr Beard stated that all compositions published for the Yorkshire Association were checked by computer.

Mr W Moreton asked that when the Collection of Multi-Minor Compositions was published they be produced in an easily-understood form.

The report was accepted. A proposition on the agenda from the Committee was then discussed, and after Mr Monson had proposed the following wording amendment: “To maintain a representative collection of peal compositions and prepare for publication such collections as the Council shall direct” Mr Pipe said he would accept an alteration, and after various members had also suggested change of words it was agreed that “of 5000 changes and upwards and prepare” would be omitted and the words “give direction for” replace “and direct”.

The change of rule was then carried. The Committee, after a ballot, now comprises Messrs R C Kippin, R Hardy, S Humphrey, P Border and Dr Beard.

Mr J R Taylor, in proposing the acceptance of the Computer Co-ordinating Committee’s report, said that Dr Baldwin had said he was not available for nomination to the Committee and Mr S J Ivin was not now a member of the Central Council.


After Mr Sibson had seconded the adoption of the report it was approved, and Dr Beard and Messrs T G Pett, J Taylor, D E Sibson and C Wratten were elected to the Committee following a ballot.

Following the submission of the Publication Committee’s report for acceptance, proposed by Mr G R Drew, Mr W Moreton expressed the Council’s thanks to Mr and Mrs Drew, who have to work 365 days a year handling the Council’s publications. “No committee works so hard as these two people”, added the speaker, whose remarks were received with acclamation.

Mr P Wilkinson suggested that the advertisement in the Ringing World be amended; the price shown was (including postage) 10p!

The report was adopted, and yet another ballot was required before the new Committee could be decided, the members now being Mr and Mrs Drew, Miss Sanderson and Messrs G Morris, C Groome and J Taylor.

Mr W Butler (chairman) proposed and Mr R Cater seconded that the Education Committee’s report be adopted, the former giving details of an 8mm film “Birth of a Bell”, now available from Mr W F Moreton.

Mr Cater spoke of the Central Council’s Course at Winchester at the end of July, which he said had not brought a very good response from Associations, all of whom had been asked to sponsor one of their own members. Another course at the end of August 1982 was planned for Chippenham, Wiltshire.


The report was approved, following which a long debate took place regarding an appendix on Standards of Ringing, prepared by Mr A M Tyler. He said he would like to see each guild appoint someone responsible to assess standards. [In view of the recent correspondence in the Ringing World about this subject, we print below Mr Tyler’s address to the Council. Ed, R.W.]

He said: “Mention was made several times at last year’s Council of standards, especially of teaching standards. If we talk about standards we must be prepared to define them. It might be helpful to try to define them through a constructive pattern of learning in ringing.

All will be aware that the Education Committee has done much towards teaching standards, as was emphasised at the meeting last Sunday, but members of the Committee are equally well aware that at seminars held we are generally preaching to the converted. There is need to get at the less competent teachers - this scheme may be a way to get at some of them; if it is, it’s worth the effort.

Need was also mentioned last Sunday at the open meeting for good leaders in ringing, tower captains of the future, and to have followed a structured course in learning may help to produce such people.


It has been suggested that such a scheme is not in real accord with the spirit of a Christian service that ringing should be. We would all agree with such a view in an ideal situation, but we do deal in ordinary human beings and not in idealists! So another aim of the scheme is to maintain interest in ringing and provide continued goals. I am aware this applies mostly to the young ringer - but they are in the majority where recruits are concerned. We should compare here the considerable success in raising standards of the Choristers’ training scheme devised by the Royal School of Church Music and structured on somewhat similar lines to this scheme.

It has also been suggested that we cannot treat ringing as we treat the learning of a musical instrument. Here I must strongly disagree: bells are musical instruments, and in the same way the better the technique of playing any instrument, the greater the pleasure that results for performer and listener alike.

I must point out it has never been suggested that there be any system of badges - this is a red herring thrown into the idea by some people, and I think has no place in the scheme. We are only interested in setting standards, not so much in tangible rewards for doing so.


We were reminded on Sunday of the need for new approaches in training, and I am glad this has apparently provided some food for thought. Already there has been some opposition - it would have been a miracle if there had not been! - but also a good deal of support. I am not suggesting that what has been produced is a final scheme; only a modest starting point, with much more thought and consultation required before any final scheme is produced. I hope we can go on looking at such a scheme which should lead towards some definitions of the standards we all talk about so readily.”

A long and interesting discussion followed the address, Messrs Jackson, Roberts, Wilby, Butler, Massey, Potter, Corby, Dobbie, Hall, Struckett, Frost, Gray and the president all expressing opinions for or against such a scheme; and after Mr P Gray had proposed that the new Education Committee continue thinking along the lines suggested by Mr Tyler, the Council agreed, three members dissenting.

The Education Committee elected after their report had been accepted on the proposition of Mr. W. Butler were Messrs Butler, Cater, Moreton, Morris, Parsons, Potter, C. Smith and Tyler.

The Public Relations Committee’s report brought forth very considerable discussion, after the only member of the Committee present (Mr. John Girt) had proposed its adoption. The main contention was the way the BBC’s presentation of the Blue Peter programme had been criticised in the Ringing World. There was also the T.V. programme which screened the big bell of Krakow being chimed. Those taking part in the discussion were Dean Thurlow, and Messrs Threlfall, Blagrove, Freeman, Clarke-Walters, Massey, Baldwin, Potter, Gray, Wilby, Wilkinson, Struckett and Mrs Barnett.

The consensus of opinion was that the Exercise should be grateful that the BBC had gone to the expense and trouble of screening the Blue Peter programme and after Mr. Freeman had said it would be better to say the council disagreed with the committee’s report than to try to delete certain offensive words and passages, the report was adopted, with this proviso. There was a possibility that ringing at Crosthwaite might fade out because of the Blue Peter adverse criticism. Dean Thurlow suggested that the President might contact the persons concerned to explain that the Council and the Exercise finally disagreed with the published adverse comments.

When it was heard that the Committee had written to the BBC asking them to alter the time of production of Church Bells on Sunday, several members said 7.45 a.m. was the best time anyway. The BBC were co-operative and had done the Exercise a service; not a disservice.

Mr. Girt said he had decided not to stand again for the Committee and the other members also had withdrawn their candidature.

After a ballot the following were elected: Messrs Corby, Potter, Wilby, Mesdames Newing and Martin.


Giving details of the Railway museum exhibition in York (in October next: for six months) and the connection with Sir Arthur Heywood’s railways, Mr. T. Lock said there was also a Railway Show at Stoneleigh for 6-9 July and there was no charge for the parking. The Biographies Committee’s report was approved and the Committee being re-elected en bloc.

At this stage Mr. Fred Dukes said he had to leave to return to Northern Ireland and it was pointed out that he had served on the Admin. Committee for 22 years and never missing a meeting. He was not standing for election this year. The company applauded as Mr. Dukes retired.

“We need more Friends of the Library”, said the librarian (Mr. W. Cook). Newsletters and association reports and also press cuttings would be welcome, he added.

After Mr. D. Joyce had seconded Mr. Cook’s proposal that the Library report be adopted the following were, after a ballot, elected to the Committee: Messrs Joyce, Wilkinson, Struckett and Miss J. Sanderson.

Mr. B. Threlfall, presenting the Towers and Belfries Committee report said that Dr. Baldwin had intimated that he did not wish to serve on the Committee again. Mr. G. Massey seconded the proposition for the adoption of the report.

Dean Thurlow queried the position about the bells when a church became redundant, and Mr. Massey said that, during the waiting period (at least one year), the contracts of the Church, including the bells, were subject to faculty jurisdiction: after that the Bishop was responsible for everything.

The insurance policy for those of the committee working on bells only covered individuals up to the age of 65.

The report was accepted. Ten members: Messrs Threlfall, Hartless, Freeman, Frost, Potter, Massey, Reynolds, Dempster, Exton and the president were elected to serve on the Committee.

Mr. J. Barnes, in proposing the adoption of the Bell Restoration Funds report drew attention to the paragraph about sound control which now was included on the application forms for grants. He also spoke of the article regarding Ockley (Surrey) bells in a recent Daily Telegraph where American visitors were invited to come to Ockley as paying guests: the money from this would pay for the work on the bells.

A letter in The Times about Charitable Trusts was answered by the president, giving information about the 500 plus rings of unringable bells in the country. Mr. R. Cooles had spoken to the Trustees of the Fund and applications for grants were invited. To date 61 had been made. The Committee were studying these and would pass suitable applications on to the Trustees. It was hoped that several thousands of pounds would be available. Details of any grants made would be published in the Ringing World.

Mr. Church expressed the Council’s thanks to Mr. Barnes for his services to the Committee and for the extra work involved in the matter of the Charitable Trust.

The report was approved and the Committee re-appointed with the addition of Messrs J. Mulvey and P. Corby.


That there had been another 25 Churches made redundant during the first quarter of this year was stated by Mrs J. Wilkinson in proposing the adoption of the report of the Committee - “Redundant Bells”. “We do depend on Council members for information”, she said. Any Church made redundant was investigated by the Diocesan Board of Finance. A Bill was going through at the moment which, if passed, would mean the contracts of the Church would also come under the Board.

Mr. Freeman seconded the adoption of the report and the Committee were re-elected with the addition of the president in place of Canon K. Felstead.

A report circulated separately gave details of the Rescue Fund for Redundant Bells, which was proposed for adoption by Mr. R. Cooles, seconded by Mr. M. O’Callaghan. At present there was £5,750 in the Fund and some amounts promised by associations, guilds and by individuals.

The report was accepted and the Committee re-appointed.

There was now a ten minute interval whilst the members of the various committees congregated to appoint the Chairman of each. These, together with the officers of the Council form part of the Administrative Committee and there were 12 others to be elected from members of the main body of Council members. The president said he would only accept 12 nominations and the following were therefore declared elected: Messrs Clarke Walters, J. Freeman, C. Groome, W. Cartwright, J. Armstrong, R. Cater, M. Church, I. Oram, R. Cooles, J. Baldwin, P. Gray and Mrs O. Barnett.


It was proposed by Mr. C. Groome that the Council’s rules be changed so that the President served only one period of three years in place of the present arrangement where he served two periods of six years in all. This rule change would allow more members to aspire to the chair than at the present rate.

Mr. D. Sibson seconded.

Mr. J. Freeman said that nothing would be gained by making a rule which might cause problems in the future. The Admin. Committee had already agreed that in the normal course of events, the President would in future only serve for three years.

Mr. F. Lufkin concurred saying that the Council should decide at the time of proposal whether a new president be elected.

Mr. Groome’s motion was heavily defeated.

Honorary membership of the Council was next debated, two motions being put forward. Mr. A. N. Stubbs proposed that honorary memberships of the Council be only for individuals elected to serve on Committee. It would mean various changes to the rules. As hon. members served mainly on a Committee their election should be linked with that Committee. Mr. A. Wilby seconded.

Mr. P. Corby, supported by Mr. D. Struckett, suggested that the debate be deferred until next year. It was past six o’clock. However, the majority of members disagreed and the debate continued.

Several members spoke against the motion and those taking part in the debate included Messrs W. F. Moreton, J. Baldwin, H. Chant, D. Joyce, T. Pett, D. Jackson, C. Mew and A. Smith.

Mrs. J. Wilkinson rounded up the debate by stating that hon. members would feel they were second-class citizens, whereas in fact they had a lot to contribute. Mr. Wilby denied this.

On being put to the vote the motion was lost.

Mr. B. D. Threlfall for the Admin. Committee proposed that the rules be changed so that in future all hon. members be elected by ballot. Election as now by a show of hands could and did cause embarrassment.

The hon. secretary (Mr. Wratten) seconded the proposal and on being put to a vote was carried, one person voting against.

Considerable discussion ensued on the final motion which concerned peals of Triples. A motion was proposed by Mr. D. Sibson seconded by Mr. F. Blagrove that round blocks of 10,080 changes be recognised, each 5040 different rows would occur twice, once at hand-stroke and once at backstroke.

Various questions were put to the proposer by members, including Messrs. D. Potter and C. Monson.

Mr. P. N. Mounsey proposed an amendment that round blocks of two or more 5040s in which each of the 5040 different rows occur the same number of times, be recognised Mr. Wilby seconded. The president ruled this out of order.

Mr. Mounsey suggested the appropriate committee that was to look into the question of peals of Minor should also look at long lengths of Triples. The original motion, when put to the vote was lost.


An invitation for the Council to hold its centenary meeting in 1991 in London was submitted by the Ancient Society of College Youths. Mr. Wratten also gave details of invitations to the Council for the next four years.

The hon. secretary reported that there were five life members, 16 honorary members and 158 representative members present during the meeting. There were he added 61 of the 65 affiliated societies represented.

The President expressed thanks to the Kent C.A. for their hospitality; to the tellers; the hosts and hostesses at the Civic Reception (especially Mrs. Marjorie Matthews); the Mayor and Mayoress of Rochester; the Bishop of Rochester; the Dean of Rochester; and the various incumbents; and anyone who had assisted in any way.

It was now just on 7.30 p.m. and the gathering quickly broke up; the hall being cleared for cleaners to make all tidy for the next gathering in Rochester - the Dickensian Society (?)

The Ringing World, June 26, 1981, pages 570 to 571

May 26, 1981, Official Report (Part I)

The 1981 meeting of the Central Council, the first of the new triennium, was held at the King’s School, Rochester, on May 26, and was attended by a near-record 179 members. After the President-elect, the Revd. J.G.M. Scott, had opened proceedings with prayer, the President, Mr E.A. Barnett, welcomed those present, making special mention of David Thorne who is to become Editor of the “Ringing World” later this year (applause).

The Hon. Secretary, Mr C.A. Wratten (Gloucester & Bristol DA) reported that 64 societies were affiliated, with 173 representatives. There were eight Life members and the Rules allowed for 24 Honorary members, giving a possible membership of 205; there were however three vacancies. All subscriptions had been paid.

