The Council shall be known as ‘The Central Council of Church Bell Ringers’.
The Object of the Central Council is to promote and foster the ringing of bells for Christian prayer, worship and celebration and in furtherance thereof:-
(i) To promote awareness of and educate the general public in the ringing of church bells and the art of change ringing;
(ii) To make available advice, assistance and information to church authorities, ringers and ringing societies and to promote good practice on all matters concerned with bells and bell ringing;
(iii) To encourage development of the art of ringing through innovation;
(iv) To bring together ringers to discuss matters of common interest and to represent ringers both nationally and internationally;
(v) To encourage high standards of performance in ringing;
(vi) To recommend technical standards in change ringing and maintain such records as may be necessary to uphold these standards;
(vii) To assist in the provision, restoration, maintenance and transfer of church bells.
The Council shall consist of:-
(i) Representative Members elected by affiliated societies;
(ii) Honorary Additional Members, not exceeding 24 18 in number, elected by the Council;
(iii) Life Members;
(iv) Ex-officio Members.
(i) The following Societies, Associations and Guilds of Church Bell Ringers (hereinafter referred to under the general term ‘Society’) shall be affiliated to the Council:-
(a) Any Society whose application for affiliation has been approved under Rule 4 (ii);
(b) Societies existing at the date of the passing of this Rule whose applications for continued membership have been confirmed by the Administrative Committee.
(ii) Applications from Societies for affiliation shall be reviewed by the Administrative Committee, which will make a recommendation to Council. Any such application will require the agreement of a majority of the members present and voting at the Council meeting at which it is considered, and shall be subject to the provision of a certificate signed by at least two of its officers that it
(a) has not fewer than 75 members as defined in Rule 4 (iv) (25 members so defined in the case of Societies operating wholly outside the British Isles); and
(b) has been in existence for at least five years (unless set up to replace in whole or in part a Society already affiliated to the Council); and
(c) actively promotes and fosters the ringing of bells for Christian worship and on other appropriate occasions; and
(d) undertakes to abide by the Rules and Decisions of the Council.
(iii) A Society shall cease to be affiliated to the Council if
(a) its membership falls below 50 (25 in the case of Societies operating totally outside the British Isles); or
(c) a proposal for its disaffiliation is agreed by two-thirds of the members present at the Council meeting at which it is considered.
(iv) For the purposes of Rules 4 (ii) and (iii) and 5 (i), a Society’s membership shall be defined as either the number of annually-subscribing and resident life members in the year preceding its application for affiliation or the election of representatives; or, for Societies whose members do not pay an annual subscription, the number of members who attended at least one event organised by the Society in the preceding year, or the number of members elected in the preceding twenty years; or, for university and college Societies, the number of members who attended at least one event organised by the Society in the preceding year. In this Rule ‘event’ shall include meetings, practices, peal attempts, dinners and other organised gatherings of members.
(i) Affiliated Societies shall be entitled to elect Representative Members according to their membership as defined in Rule 4 (iv), on the following basis:-
Each Society’s membership shall be certified by the Secretary of the Society to the Honorary Secretary at the start of each triennium.
(ii) No Representative Member shall be eligible as an Honorary Additional Member.
(iii) The election of Representative Members by affiliated Societies shall take place triennially, and the names and addresses of those elected shall be forwarded to the Honorary Secretary together with the Certificate required by Rule 5 (i) not later than four weeks before the commencement of each triennial session. In the event of a vacancy the new member shall be elected only for the unexpired period of the triennium, and his name and address shall be forwarded to the Honorary Secretary forthwith.
(iv) A Society not situated within the British Isles may appoint a single Alternate Member to attend a meeting of the Council if one or more of its Representative Members is unable to attend that meeting; in such an event the name and address of the Alternate Member shall be forwarded forthwith to the Honorary Secretary. An Alternate Member may not be elected an Officer or independent examiner, nor be appointed to a committee of the Council; neither shall an Alternate be entitled to membership of The Ringing World Limited or The Ringing Foundation Limited, nor to give notice of motion in accordance with Rule 17 18.
