The annual meeting of the Portsmouth District was held at Portsmouth on Saturday last [Nov. 12th], when over 50 members were present from Alverstoke, Bramshott, Fareham, Gosport, Havant, Netley Abbey, North Stoneham, Portsmouth (St. Mary’s and St. Thomas’), Wickham and Winchester.

Ringing at the cathedral was indulged in until 4.30, when the Guild’s form of service was used at the special service, at which the Archdeacon of Portsmouth (Ven. H. N. Rodgers) officiated and preached, assisted by the Vicar of Portsmouth (Rev. Bernard Williams). At the conclusion, the members adjourned to the Parish Rooms, where an excellent tea awaited them.

The business meeting followed, the Archdeacon occupying the chair, supported by the Vicar, the general secretary (Mr. G. Pullinger), Master (Mr. G. Williams), district secretary (Mr. F. W. Rogers), the Central Committee representatives (Messrs. F. A. Burnett and R. J. Stone), and the auditor (Mr. H. G. Reynolds). At the outset the Chairman referred to the keen enthusiasm the new Vicar had taken in the Guild, despite his short time in the city, and also to the eagerness and thoroughness the members took in performing their duties.

The balance sheet for the past year showed that the membership of the district was now 17 hon. members, 124 full members, 14 probationers, 3 unattached and one compounding member. The receipts amounted to £18 2s. 6d., and expenditure to £5 2s. 6½d., leaving a balance in hand of £1 19s. 10½d., and to the treasurer of £11.

It was decided to hold the inaugural meeting of the district in the new Winchester and Portsmouth Diocesan Guild at St. Mary’s, Portsmouth, on January 28th next, when it is hoped that representatives of all towers in the district, affiliated and unaffiliated, will attend. The present district officers were re-elected en bloc, to serve until that meeting.

The Vicar of Portsmouth was elected an honorary member, and D. Halliday (Gosport) a probationer.

A complete peal of Grandsire Triples (Holt’s Original), written in full and executed by Mr. J. D. Harris (Portsmouth), was presented to the district, and the Vicar readily acceded to the request that it should be framed and hung in the cathedral tower. The cost of the frame was guaranteed by the members present.

Votes of thanks were accorded the Archdeacon, Vicar, organist and caterers for their various services. The Vicar, in reply, thanked the members for the warm welcome they had given him that day, especially in electing him an honorary member. As the late Dean of Grahamstown, South Africa, he had greatly missed the beautiful bells of the motherland, and it was a source of delight to him to hear them ringing again. He added that he would always be willing to do what he could for the Guild, and promised to be present at the inaugural meeting in January.

After the close of the meeting the members adjourned to the tower for further ringing, which during the day ranged from rounds to Bristol Surprise Major. A few made the journey across to Gosport to try the rehung bells at Holy Trinity, and it was arranged with the Vicar to have a Guild opening on Monday, December 5th, when a service will be held in the evening and the bells rung afterwards.

The Ringing World No. 869, November 18th, 1927, page 731