Apologies for absence had been received from Messrs F.W. Perrens, E.C. Shepherd and W.G. Wilson (Life), R.H. Dove and P.L. Taylor (Honorary) and A.R. Baldock, Mrs M. Byrne, R. Byrne, K. Chambers, C. Crossthwaite, G.S. Deas, J.T. Dunwoody, W.L. Exton, G. Knight, E. Martin, E. Nixon and D. Sloman (representative members).

Application to affiliate

Proposing the affiliation of the Liverpool University Society, Mr D.R. Jones (Lancashire A) said that it had been founded in 1960, had over 80 members, and was a well-established society that made a significant contribution to ringing in Liverpool. The Revd. M.C.C. Melville (Univ. A), seconding, said that seven university societies were affiliated to the Council and paid tribute to the influence of university ringers throughout the Exercise.

The application was accepted without opposition and the society’s representative, Mr J.K. Foot, took his seat on the Council.

New members

The President welcomed 49 new members of the Council: Messrs M.D.H. O’Callaghan and R.J. Cooles (Honorary), R.C. Kippin (ASCY), D.J. Buckley (Bath & Wells), A.H. Smith (Bedfords), C. Roberts and M. Thomson (Chester), S. Humphrey (Derby), G.S. Deas (Durham & Newcastle), B.C. Bass and G. Knight (Ely), C.H. Rogers and A.J. Smith (Guildford), J.P. Sims (Devonshire G), N.R. Mattingley and M.V. Powell (Hereford), B.C. Watson and R. Baldwin (Hertford), F.J. Matthews (Kent), Mrs A.B. Speed and Mrs C. Higby (Ladies’), S.J. Franklin and A.J. Poyner (Leicester), J.K. Foot (Liverpool Univ.), P.S. Bennett and N.R.D. Orchard (Llandaff & Monmonth), R. Booth (London CA), B.H. Taylor (Middx), B. Peachey (Police), Mrs A.G. Martin (N. American), D.R. Maxwell (N. Wales), H.J. Charles (Norwich), R.H. Newton (Oxford DG), D.C. Brown (Oxford Univ.), Canon E.G. Orland (Peterboro’), M.J. Lodwick (St David’s), B. Castle (Salisbury), P.L.R. Hayward (Sherwood Youths), G.A. Dawson (Southwell), J.F. Mulvey (Stafford), J.D. Chessman and R.A. Grant (Surrey), P.M. Wills (Sussex), E. Martin (Swansea & Brecon), P.J. Tremain (Truro), G. Davies (London Univ.), Mrs G.W. Davis and A.P. Smith (Winchester & Portsmouth), and D.W. Beard (Yorkshire).

The Secretary commented that Mrs Ann Martin was the first United States citizen to become a member of the Council (applause).

Election of officers

Mr E.A. Barnett, the retiring President, thanked everyone who had made his tern of office so enjoyable, making particular mention of the Hon. Secretary and Mrs Wratten, the Librarian, and Mrs Barnett. His successor, the Revd. J.G.M. Scott, who had been on the Council since 1954, had been proposed on behalf of the Devonshire Guild by Mr D.J. Roberts and seconded by Mr B.D. Threlfall on behalf of the Cambridge University Guild and he declared him elected, there being no other nomination.

The new president said that he could not hope to fill Mr Barnett’s shoes, for the latter had been a most distinguished Secretary and President; he was however very proud to have been proposed by his own Guild, the oldest of the territorial societies. He then presented Mr Barnett with a copy of “Barclay’s World of Cricket” on behalf of the Council.

The other officers were then declared elected, there being only one nomination for each post. The new Vice-President was Mr P.A. Corby (Kent CA), who had been proposed by Mr A.W.R. Wilby (ASCY) and seconded by Mr S.C. Walters (Cambridge UG), and the former Secretary and Librarian - Mr C.A. Wratten and Mr W.T. Cook (ASCY) respectively - were both re-elected, the former having been proposed and seconded by Mr F.E. Dukes (Irish) and F.B. Lufkin (Essex A), and the latter by Mr S.C. Walters and Mr A.W.R. Wilby.

Mr Corby joined the other officers on the platform.

Life member

Mr J. Freeman (Life) proposed that Mr Corby be elected a Life member of the Council. He said that his proposal was in no way associated with Mr Corby’s election as Vice-President, but was intended to mark his past services to the Council, of which he had been a member for over 30 years. His contributions to debate in committee and in the Council had been invaluable.

After Mr R.B. Smith (Honorary) had seconded “on behalf of the younger members” (laughter), Mr Corby was elected by the unanimous vote of the Council (applause).

Thanking members, Mr Corby said that he was deeply conscious of the honour that had been done him.

Election of Honorary members

Ten Honorary members completed their three-year term at the end of the meeting. Together with three vacancies already existing, 13 places were consequently available.

Ten names were individually proposed and seconded: Mrs M.A. Wratten, to assist the Secretary; Canon K.W.H. Felstead, for his work on the Peals Analysis Committee; Mr A.J. Frost, an architect with considerable experience on the Towers & Belfries Committee; Mr K.S.B. Croft, a founder member of the Bell Restoration Funds Committee; Mr R.F.B. Speed, a member of a number of committees and chairman of the Ringing World committee; Mr J. Hartless, a member of the Towers & Belfries Committee of considerable experience; Mr H.W. Egglestone, a member of the Council for 15 years who had served on the Ringing World committee; Mr D. Hughes, a Trustee of the Carter Ringing Machine; Mr W.H. Viggers, a key member of the Biographies Committee; Miss J. Sanderson, a professional librarian; and Mr R.B. Smith, for his contribution to the general work of the Council. Mr D.A. Bayles was proposed, but declined to stand for election.

The ten nominees were then individually elected on a show of hands.

Election of Honorary Auditors

The retiring auditors, Messrs M.J. Church (Guildford DG) and E.G.H. Godfrey (Surrey A), were both re-elected after the former had been proposed and seconded by Mr E.A. Burnett (Life) and Mr C.H. Rogers and the latter by Mr C. Mew (Surrey A) and Mr I.H. Oram (Cumberland Youths).

The President thanked them for their work over the past three years, mentioning specially their investigation into the financial structure of “The Ringing World” (applause).

Loss of members through death

The President read out the names of those who had died since the Council last met: Messrs T.W. White (Honorary 1958-68, Life since 1968, died 2 September 1980), J.T. Barrett (Salisbury DG 1960-72; died 13 September 1980), C.W. Pipe (Suffolk G 1946-78, died 5 October 1980), W.B. Kynaston (Glos. & Bristol DA 1936-69, died 14 December 1980), Rev. P.N. Bond (Cumberland Youths 1950-63, died 4 February 1981), J.A. Acres (Leicester DG 1962, died 18 March 1981), and T. Cooper (Hereford DG 1972-80, died 14 May 1981).

Members stood while Canon E.G. Orland said a short prayer.

The President paid tribute to the work of the late Mr T.W. White, who had been for many years Editor of “The Ringing World”, and commented on the long service of Messrs. Pipe and Kynaston.

Minutes of the last meeting

The Minutes of the 1980 meeting were adopted without comment, on the proposition of the Hon. Secretary, seconded by Mrs O.D. Burnett. The Secretary said that copies of the surveys of bell restoration funds and of unringable bells, referred to in the Minute on the Bell Restoration Funds Committee, had been sent to all affiliated societies.

Secretary’s report

The certified resident membership of the 49 territorial societies affiliated to the Council at the end of 1980 was 27,792. This compares with a total of 25,233 members three years earlier, and thus represents an encouraging growth of some 8%.

The largest society continues to be the Oxford Diocesan Guild, with 1,949 members, but seven other societies each have other a thousand members:

Bath & Wells Diocesan Assn.1,719
Salisbury Diocesan Guild1,348
Kent County Association1,199
Essex Association1,132
Lancashire Association1,083
Gloucester & Bristol Dio. Assn.1,081
Yorkshire Association1,053

The Lancashire Association is a newcomer to this list.

In addition to these territorial societies, 15 non-territorial societies are at present affiliated to the Council, and a 16th - the Liverpool University Society - is applying for affiliation at this year’s meeting.

Because of their increased membership, the Ely Diocesan Guild, the Surrey Association and the Society for the Archdeaconry of Stafford each now have an additional representative on the Council. The resulting slight increase is partially offset by a drop in the number of Shropshire Association representatives from two to one, and by the lapse of the South Leicestershire & North Derbyshire Association whose membership is at present too small to qualify for a representative. Overall, 47 of the 173 representatives on the new Council are new members.

Although most of the Council’s funds showed an increase during 1980, the General Fund will be seen to have made a loss of some £220 on the year’s working. The growing cost of the Council’s annual meeting and the ever-increasing workload of many of its committees, allied with the continuing effects of inflation, account for this, and regrettably but inevitably mean that the annual affiliation fee paid by societies, which has been £3.00 per representative since January 1978, will have to be increased from January 1982. I consequently intend to propose at Rochester that it become £5.00 per representative.

C.A. Wratten (Hon. Secretary & Treasurer)

The Secretary proposed the adoption of his report, and was seconded by Mr Dukes. The report was then adopted without discussion, although Mr Dukes asked that the Minutes of the meeting record the Council’s gratitude to the Secretary and Mrs Wratten for their work for the Council.

Replying to a question from Mr D.E. Sibson (Cumberland Youths), the Secretary said that he would check to ensure that the St. David’s Diocesan Guild had sufficient members to entitle it to a representative; Mr J.S. Barnes (Cumberland Youths) said it would be regrettable if the Guild’s affiliation were to lapse.

Accounts for 1980
General Fund
Income and expenditure account for the year 1980
516Affiliation fees516.15
33Hire of exhibition cards14.00

256Council meeting314.00
77Committee expenses231.29
-Committee expenses, 1978-971.67
30Depreciation - exhibition cards30.00
15Secretary’s expenses15.00
45Stationery and printing24.97
26Postages and telephone31.34


Balance Sheet as at 31 December 1980
109Exhibition cards - cost less depreciation to date78.75
114Publications Fund13.09
192Thackray Bequest-
-National Savings Bank126.15
192Cash and bank balances149.81
33Sundry debtors32.00

21Clement Glenn Bequest-
21Affiliation fees in advance112.52
83The Ringing World-
19Sundry creditors110.88


396Net Assets£176.40
340Accumulated Fund, 1 January 1980395.63
(56)less: deficit on year’s working219.23

Publications Fund
Income and expenditure account for the year 1980

2390Stock, 1 January3422.75

3423less: Stock, 31 December5154.00

500Postage and telephone654.25
74Publications Committee expenses129.85


1403Excess of income over expenditure£1987.14
Balance Sheet as at 31 December 1980
2700Cash and bank balances2405.29

14General Fund13.09
224Clement Glenn Bequest37.11
376The Ringing World-
-Payments in advance20.00
7Sundry creditors-


5502Net Assets£7489.09
4099Accumulated Fund, 1 January 19805501.95
1403Excess of income over expenditure1987.14

Clement Glenn Bequest
Income and expenditure account for the year 1980
39Film hire (net)13.93

7Education Committee expenses11.72
50Depreciation - films50.00

64Excess of income over expenditure99.74

Balance Sheet as at 31 December 1980
21General Fund-
224Publications Fund37.11
100Films - cost less depreciation to date50.00
398£563 Treasury 3½% Stock 79/81 at cost397.92
656National Savings Bank1057.62
92Cash and bank balances49.12
3Sundry debtor2.21


1494Net Assets£1593.98
1430Accumulated Fund, 1 January 19801494.24
64Excess of income over expenditure99.74

Friends of the CCCBR Library
Income and expenditure account for the year 1980
50Transfer from General Fund.50.00
-Transfer from Thackray Bequest500.00

12Librarian’s expenses12.00
10Depreciation - library fixtures10.00

49Excess of income over expenditure342.87

Balance Sheet as at 31 December 1980
60Library fixtures - cost less depreciation to date50.00
87Cash and bank balances439.92


157Net Assets£499.92
108Accumulated Fund, 1 January 1980157.05
49Excess of income over expenditure342.87

Thackray Bequest
Income and expenditure account for the year 1980
2411978 tax recovered-

737Excess of income over expenditure£1029.93
Balance Sheet as at 31 December 1980
6401Leicester Building Society-
-National Savings Bank6720.96
192General Fund-

6209Net Assets£6720.96
5656Accumulated Fund, 1 January 19806208.85
184less: purchase of equipment for the
use of the Council’s committees
-Transfer to Library Fund500.00

737add: excess of income over expenditure1029.93

Note:£3,500 of the Thackray Bequest is allocated to the Rescue Fund for Redundant Bells, and £1,000 is at the disposal of the Publications Committee.
(From March 1981 these figures are £4,500 and £2,000 respectively).
“The Ringing World”
Balance Sheet as at 31 December 1980
200Goodwill, blocks etc200.00
200less: Amount written off200.00

Investments at cost:
2000Abbey National Building Society2000.00
500Brighton Corporation - 6¾% Bonds-
907Carrington Viyella Ltd - 3500 Ordinary 25p shares907.48
1756EMI Ltd - £1750 8¾% Exchangeable
Unsecured Loan Stock 1981
933Francis Industries Ltd - 2000 Ordinary 25p shares932.88
1194Antony Gibbs Income Units - 3647.42 units1194.02
1211Grand Metropolitan Ltd - 1486 Ordinary 50p shares1211.43
1154Hestair Ltd - 1250 Ordinary 25p shares1154.04
1530Imperial Group Ltd. - £1700 8% Convertible
Unsecured Loan Stock 1985/90
Midland Bank Ltd. -
22468 Ordinary £1 Shares224.40
1199£1630 7½% Convertible Substituted
Unsecured Loan Stock 1983/93
Northern Engineering Ltd. -
12272616 Ordinary Shares1227.44
157163 Preference £1 Shares156.74
516Sedgwick Forbes Bland Payne Group Ltd -
543 Ordinary 10p Shares
3500Tyndall Income Units - 5002 Units3499.57
5077British Exchequer 10% Stock 1983 £5969.77 Stock5076.60
-British Funding 6% Loan 1993 £3816.62 Stock2300.00

10120Debtors and prepayments11007.83
13980Cash and bank balances15595.48

12184Subscriptions in advance17459.24


24830Net Assets£24701.45
23992Accumulated Fund, 1 January 198024830.40
838less: Net (Loss)/Profit(128.95)

“The Ringing World”
Income and expenditure account for the year 1980
25125Postal subscribers30748.48
142Profit on sale of calendars234.34
923Sundry receipts1188.00
2551Interest and dividends receivable4110.12
1078Profit on sale of investments-

43511Printing and blocks50029.50
9069Wrappers and postage12128.14
3353Editor’s fees and expenses3860.57
148Editorial and accounts assistance1357.00
390Rent, telephone and services2469.36
395Postage, stationery and sundries632.99
205Miscellaneous expenses236.19
300Accountancy charges375.00

338Net Income (Deficit)(128.95)
500Legacy received-
838Total Income (Deficit)(128.95)

Auditors’ Report to the Central Council of Church Bell Ringers on the accounts of their official journal

We have audited the annexed balance sheet dated 31st December 1980 and have obtained all the information and explanations we required. In our opinion, the 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 our information and the explanations given to us and as shown by the books.

