The Annual General Meeting of the Winchester and Portsmouth Guild was held on Saturday 3rd July 1982 in Highclere Village Hall. Mrs.G.W. Davis, the Guild Master, was in the chair, supported by the Hon. General Secretary Mr. D.C.Jackson, and the Hon. General Treasurer Mr.J.P.Colliss. Mrs.Davis opened the meeting at 1405 hours with prayers and then welcomed the 91 members present, mentioning in particular Mr.Tony Fortin from Alderney. She thanked all bands and districts for their amicability during her multifarious visits over the past twelve months; as ringers it is vital we maintain our affability towards all who visit our domains. These are difficult times and the maintenance of unity is vital to our Guild. She asked that districts keep the officers informed of their activities and used diversified forms of advertisement in order to involve every member in the camaraderie. Mrs.Davis thanked the members of the Basingstoke district involved with the organisation of the Open Day in their district on 12th June, and then paid tribute to the purposeful work accomplished on behalf of the Guild by Mr.K.S.B.Croft and by Mr. and Mrs. Nabb in their positions as Guild officers. Mr. and Mrs. Croft were retiring to Lincolnshire, while Mr. and Mrs. Nabb, following Graham's promotion, were moving to the Bristol area. Mr.Waldron asked that a letter of appreciation be sent to Mr. and Mrs. Nabb.

Apologies for absence

Written apologies had been received from:-

Mr. and Mrs.C.H.Kippin, Mr. and Mrs.C.Denyer, Mr.D.Oram, Mr.and Mrs. G.Nabb.

Telephoned apologies had been received from:-

Messrs. B.J.Fry, J.J.Hill, C.Hitching, N.Cameron, H.Lyndon Hatfield, M.Wilson, Mrs.B.Salmons, Rev.C.Hall, and the Harper family.

Loss of members through death

The meeting stood in silence to respect the following deceased members:-

Mrs. Balaam (Basingstoke); Miss K.Barnes (Hinton); Mrs.N.Beach(St. Mary's, Southampton); Mrs.E.Cheater (Ringwood); Mr.K.J.Cook O.B.E. (Lymington and Brockenhurst); Mr.H.Harris (Holy Rood, Southampton); Mr.J.Hartless (Eling); Mr.J.Lewis (Upton Grey); Mr.R.Menzies (Eling); Mr.S.Moody (Newport); Mr.R.Nicholson (Minstead); Mr.J.Stillwell (Yateley); Mr.P.White((Petersfield)

Annual General Report

Cmr.Harris apologised for the lack of the 1981 Guild Report. He explained that, of the three quotations obtained in January 1982, that from Hiltons of Tonbridge was £109 cheaper. Delivery was anticipated 28 days after the receipt of copy, and the sample copy (for the Lincoln Guild) was of good quality. He had recommended acceptance of this quotation and this was confirmed by the Executive Committee. The copy was sent on 21st March 1982. Unfortunately this was not complete as some districts had been tardy over their copy, contrary to rule 17. Absence of any proofs by 5th May led him to initiate an almost weekly series of telephone calls to the printer. The incomplete proofs finally started to arrive, with appalling typing, incorrect layout, and with large numbers of errors. The proofs, never complete, moved between them many times. The printer became uncontactable during June but many empty promises were made on his behalf concerning delivery. As of today the 1100 copies were undelivered. Cmr.Harris apologised to the Guild for his error of judgement and promised that he would continue to harass the printer.


Minutes of the A.G.M. held on 4th July 1981 in Southampton had been duplicated and circulated with the agendas by the secretary. The meeting agreed that the Master sign these minutes as correct, on the proposition of Mr. Matcham, seconded by Mr.Wimlett.

Matters arising

(a) On the matter of the three hoax peals, Mr.Waldron felt that an apology should be sent to the Guild and that the perpetrator be named in an open meeting. The Master felt that the matter was now closed.

(b) Mr.Fortin stated that the new Channel Islands district was hoping to increase their membership since St. Peters-in-the-Wood, Guernsey, had recently launched an appeal to raise money for a ring of 8 bells. He had suggested that they first contact the C.C. Redundant Bells committee.

