1. Master’s welcome

    The Guild Master - Mike Winterbourne, supported by Vice-Master - Pete Jordan, Hon. Gen. Secretary - Heather Frazer, Hon. Gen. Treasurer - Ros Brandwood and Minute Secretary - Tony Smith, opened the meeting at 5.17 p.m. The Master welcomed all present, thanked the Lay Minister, Mike Browning, for taking the service and for his address, the Basingstoke District for hosting the event and providing the tea, and the Rev. Canon Jo Stoker for the use of the bells.

  2. Striking Competition results

    Mary Gow and Stephen Mitchell from All Hallows, Twickenham, had judged the Inter-District 8-bell Striking Competition at St. Michael’s, Basingstoke, that afternoon. The following results had been announced and certificates presented to the team captains.

    Position District Method Score Peal speed Drawn
    1stWinchesterGrandsire Triples95%3h33rd
    2ndAlton & PetersfieldPlain Bob Triples84%3h24th
    3rdBasingstokeGrandsire Triples77%2h591st
    4thIsle of WightGrandsire Triples67%3h132nd
  3. The following 52 members and one guest signed the attendance book: Mike Novell (St. Lawrence, Alton), Lizzie Hough (Alverstoke), Matthew Dancy, Adam Greenley, Ian Rees and Margaret Smith (All Saints, Basingstoke), Heather Frazer, Lynne & Pete Jordan, Steve Lutener, Betty & Mike Rice, Peter Rowe and Jon Soar (St. Michael, Basingstoke), Anthony & Liz Manship (Botley), Ros Brandwood (Burghclere), Daniel Hartley (Eling), Shân Nash (Eversley), Janice Higgins, and Tessa & Tony Smith (Hursley), Elizabeth & Andrew Johnson (New Alresford), Jeff Ford (Newnham), Phil Watts (North Stoneham), Fiona Sayers and Pauline Stokes (Odiham), David Mattingley (Portsmouth Cathedral), Allan Yalden (Purbrook), Martin Barnes, Ella & Nici Collins, Judy & Alan Giles, Adrian Nash and Joseph Sharp (Rotherwick), Viv & Graham Nobbs (Ryde), Lauren Taylor (Sherborne St. John), Chris Ford (Sherfield on Loddon), Barry Fry (St. Barnabas, Southampton), Mo & Hugh Routh (Steep), Edd Colliss (Swanmore), Mike Winterbourne (Tangley), John Colliss and Bruce Purvis (Winchester Cathedral), Sara & Gary Marsh (Wonston), John Croft and Ray Walsh (unattached) and Anne Bricknell (Edinburgh).

    Apologies for absence had been received from Barbara Townsend (Andover), Maggie Ellis (St. Michael, Basingstoke), Valerie Harris (Blackmoor), Margaret Downer (Brading), Robin Milford (Curdridge), Ruth & Derek Jackson (Eling), Romy Coldman (Hinton Admiral), Anthony Webster (Hordle), Helen Piper (Kingsclere), John Palk (Lockerley), Mary Sterry (Lyndhurst), Polly Osborne (Minstead), Robert Duffy (Petersfield), John Davey (Ringwood), Andrew Glover (Romsey), Deb Baker (Rotherwick), Jill Taylor (Ryde), Brian Oakes (St. Mary Bourne), Matthew Wilks (Shedfield), Mary Tester (Shorwell), Margaret Winterbourne (Tangley), Michael Church (Upton Grey), Nicky & John David (Vale), Peter Niblett (Whitchurch), Lisa Ashforth (Wickham), Sue Froome (Wolverton) and Christine Knights-Whittome (Wonston). Further apologies were received from Greg Jordan (St. Michael, Basingstoke) and Joyce Croft (unattached).