Temple Chambers,
Temple Avenue,
London EC4Y 0ER
Chartered Accountants

March 1981

The Secretary said that, although the financial situation was generally satisfactory, there had been a deficit on the General Fund during 1980 of some £220. If allowance was made for late Committee expenses, the loss on the year’s working was about £147, but there had also been an actual loss in 1979 as well. As explained in his report, the losses arose from the combined effects of inflation and an increasing workload; but they could not be allowed to continue. He proposed that the affiliation fee payable by societies be increased from 1 January 1982 to £5.00 per representative.

Mr Threlfall seconded the proposal, which was agreed by the Council without dissent.

The President said that he would defer acceptance of the accounts until after the report of the “Ringing World” Committee, later in the agenda.

Carter Ringing Machine

The following report was adopted on the proposition of Mr D. Hughes (Honorary), seconded by Mr W.H. Dobbie (Honorary):

Demonstrations were gives during 1980 as follows:

February 9th: some 50 members of the East Grinstead Guild attended a demonstration in the morning, but owing to lack of time to prepare the machine it did not perform very well at first. Some of the party stayed only a short time but those who stayed longer saw the machine working satisfactorily. A further demonstration was given in the afternoon to six people when Plain Bob Major and Maximus and Stedman Caters were brought round.

April 16th: 21 people from Hemingford Grey and Hemingford Abbots enjoyed a demonstration, and one of the party “conducted” a touch of Plain Bob Major.

November 15th: a demonstration was given for 26 members of the Cambridge University Guild and four people who had enquired of the machine at the museum and were directed to the demonstration. On this occasion we had great difficulty in obtaining the machine, which had not been removed from the store by the museum staff responsible. It eventually arrived at the same time as the party and a good demonstration was given. One of the methods rung had been produced by a member of the party. An apology was eventually given for the delay in obtaining the machine from the museum.

The condition of the machine has not altered during the year and only small repairs to the electrical connections have been made.

W H Dobbie, D Hughes (Trustees)

After the President had thanked to Trustees for their work, they were both re-elected after having been nominated by Mrs O.L. Rogers (London CA), seconded by Mr D.M. Joyce (Kent CA).

Rolls of Honour

The Trustee’s report was brief:

I have nothing to report. The Rolls are in St Paul’s Cathedral, and are in good condition.

W.T. Cook (Trustee)

It was adopted on the proposition of Mr Cook, seconded by Mr Dobbie, after Mr Wilby had suggested that the first sentence ought perhaps to be deleted (laughter). Mr Threlfall proposed, and Mr T.J. Lock (Middx CA) seconded, Mr Cook’s re-election as Trustee, and this was agreed.

Committee reports

The President reminded members that all committees had to be elected, and that, unless it had been agreed otherwise before any nominations were accepted, the size of each was limited by Rule to five. If more names were proposed than there were available places, election would be by ballot.


The Committee met twice in London during the year, and in addition to its routine business of agreeing the arrangements for this year’s Council meeting and of reviewing the work of the Council’s other committees, it considered three topics referred to it by the Council.

It endorsed the Library Committee’s original recommendation to the Council that the Library be insured for a more realistic sum than hitherto, on two related grounds: firstly, that the main danger to the Library is damage rather than loss, and secondly that any insurance payments in response to claims would be directly related to the adequacy of the insurance cover. The Librarian has as a result now insured the collection for £20,000.

Secondly, it considered and adopted a report on insurance for ringers prepared by a sub-committee consisting of Messrs M.J. Church, I.H. Oram and D. Sloman. The sub-committee’s recommendations were published in The Ringing World on 27 February 1981 (p. 195), and their report forms an appendix to this Committee report.

Finally, it considered a report prepared at the Council’s request by Messrs M.J. Church and E.G.H. Godfrey, the Council’s Honorary auditors on the general financial structure of “The Ringing World”. In following their remit, the authors had three objectives in mind:

They concluded by making five recommendations:

  1. that a Capital Fund need not be established, since a large sum would need, in these inflationary times, to be continually topped up, and a substantial amount would need to be raised in order to make any substantial difference to the price of the paper.

    This recommendation was accepted by the Committee.

  2. that the Ringing World Committee should consider whether it would be advisable to produce accounts at more frequent intervals, say quarterly.

    The Ringing World Committee is following up this recommendation.

  3. that the market value of the investments, rather than the cost, should be used for planning purposes and be shown in the Annual Accounts by way of a note.

    This recommendation was accepted.

  4. that investment interest and dividends, including reclaimed tax, and profits (and losses) on Sales are excluded from the Income and Expenditure Account, but added to the cost of Investments in the Balance Sheet; this amount should be excluded from Budgets and the paper priced accordingly.

    The Committee felt that, while such a procedure should not be mandatory, it nevertheless merited consideration by the Ringing World committee.

  5. that, since the Council’s legal adviser had informed the authors that the insolvency of the Ringing World would involve the other assets and investments of the Central Council, and all members of the Council would be singly and collectively liable for the liabilities, there was great merit in consideration being given to the formation of a limited company, possibly limited by guarantee, to own and run the paper. To structure affairs in the best possible way would undoubtedly be expensive, and would perhaps be best embarked upon only after receiving Counsel’s opinion and possibly Inland Revenue approval.

    The Committee agreed, after considerable discussion, to note this recommendation, but, satisfied that the Ringing World Committee was keeping matters under close scrutiny, recommended that no action be taken on it for the present.

On the Council’s more general financial affairs, the Committee agreed to support a move by the Hon. Treasurer to increase the annual subscription from 1 January 1982 to £5.00 per representative. In the meantime it authorised him to draw up to a maximum of £200 from Thackray Bequest investment income to cover any shortfall in General Fund income during 1981.

At the same time it increased the sums available from the Bequest for the Rescue Fund for Redundant Bells from £3,500 to £4,500, and for the Publications Fund from £1,000 to £2,000 in view of heavy forecast expenditure this year, particularly for new Beginners Handbooks.

Cyril A. Wratten (Hon. Secretary)

The report’s adoption was proposed by Mr Wratten, seconded by Dr J.C. Baldwin (Llandaff & Monmouth DA), the former commenting that copies of the insurance sub-committee’s report would be sent to affiliated societies. He also paid tribute to the work of the Hon. Auditors in producing such a comprehensive and lucid report on the Ringing World.

A number of members expressed their misgivings that the Committee had decided to take no action on the Auditors’ final recommendation. Mr C.J. Groome (Peterborough DG) said that the Council’s main assets - the Library and the Thackray and Glenn Bequests - ought to be protected, and suggested that this part of the report be referred back to the committee. He was supported by Messrs H. Rogers (London CA), J. Freeman, and G.W. Massey (Bath & Wells DA). Mr P.M.J. Gray (Australia and New Zealand A) wondered whether members mere being unduly pessimistic, and whether the expected cost was really necessary and justifiable.

In reply to a question from the president, Mr W.B. Cartwright (Worcs. A) was reluctant to estimate what the cost might be, but guessed it might be of the order of £1,000. Mr R J Cooles felt that much of the advice required could be obtained from suitably qualified members of the Council.

Mrs. M.J. Wilkinson (Honorary) then proposed that Mr. Groome’s motion, that item e. be referred back, which had been seconded by Mr R.B. Smith, be put; Canon Felstead seconded. The Council agreed, and went on to agree to refer back the disputed item.

Subject to this amendment, the report was then adopted.

“The Ringing World” Committee

During 1980 we published 51 issues of “The Ringing World”, including the double issue for Christmas. Of these, 22 were of 24 pages, one of 36, and the remainder 20; in all a total of 1,120 pages, slightly more than in 1979. No issues were missed despite our printers having difficulties with the printing unions, which resulted in one emergency issue. Most unfortunately this coincided with an association centenary issue. There were a number of issues devoted to centenaries and other anniversaries. Once again we were able to feature a cathedral for our colour picture at Christmas.

The annual increase in wage rates for the printing trade faced us with a steeper increase in printing costs than we had planned for. Some economies were made in consultation with Seven Corners, and we managed to break even (a loss of £129 on a turnover of £73,000). The possibility of an increase in selling price during the year was rejected.

Our income was bolstered by a sharp increase is our investment income to over £4,000 and a rise in donations to £6,700. This financial support from our readers is very much appreciated, and enables us to produce more 24-page issues.

Our Editor is 70 this year and hopes to retire shortly. Encouraged by the views expressed at Southampton, we have advertised the post at what we believe to be an appropriate salary and we have raised the price of the paper to a level to sustain this figure. There has been a fall in circulation, partly because of this increase and partly because of the economic climate.

The sick minds in the Exercise have been having a field day with hoax peals. They have not been even remotely amusing; they are designed to cause distress and often succeed. Our policy continues to be to

A Newsletter competition was held during the year and we were pleasantly surprised by the number and quality of the entries.

At Guildford Charles Denyer has continued, as ever, to ensure that “The Ringing World” appears punctually every week and has been all over the country attending functions as our representative. To him and to his many helpers, both paid and voluntary, we give our sincere thanks. Also we must thank the officers of the Council for their support, and Messrs Cartwright, Hughes and Tate for continuing as legal adviser, treasurer and accountant. Douglas and Mrs Hughes have again made us most welcome at the Bell Foundry for our meetings; to them also our sincere thanks.

R.F.B. Speed (Chairman) D A Bayles
H W Egglestone
Mrs J S King
Mrs A Newing
A N Stubbs

Moving the report’s adoption, Mr Speed said that he was pleased that the journal’s next editor, Lt Col David Thorne, was present; he would become editor in November, although Mr Denyer would not finally leave until the end of the year.

Mr Speed said that, following the Council’s advice at Southampton, the Committee had increased the price of the Ringing World, and circulation had now dropped to just over 5,000. Printing costs were now expected to rise by some 14% during 1981, which could mean an extra 5p on the cost of the paper.

Seconding, Mr Stubbs (ASCY) said that the Committee had decided to conduct a readership survey in the near future, and asked representatives to ensure that as many readers as possible returned their completed questionnaires. The report was then adopted.

A proposal by Mr Joyce that the committee should have 8 members having failed to obtain a seconder, it was agreed that it should have a strength of 6, as proposed by Mr Egglestone, seconded by Mrs Newing. Since seven names were proposed and seconded, election was by ballot, the successful nominees being Messrs Speed, Egglestone, Stubbs, C.J. Groome, M.J. Church and A.W.R. Wilby, and the unsuccessful, Mrs Newing.

Mr Speed presented the Ringing World accounts, explaining that the apparent sharp increase in editorial and accounts assistance and in rent, telephone and services was largely due to a rearrangement of the accounts: previously much of this cost had appeared under “printing” since it was provided by Seven Corners Press. Replying to a question from Mr S.C. Walters, he said that it was at present very difficult to judge whether it was better for the paper for subscribers to take it by post or through a newsagent. He also acknowledged a suggestion from Mr W. Butler (Oxford CG) that it might be helpful in future to distinguish between donations sent with quarter-peal reports and other donations.

A suggestion by Mr G.W. Massey that the Committee had been negligent in allowing the journal’s reserve funds to decline from a year’s costs to 3 months’ worth over a period of years found little support.

Mr Wratten then proposed, and Mr Dukes seconded, the adoption of the Council’s accounts, including those of “The Ringing World”, and this was agreed.

(To be continued)

The Ringing World, June 26, 1981, pages 559 to 562

May 26, 1981, Official Report (Part II)

Peals Analysis Committee


We have recorded 4632 peals rung in 1980, of which 4212 were on tower bells and 420 on handbells. The overall total was 128 more than in 1979, with tower bell peals up by 182 and handbell peals down by 54. Handbell peals have now dropped by 110 over the last two years.

On tower bells the biggest increases proportionately have been in Royal (+ 70), Caters (+ 33) and Minimus (+ 12), while peals of Minor are down by 26.

In our report for 1979 we drew attention to Rule C4 of the Decisions relating to peals in more than one method. In October 1980 our Chairman queried 53 peals which did not conform to this rule in their publication. Replies were received in respect of most of these, and from them it is evident that the majority of ringers and societies desire and see the need for correct publication. Some replies pleaded ignorance of the rule, and others gave the saving of printing space as their reason for lack of information. Since October 33 more peals have failed to meet the provisions of this rule.

Breakdown of peals by numbers of bells, and comparison with 1979

Royal & Caters1-1
Minor & Doubles82-6


The leading societies

The following societies rang 150 or more peals:

Winchester & Portsmouth D.G.2757282
Yorkshire Association24218260
Leicester D.G.21827245
Oxford D.G.15746203
Southwell D.G.16317180
Lancashire Association1707177
Gloucester & Bristol D.A.1429151

Compared with a similar list for 1979, the Southwell D.G. and Gloucester & Bristol D.A. return, and the Essex A. and Lincoln D.G. have dropped out.

At the 1980 Council meeting a suggestion was made that we should also show the leading peal-ringing societies in relation to their membership. Using the 1978 resident membership figures as set out in the report on the Bell Restoration Funds Committee’s survey which was distributed last year (being the figures most readily available to us), numbers of peals rung have been calculated as a percentage of membership. In this way, the leading societies are:

No of pealsPercentage of
St Martin’s Guild11280%
Leicester D.G.24547.1%
Southwell D.G.18045%
Derby D.A.13533.4%
Winchester & Portsmouth D.G.28232.8%
North Staffordshire A.4232.6%
North American Guild6532.5%

The average for societies for which membership figures are available is 17%.