(c) The church and new bells had been dedicated at Yateley on 21st November 1981, and the Master had attended the service. The church treasurer had received the £400 from our B.R.F. and the £1000 from the Manifold Trust, and the Secretary had received letters of appreciation for the Guild's involvement.

(d) £100 from the B.R.F. had been sent to Andover Essential Repairs Appeal Fund. A letter of thanks has been received from Mr.Redman.

(e) The Secretary had sent letters to the Broughton ringers and to the Channel Island District informing them of the 1981 decision concerning transfer.

(f) Letters had been sent to the Deans of Jersey and Guernsey. Both had accepted the invitation to become Vice-Presidents of the Guild.


(a) The C.C.Redundant Bells committee had sent a list of 30 churches declared redundant in the two diocese since 1968. The Guild was asked to provide information about the fate of the bells therein. The Secretary had written to Col. Gibbon, secretary of the Redundant Churches Uses Committee in Winchester for further information and had subsequently replied to Mrs.Wilkinson about some of the specified bells. He proposed to photo-copy the list, read it out at A.D.Ms., leave copies with District Secretaries, and encourage district members to become sleuths.

(b) The C.C.Rescue Fund for Redundant Bells has rescued the 10 bells from St.Catherine's, Feltham. The money was raised by calling in 45% of the promised loans. The treasurer had sent our contribution of £22 to Mr. O'Callaghan.

(c) The Guild had been invited to participate in the Essex Trophy 10-bell striking competition, to be held on 25th September at Horsham. The peal recorder reported that he is recruiting a band capable of ringing the test piece, which is a course of Yorkshire Royal.

(d) The Secretary had received a letter from the solicitors of the late Mrs. Cheater, stating that 50% of her residuary estate has been left to the Guild Bell Restoration Fund.

(e) The C.C.Bell Restoration Funds committee have arranged a one-day seminar on Bell Restoration Funds at Northampton on 23rd October 1982. The Secretary had application forms available for any member who might wish to attend. In addition the Secretary of the Salisbury Guild had written to ask if our representative could also represent them since their main Centenary celebrations will take place at Salisbury on 23rd October.

(f) Mr.R.Downer has resigned as I.O.W. District Secretary, and his last official function was to advise the Guild of a proposal to augment Niton from 5 to 6 bells. Mr.Bailey reported that no further progress has been made over the proposal since the benefactor has been ill for some time.

(g) The C.C.Rescue Fund for Redundant Bells has been approached by the P.C.C. of Holy Trinity, Gosport, to enquire if the Fund will purchase their bells for £4200. There has been an inspection by Whitechapel representatives following concern over the safety of the installation, and they suggest three alternatives:-

(i) Rehung as a chime. Cost £9583. (ii) Recast as a 4½cwt. ring of 8. Cost £12860. (iii) Remove and sell the bells for £4230. Cost £2229.

The secretary of the Fund suggests that St. Peter-in-the-Wood, Guernsey, might be prepared to purchase the bells.

Honorary Life Membership

Mr.W.H.Symes of Micheldever and Mr.H.A.Moody of Alton have both maintained ringing membership of the Guild for over 50 years. In accordance with rule 6 the Master declared these two members to be Honorary Life Members of the Guild. To warm applause, Mr. Symes rose to thank the Guild and to speak nostalgically of bygone days when he was encouraged to join the Guild by Mr. Wilfrid Andrews.

Following his retirement after 12 years as editor of "The Ringing World", the Executive Committee proposed that Mr.C.Denyer be elected an Honorary Life Member of the Guild. This was seconded by Mr.Croft, and confirmed by members present. The Master requested the Secretary to write to Mr.Denyer.

Hon. General Secretary's report

This is printed in the 1981 Guild Report. In the absence of this, the Secretary circulated duplicated copies. This was accepted on the proposition of Cmr.Harris, seconded by Mr.Sansom.

