1. Opening Prayer and Master's Welcome.

    The Master, Rev B J Fry, supported by the Honorary General Secretary, D C Jackson, and the Honorary General Treasurer, M Bubb, opened the meeting with a prayer at 9.36 and welcomed the 17 other members present.

  2. Apologies for absence.

    Apologies were received from Mrs G W Davis, Mrs J Le Conte, R Knight, R H Routh, A P Smith, and Mrs C R Hill. A P Smith was involved in a peal attempt with the Kippin family for Jessie Kippin's birthday. If successful, this would be Jessie's 200th peal.

    R Cater registered his disappointment that some officers of the Guild had not even been able to send apologies for absence.

  3. Loss of members through death.

    Members stood in silence to remember Arthur V Davis (Life Member - Christchurch), Julian Newman (Kingsclere), and Jack Perkin (East Meon).

  4. Minutes of the last meeting (12 November 1988).

    The Minute Secretary had circulated the minutes in November and they were approved and signed.

  5. Matters arising.

    1. Guild Library. The Secretary reported that the library had been moved as planned in November and thanks were expressed to all those who had assisted, but especially to Hugh Routh for all his work.

      The Secretary had written to the Ecclesiastical Insurance Office (EIO) and arranged cover both for the removal of the library and also for its new location. N Skelton of Salisbury had valued the library contents and the Secretary would send a copy to EIO for their consideration as soon as possible. The library contained some books of considerable value and A T Collins suggested that the Librarian should be asked to consider whether it might be possible to keep these books in a steel cabinet at Christchurch. The meeting regretted that N White was not able to attend the meeting and it was agreed that he should be contacted as to his annual report and also as to the remaining matters which needed to be attended to following the library removal.

    2. Guild Badges. The Secretary reported that the badges were now available and several had already been sold.

    3. Restructuring and Nominations. R M Esbester reported that he had spoken to A A Buswell shortly after the last meeting, but Mr Buswell had been unable to identify any of the benefits which he felt might accrue from having a smaller Executive Committee. As to nominations, the Secretary had mentioned the matter at Annual District Meetings suggesting that districts might like to advise their members which of the District Officers would be prepared to stand for re-election, and also advising districts which Principal Officers of the Guild were prepared to stand for re-election at the AGM. The Secretary reported that there did not seem to be any strong views at district meetings as to a change of rule to require nominations to be received before meetings.

    4. Guild Ties. 300 had been ordered in three different colours and should be available at the AGM at a cost of about £5.

    5. Guild Calendars. Although some districts had been able to sell more than others, only a small number of calendars were left of the original 300. The Secretary was asked to write to D Holmes thanking him for producing the calendars which had raised over £300 for the BRF and, in view of the success of the project, encourage him to consider producing a calendar for 1990.

    6. 200 Club. There was a brief discussion on this matter, but the Master hoped to obtain further information regarding clubs run by other Guilds and report back to a future meeting.

    7. Covenants. Most covenants had now been renewed and the Master agreed to try and include some information on covenanting in his message in the report.

    Other matters arising were dealt with later in the meeting.

  6. Honorary Life Members.

    The Secretary reported that the following members would become Life Members at the AGM:
    Pat Page (Portsmouth District)
    Andrew Taylor (Basingstoke)
    John Hunt (Southwick)
    Tom Drew (Romsey)
    Jack Page (Romsey)

    It was suggested that M J Butler (Southampton) might also be eligible for Life Membership and the Secretary agreed to check Annual Reports.

  7. Correspondence.

    1. The Guild had donated £50 in memory of Arthur Davis. The monies collected were to be given to the Christchurch Priory Restoration Fund.

    2. The Secretary had retained copies of various correspondence in connection with the Central Council Survey of Ringing.

    3. A letter from the CC rescue fund for redundant bells asked for a contribution of £50 from the Guild's previously approved pledge, to help save the bells of Todmorden. The requested contribution had been sent by the Secretary.