First pealers and firsts as conductor

There were 636 first pealers in 1980 (580 in 1979) and 100 first as conductor (106). The Gloucester & Bristol D.A. had most first pealers with 40, followed by the Yorkshire A. with 39, and the Winchester & Portsmouth with 28.


Peals were rung in 1758 towers (1733 in 1979), broken down as follows:

1 peal957
2 peals353
3 peals190
4 peals78
5 peals57
6 peals36
7 peals21
8 peals8
9 peals13

and the following 45 towers had 10 or more peals:

Loughborough, Bell Foundry89
Barrow Gurney41
Birmingham Cathedral37
South Wigston24
Burton Latimer23
Bedford, St Paul19
Bristol Cathedral18
Cambridge, St. Andrew18
Uxbridge, St.Margaret16
14-Edenham, Hungerford, Windsor (St.John)
13-Harrogate (St Wilfrid), Rotherham*
12-New Alresford,* Bloxwich,* Daventry, Leicester (All Saints), Leicester Cathedral,* Moulton,* Nottingham (St Peter), Trumpington, Worcester (All Saints)
11-Birmingham (St Martin),* Bristol (Christ Church), Burley,* Farnworth,* Hanbury, Hughenden,* Kingsbury,* Oaks-in-Charnwood.
10-Deptford,* West Hallam,* Salford, Bishopstoke, York (St Martin)*
* Towers which had fewer than 10 peals in 1979

This is the ninth time that our report has contained this feature. In these 9 years only 6 towers have been mentioned every year, as follows:- Loughborough Bell Foundry (613 peals in the 9 years), Birmingham Cathedral (334), Meldreth (283), Isleworth (237), Salford (214) and Trumpington (130). These 6 towers have been responsible for about 6% of all the peals rung in the 9 years. 5 towers have been mentioned 8 times, 6 towers 7 times, 3 towers 6 times, 4 towers 5 times, 15 towers 4 times, 8 towers 3 times, 16 towers twice and 41 towers once.


Numbers of peals rang in the more popular methods are set out below. Figures for 1979 appear in brackets.

Cambridge S.60(55)5( 1)
Single S.38(35)1( 7)
Yorkshire S.33(36)0( 0)
Bristol S.20(22)1( 2)
Spliced S.14(11)4( 1)
Kent/Oxford T.B.2( 4)13(14)
Plain Bob4( 4)6( 5)
Grandsire12(14)1( 0)
Cambridge S88(72)13(10)
Single S.71(67)4( 5)
Yorkshire S.51(50)7( 4)
Plain Bob41(35)16(14)
London S.48(34)2( 3)
Bristol S.33(21)5( 2)
Kent/Oxford T.B.13( 3)21(38)
Spliced S.12( 9)2( 2)
Grandsire80(71)4( 9)
Single S.355(383)4( 7)
Spliced S.274(239)20(10)
Plain Bob226(202)53(70)
Yorkshire S.211(229)13(24)
Cambridge S.157(166)16(19)
Bristol S.142(132)6( 8)
London S.109( 89)9( 4)
Rutland S.109(124)5( 5)
Lincolnshire S.87( 83)11( 7)
Superlative S.71( 72)9( 4)
Kent/Oxford T.B.25( 27)46(58)
Pudsey S.48( 36)3( 2)
Double Norwich43( 57)1( 3)
Grandsire117(122)3( 6)
Stedman116( 96)1( 3)
Plain Bob33( 19)0( 1)
2-6 methods250(260)22(16)
7 methods248(240)10(16)
Plain Bob199(180)38(25)
8+ methods121(167)8( 7)
Cambridge S.71( 64)3( 5)
Single S.33( 29)4( 2)
2+ methods175(174)0( 1)
Plain Bob27( 15)1( 0)
Stedman23( 18)0( 0)
Grandsire13( 24)2( 2)

Single S = peals of Surprise in single methods other then those listed.

Peals of Note

We consider the following peals to be worthy of special mention and we congratulate these who took part:


The following were published as peals in The Ringing World, but have not been included in the Analysis for the reasons given:

Corrections to the 1979 Analysis

Changes to the 1979 peal totals arising from late publication, withdrawal of and correction to peals after the submission of our report for 1979 can be summarised as follows (all tower bell peals):

Derby D.A.: Major -1; Ely D.A.: Minor +1; Essex A: Minor +1; Leicester D.G.: Major -1; Oxford D.G.: Major -1; Suffolk G.: Royal +1; Winchester & P.D.G.: Minor +2, Minor & Doubles +1, Doubles +2; Yorkshire A.: Major -1; Non-association: Maximus +1, Royal +1, Doubles +2; Non-affiliated soc: Maximus -1, Royal -1, Major +1, Minor +1.

The net effect on totals is Royal +1, Major -3, Minor +5, Minor & Doubles +1, Doubles +4. The revised total for the year is 4504.

F.B. LUFKIN (Chairman) Canon K.W.H. Felstead
D.A. FRITH (Co-opted)


A.S.College Youths1316751982 2  1321 1  72880
Australia & NZA   2321          2 8210
Bath & Wells DA828279620 14  1       1391140
Bedfordshire A.733 29423            69 69
Beverley & DS1 111015            19 19
Cambridge UG124315 6 2     1    33134
Carlisle DG   1221            6 6
Chester DG2 7347236 8  2 4 23 4 10533138
Coventry DG  423628 2      5 1 54660
Derby DA7 20470411 1    3 11 4 11718135
G. Devonshire R. 13 34916 4          67 67
Durham & NDA 1222375          6 40646
Durham US 12 2 2            7 7
E. Derby & WNA      2            2 2
E. Grinstead & DG    2   1          3 3
Ely DA113164724 2    8     1038111
Essex A.1 5343640 7      2 4 1056111
Glos & BDA63175611126 13  1 3 4 1 1429151
Guildford DG115435510    4 1 10   611576
Hereford DG    7419 9  2 1117   392160
Hertford CA 41458335  1   4 16 4 10624130
Kent CA11156361344 72         125 125
Lancashire A136103951321 72   1 1 411707177
Leeds US211 11 2 1      1   18119
Leicester DG8549131081222 1    5 1615 21827245
Lincoln DG238 30255 141       1 1151116
Llandaff & MDA11352137 4      4 2 45651
London CA139121633            47 47
Manchester UG.  1 1              2 2
Middlesex CA  534162            57 57
Midland CG   51424        2   25227
N. American G.  351646 2    2212 13 362965
N. Staffs A.1 522536            42 42
N. Wales A.    11       1 1   224
Norwich DA 21217147 10      3 5 80888
Oxford DG428492142715  11210 1515215746203
Oxford S.  1433         1   11112
Oxford US1 1 2 7    1   2 1 11415
Peterborough DG223234428 11          86 86
Railwaymen’s G     1             1 1
St. David’s DG    3              3 3
St Martin’s DG36158235105 1          112 112
Salisbury DG  33291030 12     11   87289
Scottish A.  2 3            2 527
S.R. Cumberland Y.22212122          1   59160
S. Sherwood Y.  1 1              2 2
Shropshire A. 1  7221 1          32 32
Southwell DG8 23758749 7414 513 3 16317180
Stafford Arch S.123 33713      1     59160
Suffolk G.323230221 291       1 93194
Surrey A. 3149110 21         31 31
Sussex CA3 7439519 4    1     81182
Swansea & BDG    14             5 5
Truro DG  21466 2          21 21
Universities A    1              1 1
U. Bristol S. 21214 9      3 7 1 281139
U. London S.  511136 2    1 11 11 282351
Winchester & PDG7413511221721364    25   2757282
Worcester & Dist.A24148731019 4  1   2   1343137
Yorkshire A.14722131271335 101 1 3 11 3 24218260
Non-Affiliated Socs2219678736 3  4 4 23 9 15340193
Non-Association221132218 4  1       53154

The report’s adoption was proposed by Mr F.B. Lufkin (Essex) and seconded by Mr C.H. Rogers. The latter urged the Editor of the “Ringing World” to publish amendments and corrections to peal reports more frequently - a point supported by some other committees.

A lengthy discussion ensued, broken by the lunch interval, as a result of attempts by members to persuade the Council to recognise the three peals listed in the report under “Omissions”.

Mr B.D. Threlfall, seconded by Mr S.C. Walters, said that there was no logical reason for excluding the Qualis at Basingstoke. Both Mr P. Border (Coventry DG) and Mr Wilby commented forcefully that it would be better if bands wishing to ring peals liable to contravene the Decisions of the Council checked before doing so and, if they felt it necessary, sought to have the Decisions amended. On being put to a vote, Mr Threlfall’s motion was lost.

Mr J. Kershaw (Lancashire A) said that the peal of Caters at Broughton had been rung at a time when a ninth bell had been added to the original ring of eight and there seemed no immediate prospect of getting a tenth. An assertion by Mr F.T. Blagrove (Middx CA) had amended its Decisions in 1974 to recognise all peals of Caters rung in 9-bell towers was denied by the Secretary: the Minutes showed that, following the precedent set by the recognition of peals of Caters rung at Basingstoke, specific peals rung in 9- and 11-bell towers had been accepted, he said.

Mr D.E. Sibson moved that, following these precedents, the Broughton peal be recognised, and was seconded by Mr I.G. Campbell (Beverley and District); this was agreed, with four members voting against.

When the meeting was resumed after lunch, Mr C.K. Lewis (Honorary) proposed the acceptance of the 5,040 of Cambridge Minor rung at Leicester in December. He said he did so regretfully, since the composition was a monstrosity; but following the precedent set by the acceptance of a similar peal rung at Cox Green in 1970 it could not be said to contravene the Decisions. He suggested however that the Decisions could be amended to close this particular loophole.

Mr H. Chant equally regretfully (laughter) seconded. He said that he had produced the composition only to show how the Decisions could be interpreted, and had not expected to see it rung; he would be heartbroken if the peal were now rejected (laughter).

Mr Blagrove said that the 1969 Decisions had subsequently be amended by the Council, and that the peal satisfied the amended Decisions, but the Secretary said that the Minutes of the Council’s 1973 meeting reflected only the recognition of the Cox Green peal - the Decisions had not been formally amended.

On being put to the vote, the motion to recognise the peal was lost by a large majority.

During the discussion, Mr P.J. Tremain (Truro DG) had suggested that the Decisions should be re-examined and amendments proposed as necessary to cover all eventualities. This theme was taken up by other speakers, several commenting that the Decisions were at present often difficult to interpret. It was eventually agreed, on the proposition of Mr A.P. Smith (Winchester & Portsmouth DG), seconded by Mrs A Martin (N. American G) that the joint Methods and Records committee should consider the situation relating to peals of Minor and report back to the Council.

Mr M.J. Church protested at the amount of time spent in discussing just three peals when the Council had far more important business before it (applause); he suggested the Administrative Committee should consider ways of speeding matters. The President said that he accepted the point, but feared that little could be done.

On the report is general, Mr G.A. Halls (Derby DA) welcomed the figures relating society membership and peals rung, but said he would like to see statistics on the number of peals rung by local bands. The Council should strive to encourage the latter in every way, he said.

The report was them adopted, subject to the inclusion of the Broughton peal, and the new committee elected. Six names being proposed, there was a ballot, resulting in the election of Canon Felstead and Messrs F.B. Lufkin, T.G. Pett, C.H. Rogers and O.C.R. Webster, Mr P. Mounsey (Oxford US) being unsuccessful.