(i) Honorary Additional Members shall consist of those who possess knowledge or skills needed by the Council. They shall be elected for three years and, on retiring, shall be eligible for re-election (retirement and election taking effect as from the end of the annual meeting), provided that any Honorary Member who during his term of office may be. An Additional Member who is elected a Representative or Life Member, or becomes an Ex-officio Member, shall, ipso facto, vacate his honorary membership immediately cease to be an Additional Member. Election shall be by ballot at an annual meeting of the Council and require the vote of a majority of those present. The Council may fill a vacancy among the Honorary Members at any annual meeting of the Council. Notwithstanding the note above concerning when the election takes effect, a new Honorary Additional Member shall be eligible for election to a committee at that meeting.
(ii) All nominations for Additional Membership shall be sent to the Honorary Secretary, signed by two Representative, Life or Ex-officio members of the Council, not less than two calendar months previous to a meeting of the Council. Such nominations shall appear on the agenda paper. Nominations shall be accompanied by a supporting statement of not more than 250 words which will be distributed to members of the Council. Supporting speeches will not be permitted at the meeting.
(i) Life Members shall consist of those who in the opinion of the Council by reason of their services to the Art of Ringing merit the conferment on them of the honour of Life Membership. Election shall be by ballot and shall require the agreement of four-fifths of those present. Life Membership shall cease only on death or resignation.
(ii) All nominations for Life Membership shall be sent to the Honorary Secretary, signed by two members of the Council, not less than two calendar months previous to a meeting of the Council, unless notice of motion has been given at the previous meeting. Such nominations shall appear on the agenda paper.
(i) All members of the Central Council as shall from time to time consent in writing shall be members of The Ringing World Limited.
(ii) The Chairman of The Ringing World Limited shall be an Ex-officio member of the Council if not already a Life or Representative Member.
(i) All members of the Central Council as shall from time to time consent in writing shall be members of The Ringing Foundation Limited.
(ii) The Chairman of The Ringing Foundation Limited shall be an Ex-officio member of the Council if not already a Life or Representative Member.
9 10. Each affiliated Society shall subscribe annually, on 1 January for the year commencing on that date, such sum as the Council may from time to time determine in relation to its membership as certified under Rule 5 (i) to meet the expenses of conducting the business of the Council. No Representative or Alternate Member shall be entitled to speak or vote at a meeting of the Council until the subscription of the Society he represents be paid.
10 11. The Council shall normally meet once annually, the venue and date to be decided at a previous meeting, or (in the event of unforeseen circumstances rendering the Council’s decision impracticable) as the Administrative Committee of the Council shall decide. Any meeting of the Council may be extended to additional sittings on the motion for adjournment being put and carried. The President shall have power, in case of emergency, to call special meetings of the Council, and he shall at any time summon such a special meeting on receipt of a requisition signed by 25 members.
11 12. (i) At the Annual Meeting next after each triennial election a President, Vice-President, Honorary Secretary, Honorary Assistant Secretary and Honorary Treasurer shall be elected to serve for three years. In the event of the President, Vice-President, Honorary Secretary, Honorary Assistant Secretary or Honorary Treasurer vacating office before the expiry of the three years, the remaining officers shall have the power to make a temporary appointment to fill the vacancy until the ensuing meeting, which meeting shall elect a member to fill the vacancy replacement for the remainder of the period. The retiring President, Vice-President, Honorary Secretary, Honorary Assistant Secretary and Honorary Treasurer shall be eligible for re-election at the expiration of their term of office. The retiring officers shall continue in office until the business of the meeting is concluded. All nominations for these offices shall be sent to the Honorary Secretary, signed by two members of the Council, not less than two calendar months previous to the meeting, and such nominations shall appear on the agenda paper.
(ii) The President, Vice-President, Honorary Secretary, Honorary Assistant Secretary and Honorary Treasurer shall be Ex-officio members of the Council if not already Life, Honorary, or Representative Members.