    4. The Secretary had received a copy of a comprehensive guide to all Isle of Wight towers aimed at visiting ringers.

    5. A letter of thanks had been received from Woolton Hill for their BRF grant.

    6. A prize in a recent competition in the RW (Bash the Editor) had been won by G Barrett of Portsea who had donated his winnings to the BRF.

    7. The Secretary had forwarded a note on the use of bells at weddings to Rev M Perry of Eversley in response to a request for information. It was felt that, if space permitted, the note might be reproduced in the Guild Newsletter.

    8. The Master had written to the new Bishop of Southampton welcoming him and inviting him to become a Vice President of the Guild, a position which he was pleased to accept.

    9. The Secretary had paid the Guild's CC subscription and in return had received some pamphlets relating to the work of the Council.

    10. The Secretary reported receipt of a letter from M Waldron who wished to advise the Guild of a possible conflict of interest with his work as a BRF Trustee now that he sometimes acted for the Whitechapel Bell Foundry in a professional capacity. The meeting felt that the Guild was fortunate to have Mr Waldron's knowledge and expertise and since there were four other BRF Trustees, it was unlikely that there would be any difficulty. The Master thanked M Waldron for declaring his interest at Whitechapel to the Guild.

    11. The Secretary had received a further letter from M Waldron enclosing a press cutting relating to a church in India which had a need for a small bell.

    12. Details of the proposed new ring at St Martin's, Birmingham had been received inviting donations to the project. It was left for individual members to support the scheme.

    13. It was agreed that publicity material relating to a new book "The Craft of the Bellfounder" should be passed to the Librarian so that he might consider purchasing a copy.

    14. The Secretary had received a Christmas card to the Guild from the Bishop of Portsmouth.

    15. The Treasurer reported that Canon Fenwick had now been installed as Dean of Guernsey and the Secretary would be writing to welcome him, inviting him to become a Vice President of the Guild.

  8. Honorary General Secretary's report.

    The Secretary's report had been circulated prior to the meeting. Subject to a few minor amendments, R LeMarechal proposed adoption of the report. This was seconded by Miss J Reed and carried nem con.

  9. Honorary General Treasurer's report.

    The Treasurer circulated the accounts and read his report to the meeting. Adoption of the report and accounts was proposed by R M Esbester, seconded by A T Collins, and carried nem con.

  10. Honorary Peal Recorder's report.

    R LeMarechal read his annual report to the meeting. Adoption of the report was proposed by A T Collins, seconded by P Hill, and carried nem con.

  11. Honorary Librarian's report.

    N White was not present at the meeting, and the Secretary had not received his report.

  12. Public Relations Officer's report.

    Joyce Reed presented her report and accounts. Thanks were expressed to Joyce for the Newsletters which she had produced in 1988. The report and accounts were adopted on the propositon of Elizabeth Johnson, seconded by R Cater.

  13. Annual Report.

    Mrs R Jackson reported on the current position as to the 1988 Report. Mrs Jackson asked if A Barnsdale should appear in the report as membership secretary and the Secretary agreed to write to him to enquire as to progress with the membership records.

  14. Report and Accounts of the Trustees of the Bell Restoration Fund.

    The Treasurer circulated the accounts and read the report to the meeting. Adoption of the report and accounts was proposed by M Waldron, seconded by R M Esbester, and carried nem con.

  15. Restoration Work.

    The Secretary had circulated a note of current restoration work. Subject to minor amendments, it was proposed by G Grant and seconded by R M Esbester that the report be included in the Annual Report.

    R M Esbester mentioned there were proposals to install the Gosport bells at St Mary's, Hayling Island, but that the scheme was at a very early stage at present.

    G Grant mentioned that there was a possibility that stays and sliders might be installed to the 3 bells at Farley Chamberlayne and that work was being considered which would make access easier at Upton Grey.