Hon. General Treasurer's report

The full balance sheets should be printed in the 1981 Guild Report, but the printer reports that he has lost them. Consequently he has now promised to print them as an extra sheet and insert them in the middle of the Report, amidst the peals. Mr.Colliss read a precis supplied by the Report Editor. The accounts were accepted on the proposition of Mr.Bailey, seconded by Mr.Collins.

Hon. Peal Recorder's report

This too should be printed in the 1981 Guild Report, Mr.Le.Marechal read his written, report but opted out of the details of the 270 peals. This was accepted, on the proposition of Mr.Collins, seconded by Mr.Waldron.

Mr.Cater asked whether the peal of Minor rung on Liss Campanile on 25 July 1981 would be included since the Central Council had rejected it (see R.W.3713, page 528). Mr Peachey addressed the meeting, explaining his opposition to this peal. Mr.Smith pointed out that Mr.Peachey had raised no objection when the peal was published in "The Ringing World" in 1981, neither had he raised it at any Guild Meeting. The matter received maximum publicity when he first raised it, as a Police Guild representative, at the Central Council Meeting. At this point the Guild Master interjected and requested that members who wish to criticise or question Guild activities should have the courtesy to approach the person(s) concerned first, and not raise it initially at public meetings. Mr.Peachey made a proposition but was unable to find someone to second it. Mr.Smith proposed that, in view of the false reason given to the Central Council for rejecting it, the peal be accepted by the Guild and included in the peal analysis. This was seconded by Cmr.Harris. On being put to the vote, 23 members voted for the proposition and 24 voted against.

Hon. Librarian's report

This was read by Cmr.Harris and was accepted on the proposition of Mr.Matcham, seconded by Mr.Smith. The report should appear in the 1981 Guild Report. Since Mrs.Nabb has moved with Mr.Nabb we now lack a librarian for the final year of the Triennial Period. It was proposed by Mr.Cater and seconded by Mr.Croft, that Mr.W.O.Haythorne be appointed librarian for the twelve months. Mr.Haythorne's election was confirmed by the meeting.

Bell Restoration Fund

Mr.Colliss presented the accounts, which should appear in the 1981 Guild Report, The Fund totals £6762-69, with a large income from the Guild Draw and from Winchester District who raised £120 on the 1981 Open Day. He again encouraged donations from individuals towers, and asked that each considered giving one wedding fee per year. A volunteer District was required for the 1983 Open Day, and the Fund had celebrated its tenth birthday on the previous Thursday. The report was accepted on the proposition of Mr.Chapman, seconded by Mr.Collins. Mr.Esbester displayed the beer mugs on sale to raise funds in 1981. Mr.Collins rose to enthusiastically eulogise over Mr.Grant's splendid motif when backed by a vessel-full of amber liquid.

On behalf of the trustees, Mr. Collins explained that although three requests had been received for grants, only two were clear-cut. Deane had initiated a scheme to augment from 6 to 8, costing £5000. Sherfield English had to rehang the tenor, following damage to the bearings, and this would cost £500. The trustees recommended more than 10% this year, suggesting £675 for Deane and £70 for Sherfield English. Mr.Foot seconded these propositions, and they were carried, nem.con.

An application had been received from Mr.P.Taylor on behalf of the Andover District, concerning the 6 bells in the redundant church of St. Peter, Sydmonton. Mr.Taylor stated that the District would transfer the bells to St.Lawrence, Ecchinswell, assisting the bell-founders, who would charge £10000. £4000 was the approximate sum promised so far. Mr.Dodd explained that Mr.Taylor had resigned as secretary and had little involvement in the project. Following an inspection by Whitechapel representatives, the proposed scheme was declared inoperative due to lack of space. They recommend either removing the 6 Sydmonton and 3 Ecchinswell bells and rehanging 4 of the former in Ecchinswell, cost about £600, or removing the 9 bells and recasting a 4 cwt. ring of six for Ecchinswell, cost about £5000. Ecchinswell P.C.C. prefer the former scheme, but the D.A.C. are not in favour. In addition Mr.Dodd stated that Mr.Taylor had been involved in all the discussions with the team rector, the Rev.Jardine, until his resignation, and that it was believed that only £1000 would be available, and then only on condition that Sydmonton bells are not re-cast. It was suggested that this matter be discussed again next year, when the Secretary and the Andover district officers had clarified the situation. The meeting agreed with Mr.Collins that a scheme for 4 bells was not to be encouraged, and the Secretary agreed to write to Rev.Jardine.