  4. Loss of Members from death since the 2017 AGM

    The meeting stood to remember members: Maurice Bailey (Eling), Margaret Ellis (Eversley), Robert Howland (Headbourne Worthy), Valerie Keel (Wonston), Brian Marchant (Upham), Coral Northeast (Overton), Anita Seamons (Selborne), David Wilson (LM) (Ringwood) and Colin Younger (Portsmouth Cathedral); and former members: Peter Bardon (Hursley and New Alresford), Mike Baverstock (Sacred Heart, Bournemouth), Edna Blissett (Sherborne St. John), John Curtis (New Alresford), Lionel Doubleday (Portchester and Southwick), Barbara Jones (Christchurch), Leonard Lewer (New Alresford), William Arthur Littlejohns (Baughurst), Janet Livingston (Botley), Jack Roberts (Baughurst), Barbara Salmons (St. Mary, Portsmouth) and Harry White (Vale). Barry Fry said a prayer.

  5. Minutes of the 2017 AGM

    The minutes of the 2017 AGM at Milford-on-Sea were adopted on the proposition of Lizzy Hough, seconded by Bruce Purvis, and signed by the Master as a true record.

  6. Matters arising

    There were no matters arising.

  7. Life Membership

    Anthony Manship (Botley), Anthony Webster (Hordle) and Mavis Whitehead (Portsmouth Cathedral) had completed fifty years’ ringing membership of the Guild. The Master presented Anthony Manship with his Life Membership certificate (applause). Mavis’s certificate was taken by David Mattingley.

  8. Officers’ and Committee Reports for 2017

    There were no comments and the reports were adopted en bloc on the proposition of Bruce Purvis, seconded by Pete Jordan.

  9. Bell Restoration Fund

    1. Trustees’ Report and Accounts for 2017

      There were no comments on the Report and Accounts.

    2. Grant proposals

      David Mattingley reported that the Trustees met three times a year, before the two Executive Committee meetings and before the AGM. There were grants outstanding to Ecchinswell, Northington, Silchester and Brading. A new grant application had been received from St Catherine’s, Wolverton for rebushing the clappers at a cost of £2,500. The Trustees recommended a grant of £375, which was approved on the proposition of David Mattingley, seconded by the Hon. Gen. Treasurer.

  10. Report of 2018 Central Council Meeting

    The Guild was represented at the meeting in Lancaster by Michael Church and Allan Yalden. Allan read a report (see Appendix A).

  11. General Data Protection Regulation

    The Master proposed the adoption of a draft policy that had been placed on chairs. Although this was agreed, many members had not seen the document and following questions it was acknowledged that further work was necessary.

  12. WW1 Project

    Viv Nobbs read a paper (see Appendix B). Allan Yalden said at the Central Council meeting the Steward of the Rolls of Honour, Alan Regin, had said men who died of their wounds up to 1922 would be added to the Rolls, and asked whether they would be included in the WW1 Project. Viv said they could be added to the digital format.

  13. Ringing Remembers

    Viv Nobbs read a paper (see Appendix C).

  14. Motion

    Tony Smith proposed and the Master seconded on behalf of the Executive Committee that “Child Protection Officer” be changed to “Safeguarding Officer” in the list of officers enumerated in rules 4 and 5. The motion was passed nem. con. by the required majority.

  15. Appointment of Committees

    The following were appointed on the proposition of the Master.

    1. Belfry Stewardship

      Martin Barnes, Mark Warner and John Pereira.

    2. Communications

      Deb Baker, Graham Hounslow and Rosalind Martin.

    3. Education

      Christine Knights-Whittome, Andy Ingram, Sallie Ingram, Polly Osborne and David Mattingley.

    4. Striking Competitions

      Pete Jordan and Peter Niblett.

    5. Ringing Schools

      Mike Winterbourne, Andy Ingram and Sallie Ingram.

  16. Future Guild Events

    Ringing World National Youth Contest 7 July 2018 London
    Essex Trophy Competition8 September 2018Horsham
    Inter-District 10-bell Striking Competition15 September 2018East Meon
    District Officers’ ForumTBA
    Education Course13 October 2018Plain Hunt & Trebling to Doubles methods, Church Oakley
    Executive Committee Meeting17 November 2018St. Barnabas’ Church Hall, Southampton
    Education Course24 November 2018Surprise Minor, Shedfield
    Education Course9 March 2019TBA
    Executive Committee Meeting16 March 2019St. Barnabas’ Church Hall, Southampton
    Education Course6 April 2019TBA
    WW1 Service12 May 2019Portsmouth Cathedral
    WW1 Service19 May 2019Winchester Cathedral
    Education Course12 October 2019TBA
    Education Course23 November 2019TBA
  17. Date and place of 2019 AGM

    This would be held on Saturday 15 June 2019 on the Isle of Wight.

