1. Welcome

    The Guild Master - Viv Nobbs, supported by the Vice-Master - Christine Hill, Hon. Gen. Secretary - Mo Routh, Hon. Gen. Treasurer - Mike Bubb and Minute Secretary - Tony Smith, opened the meeting at 10.19 a.m. The Master welcomed those present and asked Barry Fry to say a prayer.

    The other members attending were Andy Banks (A&P Rep.), Michael Church (CC Rep.), John Davey (Child Protection), Barry Fry (BRF Trustee), Keith Gillings (Basingstoke Rep.), Maggie Hiller (Andover Sec.), Rosalind Martin (PRO, CC Rep., C&S Rep.), David Mattingley (BRF Trustee), Bruce Purvis (Librarian & Archivist, Winchester Sec.), Jill Taylor (IoW Rep.) and Matthew Wilks (Portsmouth Rep.) and guests Barry Downer, Graham Nobbs and Robin Wilson.

  2. Apologies for absence had been received from Roger Barber, Madeline King, Simon King, Christine Knights-Whittome, Jane Le Conte, Janet McCoy, John Palk, Mary Tester and Barbara Townsend.

  3. Loss of members through death since the last Executive Committee

    Members stood while the Master read the following names and Barry Fry said a prayer.

    Leonard Perrins (Life Member) Ringwood
    Stephen HaynesRyde
    Ann WheelerAlderney
    Paul ArdittiAlderney
    Roland JacksonCurdridge
    Aubrey EveleighIsle of Wight
    Barbara SkilleterHavant
  4. Minutes of the last meeting

    The minutes of the meeting held on 8th March 2014 were proposed by Tony Smith, seconded by Mike Bubb, and signed by the Master as a true record.

  5. Matters arising from the minutes

    The Hon. Gen. Secretary had been approached by a volunteer interested in organising the W&P 200 Club who she had put in touch with Mark Esbester but had heard nothing since.

  6. Budget bids for 2015.

    The following bids were approved.

    1. Nothing requested by the Hon Librarian and Archivist.

    2. £40 for the Hon Report Editor, proposed by John Palk, seconded by John Davey.

    3. Nothing requested by the Belfry Stewardship Committee.

    4. Nothing requested by the Education Committee.

    5. £518 for the Communications Committee, proposed by David Forder, seconded by John Davey.

      Domain Name Renewal£10.00
      Web Hosting£50.00
      Newsletter Printing£378.00
      Post & Packing£80.00

    6. No budget bid received from the Striking Competitions Committee.

  7. Bell Restoration Fund - Report on Trustees’ meeting

    The Hon. Gen. Treasurer said the meeting that morning had welcomed the new Trustee, David Mattingley. He reported that the work at Northington was expected to be completed next month, and the work at Monk Sherborne was finished and the completion report awaited from the Belfry Stewardship Committee. Keith Gillings had advised they would call on about £2,500 to cover the balance. New grant applications had been received from All Saints, Basingstoke and All Saints, Houghton. All Saints, Basingstoke were adding a new treble to augment the unique ring of nine bells to a ring of ten bells at a cost of about £23,000 and the Trustees proposed a grant of £3,000. Houghton were installing a new ring of six bells at a cost of about £37,000, and work on retaining two bells of significant historic interest in the existing frame at a cost of about £6,000, and the Trustees proposed a grant of £4,000. Andy Banks seconded the proposals which were approved. Future grant applications are expected for the March meeting from Wherwell, whose bells are being overhauled at a cost of about £32,000, and Ecchinswell.

  8. Striking Competitions Committee - Arrangements for 2015

    1. Inter-Tower 6 and 8-bell competitions. No information from the Committee.

    2. Inter-District 8-bell competition. Presumably on 4th July 2015 in the Portsmouth District.

    3. Update on Young Ringers’ Competition. Dan Graham posted a message to WIN-PORT-BELLRINGERS on 23rd October (see Appendix A). In a message to the Master last evening, Dan said he had received positive feedback in the form of 30 replies with suggestions or comments.

  9. Update on the Central Council Visit 2016 and the associated Ringing World calendar

    1. The Vice-Master said that arrangements were proceeding satisfactorily and the organising committee would be meeting again later that morning.

    2. John Davey and Robin Wilson presented the tower photographs they had selected and prepared for the 2016 Ringing World calendar projected onto a screen. John and Robin were warmly commended and thanked for all their work. The featured towers would be invited to provide descriptive text and the Vice-Master would work with John and liaise with The Ringing World. The Vice-Master suggested that the unused images could be preserved in the Guild Archive.

    3. Michael Church advised the organising committee to maintain contact with the CC Hon. Secretary, Mary Bone, regarding possible changes in meeting format.