Records Committee

A. First peals on tower bells in 1980.
Jan.15056Heathrow S. MajorEssex A.
15042Ewerby S. MaximusLincoln D.G.
55056Brockley S. MajorPeterborough D.G.
125152Leaning S. MajorDerby D.A.
155056Tantalum S. MajorBath & Wells D.A.
165040Carter’s TriplesSt. Martin’s G.
215040Mercury MajorLancashire A.
235184Chew S. MajorBath & Wells D.A.
265088Maia S. MajorYorkshire A.
295040Knifesmithgate S. RoyalLeicester D.G.
305184Zinc S. MajorBath & Wells D.A.
Feb.55016Double Coslany Court MaximusSoc. of Royal Cumberland Youths
95152Ramblers D. MajorRambling Ringers Soc.
125056Magnesium S. MajorBath & Wells D.A.
155152Gold S. MajorGloucester & Bristol D.A.
165056St. Margaret’s S. MajorMiddlesex C.A. & London D.G.
195024Alverstoke S. MajorHertford C.A.
235056Dingley D. MajorPeterborough D.G.
235152Gatwick S. MajorEssex A.
235088Uxacona S. MajorYorkshire A.
235088Vivian S. MajorS. Northants S.
Mar.15152Ulceby D. MajorLincoln D.G.
35024Thorne S. MajorLancashire A.
45088Haggerston S. MaximusSoc. of Royal Cumberland Youths
85056Liverpool B. MajorHertford C.A.
85184Quenington S. MajorS. Northants S.
105056Pearson S. MajorWinchester & Portsmouth D.G.
155088Lessness S. MaximusNon-Association
225120Bannaventa S. MajorYorkshire A.
225152Thenford S. MajorS. Northants S.
225002Berkeley Vale S. RoyalGloucester & Bristol D.A.
235024Kirkburton S. MajorArchdeaconry of Halifax G.
255024West Germany S. MajorLancashire A.
255040Canterbury Little B. MajorYorkshire A.
255040Gilthorpe S. RoyalLeicester D.G.
285120Hafnium S. MajorBath & Wells D.A.
295088Mediolanum S. MajorYorkshire A.
Apr.55088Varae S. MajorYorkshire A.
115040Candlesby Slow Course CatersPeterborough D.G.
195088Ardotalia S. MajorYorkshire A.
225120Araucaria D. MajorSoc. of Royal Cumberland Youths
225184Droxford S. MajorHertford C.A.
245152Watership D. MajorWinchester & Portsmouth D.G.
May55094Double Oxford B. CatersCambridge University G.
85056Sunderland D. MajorS. Lincolnshire S.
95040Henleaze S. RoyalGloucester & Bristol D.A.
105152Cholsey S. MajorOxford D.G.
115040Humberside S. RoyalAncient S. of College Youths
135088Kingswood S. MajorPeterborough D.G.
165086Dundry S. MajorGloucester & Bristol D.A.
175184Vindocladia S. MajorYorkshire A.
225184Walbury D. MajorOxford D.G.
245024Antioch S. MajorMiddlesex C.A. & London D.G.
245040Hampshire D. RoyalWinchester & Portsmouth D.G.
305040Glazgow Little S. MajorG. of Devonshire Ringers
315184Felmersham S. MajorBedfordshire A.
June35056Bosel D. MajorWorcestershire & Districts A.
65152Brixworth S. MajorPeterborough D.G.
65152Newlyn S. MajorGloucester & Bristol D.A.
105040Bockingford T.B. RoyalKent C.A.
115040Foggathorpe Little S. MajorUniversity of Bristol S.
175152Froxfielde S. MajorHertford C.A.
205152Flax Bourton S. MajorGloucester & Bristol D.A.
215088Venonae S. MajorYorkshire A.
225040St. Pancras College B. TriplesMiddlesex C.A. & London D.G.
285088Rorestun S. MajorYorkshire A.
July45152Westbury S. MajorGloucester & Bristol D.A.
55088Fulney S. MajorLincoln D.G.
85088Olympus S. MajorBath & Wells D.A.
125088Rachel S. MajorMiddlesex C.A. & London D.G.
175152Cannon S. MajorOxford D.G.
215376Champion S. MajorWinchester & Portsmouth D.G.
295040Glamis S. RoyalLeicester D.G.
Aug.15184Nythe S. MajorGloucester & Bristol D.A.
25184Durocobravae S. MajorYorkshire A.
25016Test Little S. MajorGuildford D.G.
55040Conisbrough S. MaximusSoc. of Royal Cumberland Youths
95024Causennae S. MajorYorkshire A.
165088Vinovia S. MajorYorkshire A.
255040Abingdon S. RoyalOxford D.G.
295088Stratton St. Margaret D. MajorGloucester & Bristol D.A.
305184Darnall S. MajorS. Northants S.
Sept.25040Savernake S. RoyalSouthwell D.G.
35152Indium S. MajorBath & Wells D.A.
105088Ruthenium S. MajorBath & Wells D.A.
135152Much Hadham S. MajorEssex A.
135088Zinnia S. MajorYorkshire A.
155080Albion T.B. RoyalLondon C.A.
165024Shepreth S. MajorEly D.A.
275056Jimthevim S. MajorPeterborough D.G.
275024Tryes S. MajorGloucester & Bristol D.A.
Oct.35026Holmium S. MajorBath & Wells D.A.
45040Liffey S. RoyalS. Northants S.
85184Palladium S. MajorBath & Wells D.A.
155024Xanthium S. MajorBath & Wells D.A.
165280Dunkery D. MajorOxford D.G.
185152Bowdon D. MajorChester D.G.
185024Gariannonum S. MajorYorkshire A.
Nov.55024Wheathampstead S. MajorMiddlesex C.A. & London D.G.
225152Backwell S. MajorBath & Wells D.A.
295040Pompey S. RoyalWinchester & Portsmouth D.G.
Dec.25088Arkley S. MajorEly D.A.
25040Zeuxite S. RoyalSouthwell D.G.
95056Technetium S. MajorBath & Wells D.A.
125152Draughton S. MajorPeterborough D.G.
135024Kent D. MajorKent C.A.
165152Queensbridge D. MajorSoc. of Royal Cumberland Youths
175184Queen Charlton S. MajorBath & Wells D.A.
185184Cheviot S. MajorOxford D.G.
205076Hagworthingham A. RoyalChester D.G.
275088Magnis D. MajorYorkshire A.
295088Adlington S. MajorLancashire A.
295184Humber S. MajorPeterborough D.G.
B. First peals on handbells in 1980
Jan.75280110-Spliced S. MaximusOxford D.G.
Feb.265088Cornwall S. MajorOxford D.G.
Mar.195040Winton Court RoyalHertford C.A.
Apr.1450808-Spliced S. Royal (all the work)Oxford D.G.
May215040Avon D. MaximusOxford D.G.
Nov.26528010-Spliced S. Maximus (all the work)Oxford D.G.
C. Record Peals on tower bells in 1980
Jan.1210400Clyde S. RoyalAncient Soc. of College Youths
Aug.251396811-Spliced S. MaximusAncient Soc. of College Youths
Nov.114336London S. MajorSt. Martin’s G.
Nov.2910080Evesham S. MajorOxford D.G.
Dec.1510080Stedman TriplesAncient Soc. of College Youths.

The method rang on 20 December 1980 and named Oakley S. Major had been previously rung as King Alfred S. Major.

Two methods (Surprise Major and Surprise Maximus) rung only in quarter-peals are not included, as they cannot be named in less than a peal.

The method recorded last year as Veryan S. Major has been renamed Vatersay S. Major because of an unrelated S. Minor method having been previously rung and named Veryan.

D.E. Sibson (Chairman) F.T. Blagrove
G. Dodds
J.R. Mayne
C.A. Wratten

The report was proposed by Mr D.E. Sibson, who noted that the method appearing as Vivian (Feb. 23) had originally been rung as Vowchurch but had had to be renamed since it bore no relation to Vowchurch S. Minor; Mr G. Dodds (Hertford CA) seconded.

Mrs Martin questioned whether Carter’s Triples was the correct name for the method rung on January 16, since it was not the Triples method originally published by John Carter in 1899; she proposed that it be referred back to the band for renaming.

Mr A.P. Smith seconded, commenting that the method rung was an extension of Reverse Carter’s Doubles which had appeared - incorrectly - in the Council’s 1955 Collection of Doubles Methods as Carter’s Doubles. Mr M.C.W. Sherwood (Manchester UG) said that, before ringing the peal, the band had asked the Methods Committee for a ruling as to whether the method was Carter’s Triples, and had been told that it was.

On a vote the proposal to refer the name back was lost.

Mr A.P. Smith asserted that Double Coslany Court Maximus could not be a true extension of the Major since it did not satisfy the lead-head requirements of the 1953 Report on Extension, but was assured by Mr C.K. Lewis that the requirements had been suspended some years ago. The proposal to reject the name found no seconder.

The report was then accepted, and a committee consisting of Messrs F.T. Blagrove, G. Dodds, J.R. Mayne, D.E. Sibson and C.A. Wratten elected.

Methods Committee

The Committee has answered a variety of enquiries throughout the year concerning methods old and new. The function of monitoring methods rung in peals has been maintained and where infringements of the Rules have been noted the appropriate committee has been informed.

Our Doubles expert has furnished a scheme for Part 2 of the Doubles Collection, and tables are in preparation for the Method Extension publication.

M.C.W. Sherwood (Chairman) F.T. Blagrove S.J. Ivin

After the report’s adoption had been proposed by Mr Sherwood and seconded by Mr Blagrove, Mr D.C. Jackson (Winchester & Portsmouth DG) questioned changes in the names of Doubles methods in the new Council collection; he said that they should have been referred to the Council before publication. Mr A.P. Smith supported him, deploring Mr Blagrove’s delay in replying to correspondence in “The Ringing World” and the lack of supporting references in his recent reply in the paper.

In reply, Mr Blagrove explained the sequence of events following the Council’s acceptance of the revised Decisions in 1969, which had resulted in a need to give names to methods previously described simply as reverses of others. Mr Smith was not entirely satisfied, but said that he would be content to continue the discussion by correspondence.

In the light of this discussion, Mr D. Joyce proposed, and Mr B. Peachey (National Police G) seconded, that Part 2 of the Collection, mentioned in the report, should not be published until these differences had been resolved. This was agreed by the Council.

The report was then adopted and a new committee consisting of Messrs Sherwood, Blagrove, A.P. Smith, C.K. Lewis and S. Humphrey elected, Messrs B.L. Burrows, D.A. Frith and D.C. Brown having been unsuccessful in the ballot, and Mr R.C. Kippin having declined nomination.

Peal Compositions Committee

1980 has been another busy year for the Committee, although only one formal meeting as such has been held. This was primarily to review the present position and to discuss our future plans and objectives.

There has been disappointingly little progress on the publication of collections. The Major Collection ran into printing problems as reported last year, and after two further drafts is still not ready (the Committee believes that accuracy must be the overriding consideration, even though this may delay publication). The Stedman Collection has been with the Publications Committee since the middle of the year and has been completely computer checked. As for forward plans, we believe there is a need for a collection of Multi-Minor compositions, and would welcome the Council’s views on this.

Publication of compositions in the RW is now working well, and 116 compositions were published in 1980. Regular review articles have been written and generally these seem to be favourably received. We are now proposing to compile an index of RW compositions each year.

Since the Computer Co-ordination Committee produced its “Guidelines” for programs designed to check compositions, a number of people have written to have their programs approved for official checking purposes, but only two have been accepted so far. It is, nevertheless, a practice which we would wish to encourage, and commend it to Associations who publish compositions in their reports.

For the last two years the Committee has been operating with a membership of four. This experience leads us to request that the complement be restored to five for the next triennium.

R.W. Pipe (Chairman) P. Border
R.E. Hardy
M.C.W. Sherwood

Proposing adoption of the report, Mr Pipe (St Martin’s G) said that the Major Collection was now almost ready for publication, and that the Stedman collection had joined the queue for publication. He thanked the Editor of “The Ringing World” and the Computer Coordination Committee for their assistance during the year, and went on to propose that the committee should in future have six members. Both proposals were seconded by Mr R.E. Hardy (Hertford CA).

Dr D.W. Beard (Yorkshire A) commended the recommendation in the report’s penultimate paragraph, and Mr W.F. Moreton (Yorkshire A) endorsed the need for a collection of multi-Minor compositions; he hoped however that they would be presented in a readily understandable form.

The report was adopted, and the proposed increase in size of the committee agreed.

Before taking nominations for the new committee, the President said that it would be appropriate at this point for the Council to consider item 18(d) on the Agenda, since it proposed changes to the terms of reference of the committee.

In moving the motion, Mr Pipe said that the suggested wording was a more accurate reflection of the committee’s actual and potential work; he was seconded by Mr Sherwood. Mr C.C. Monson (Durham US) wondered how the proposed work on multi-Minor could be done under the proposed wording, and proposed that the second clause should read “to maintain a representative collection of peal compositions and prepare for publication such collections as the Council shall direct”. This was seconded by Mr S. Humphrey, and after Mr Pipe said that he would have no objection to such a change, accepted by the Council.

Dr J.C. Baldwin objected to the use of the words “to direct” in the reference to aids to composition and proposed their deletion. This was seconded by Mr G.W. Massey, and also accepted by the Council.

The change of Rule was then passed in its modified form

The ensuing election of a new committee was by ballot, Messrs M.C.W. Sherwood, R.W. Pipe, D.W. Beard, R.C. Kippin, R.E. Hardy and P. Border being elected, and Messrs D.E. Parsons, C.K. Lewis, H. Chant and S. Humphrey being unsuccessful.

Computer Coordination Committee

The Committee met at Backwell on 15 February 1981. The meeting was later reported in “The Ringing World”.

During the year 107 peal compositions were computer checked by the Committee’s helpers as a service to the Peal Compositions Committee. Ten were found to be false. Our thanks are offered to Messrs P.J. Bird, P.G. England, A.D. Leach, J.C. Manley and Mrs J.M. Taylor for their help with computer checking. A further 36 compositions were received and are being checked at the time of writing.

A special task has been undertaken on the checking of peal compositions for the Central Council Collection of Stedman Caters and Cinques Compositions. We wish to offer our thanks to Messrs A.D. Leach, N.J. Diserens, C. Munday, S.J. Ivin, and F. Sage for volunteering to do this work.

A set of guidelines for the independent checking of compositions when computers are used was developed in collaboration with the Peal Compositions Committee, and was published in “The Ringing World” of 4 July 1980 (p.590).

The principal remaining work has been concerned with development and maintenance of Central Council collections of methods.

J.R. Taylor (Chairman) J.C. Baldwin
S.J. Ivin
D.E. Sibson
C.A. Wratten

The report was adopted, without discussion, on the proposal of Mr J.R. Taylor (Gloucester & Bristol DA), seconded by Mr D.E. Sibson.

Messrs J.R. Taylor, D.W. Beard, T.G. Pett, D.E. Sibson and C.A. Wratten were elected by ballot to form the new committee, the other nomination being of Mr M. Thomson.

Publications Committee

1980 was a year in which further substantial progress was made. Although the number of items sold, 8,795, was only 17 up on the previous year, sales revenue rose from £3,271.11 to £4,105.47, an increase of 25.5%. Since price rises in 1980 were kept well within the rate of inflation, this increase represents a shift towards sales of publications with a higher unit value. The sales figures for individual publications are appended to this report, with the previous year’s for purposes of comparison.

New titles published during the year included the first two in the Education Committee’s Progressive Change Ringing Series - “Doubles and Minor”, and “Elementary Conducting”. The first has already established itself an a best seller. The other new publication was the Methods Committee’s new “Doubles Collection”. “On Conducting” was reprinted in the new format.

Sales of the Beginners Handbook reached a new high for recent years. The Education Committee’s new version was not ready for printing in time to avoid reprinting the old version; a reprint of 1,000 was ordered.

Other items with printers are the Compositions Committee’s Collections of Stedman Caters and Cinques Compositions and of Major Compositions, a new belfry warning notice, a dust cover for the Towers and Bells Handbook, and a reprint of the Tutor’s Handbook in the new format.

It has been agreed with the Education Committee not to reprint “Ringing for Service”. Instead the Education Committee will produce a new book, to be entitled “Towers Captain’s Handbook”. Other items still under discussion include method sheets, Triples Collection, Plain Minor Collection, Plain Major Collection, Composition, Bell Poster, reprint of the Collection of Minor Methods, a new LP record, and a recruitment package consisting of film strip, cassette, and posters.