12 13. (i) At the Annual Meeting next after each triennial election the Council shall appoint Stewards (their number as may from time to time be determined by the Council), to be separately responsible for the Carter Ringing Machine Collection, for the Rolls of Honour, for all material in the Council’s Library, and for the Dove database. The Steward responsible for the Library shall be an ex-officio member of the Library Committee. In the event of a Steward vacating office before the expiration of the three years, the ensuing meeting shall appoint a member replacement for the remainder of the period. The Stewards shall be eligible for re-appointment at the expiration of their term of office, but in the event of replacement shall continue in office until a successor has accepted full responsibility for the relevant material. Nominations for these offices shall be sent to the Honorary Secretary, signed by two members of the Council, not less than two calendar months previous to the meeting, and such nominations shall appear on the agenda paper.
(ii) The Stewards shall be Ex-officio members of the Council if not already Life or Representative Members.
13 14. The Council shall triennially elect from amongst the members of the Council two independent examiners who shall examine and report upon the Annual Accounts of the Council. The independent examiners shall have power to employ the services of a professional accountant at the expense of the Council. In the event of the independent examiners vacating office before a triennial election, the Administrative Committee shall fill the vacancy.
14 15. (i) The Council shall at each Annual Meeting appoint members to fill vacancies in an Administrative Committee and the permanent committees enumerated in paragraph (ii) of this Rule and shall appoint such other committees as are necessary to carry out the work of the Council. At each Annual Meeting at least one-third of the elected members of the Administrative Committee and of each of the permanent committees enumerated in paragraph (ii) of this Rule shall retire. Retiring members who are still members of the Council shall be those who have been longest in office since their last appointment and are eligible for reappointment. If any members were appointed on the same day, those to retire shall be determined by lot unless they otherwise agree among themselves. Notwithstanding the note in Rule 22 23 concerning when an alteration to the Rules takes effect, a new permanent committee shall be appointed at the meeting at which the committee is added to those enumerated in paragraph (ii) of this Rule. The Council may at any time dissolve a committee or alter its membership. Reasonable expenses may be paid.
(ii) The following committees shall be the permanent committees of the Council:-
(d) Peal Records
(f) Public Relations
(h) Towers and Belfries
(i) Redundant Bells
(j) Information and Communications Technology
(l) Bell Restoration
(m) Ringing Centres
(n) Ringing Trends
(o) Tower Stewardship
(iii) The Administrative Committee shall consist of:-
(a) The President, Vice-President, Honorary Secretary, Honorary Assistant Secretary and Honorary Treasurer;
(b) The Chairmen of Committees or their nominees;
(c) Twelve elected members (chosen by ballot if nominations exceed the number of vacancies);
(d) The Chairman of The Ringing World Limited.;
(e) The Chairman of The Ringing Foundation Limited.
(iv) The other committees shall consist of not more than five elected members unless a greater number shall be decided by the Council before nominations are closed. Members shall be chosen by ballot if nominations exceed the number of vacancies. Each of these committees shall have power to co-opt any number of members of the Council. Co-opted members shall retire at the next annual meeting and shall not be taken into account in determining the members who are to retire by rotation.
(v) Each committee shall appoint a chairman and shall report annually to the Council. All reports, except those of the Administrative Committee, shall be made in writing to the Honorary Secretary where possible three months before the Council meeting.
(vi) A committee may establish an advisory panel of consultants to assist them with their activities and shall be solely responsible for appointments to the panel.
(vii) At the Annual Meeting next after each triennial election, members of any committee who have not been re-elected to the Council shall (when such Committee has a report to present) have the right to attend and speak on any matter arising exclusively out of that report.
15 16. The terms of reference of the committees shall be as follows:-
(i) The Administrative Committee. To organise the meetings of the Council, co-ordinate the activities of other committees, and deal with urgent matters between meetings of the Council.
(ii) The Biographies Committee. To maintain an account of the work and general ringing activities of past and present ringers.