  18. Any other business

    1. Andrew Johnson invited comment on the “Framework for Method Ringing” intended to replace the existing democratically-agreed Central Council Decisions.

    2. The Hon. Gen. Secretary said John Davey had enquired about the savings from only printing copies of the Annual Report for those members who had requested them. John Palk had advised that in 2017: 1,535 copies had been printed at a cost of £1,249, whereas in 2018: 700 copies had been printed at a cost of £569.

    3. The Hon. Gen. Secretary had followed the practice of placing two advertisements for the AGM in The Ringing World but wondered whether this was still worthwhile. The cost in 2017 had been £26.88. After it was determined that no-one had attended as a result of seeing the advertisements it was accepted that they were no longer necessary.

    4. The Hon. Gen. Secretary said Robin Milford had asked that the 200 Club be promoted and the forms were on the Guild website. Hugh Routh was disappointed that there was not a draw following this AGM.

    5. David Mattingley asked anyone willing to help with Education Committee courses to see him afterwards.

    6. Viv Nobbs promoted her raffle in aid of the WW1 Project.

There being no further business, the Master closed the meeting at 6.17 p.m.


Central Council Meeting - LANCASTER 2018

Two Reps from W&P Diocesan Guild attended this year’s meeting at Lancaster University over three days at the end of May. The Hon. Sec. read out apologies from the three members unable to attend.

Saturday’s programme was started in the afternoon with various presentations on Youth Leadership, Safeguarding, Public Relations and Biographies in various lecture rooms on the campus, and one on Belfry Maintenance held at Pilling Church.

Then followed a Saturday evening social entertainment in the form Ceilidh.

Sunday morning “Adopt a Tower” saw visitors enabling some excellent service “Touches” being rung in some local towers who normally only managed rounds and call changes.

The Lichfield Diocese Belfry had been assembled on campus with the aim of generating interest amongst the local students (but I must admit I never saw a queue waiting to ring.)

Sunday afternoon
The Ringing World AGM opened for business and the financial status showed the accounts were much the same as previous years, although there were fewer RW printed copies distributed the digital format was showing increasing numbers from quite a low base start. It was also under investigation the RW may be able to take advantage of ‘working from home’ technologies but further investigation would be needed. It was also noted that the income from ‘Bellboard’ entries were making a healthy contribution to the finances. It was noted that savings could be made in postage cost if RW were to be published Fortnightly but a year’s notice of this change would be needed.

There then followed a choice two Seminars:-

A well-attended open meeting on the Constitutional Reform presented by Clyde Whittaker one of the authors on the review system and checks and balances that had been applied. The approach was that the amended Rules were simplified in language and amended to take into account the requirements of the Charity Commission. The charity commission had since the rewrite approved the rules as now written.

The new structure was described in a Transition Motion that showed a bottom up structure of 5 new committees generated by the amalgamation the earlier committees of similar areas of interest./ The Executive board of 8 members/ the Annual Council Meetings/The Ringing Societies.

There were no changes proposed yet in Council Rep. numbers and qualification rules remain much the same a before for each Ringing Society.

The Transition Motion, if agreed to at the AGM, would be followed by the Election of four addition trustees. At the close of the meeting subject to agreement the new governing docs take effect and the present 15 committees retire. The execs take office and shortly after that the Trustees formerly appoint the new workgroups.

The Rules were considered to be in scope and first at this time of change, the Standing Orders and Policy Decisions were considered out of scope at this time and a more long-term requirement for change.

The Second Seminar “The Church & Bells” was held in parallel with the first seminar and I cannot report on the outcome of this but it was also well-attended.