The fortnightly pattern of advertising is being continued. The policy of giving greater prominence to the best sellers seems to be paying off.

Although the Publications Fund is in a healthy state, the forward work-load of the Committee is substantial and will entail a considerable outlay of capital. Prices for 1981 are to be raised by more than in the previous year so that as much of this expenditure as possible can be met from sales revenue.

The Committee met twice during the year.

G.R. Drew (Chairman) W. Butler (Co-opted)
C.J. Groome
E.C. Shepherd
J.R. Taylor
W.G. Wilson
Appendix: Sales, 1980
Central Council Handbook29295
Library Catalogue (List)(18)40
Towers and Bells Handbook96103
Maintenance Handbook928581
Belfry Warning Notice17395
Bell Restoration Funds82137
“A Ring Restored” (film strip)2322
Recruiting leaflet565555
Model Code of Rules7532
Prayer Sheets4098
Tutor’s Handbook235286
Beginners’ Handbook34723624
Doubles and Minor for Beginners-854
Conducting for Beginners-49
Touches of Triples102128
Conducting Grandsire Triples16197
Conducting Stedman Triples172154
On Conducting212256
Rhythm of the Bells (record)126139
Change-Ringing on Handbells174191
Elementary Method Construction-94
Doubles Collection-305
Minor Collection150139
Treble-dodging Minor Methods275164
4-way Table of Minor Methods4541
Method sheets:Plain Bob Minor6271
Stedman and Grandsire10367
Rung Surprise Methods12491
Grandsire Caters2338
Elementary Method Splicing106133
Variation and Transposition5641
Symbolic Treatment of FCH3577
Blue Line Proof3837
Stedman Compositions3425
10- and 12- Bell Compositions1238

Mr W.F. Moreton thanked Mr and Mrs Drew for their work throughout the year; selling publications, they were involved for nearly 365 days a year on the Council’s behalf - far more than any other members of the Council’s committees (applause). Mr P. Wilkinson (Cumberland Youths), noting that the committee was keeping price rises within the rate of inflation, commented that at least four publications were being advertised for 10p “post included” and mused on the economics of this (laughter).

The report was adopted on the proposition of Mr G.R. Drew (Honorary), seconded by Mr C.J. Groome, and a committee size of six agreed.

A ballot resulted in the election of Mrs S.M. Drew, Miss J. Sanderson, and Messrs G.R. Drew, C.J. Groome, G. Morris and J.R. Taylor, Mr D.M. Joyce having also been nominated.

Education Committee

In our report for 1978 we outlined our aims and objectives for the three years of the Council’ s session. In this report, the last of the three, we hope to show that we have successfully concluded most of them.

Three of the “Progressive Change Ringing” series have now been completed. “Doubles and Minor for Beginners” and “Conducting for Beginners” are both selling well. The new “Beginners’ Handbook” is being printed and should be available by the Council meeting. The fourth one of the series, “Triples and Major for Beginners” is still in the hands of the committee.

Another book which is not yet completed is “A Tower Captain’s Handbook”. This will combine much of the old “Ringing for Service” together with the draft of a leaflet entitled “Running a Practice”. It will be late 1981 before this will be ready to pass to the Publications Committee.

Two leaflets have been produced. The first of those, “Elementary Method Construction”, is on sale; the other, on “Good Striking”, is being printed.

During the session we should have liked to have held more symposia on teaching beginners. Two were held during 1980, one at Chester and another at Darlington. Both proved of value to the host and nearby associations; others are planned for 1981. We would welcome invitations from societies.

Projects undertaken but not yet completed include a general interest film strip, a handbell training tape, a recruiting package, a tape to accompany the Beginners’ Handbook, and a new record to replace “The Rhythm of the Bells”. Action on all these is continuing, and will form part of the work of the next committee.

The exhibition cards and the Council’s two 16mm films have been hired on a number of occasions. Increased postal charges have probably contributed to the reduced use of the latter during 1980.

The Council’s ringing course held at Winchester during the last weekend of August was a great success, a small financial profit being made. The real benefit to the Exercise is difficult to measure. Our aim is to improve the standard of teaching ringers throughout the country, and we rely on the co-operation of societies to encourage their members to attend. We sent circulars to all affiliated societies, inviting them each to sponsor two candidates. Sadly, only 11 did so. We hope that there will be a better response to this year’s course, which will be held at Winchester from 31 July to 2 August.

We welcomed David Parsons and George Morris to the ranks of the committee at the last Council meeting. Our two meetings this year were held at Lichfield and Thatcham, and our discussions and exchanges were fruitful and valuable. It is a pity that we are so widely dispersed that it is not practicable to meet more often.

W. Butler (Chairman) R. Cater
W.F. Moreton
R.G. Morris (co-opted)
D.E. Parsons (co-opted)
C.M. Smith
J.M. Tyler

The Ringing World, July 3, 1981, pages 583 to 586

May 26, 1981, Official Report (Part III)


We should like to receive the comments of members of the Council on a scheme for graded ringing assessments. We are not concerned with detail at this time, merely the principle.


To raise a bell at a consistent pace and without any loss of control.

To ring rounds and simple call changes on an “inside” bell. Each change to come cleanly at the next hand stroke after the call.

To correct elementary faults as demonstrated by the instructor such as bad hand and body positions.

To name and explain the function of basic parts of bell fittings.

To provide evidence of 60% attendance at practice and service ringing.


To raise and lower a bell at a consistent pace and without any loss of control.

To ring the treble to rounds with particular care for the rhythm and the open hand stroke (except where this is not a general practice).

To ring call changes on an affected bell, including leading, a minimum of 24 changes with great care for the striking rhythm.

To ring leads of plain hunt either on the treble or an inside bell on at least 4 bells.

To ring a cover bell to a course or touch of Doubles.

To explain the function of a bell when being rung and the purpose of various parts of the fittings.


To raise or lower a bell in peal.

To ring and conduct call changes with a minimum of 12 changes.

To ring the treble to a touch of Plain Bob Doubles or Grandsire Doubles and, where possible, a touch of Plain Bob Minor.

To ring a plain course of Plain Bob Doubles or of Grandsire Doubles in both cases on an inside bell (not the second in Grandsire).

To explain the basic principles of change ringing.

To recognise which bell is out of place or ringing badly in a piece of ringing.


To raise and lower a bell in peal.

To ring the treble to a Treble Bob method.

To ring an inside bell and be affected in a touch of Plain Bob Minor.

To ring a plain course of some other plain minor method of own choice.

To explain the function of a bob and a single in a seconds place method.

To ring a plain course of Stedman Doubles.


To ring an inside bell and be affected in a touch of Treble Bob Minor.

To ring an inside bell in a plain course of a Surprise Minor method of own choice.

To ring and conduct a touch of plain minor method of not less than 180 changes using both bobs and singles.

To ring an inside bell in a plain course of any Plain Major or Triples method (not Stedman).

To ring an extent, 120 changes, of Stedman Doubles on a bell affected by Singles.

To give a brief basic practical lesson as to a beginner in the art of bell control.

To explain place notation.


To ring and conduct a touch of Surprise Minor of not less than 240 changes.

To ring an inside bell in a touch of not less then 160 changes of Grandsire Triples.

To ring and conduct a touch of Plain Bob Major of not less than 224 changes.

To give instruction as to a beginner in the method of plain hunting.


To ring and conduct a touch of Grandsire Triples of not less than 168 changes.

To ring a touch of Stedman Triples of not less than 180 changes.

To conduct a quarter peal of any Plain Major method.

To ring inside in a plain course of any Surprise Major method.

To give instruction in the method of ringing Plain Bob Minor inside, including bobs and singles.

To answer questions on belfry equipment and bell maintenance.


To ring and conduct a touch of Stedman Triples of not less than 180 changes.

To ring and conduct a quarter peal of Surprise Major.

To ring inside in a touch of at least three Surprise Major methods.

To answer questions on method construction.

The report was adopted, without discussion, after its proposal by Mr W. Butler, seconded by Mr R. Cater (Winchester & Portsmouth DG). Mr Butler said that copies of a 22½-minute 8mm film on “The Birth of a Bell” could now be bought from Mr W.F. Moreton.

Mr Cater said that, although this year’s Winchester course was now fully booked, societies’ response to the suggestion that they should sponsor students was still disappointing. There would be a further course in 1982, at Chippenham from 27 to 29 August.

Turning to the committee’s proposals for a scheme of graded assessments that had been described in “The Ringing World”, Mr J.M. Tyler (Peterborough DG) said that the scheme was concerned with defining standards, which were frequently mentioned but never defined hitherto, not in suggesting that there should be any form of reward for achievement.

There was general agreement among the following speakers that such a scheme could encourage the young, but there were reservations about its relevance to older learners or to more experienced ringers, the more advanced grades being questioned in particular by Mr D. Potter (Yorkshire A).

Mr G.W. Massey wondered whether the present practice of advancing to ringing quarter-peals and then to peal-ringing did not already satisfy any need that might exist for “grading”, and Mr A.W.R. Wilby suggested that a syllabus for instructors would have been more useful.

Mr J. Freeman feared that the approach overlooked the importance of teamwork in ringing, and Mr G.A. Halls commented that what was needed was, basically, more ringers and better ringers. The present means of finding them was clearly not entirely satisfactory, and a set of standards on the lines proposed could well act as stepping stones for progress; but the importance of motivation ought to be stressed.

Mr P.M.J. Gray proposed, and Mr D.C. Jackson seconded, that the Council should ask the new committee to continue thinking along the lines suggested. This was agreed, three members voting to the contrary.

After it had been agreed that the new committee should have eight members, eleven names were proposed and seconded, Mr C.M. Smith declining nomination. In a ballot Messrs H.J. Charles, C.F. Mew and N.R. Mattingley were unsuccessful, the committee elected being Messrs W. Butler, R. Cater, W.F. Moreton, R.G. Morris, D.E. Parsons, R.B. Smith, D. Potter and J.M. Tyler.

Public Relations Committee

The work of the committee was again varied, and a close watch was kept on television, radio and the press. Many interesting items were brought to our notice and we were happy with the publicity given to the Council meeting in Southampton. There has been much correspondence with the BBC but, as yet, no yielding to our pressure.


Mr William Theobald keeps the Overseas Directory up to date and reports regularly on new work planned, and progress made, in North America, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. He has reported on the new bells at St. George’s, Parktown, Johannesburg, and the ten bells at Cape Town. He tells us that in California Brian Ashurst has embarked on a one-man campaign to get a ringing peal installed there, and gives lectures and prints and distributes literature to that end. The handbell ringers of Philadelphia raised enough money to install a light ring of bells in their home tower. The ringers at the Church of the Advent, Boston, take advantage of a street fair nearby to set up a display booth, and put their ringing schedules in all the neighbouring mailboxes. Negotiations are proceeding for America’s first ring of 12, and other enquiries show that change ringing overseas is growing. Many overseas ringers visited this country, and a party of girl ringers from Washington Cathedral High School received much publicity when in the United Kingdom.


“Church Bells on Sunday” still has a wide appeal and requests have been received for further information about the churches and bells featured in the programme. The committee have pressed the BBC to lengthen the programme and to broadcast it later in the day, but at the moment they say this is not possible. Harold Pitstow once again worked closely with the BBC in producing the Christmas Bells programme, and opinion has it that the standard was higher than in previous years.

Laurie MacMillan’s 10-minute visit to the Whitechapel Bell Foundry was broadcast on Boxing Night and again on New Year’s Day, and was full of interest. In “Women’s Hour” on 18 April, Jane Pitman was interviewed in the ringing chamber of Tewkesbury Abbey, other ringers contributed, and the bells were heard in the background. “The Archers” continue to practise bell-ringing in Ambridge on suitable occasions. The restoration of Durham Cathedral bells attracted radio, television and press coverage.

At Christmas Radio Eireann broadcast the bells of Ss. Augustine and John, Dublin, and from St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Christchurch Cathedral bells were heard after their restoration. Armagh Cathedral bells were heard at the Enthronement of the new Archbishop of Armagh.

Many local radio stations in the United Kingdom mention forthcoming ringing activities in their “What’s On” spots.


In an episode of “All Creatures Great and Small” ‘Darrowby’ bell chamber was shown and the wartime ban on ringing referred to. Canterbury Cathedral bells were heard as the new Archbishop was seen blessing the crowd. In April Yattenden ringers were seen ringing. In October “Points West” visited the ringing chamber of St. Mary’s, Taunton, in connection with the Festival of Craft, Somerset 81. “Points West” also gave some fine shots of Gloucester Cathedral ringers in action during the visit of the Archbishop of Canterbury. There were two unfortunate items screened: one was a scrambling mass of men chiming the big bell in Krakow, and the other was the “Blue Peter” demonstration.


In Ireland press coverage of bells and ringers was extensive. The new ring of six bells in St. John’s, Newcastle, Co. Down, was covered by the Belfast Telegraph and the Mourne Observer. Kilkenny Standard gave a half-page article, with pictures, of St Canice’s Cathedral. The Irish Times covered the re-dedication of Christchurch Cathedral bells and also carried an article about the O’Byrne bell foundry in Dublin.

The intruder who stopped the peal at Cirencester was mentioned in both daily and Sunday newspapers. The Herts Advertiser gave a full page, with pictures, to the bells and ringers at Harpenden. The Western Mail carried a picture and article covering the removal of the cracked bell at Llandefaelog Fach Church, near Brecon. The South Wales Echo covered the story of the cracked bell at Aberdare, Glam., and the article included photographs and details of the £2,000 needed to recast the bell. The BP Oil News carried a double-page article on the Whitechapel Bell Foundry; the pictures were in full colour and were very fine.

Directory of Public Relations Officers

The Directory was distributed during the year and we hope was copied and used by the Guild PROs. The committee sent copies to the BBC (radio and television), to ITV, to the Church Times, to Diocesan offices, to the national and local press - in short, to everyone we thought would have a use for it.