(iii) The Education Committee. To review, further, and if necessary advance, the best methods of ringing teaching and learning, and to disseminate this knowledge to societies and the ringing community; to arrange or assist in the organisation of training events for societies; to keep under review the need for up-to-date educational resources using whatever medium best suits the purpose, and to produce this material wherever necessary.
(iv) The Methods Committee. To consider and advise on all questions arising from the interpretation of the Council’s Decisions relating to methods, calls, and peal ringing.
(v) The Peal Records Committee. To maintain a record of the first peal in each method on each number of bells for both tower bells and handbells and subsequent record length peals together with compositions used; a record of new methods included in multi-method peals; and a record of the progressive number of methods rung in peals of different groups of methods. To prepare an analysis of and report on all peals published in ‘The Ringing World’.
(vi) The Compositions Committee. To promote the art of composition; to maintain a representative collection of peal compositions and compositions of other lengths and to prepare for publication such collections as the Council shall direct; to select, check, and prepare compositions for publication in ‘The Ringing World’; and to encourage the use of aids in composition.
(vii) The Public Relations Committee. To establish and maintain goodwill and mutual understanding of church bell ringing between the Central Council, its officers, committees and members, bell ringers, associations/guilds/societies in the British Isles and overseas, church authorities, the media, and the general public.
(viii) The Publications Committee. To ensure that information is available in the form of publications to further the object of the Council, and to exert overall responsibility for the form, content and layout of publications; and for marketing, sales and distribution.
(ix) The Towers and Belfries Committee. To make available advice and assistance on, and information about, the installation, maintenance and security of rings of bells, the maintenance of towers, and all related matters.
(x) The Committee for Redundant Bells. To consider and advise on all matters concerning bells in churches affected by redundancy, having where necessary the power to act on behalf of the Council; to develop and maintain contact with the statutory bodies charged with dealing with redundant churches, providing advice as necessary; to produce periodic reviews of the situation concerning bells in churches affected by redundancy, in order to promote an awareness of the problem among ringers generally.
(xi) The Information and Communications Technology Committee. To encourage and assist affiliated societies and the Officers and Committees of the Council in the exploitation of information and communications technology; to support improved communication within the Exercise by such means as operating a world wide web site for the Council; and to communicate to the Exercise developments in ringing-related computer software and hardware by such means as publishing a catalogue and reviews.
(xii) The Library Committee. To develop the Council’s Library and raise the profile of its work on bells and ringing by ensuring that it acts as an up-to-date information source; the archive of material is maintained in good condition for consultation; and that relevant research is encouraged and made available.
(xiii) The Bell Restoration Committee. To promote the restoration and provision of rings of bells, by investigating and disseminating information on sources of funds and other resources, fund management and charitable status; to administer such funds as are from time to time available for distribution by the Council for bell restoration; to raise funds on behalf of the Council for the purpose of bell restoration.
(xiv) The Ringing Centres Committee. To promote, support, set minimum standards for, and provide information on ringing centres; to evaluate proposals for the formation of centres against the standards agreed by the Council, and where appropriate recognise centres on behalf of the Council; to administer funds for setting up and developing centres.
(xv) The Ringing Trends Committee. To identify, evaluate and record trends in church bell ringing for the purposes of guiding Council policy.
(xvi) The Tower Stewardship Committee. To support the good management of towers by promoting best practice and good governance; to inform and make available advice on the roles and responsibilities of tower officials; to monitor regulatory issues that might affect the local parochial organisation and to act in support of the interests of tower officials in consultation with the authorities whenever necessary.
16 17. The property, funds and assets of the Council shall be vested in the President, Vice-President, Honorary Secretary, Honorary Assistant Secretary and Honorary Treasurer for the time being. They shall have power to invest money and adopt such measures as seem to them necessary in the interest of the Council.
17 18. All notices of motion shall be sent in writing, signed by two members of the Council, received by the Honorary Secretary not less than six weeks previous to the meeting, and be placed by him on the agenda, together with the names of the proposer and seconder of the motion. But it shall be competent, on a vote of the majority of the meeting, for the Council to discuss a subject not upon the agenda paper, provided such subject does not affect the Rules or Constitution of the Council.