Guild Public Relations Officer

The secretary summarised the many projects initiated by Mr.Nabb, namely Biography Sheets; Display Material; Prepared Talks; Prepared written articles for newspapers and Parish Magazines; Items for Guild Newsletter; All material had been passed on to Mr.Jackson for safe keeping. The Master asked that members discover a suitable replacement for Mr. Nabb as Guild P.R.O., ready for the 1983 Trienniel elections. Meanwhile the Secretary would oversee any activity in this field.

Education sub-committee

The convener, Mr.R.Cater, read out the report that should appear in the 1981 Guild Report. He added that the Ringing School on 8th May 1982 had been a success but that the Handbell Course planned for 10th July 1982 had been cancelled since there were only two applicants. The notification forms concerning the Maintenance Course on 2nd October 1982 were available. Mr. Cater regretted that Miss Olding and Mr.Esbester did not wish to stand for re-election to this sub-committee of activity. This report was accepted on the proposition of Cmr.Harris, seconded by Mr.Sansom.

Striking Competitions sub-committee

The Secretary thanked the three district ringing masters, Messrs. Reynolds, Collins, and Mather, for stepping into the breach and organising the 8-bell competitions, after the tragic loss of Mr.Hartless. Mr. Reynolds reported on this competition, held on 15th May 1982 at East Meon. He also reported that the adjudicator, Mr.I.Oram, had suggested a change in the rules, while some Guild members had requested changing rules preventing 5 and 6 bell bands from entering both 6-bell and 8-bell competitions. Cmr.Harris proposed and Mr. Cater seconded that the new committee consider any change in competition rules and submit them to the Executive Committee Meeting. This was carried, nem. con.

Mr. Reynolds had distributed entry forms for the 6-bell competition due on 16th October 1982 at Catherington. He also stated that, in future, it will be necessary to book teas individually, since some teams, for whom teas were automatically reserved en-masse, were departing after they had rung, without warning those responsible for the catering.

This report was accepted on the proposition of Mr. Bailey, seconded by Mr. Matcham.

Social sub-committee

The convener, Mrs. G. Cater, read out the report that should appear in the 1981 Guild Report. She commented upon the success of the Guild Dinner held at Potters Heron Hotel on 1st May 1982, and on the proposed Barn Dance arranged for 9th October 1982, All belfries were requested to display the orange poster advertising the latter. Next year it was proposed to hold a Guild Luncheon at the Grantham Hotel, West Cowes, on 21st May 1983 with ringing and coach transport arranged for members from the mainland. This report was accepted, on the proposition of Mr. Bailey, seconded by Mr. Mather.

Insurance sub-committee

A summary of this committee's findings had been prepared by Mr.Nabb, duplicated by the Secretary, and distributed to the meeting. In the absence of Mr.Nabb, Mr. Foot introduced the summary. He stressed the importance of Public Liability cover. A quick show of hands indicated that most of those present already possessed Personal Accident Cover. The Master suggested that members take these summaries, study them, discuss them at their A.D.Ms. and ask their representatives to report back to the March Executive Committee Meeting.

Election of Education sub-committee for the Triennial Period 1983-85

Mr.A.P.Smith was proposed by Mr.Esbester and seconded by Miss Olding.
Mr.Le.Marechal was proposed by Mr.Colliss and seconded by Mr.Mather.
Mr.Cater was proposed by Cmr.Harris and seconded by Mr. Smith.
Mr.Hatfield was proposed by Miss Olding and seconded by Mr.Esbester.
Mr.Foot was proposed by Mr.Esbester and seconded by Mr. Cater.