The National Association of Women’s Clubs were most appreciative of their copy as they were able to use it in conjunction with their speakers list. A copy was sent to Mathew S. Ogawa of the Avaco Christian Mass Communication Centre in Tokyo to aid him in his search for Cathedral Bell recordings. The Directory also found its way to the Group Media Department of the World Association for Christian Communication.

The up-dated Directory is being circulated to Guilds, who will we hope make extensive use of it and of their Public Relations Officers. The help of Mr F.E. Dukes has been much appreciated and we wish to thank him.

Jacqueline S. King (Chairman) J.L. Girt
N.H. Pitstow, OBE.
P.G. Smart
W. Theobald

As the only member of the old committee still on the Council, Mr J.L. Girt proposed the report’s adoption; this was formally seconded by the Secretary.

Although Mr A.W.R. Wilby said that the report showed little evidence of active public relations work by the committee, simply cataloguing what others had done, most criticism was directed at the references to televised ringing at Krakow and to the “Blue Peter” demonstration.

Mr Blagrove felt that the former should have been a cause for joy rather than condemnation, and a number of members, in particular Mr S. Richardson (Carlisle DA), strongly deplored the criticism of the latter in the correspondence columns of “The Ringing World” and in the committee’s report. Mr. Richardson said that there had been great resentment locally at the criticism of a film that had been produced, not as a documentary, but as something for children; the producer was a ringer who had persuaded the BBC to produce an 8-minute film on ringing and broadcast it nationally, and he deserved encouragement rather then attacks.

Dean Thurlow (Life) suggested to the President that he should write to the ringers at Crosthwaite, telling them of the feelings expressed at the meeting and offering encouragement. The president undertook to do so.

Several members proposed the deletion of the offending sentence from the report, but a proposal to that effect by Mr B.D. Threlfall, seconded by Mr S.C. Walters, was withdrawn when Mr Freeman pointed out that the report reflected the committee’s opinion. He proposed that the Council accept the report apart from the final sentence of its seventh paragraph. Mrs O.D. Barnett seconded, and this was agreed by the Council.

Dean Thurlow and Messrs J.L. Girt and G.A. Halls declined to be nominated for the new committee, and in a ballot Messrs F.E. Dukes and J.P. Sims were unsuccessful. Those elected were Mrs A. Newing, Mrs A. Martin (who will act as Overseas Liaison Officer), and Messrs P.A. Corby, D. Potter and A.W.R. Wilby.

Biographies Committee

The undermentioned member and past members of the Council died during 1980.

W.F. JudgeOxford Society, 1946-1954. Died 28 Jan, 1980. Attended two meetings.
J.L. Garner-HaywardCoventry Diocesan Guild, 1960-1963; Honorary, 1967-1973. Died 10 May 1980. Attended nine meetings.
T.W. WhiteHonorary, 1958-1968; Life, 1968-1980. Died 2 Sept. 1980, Attended 17 meetings.
J.T. BarrettSalisbury Diocesan Guild, 1960-1972. Died 13 Sept. 1980. Attended 11 meetings
C.W. PipeSuffolk Guild, 1946-1978. Died 5 Oct. 1980. Attended 31 meetings.
W.B. KynastonGloucester & Bristol Diocesan Association, 1936-1969, Died 14 Dec. 1980. Attended 28 meetings.

James Leslie Garner-Hayward was an Honorary member of the Council whilst acting as Honorary Assistant Librarian, dealing with the sale of Council publications.

Thomas William White learned to ring at the ago of 40, when he was a journalist in the employ of the Woodbridge Press, then printers of “The Ringing World”. He first assisted in the production of our journal while J.S. Goldsmith, the Editor, was taking part in the Great Adventure tour of Australia in 1934. In 1946 Mr White became Editor, a position he held for 23 years. He followed on the pioneering work of his predecessor when he joined the Great Adventure II touring party in 1965. Mr White was elected a Life Member of the Council in 1968 for his outstanding contribution to the Exercise.

Some limited progress has been made in gathering missing information on past members, but we are searching for much more material than is in our possession at present, and we again ask Council members to give all possible assistance so that the suggested booklet on the lives and contributions to ringing of past members may be a worthy publication in the Council’s centenary year.

Correspondence concerning our first President, Sir A.P. Heywood, has been taking place, initially through the Hon. Secretary of the Council. One enquiry was from the Curator of the Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway Museum, in preparation for an exhibition to be held at the National Railway Museum, York. A second enquiry was from a representative of the miniature railway fraternity, in preparation for a display to be staged at the Royal Show. Both events will be to celebrate the centenary of the publication of “Minimum Gauge Railways” and the opening of the Duffield Bank Railway in 1881. It was possible to give useful assistance in both cases.

It was decided at a meeting of the Committee to retain all papers gathered in respect of deceased members, and also to leave undisturbed the Biographical Records in the two (at present) main portfolios. Further such Records will be filed in the third portfolio.

Thanks are extended to Mrs Joyce Dodds, of St Albans, for writing the Biographical Records during another triennial period.

T.J. Lock (Chairman) Mrs E.A. Barnett (co-opted)
G.A. Dawson
W. Viggers
Revd. M.C.C. Melville
B.D. Threlfall

The report was adopted on the proposition of Mr T.J. Look, seconded by Mr G.A. Dawson. Mr. Lock said that the exhibition at York would run from 19 October 1981 to early January 1982, and that the Royal Show display would be at Stoneleigh from 6 to 9 July.

Mrs O.D. Barnett, Revd M.C.C. Melville, and Messrs T.J. Lock, G.A. Dawson, B.D. Threlfall, and W.H. Viggers were elected to form the new committee after it had been agreed that this should have six members.

Library Committee

The year has been a quieter one for the Library and the Committee, although the Library has continued to grow. Indeed, 93 new titles were added last year, probably more than in any previous year. Whether this rate of progress can be maintained in the future will largely depend on the support given to the Friends of the Library. Membership now stands at 44, including eleven associations/guilds, leaving only 33 individual members - and from ten of these no subscription was received last year. So, as will be seen from the accounts, the amount subscribed by Friends was actually down by £9 on 1979, was it was only possible to purchase all the titles which became available by using some of the grant from the Thackray Bequest. Last year’s expenditure amounted to £314; more much-needed rebinding could have been undertaken had funds been available. It had been hoped by the Committee that last year would have seen membership of the Friends grow to over 50, the figure at which we thought it would be worth asking Friends to covenant their subscriptions. The Committee noted that only about 20 Council members had joined the Friends, which seems very disappointing.

The question of adequate insurance cover, raised at the last Council meeting, has been satisfactorily resolved, and the Library is now insured in the sum of £20,000.

In addition to purchases, nearly 40 books and publications have been donated to the Library, for which we are very grateful. 23 Association reports for 1979 were received, as well as a good number of older reports, so that this part of the Library is growing slowly but on the whole satisfactorily. If C.C. representatives could be empowered by their Associations to bring a copy of their current report to the Council meeting for presentation to the Library, that would be most helpful and welcome.

The cataloguing of the MS and non-book section of the Library has now been completed, except for correspondence and miscellaneous papers, at which members of the Committee are still working. The Librarian has dealt with the usual number of queries, mainly by letter, and with the loan and return of nearly 40 books.

Members may recall that the Committee is anxious to build up in the Library a collection of what might be termed the Council’s archives, as the Library seems a natural place for such documents to be deposited. Such archives might include committee minutes and correspondence, or papers produced for discussion by various committees. If any member holds any such papers to which he or she no longer needs to refer, perhaps they could consider lodging them in the Council’s Library.

There is one point on which the Committee seeks the Council’s guidance. It was formerly, we believe, one of the tasks of the old Literature and Press Committee to receive cuttings and articles from newspapers and magazines, and to comment on these in their annual reports. We wonder whether the Council considers that such items, when ringers contribute them or came across them, should now be sent to the Library. It might be thought that this should be the case, in view of the fact that the Committee considers it to be one of its tasks to make the Library as complete a collection as possible of all published material relating to church bells and bell ringing.

W.T. Cook (Hon. Librarian and Chairman) W. Butler
D.E. House
D.M. Joyce
P.M. Wilkinson

Proposing adoption of the report Mr W.T. Cook commented on the disappointingly small number of those who had become Friends of the Library. He added that the Library was still in need of copies of all Association reports and of Association and local newsletters. He was seconded by Mr D.M. Joyce, and the report was adopted.

Six names were proposed for the four places remaining on the committee (the Hon. Librarian is ex officio chairman), and Miss J. Sanderson and Messrs P.M. Wilkinson, D.M. Joyce and D.W. Struckett were elected. Messrs C.M. Smith and N. Booth were unsuccessful.

Towers & Belfries Committee

During the year there have been two meetings of the Committee, both well-attended and both extremely valuable for the exchange of information and views between members.

The members have as usual been active, and between them have dealt with a total of 180 enquiries, many of these being tower inspections involving long journeys. As usual, the scope of the enquiries has been wide-ranging. It is perhaps worth emphasising that tower inspections cannot be carried out without a written request from the Church authorities, for both legal and insurance reasons.

An aspect of their work which the Committee wish to stress is liaison with the Bishops’ Diocesan Advisory Committees. These bodies, as many ringers will know, are set up to advise Diocesan Registrars on the suitability of applications for faculties. Their procedures vary slightly from diocese to diocese, as does their composition. Most, if not all, have a bell advisor, who may or may not be a full member of the Advisory Committee. Ideally, these bell advisors world be members of the Towers and Belfries Committee; but this is clearly impracticable for numerical reasons, and we must strive instead for informed contact between our Committee and the bell advisers.

It is the experience of those of us who are members of DACs that there is often considerable pressure for commercial reasons to agree quickly with unsatisfactory faculty applications, on both bell work and other work. We also note that there are still schemes submitted by architects for “spring” frames, and from engineers who seem unaware of the nature of the forces involved. It is perhaps worth reminding ringers generally that for any work, other than routine maintenance, to bells, fittings or tower, a faculty is legally required before the work is started, and that some Chancellors contemplate stiff penalties for non-compliance.

This year the Committee have produced an information leaflet, which details their scope and limitations and shows a list of members’ names and address. Copies are available from all Committee members or from the Secretary of the Council.

Two members of this Committee, Messrs Frost and Hartless, have not been elected to the new Council. Our grateful thanks are due to both for all their hard work on the Council’s behalf.

B.D. Threlfall (Chairman) J.C. Baldwin
A. Dempster
W.L. Exton
J. Freeman
A.J. Frost
J. Hartless
G.W. Massey
D. Potter
F. Reynolds
J.G.M. Scott

After Mr B.D. Threlfall had proposed, and Mr G.W. Massey seconded, adoption of the report, Dean Thurlow enquired what was the situation regarding the bells and fittings when a church became redundant. Mr Massey explained that during the first year everything was still subject to the usual faculty jurisdiction; responsibility then passed into the hands of the Bishop until the Redundant Churches Fund assumed control.

The President thanked the committee members for the many hours of work that they put in on the Council’s behalf, and went on to say that the new committee’s members should come from a wide area; he added that the insurance policy covering members did not cover anyone over 65 years of age.

Mr D.M. Joyce wondered whether the committee should have more than its previous ten members in view of the interest shown in its work by members of the Council, but was reminded by the President that the Rules allowed any committee to establish an advisory panel if it wished. It was agreed that the committee should continue to have ten members, and the Revd J.G.M. Scott and Messrs B.D. Threlfall, J. Hartless, A.J. Frost, J. Freemen, D. Potter, F. Reynolds, G.W. Massey, A. Dempster and W.L. Exton were elected, Dr J.C. Baldwin having expressed a wish to retire from the committee.

Bell Restoration Funds Committee

The Committee has met twice during the year, in March and October, on both occasions in London.

A good number of requests for assistance and advice have been received during the year, and it is pleasing to report that St Issey (Cornwall) obtained £910, and Barnstable (Devon) £585, both by acting on information supplied by our Committee. We always welcome the fullest possible information concerning fund-raising from the organisers of every completed restoration scheme, for such details are particularly helpful, and indeed are part of the tools of our trade.

A fine example of fund raising was to be found at the village of Charlwood (Surrey), where £41,000 was raised in a year for church restoration, the bulk of it in one week. Details of their activities - which included being hosts to 36 American tourists - may be found in “The Ringing World” of 9 January 1981.

Analysis of the Survey of Bell Restoration Funds, presented at Southampton, has revealed that the amount of capital locked up in Guild Bell Restoration Funds was in October 1980 sufficient to finance entirely an estimated 50 restoration projects. By October 1981, however, the loss caused by inflation would leave sufficient money for only an estimated 40 projects. Thus the ability to finance no less then ten projects will be lost simply because guilds accumulate capital, rather than put it to the use for which it was originally subscribed. We suggest that Guild Officers actively seek all possible ways of using money wisely, if necessary by helping to initiate projects which otherwise might not be considered. From reports which we receive, it is of interest to note the keen spirit which is engendered among Guild members when a Fund has to be built up following large expenditure, especially if another specific job is proposed.

The Survey also showed that there was sufficient capital in Bell Restoration Funds to keep all the bell founders fully employed for 3 months. If only 10% was contributed to every project, it would keep them employed for 2 years.

At Southampton we were criticised in some quarters for failing to acknowledge in the Survey that ringers contribute towards bell restoration in ways other than through Guild BRFs. Whilst acknowledging that such of course is the case, we wish to stress the importance of the strength of a Guild BRF in its ability to contribute handsomely in order to persuade a PCC to launch an appeal. At the outset an offer of £1,000 by a Guild to get a scheme started can encourage a PCC to take positive action; from the point of view of public relations and of relations with the Church authorities this does tremendous good. Not only that, but ringers generally cannot relax their efforts until all bells in their territory are fully ringable. It is important that ringers are seen to be doing bell restoration work collectively. BRFs often are sources of large amounts of cash, but only rarely are individuals able to contribute to the same extent.

The survey of Unringable Bells was also presented last year. It revealed county by county the scope for restoration, and thus the likely future demand for support from Guilds. The picture is far from uniform, whereas Gwynedd, West Glamorgan, West Sussex and Cleveland had no rings of bells unringable, Cambridgeshire had 26, Essex and Gloucestershire 25, Norfolk 59, and Suffolk 61 such rings. Nor were the poorest areas in this respect those of the lowest populated rural areas: Greater London has 18 unringable rings. The bulk of the unringable rings are in five and six bell towers; our incomplete information on four-bell rings suggest that half of them are unringable.