17:30pm in the Faraday Lecture was the first part of the AGM chaired by the President Christopher O’Mahony. The Hon. Sec. announced that 189 reps represented 66 Societies and all subs had been paid. Apologies were read out including those from Dave Mattingley, Peter Niblett and Andrew Johnson. From W&P. A number of reports for 2017 were individually proposed for acceptance and accepted without items arising.

The AGM was adjourned at that point and preparation made for Annual Dinner, which was held in the Great Hall.

Monday at 9:30am

Item 13 on the Agenda “That the Council adopt the Revised Rules of the Council, the Standing Orders of the Council and other provisions of the Transition Motion.” Was proposed and accepted.

The Motion to take effect from the close of the meeting.

Continuing Officers (Trustees)
The President, Vice-President, The Hon. Treasurer and Hon. Sec. were to continue in Office spread across 2019-2021.

Four New Ordinary Trustees were chose by ballot from 5 names on the ballot paper. The Independent Examiners were also chosen to remain in place by a show of hands. A short break was then taken to allow for the new Workgroup Introductions to take place by each of their Leaders, appointed by the Exec. These took place in various lecture rooms adjacent.

After Lunch on Monday.

Time was then given to the proposal and acceptance of the existing committee reports, these of course to be the last in this format of the council.

A presentation by was then given on ‘Ringing Remembers’, which was well received by all as a successful project for which nearly 50 per cent of the targeted 1400 new ringers had been recruited.

Item 19 on the Agenda was “A new Framework for Method ringing”

A presentation was given by Tim Barnes on the new framework whose status updates had been reported in the Ringing world (Jan 26th and March 2nd 2028) developing a new descriptive framework to replace the current Central Council Decisions. Production of the framework had the remit to be simple, permissive and yet maintain the historical record and these often came into conflict with each other.

Although not complete in time for this AGM it was hoped that a draft document that balances the requirement of both ordinary ringers and also satisfy the mathematical/technical ringers would be available for comment by all interested parties with a couple of months. For approval at next year’s AGM.

The CCCBR AGM for 2019 is likely to be held in London.

Reps from Suffolk Guild invited the AGM in 2022 as part of their 100 year celebration. It was also noted that 2023 was likely to find the CCCBR AGM in Ireland.

Hon. Sec. noted It had been decided that CCCBR reps may only vote if Subs from their societies had been paid 6 weeks in advance of the AGM. (The closing date was actually January.)


World War 1 Centenary Commemoration Project

Bell Ringing to honour those service personnel who fell in the Great War.


Bishop Christopher writes in support


Bishop Tim writes

We’re compiling archives of special ringing performances in memory of service personnel - ringers and non-ringers - who were killed in the WW1 conflict and Remembrance ringing. We aim to include tower and hand bell performances. It is anticipated that the archives will cover 100 years or so up until the end of November 2018.

There is wonderful support overall: many ringers are pro-active - local leadership and community involvement is playing a very significant and meaningful role, all very inspiring. Both Dioceses are offering practical support - using their communication networks to spread the word of this project, Ringing Remembers recruitment campaign and the Ringing for Peace initiative. E-News have been issued very recently and it’s likely that an email will be sent on our behalf direct to all Incumbents - whether the church has bells or not. This really is raising the profile of ringing across our many communities. Several letters of support have been received from our Guild’s Presidents, Vice-Presidents and Patrons. Winchester Cathedral Archivist has been guiding us. Alan Regin, responsible for the Central Council Rolls of Honour, and our own Librarian - Bruce - have been active with research support. The Ringing World has pledged its support.

ALL ringers, including new ones, can participate in the special ringing! It’s an ideal project for everyone to work on together and we can all gain much from it in a variety of ways.

We invite you all to ring in a special performance and for it to be recorded in the archive. It would be wonderful to have all our Guild’s towers included and marvellous if all Guild members who had lost their lives in the dreadful conflict were honoured with a special performance recorded in the archives.

Our working group - 8 members currently - met at the end of March. Project updates appear on the website. A WW1 Newsletter was issued to towers in the Spring.

Research and compilation of harvested records is progressing well … almost 1,000 performances have been harvested to date; the archive in its current form can be seen at (ringers’ names are held and will be included later).