  10. Committee Elections in July 2015

    The Master reminded the meeting that the BRF Fund Raising Committee, Belfry Stewardship Committee, Communications Committee, Education Committee, Social Committee and Striking Competitions Committee would all be up for election at the next AGM. Roger Barber, Andy Banks, Keith Gillings and Hugh Routh had all intimated that they would not be offering themselves for re-election to the Belfry Stewardship Committee.

  11. Investment in Education

    The Master read a paper (see Appendix B). The Hon. Gen. Treasurer said the Reserve Account could bridge the timing gap between a reduction in the proportion of subscriptions allocated to the BRF and the increase in revenue to the Central Fund. Michael Church questioned whether financial support was a deterrent to people attending courses and agreed with the Master’s suggestion that paying to attend a course could increase its perceived value. The Vice-Master pointed out that, in accordance with rule 14, the first charge on District funds after administration shall be for instruction in change ringing. Rosalind Martin said that new funding could create opportunities for delivering new services such as hiring a mini-bus for young ringers without transport.

  12. 2015 meetings

    Executive Committee Meeting 7th March 2015 St Barnabas’ Church Hall
    Annual General Meeting4th July 2015Curdridge
    District Officers’ Forum3rd October 2015Venue TBA
    Executive Committee Meeting21st November 2015St Barnabas’ Church Hall
  13. Any other business

    1. The Vice-Master said that twelve Annual Reports were sold at the Ringing Roadshow

    2. On behalf of the Christchurch & Southampton District, Rosalind Martin asked for fewer Annual Reports. It was pointed out that, in accordance with rule 18, a copy will be supplied to all except probationary and compounding members.

    3. Michael Church asked whether Guild social events had been abandoned. There does not appear to be sufficient demand or support by members for such events.

    4. The Master read from a paper on a Proposed Database of Guild Members that had been distributed to District Secretaries. Guild Officers are continuing to research the setting up of a database to enable enhanced communications to all members. They would ensure that the Guild would adhere to any legal requirements and expect to hold very limited information. The current record of members is held by District Treasurers. It is recognised that there may well be considerable effort needed initially, for example in setting up records, but they are satisfied and convinced that there will be much benefit in being able to have a central database of the names and contact details of members. It is a way of engaging with members directly, as appropriate. They’d work to ensure that members were not overloaded with material. They are working towards reporting back fully at the March 2015 Executive Committee Meeting with a view to proposing a way forward so that positive decisions can be made at the July 2015 A.G.M.

      The Master asked that any comments should be submitted to the Hon. Gen. Secretary.

    5. The Master said she would email members about the “Unringables” initiative at the Ringing Roadshow.

    6. The Master said Sunday 14th June 2015 was the day nominated for ringing to mark the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta. Mike Bubb said Saturday 9th May 2015 was the 70th anniversary of the Liberation of Guernsey and Jersey.

    7. The Master said the Mini “Have your Say” event on the Isle of Wight in Saturday 25th October had incorporated a Ringing Festival when one peal and five quarter peals were rung.

There being no further business, the Master closed the meeting at 11.47 a.m.


3108 W+P Young Ringers Day

Dear all,

Those of you who were at the AGM earlier this year will know plans had been forming to start having a yearly young ringers event in the W+P to bring all the young ringers together for a fun day of ringing.

The first event will be hosted by the Southampton University Guild to kick things off, but then the location can hopefully rotate around the Guild. The day would consist of a variety of hopefully fun ringing activities for the young ringers of the Guild. The event really is going to be shaped around what the young ringers in our Guild want, so this is where you all come in …

I’m writing to you all now to source some information to help with the planning of this event, so we can be sure it is catered to what the young ringers in your district/tower want.

Please circulate this email as far and wide as you can, so I can hopefully make contact with as many young ringers in the Guild as possible. Print it out and take it to the towers you ring at, email it to anyone you know who might have contact with young ringers - basically spread the word!

What I need to know is as follows: (please email

1) WHO - How many young ringers from your tower/district do you have that would be interested in a Guild young ringers event? (providing contact details would help me get future information out easily)

2) WHEN - What time of year would be best for your young ringers?

3) WHERE - Would Southampton be a suitable location for the first event? How about future events? Any restrictions on where your young ringers would be able to get to?

4) WHAT - What activities would appeal to your young ringers? Fun striking competitions? Any ideas are welcome, however crazy they may sound! The idea of the day would be to promote the fun side of ringing so that the young ringers can really enjoy the day together

Any other comments/suggestions/questions are welcome. I look forward to hopefully hearing from lots of you very soon.