We have learned of a Guild which every year sets aside a sum from its BRF for routine belfry maintenance. Such work frequently avoids larger expenditure at a later date, and we warmly commend this idea to all Guilds.

We would remind Guild officers that the Charity Commission has allowed a clause to be inserted in the Model BRF Rules concerning the installation and maintenance of sound control. We have received few enquiries on this subject, but it is an area of which ringers should be well aware.

It has been announced that from 1981 a Charitable Covenant must be capable of continuing for at least three years (i.e. for a total of four years) instead of for at least six years (i.e. for a total of seven years). This shorter period will undoubtedly encourage ringers to covenant to their Guild BRFs. There will also be advantages for higher-rate tax payers.

Lastly, our attention has been drawn to an explanatory leaflet produced by one Association in order to disseminate information about its BRF, and we believe there are clear advantages to be gained from this kind of publicity.

J.S. Barnes (Chairman) E. Billings
M.J. Church
K.S.B. Croft
G.A. Halls
I.H. Oram

Having moved the report’s adoption and been seconded by Mr M.J. Church, who paid tribute to his enthusiasm and hard work, Mr J.S. Barnes said that, following letter in the Times, a charitable trust had approached the Revd. J.G.M. Scott, and through him the committee, about the possibility of making a contribution towards bell restoration work.

As a result of a letter in “The Ringing World” explaining this situation and inviting applications, he had now received replies from 61 churches contemplating restoration work on their bells. The committee was now sifting these in readiness to pass them on to the trust, but he felt that, now that the need for such support had been proved, there was a strong likelihood that several thousands of pounds might be made available each year from the trust for this sort of work. It was hoped to announce in “The Ringing World” details of all such grants made by the trust.

The report was adopted and Mr Barnes’ suggestion that the committee should in future have seven members was accepted. Messrs J.S. Barnes, E. Billings, M.J. Church, K.S.B. Croft, G.A. Halls, J.F. Mulvey and I.H. Oram were elected.

Committee for Redundant Bells

By December 31st 1980, 867 churches had been declared redundant under the Pastoral Measure 1968. This included 73 churches for 1980, the first increase since 1977 when 84 churches became redundant; the figures for 1978 and 1979 were 59 and 52 respectively. It is disappointing to note an increase in redundancies, especially after the recent feeling of cautious optimism that the numbers were at last levelling out if not actually falling. No-one so far has been prepared to suggest a reason for the rise. We hope it is not a trend that will continue, though there are several dioceses which have not yet really tackled the problem of redundancy, and there are signs that at least one or two are about to do so.

In our last report we welcomed the setting up by the General Synod of a Commission to review the Faculty Jurisdiction. The Committee submitted comments, through Mr Wratten, suggesting the importance of improving and tightening up the administration of the faculty procedure. The Commission is still working through the large amount of evidence received, and it is not yet able to say when it will report to the General Synod.

This year the Committee has been involved with some 61 cases, including seven requests for rings and 22 for bells for augmentations, replacements or for use as singles. Some seven bells or rings are currently at some stage of transfer.

The Pastoral Measure visualises, in a perfect world, fittings from redundant churches being rehoused in other churches close by: the transfer of the bells of St. James, Birch in Rusholme, to another church in the sane parish could perhaps be considered a textbook example. Such solutions are obviously an ideal; and we congratulate those associations whose organisation and close relationship with their diocese help to make them possible. We urge any association which lacks such a relationship to do all it can, however difficult, to establish close links with its diocese. This Committee exists to act as a clearing house and to support the associations if a problem is incapable of a local solution. But as a general rule local solutions are best. In this context we are most grateful for all the help and information we have received this year from societies. May we, like Oliver Twist, ask, please, for more!

Nowadays requests for rings of bells tend to be for “a nice ring of six, tenor about four or five cwt”, which is clearly something like crying for the moon. On the other side of the coin, we would be particularly grateful to hear from anyone who is seeking a heavier ring. A home for anything with a tenor of more than about 15 cwt tends to be a problem, and this is of course especially the case when the bells are not top class. While the obvious solution always seems to be to send the bells abroad, we feel that the export of the mediocre is hardly the way to encourage interest from overseas churches - and the installation of rings of bells overseas is one of the ways we see forward for the future. All possible domestic solutions should be tried, but examples such as St. Catherine, Feltham, where three possible homes and the chance of retaining the bells for ringing in their original, now redundant, tower all proved abortive, suggest that the solution for good but homeless rings may lie in emigration.

The bell pitching equipment, purchased from the Thackray Bequest, remains, as announced at Southampton last year, available for borrowing by associations for the cost of the carriage.

We record our thanks to the Church Commissioners, the Council for Places of Worship - soon to become again the Council for the Care of Churches - and the Redundant Churches Fund for their help and interest. Mr Ranald Clouston’s notes for the Council for Places of Worship record not only the number, weight and founder but often as well the notes of the bells: it is the greatest help to have access to this information, and we are very grateful to him.

During the year we co-opted Mr R.J. Cooles and Mr M.H.D. O’Callaghan to the Committee, and we have gladly taken advantage of their legal and financial expertise.

E.A. Barnett
R.J. Cooles (Co-opted)
K.S.B. Croft
G.A. Dawson
K.W.H Felstead
J. Freeman
A.J. Frost
G.W. Massey
M.H.D. O’Callaghan (co-opted)
A.G.G. Thurlow
Jane Wilkinson

Mrs M.J. Wilkinson moved the adoption of the report, adding that a further 25 churches had been made redundant during the first quarter of 1981; the recent surge in such redundancies was however thought to be a flash in the pan rather than a new trend.

Mr J. Freeman seconded, and the report was adopted. It was agreed that the new committee should have 11 members, and Mrs M.J. Wilkinson, Dean Thurlow, Rev J.G.M. Scott and Messrs E.A. Barnett, R.J. Cooles, K.S.B. Croft, G.A. Dawson, J. Freeman, A.J. Frost, G.W. Massey and M.H.D. O’Callaghan were elected.

Rescue Fund for Redundant Bells

  1. Interest-free Loans

    Following Dean Thurlow’s appeal offers of interest-free loans amounting to £3,200 had been received up to 31 December 1980. Further offers totalling £1,450 were received by 28 February. We are most grateful to the individuals and Associations who have responded.

  2. Finance

    The Fund has £130 in the bank on deposit as well as £4,500 available from the Thackray Bequest if needed.

  3. General

    As the Fund is a “last resort”, it is good news to report that no call has so far had to be made on the Fund. However, should the need arise, the Fund will now be in a position to assist.

Accounts for the year ended
31 December 1980
Donations received£130
Represented by cash on deposit£130

Gilbert Thurlow (Chairman) E.A. Barnett
K.S.B. Croft
G.A. Dawson
K.W.H. Felstead
J. Freeman
A.J. Frost
G.W. Massey
Jane Wilkinson
R.J. Cooles (Secretary)
M.H.D. O’Callaghan (Treasurer)

Mr R.J. Cooles moved the report’s adoption, and was seconded by Mr M.H.D. O’Callaghan. Mr Cooles said that the trust referred to earlier by Mr Barnes had made at least £5,000 available to the Fund as an interest-free loan, and that other interest-free loan available now totalled £5,750, some £2,350 of which had been offered by 14 Guilds and Associations and the remainder by 18 individuals.

The report was adopted.

As the Fund is, under the Rules, administered by the members of the Committee for Redundant Bells, no elections were necessary in this case.

There ensued a short break while the newly-appointed committees met to appoint their chairmen, after which the Council elected the twelve members who, with the officers and committee chairmen, make up the Administrative Committee.

Mr E.A. Barnett declined to stand, and the following were all proposed, seconded and, after Mr F Reynolds (Lancashire A) had proposed and Mr R.C. Kippin (ASCY) had seconded the closure of nominations, elected: Mrs O.D. Barnett and Messrs. J. Armstrong, J.C. Baldwin, R. Cater, W.B. Cartwright, M.J. Church, R.J. Cooles, J. Freeman, C.J. Groome, P.M.J. Gray, I.H. Oram and S.C. Walters.

Mr F. Dukes had had to leave the meeting to catch a train, but the President paid tribute to his 27 years’ service on the Standing and Administrative Committees, during which, in spite of having to travel from Ireland in nearly every case, he had never missed a meeting (applause)


Mr C.J. Groome proposed an amendment to the Council’s Rules to limit the president’s term of office to three years, arguing that the previous custom of a President serving for six years after six years as Vice-President was too much to expect: there were doubtless a number of Council members who could undertake a commitment for one term, and a formal limitation on the lines proposed would mean that twice the number of members - four in a generation, instead of two - would be able to aspire to the post. He was formally seconded by Mr D.E. Sibson.

Mr J. Freeman could not see what such a change would gain. It had been recommended last year by the Administrative Committee that the President’s term of office should in future be three years, and there was now a gentlemen’s agreement to that effect. To turn this into a strict rule could cause difficulties in the future.

Mr F.B. Lufkin agreed with him: rules, he said, could be a benefit, but they could equally become a hindrance. The decision should be left to the Council at the time.

On being put to the vote, the motion was lost by a large majority. The next two motions on the Agenda both concerned Honorary membership of the Council. Mr. A.N. Stubbs proposed that Honorary membership should be restricted to those elected to serve upon Committees of the Council, entailing a number of detailed changes to the present Rules.

The motion was not intended to be provocative, he said, but to define the role of Honorary members. The lifeblood of the Council was provided by the representative members, but sometimes others were needed to provide particular expertise for the good of the Exercise in general. Since Honorary members were elected to work, their elections should be tied to the election of committees. Mr A.W.R. Wilby formally seconded.

A move by Mr P.A. Corby, seconded by Mr D.W. Struckett, to defer debate on this motion until next year in view of the lateness of the hour - it was now past six o’clock - was defeated on a vote.

Several members spoke against the motion. Both Mr W.F. Moreton and Mr H. Chant felt that Honorary members could contribute significantly to the work of the Council without serving on committees, the latter adding that honorary membership was one way to say “thank you” for past services to the Exercise. Taking up this point, Mr C.F. Mew suggested that acceptance of the proposed changes might lead to an unwarranted increase in the number of Life members of the Council. Mr A.P. Smith agreed that representative members were the lifeblood of the Council, and argued from this that they should be the first to be elected to committees rather than bring in Honorary members from outside. Finally Mrs M.J. Wilkinson said that, as an Honorary member herself, she was beginning to feel a very second-class citizen: the work of the Council entailed more than its committees, and in trying to regularise the position of Honorary members in this way there seemed a very real risk of throwing out the baby with the bathwater.

Replying, Mr Wilby denied that Honorary members were in any way second-class, or that the proposals would significantly alter the make-up of the Council. He said they would forestall the present situation whereby somebody could be elected an Honorary member so as to serve on a committee, and then not be elected to that committee.

The motion was them voted on, and lost by a large majority.

On behalf of the Administrative Committee Mr B.D. Threlfall then proposed an amendment to Rule so that, in future, all Honorary members would be elected by ballot, election requiring the vote of a majority of those present. He said the intention of the proposal was to resolve some of the shortcomings of the present system: election by show of hands could sometimes be embarrassing or inhibiting, and it allowed election by a minority vote. The Secretary formally seconded the motion.

Mr H.W. Rogers supported the proposal, but hoped that societies were conscious of the work done on the Council by their members and would recognise this by electing them as representatives, rather than leave it to the Council to elect them as Honorary members.

The motion was passed on a vote, only one hand being raised against.

The final motion on the Agenda concerned peals of Triples, and sought to amend the Decision in order to recognise round blocks of 10,080 changes in which each of the 5,040 different rows occurs twice, once at handstroke and once at backstroke. It was proposed by Mr D.E. Sibson, who said that this was thought to be a desirable extension to the present situation whereby all long lengths of Triples had to be rung as a series of consecutive 5040s. Mr F.T. Blagrove seconded.

Replying to a question from Mr D. Potter as to why the proposal insisted on each change being rung once at hand and once at back, Mr Sibson said that the wording had been framed with one specific composition in mind. A band was planning to ring this composition - one attempt had already been unsuccessful - and the proposal, if accepted, would ensure its recognition.

Mr C.C. Monson felt it was wrong to try to change a Decision in order to accommodate a particular composition, and Mr Potter proposed the deletion of the words “once at handstroke and once at backstroke”. He was seconded by Mr R.B. Smith, but the amendment was lost on a vote.

Although Mr Blagrove denied that the proposal did not apply to all Triples, Mr P.N. Mounsey (Oxford US) proposed an amendment, that “round blocks of two or more 5040s in which each of the 5040 different rows occurs the same number of times” should be recognised. He was seconded by Mr A.W.R Wilby, but the President ruled that this was a substantive change requiring advance notice and was out of order.

A suggestion by Mr Mounsey that the joint committee that was to look into the question of peals of Minor should also look at long lengths of Triples brought no reaction, and the original motion was then put to the vote. Although supported by a number of members, a majority voted against, and the motion was declared lost.

Future meetings

The Secretary reminded members of the invitations that had been accepted for the next four years, and added that an invitation had been received from the Ancient Society of College Youths for the Council to hold its centenary meeting in 1991 in London, where it had been founded and where it had held its first meeting in 1891.

Any other business

The Secretary reported that 5 Life, 16 Honorary, and 158 representative members had attended the meeting, with 61 of the 65 affiliated societies being represented.

Votes of thanks

Closing the meeting, the President proposed a comprehensive vote of thanks - to the officers and members of the Kent County Association for their hospitality, in particular the hard-worked tellers (applause) and those responsible for the reception the previous evening, especially Mrs Marjorie Matthews (applause); to the Mayor of Rochester for his welcome; to the Bishop of Rochester for his welcome and for officiating at the Corporate Communion service that morning; to the Dean of Rochester; and to the incumbents and ringers of the various churches visited.

The meeting closed at 7.20 p.m.

The Ringing World, July 10, 1981, pages 607 to 610

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