These five members were declared elected, and given the power to co-opt, on the proposition of Mr. Foot, seconded by Mrs.Haviland.

Election of Striking Competitions sub-committee for the Trienniel Period

Cmr.Harris stressed that District Ringing Masters were really the best for undertaking this responsibility since they had "grass-roots" contact with ringing members. Messrs. Cater and Mather spoke of the difficulty in imposing an extra duty on eight ringing masters. It was proposed by Mr.Colliss, seconded by Mr. Smith, that Messrs. Reynolds, Collins, and Mather be asked to continue as the sub-committee, and this was agreed, nem. con. On the proposition of Mr.Esbester, seconded by Cmr. Harris, the sub-committee was given the power to co-opt. This was carried, against one vote.

A break for service and tea followed at this point.

Report of the 1982 Central Council meeting

Mr.Smith gave a succinct account of the meeting and events held at Bedford from 29 May to 1 June. He referred everyone to the excellent accounts of the meeting published in "Ringing Worlds" 3712 and 3713. There was a record attendance of 189. The Open Meeting was a disaster, the only important item from it being the news that purchasers of "The Ringing World" via. newsagents were being subsidised by postal subscribers. Mr.Smith, as a result of his work on the Methods Committee, had a number of un-named Minor methods which he was prepared to present to any Guild member contemplating such peals.

Change of Rules 6 and 7

This item resulted from a move at the 1981 A.G.M. to remove sums of money from printed Guild Rules. New wording had been submitted by Messrs. Smith and Esbester, and, after several amendments made by members of the March Executive Committee, it was proposed to replace Rules 6 and 7 by the new Rules 6, 7, and 8 printed on the agenda papers, and re-number Rules 8 to 20 with new numbers 9 to 21.

(SEE 1981 GUILD REPORT, pages 13 and 14.)

Mr. Collins seconded this proposition, and the meeting voted 40 in favour, 0 against.

New Rule "Public Relations Officer"

It was proposed by the Executive Committee that this should read:-

"Publicity material shall be kept under the control of the Guild Public Relations Officer who shall be accountable to the Executive Committee for it. He shall maintain an Inventory of such property and shall render annually a report to the Executive Committee".

Mr.Bailey seconded this proposition, and the meeting voted 31 in favour, 0 against.

Guild Service Sheets

At the March Executive Committee the Secretary had been asked to attempt to have more copies printed. Our usual printer, The Bittern Press, had quoted £47-40 for 150 copies, and this was the cheapest. However, telephone conversations elicited that another 150 copies would then cost only £5 more. Hence he had arranged for 300 copies to be printed. These were now available, and the Treasurer suggested a charge of 10p each.

1983 Annual General Meeting

By rule this should take place in the Portsmouth District and by tradition should be held on Saturday 2nd July 1983, It was proposed that we accept this venue and date by Mr.Esbester, seconded by Miss Olding, and carried, nem. con. The Master asked whether the routine used in 1981 or in 1982 was preferred. Both Mr. and Mrs. Croft spoke about their experience in organisation. It was decided to leave the matter in the hands of Portsmouth District.

Any Other Business

(a) Mr.Haythorne spoke on behalf of Mr.Ingram, the steeple-keeper of Southampton City Centre. The bells would not be available for peals since expensive repairs were required. Mr. Waldron doubted the accuracy of Mr. Ingram's assessment and concluded that if the situation was really that bad then we must fear for the safety of other sets of bells hung in modern fittings throughout the country.

(b) Mr. Haythorne spoke on behalf of Southampton City Centre band. St. Mary's illuminated peal book had disappeared after Mr. Butler and his band had been asked to leave St. Mary's. The Master interjected to rule that this was a domestic matter and should not be discussed further.

(c) Mr. K.S.B. Croft wished to congratulate the Master for conducting the meeting with graciousness and expedition. He wished to thank everyone for help and support given to himself and his wife. He hoped that the Guild will ever flourish and abound.

The Master closed the meeting, with prayers, at 1850 hours.