Daniel Graham

Now many of you in the Guild may have never met me before, or know who I am, and are probably sat wondering, “who is this strange man emailing us about our young ringers” … To introduce myself, I’m Daniel, a ringer from Southampton who graduated this summer after spending 6 years at the University of Southampton. During my time in Southampton I spent 4 years on the committee for SUGCR including 2 years as ringing master. Having graduated I now work as a Doctor at Southampton General Hospital and ring regularly in Southampton. I’m passionate about ringing, and think now really is the time we need to stand up and start doing something to ensure that ringing as we know it continues for many years to come. I personally think an event as above would be fantastic for the young ringers in our Guild, and would really be a step in ensuring we are doing something about the future of ringing. It is my passion for ringing and the desire to do something to help promote the future of ringing that leads me to want to dedicate my time to creating an event for the young ringers in our very own Guild :-)


Investment in Education

The overall review of Guild finances is continuing, undertaken principally by Mike Bubb, our Treasurer, with Graham Nobbs of the Isle of Wight District. The Principal Officers are looking at coming up with a budget for what we propose to do overall, at least for next year, 2015-16.

As part of that budgeting exercise, we’d like to ensure that funds are readily available for the Guild’s general use, including helping with recruitment and retention and for the Education Committee, Districts, Towers and individual ringers.

One simple way would be to reduce the proportion of subscriptions that is allocated to the Guild’s Bell Restoration Fund, a registered charity. Currently, each full member pays an annual subscription of £10.00 and each senior member pays £7.50; £4 of each of these annual subscriptions is paid into the Guild B.R.F. The funds accumulated and held must be used for helping to fund bell restoration projects only, according to the charity’s aims and objects.

The B.R.F. funds currently stand at £74,000, approximately. The charity’s income from members’ subscriptions alone is in excess of £5,000 per year.

Historically, the Guild has granted in the region of 10% of each project’s relevant costs. If the B.R.F. continues to grant money in the order of 10% then the current funds held would be able to assist projects totalling as much as £740,000. We cannot see projects coming along in the next few years totalling that large amount.

Fewer bell restoration projects are coming forward, especially in this current financial climate so, whilst we do not want to be unwise by completely cutting off income to the B.R.F. from subscriptions, there is surely great merit in considering reducing the amount of subscriptions that is allocated to the B.R.F.

In this way, funds would accumulate in the Central Fund that could be easily available for allocating to the Guild’s other work, including investing in education.

It is considered vital that we invest in education for the future benefit of ringing across our Guild area. Currently, there is no money specifically set aside for investing in education; neither are there any concrete plans set out yet on how to offer structured help with education from the Guild to Districts, towers and individual members.

A number of ideas and suggestions have been made, for example:

  1. It was requested at the 2014 A.G.M. by the Education Committee that the Guild considers subsidising the fees for I.T.T.S. courses.

    It might be considered appropriate, encouraging and a good investment for the future, to offer financial support to course attendees, perhaps by covering local costs (about £80-£120 for a Module 1 course), or by covering some of the I.T.T.S. course fees so that the cost to attendees is kept to, say, £10 per course.

    The annual costs are difficult to predict, but at the moment there appears to be sufficient interest to run one Module 1 course a year for about 10 new teachers. If each potential new teacher who is Guild member was to be given a £10 subsidy, this would require about £200 per course taking into account the local costs. Similar costs are anticipated for any Module 2 (rounds to plain hunt) courses, once they are underway in the area.

  2. Perhaps the Guild could consider sponsoring members to go on residential courses, such as those held at Hereford or the Bradfield School. This might be in conjunction with the member’s own District offering financial assistance as well perhaps?

  3. Often, we hear that there are insufficient volunteers available to run a course, or even stand behind at District practices. It would be useful for us to think about the possibilities of buying in the appropriate help maybe? One option could be very straightforward - paying other ringers’ reasonable travelling expenses, for example. Again, maybe The Guild could support in that way financially alongside the District as well, if possible?

These thoughts and ideas are up for consideration and discussion, of course.

Between now and the March 2015 Executive Committee meeting, it is hoped that the District Ringing Masters will have significant input into:

  1. other specific areas where Guild funding for education might be beneficial and

  2. in the planning of how the best results could be achieved.

The Ringing Masters are to be consulted shortly.

We wish to be in a position at the March Executive Committee to propose a way forward so that positive decisions can be made at the July 2015 A.G.M. for providing easily available funding for general Guild use, including for education.

We would ask you, please, to bring this all to your members’ attention and to encourage them to advise you what they would like to see in the way of financial support for education or other areas of the Guild’s work.

Ideally, please let us know your members’ views, as soon as possible, by contacting Mo and bring it to the next Executive Committee Meeting.