The archive being created uses existing ringing records; they will be in two printed volumes and in digital format. We plan to make them very accessible.

After 30th November 2018 we will need your help with checking your records for accuracy where possible but if you notice anything amiss now, please tell us.

The Executive Committee in March 2018 formally allocated £1,000 towards the estimated project costs of approximately £2,900, including the costs of receptions at the two cathedral services.

We are encouraging fund-raising right across the Guild. Please be creative and consider raising funds to support our project.

Fundraising results to date:

Isle of Wight District Raffles£114
St. Michael’s, Basingstoke Ringers£200
Isle of Wight Fund Raising Tommy Relay Day£326

The Executive Committee will be reviewing the project and budget in November 2018 before the order is placed for the printing of the two bound volumes.

The Isle of Wight District with Tommy (seen here) effectively threw out a challenge to the other 7 Districts. They successfully achieved Leg 1 of what we hope might be a relay right across our Guild area between now and the 11th November. So, what’s it about? Basically, Tommy and ringers visiting all towers where Guild members, who were killed in the war, used to ring. Special ringing there on the day, whatever that might be, can be recorded for the archives. The relay legs could be fund raising events but not necessarily. Pete Jordan is co-ordinating: please show your keen interest and support.

The two Cathedral Evensong services in 2019 then:

Winchester19th May3.30 p.m.
Portsmouth12th May6 p.m.

The services - we’ll be joining the local congregations - will be great occasions of thanksgiving and fellowship!

The project would welcome volunteers … local “Ambassadors” for the project would be invaluable. If you feel you could offer your skills and enthusiasm, please contact us. Please spread the word generally and encourage all to engage with the project and to visit the website to keep up-to-date.

Thank you all!


Ringing Remembers Recruitment in our Guild.

I will not go into the background here as the project has been well documented. Many details have been circulated widely, via District Secretaries and the Guild Communications network, and much wider afield in the Ringing World and on many social media sites. I will be very happy to discuss with individuals after the meeting.

We had notice of the project towards the end of 2017 and, by the end of December, referrals started to arrive by email. David Mattingley kindly volunteered to help me and, between us, we made every effort to respond to all enquiries very quickly, chatting to the applicants, their potential tutors and organising Taster Sessions.

We could see from the outset that it promised us all some good recruiting possibilities with excellent support from Central Council. The great professional publicity in newspapers, local magazines, national publications and online was getting attention; one lady said she’d actually been looking for Boxing Day sales and, in her words, “It just popped up and I’d always wanted to try bell ringing!”

Some months on we were offered the free, excellent, well-designed posters and leaflets. These have been well received generally and they’ve hit the mark with the new ringers, for sure.

Some A4 posters and leaflets were circulated at the March Executive Committee Meeting; further supplies were offered across the Guild subsequently. We’ve been actively encouraging towers and ringers to distribute them widely in their own area. There have been some creative activities with good results. Feedback about the promotional material, and the project overall, continues to be positive.

We’re aware of around 40 positive enquiries to date. They have been placed in 18 - 20 towers. The majority were in the Southampton and Winchester areas as a direct result of the professional advertising.

Eling band stepped up magnificently, taking the largest group.

Steve Hough at Eling reported positively recently:

The tower has invested in a simulator, running Abel. They have a 30 minute Ringing Up and Down practice on a Saturday morning followed by an hour of Rounds and Call Changes on the simulator.

We are currently reviewing with new ringers and their tutors hoping to get a full and accurate position to report back to members.

I would encourage you all to distribute the excellent promotional posters and leaflets to your advantage; they can be easily used in local initiatives.

There is still plenty of time to teach new ringers to join in the ringing for Armistice 2018 and likely to be help available to do so. These new ringers will be participating in a very meaningful project indeed; they will receive additional benefits, such as newsletters and special recognition.

Finally, our sincere thanks to all the very positive volunteers who have stepped up - they’ve been enthusiastic, flexible and have worked well for the common good. Hopefully, the worldwide target of 1,400 new ringers to symbolically replace those killed in World War I will be met or even exceeded.