  16. District Officer's Activities.

    The paper submitted at minute 11/11/88 was considered. The Secretary suggested that paragraph 2.4.2 should be removed and there were also other suggested minor amendments including an addition relating to ringing masters and plans for assisting towers and further duties of District Treasurers. It was felt that the paper might be better entitled "Guidance Notes for District Officers".

    Thanks were expressed to Elizabeth Johnson and Heather Peachey for their efforts and the notes were commended to District Officers and the Guild in general. R Cater felt the notes were worthy of wider distribution and suggested the authors might wish to consider publication in the RW.

  17. Insurance.

    1. Personal Accident. The Secretary had been in correspondence with I Oram regarding insurance generally. Mr Oram considered that the EIO level of cover for personal accident was not sufficient and had obtained a quote for a policy which would pay £100 per week in the event of temporary total disablement and £10,000 for death or total disablement. The Guild has previously resolved not to arrange group personal accident cover and so it was felt that the Executive need not pursue this.

    2. Mr Oram also considered that the Guild's public liability insurance contained some unacceptable exclusions. An alternative quotation had been obtained by Mr Oram for cover of up to £500,000. The Secretary had written to EIO seeking their comments on the exclusions and their reply was awaited. It was agreed that this matter would be reconsidered when EIO had replied, but in the meantime the Secretary would ask Mr Oram to obtain a quote for cover of up to £1 million - the level of EIO's cover.

    3. Mr Oram had been unable to find any insurer wishing to quote for personal accident cover for temporary disablement for anyone over 75.

  18. Proposed Change of Rule 19 - as at Minute 17a)/11/88.

    A P Smith had proposed in writing that the Executive should put this change of rule forward to the AGM. This was seconded by R LeMarechal and carried nem con.

  19. 1989 Striking Competitions.

    In the absence of Mrs C R Hill, A T Collins advised the meeting of the arrangements made which were as set out at minute 14/11/88 save that the 8 bell tower for 24 June was to be Shedfield.

    R LeMarechal expressed disappointment that call change bands were to be excluded from the 8 bell competition. There was a discussion as to whether the revised rules would tend to discourage novice bands, in particular the "rule" relating to call changes in the 6 bell competition was mentioned. A T Collins pointed out that this was only a guideline which 6 bell call change bands might wish to adopt; there was no requirement that changes should be every third whole pull.

    Finally, M Waldron proposed that the Striking Competitions sub committee be required to revert to previous competition rules regarding call changes so as to permit 8 bell call change bands to enter the 1989 competition. This was seconded by R LeMarechal and, on being put to the vote, carried by 9 votes to 3.

    There followed a discussion regarding the 10 bell competition. S Noyes proposed that the Striking Competitions sub committee be requested to consider allowing plain courses or call changes to be rung as well as true 360's. This was seconded by M Bubb and carried by 11 votes to 2.

  20. 1989 AGM.

    The Master reported as to the arrangements for this meeting at which the triennial election of officers would take place. The Master suggested that a corporate communion service might be appropriate. M Waldron proposed that a communion service be held after the AGM. This was seconded by P Hill and carried nem con. The 1990 AGM was due to be held in the Andover District.

  21. Date and venue of next meeting.

    It was agreed that the next Executive Committee meeting would be held on Saturday 25 November 1989 at St Lawrence Parish rooms (if available). The preferred time for the meeting was 9.30am.

  22. Any Other Business.

    1. R LeMarechal advised that there was to be a 12 bell striking competition at Liss Campanile on 8 July 1989.

    2. A T Collins reported that George Williams' first peal book was in need of repair.

    3. S Noyes advised the meeting that Newport ringers had asked the Guild to consider making available a loan of £2000 in advance of the payment of the approved BRF grant. Following a discussion it was proposed by R LeMarechal that the Executive Committee agree to make £1500 available for the Principal Officers and Trustees of the BRF to lend to Newport on a temporary basis in case of need. This was seconded by P Hill and carried nem con.

    4. P Hill circulated details relating to the 1989 Ringing School to district representatives.

    There being no further business the Master closed the meeting at 1.35pm.