18 19. (i) At the meetings of the Council, the President, or Vice-President, shall take the chair and in the event of their absence the members present shall elect a Chairman for that meeting.
(ii) Fifty members shall form a quorum.
19 20. (i) Each member present, whether Representative, Honorary Additional, Life, Alternate, or Ex-officio, shall have one vote. The Chairman for the time being shall have a casting vote.
(ii) Whenever more than two candidates are considered for the positions of President, Vice-President, Honorary Secretary, Honorary Assistant Secretary and Honorary Treasurer voting shall take place under the Alternate Vote system of the Electoral Reform Society.
20 21. Provisional notice of the date of and items for discussion at the Annual Meeting shall be given approximately nine weeks previous to such meeting. Full notice of the date, arrangements and agenda for each meeting shall be given not less than four weeks previous to such meeting. Such notices shall be given in ‘The Ringing World’ and it shall not be incumbent on the Honorary Secretary to send notice to each member. The names of the members present and the business transacted at each meeting shall be entered in the minute book and reported to ‘The Ringing World’. Copies of the resolutions passed by the Council and of the Decisions of the Council shall be forwarded to affiliated Societies as soon as is convenient after the meeting.
21 22. At each Annual Meeting the Honorary Treasurer shall submit the statement of all accounts of the Council for the year ended 31 December previous, together with the report of the independent examiners thereon.
22 23. Alterations in the Rules of the Council shall be made only at the Annual Meeting, and every notice of a proposed alteration shall be sent to the Honorary Secretary as laid down in Rule 17 18. All alterations in the Rules of the Council shall require the agreement of two-thirds of those present. Alterations to the Rules of the Council shall come into effect at the close of the meeting at which they are agreed.
The fund shall be known as The Central Council of Church Bell Ringers Rescue Fund for Redundant Bells.
The object of the Fund shall be to advance the Christian religion by the rescue of redundant bells for the purpose of their being rehoused elsewhere for ringing in churches.
The Fund may take any reasonable action for the furtherance of its objects, including the acquisition, removal and storage, of bells, fittings and frames.
Members for the time being of the Central Council of Church Bell Ringers shall be members of the Fund.
The Fund shall be administered by a Committee consisting of the members for the time being of the Central Council Committee for Redundant Bells who shall be the Trustees of the Fund.
(i) Such bank accounts as may be required shall be opened in the name of the Fund. All cheques drawn on the Fund must be signed by two of the Trustees.
(ii) Any monies not required for the immediate purposes of the Fund shall be invested in any manner the Trustees and the Committee acting together may think fit. Any investments must be made in the names of all the Trustees.
(iii) The Committee shall have the power to raise funds by any means it sees fit, so long as permanent trading is not engaged in.
(iv) Subject to the consent of the Trustees the Committee shall have the power to dispose of bells, fittings, or frames if attempts at rehousing have proved unsuccessful.
(v) The Trustees shall effect such insurance as they from time to time shall deem appropriate.
There shall be an annual meeting of the members of the Fund which shall be held at the annual meeting of the Central Council and the President for the time being of the Central Council shall be invited to chair the meeting.
The Committee shall elect from their number a Chairman, an Honorary Treasurer, and an Honorary Secretary. The Honorary Treasurer shall prepare a balance sheet as at December 31st in each year, and an income and expenditure account for the year ending on that date. The accounts shall be examined by the independent examiners of the Central Council, and presented to the members of the Fund at the next annual meeting of the Central Council.
In the event of the dissolution of the Fund, its assets shall be distributed by the Central Council for the purposes of church bell restoration.
(i) No alteration of, or addition to, or deletion from, these rules shall be made so as to cause the Fund at any time to cease to be a charity in law.
(ii) No alteration of, or addition to, or deletion from, these rules shall be made except at the Annual Meeting of the Central Council, following notice given to the Honorary Secretary of the Central Council at least six weeks prior to the date of the meeting. All alterations to these rules shall require the agreement of two-thirds of those present.
This page is maintained by Tony Smith 11th September 2014