Three towers were open for ringing in Southampton when the annual meeting of that district of the Winchester and Portsmouth Diocesan Guild was held. They were the rings of eight at Holy Rood and St. Michael's, and the ten at St. Mary's, and the methods rung by the many visitors ranged from Grandsire Triples to Surprise Major and Royal. Service was held in St. Michael's Church and was conducted by the Guild treasurer, the Rev. Evan Jones.
After tea in St. Michael's Hall, Mr. George Williams (Master) presided over the business meeting.
Among those present were the Rev. Evan Jones, Messrs. F. W. Rogers (hon. general secretary), A. T. Greenwood (Portsmouth District secretary), W. Andrews (Winchester Cathedral) and G. Pullinger (district secretary).
Ringers attended from North Stoneham, Bishopstoke, New Alresford, Romsey, Winchester, Portsmouth, Wimborne, Swindon, Dibden Purlieu, Lockerley, Mottisfont, Wickham, Tichfield, Eling and Upham, and there were welcome visitors in Messrs. J. H. Shepherd (Swindon) and W. Shute (Dorset).
The hon. secretary (Mr. G. Pullinger), in his report, said the year 1937 had been an uneventful one in the district. Some parishes had no difficulty in keeping bands up to strength and maintaining Sunday service ringing. Others were not so fortunate, and St. Micheal's, Southampton, and East Tytherley had no ringers at all. Shortage of ringers in some towers meant lack of practice, thus lowering the standard of ringing. One way out of this difficulty appeared to be more inter-tower practices. The convenient centres where this idea could be carried out were Romsey, Dibden, North Stoneham and Southampton.
Meetings had been held at Mottisfont, Dibden, Lockerley, Netley Abbey and the annual at Southampton. All were fairly well attended. Generally speaking, the bells in the district were in good order, the exception being Mottisfont, which badly need expert attention.
During the year Mr. Connelly and Mr. Corrigan, both very active members and attached to the North Stoneham band, had left the diocese, and thanks were due to them for the great amount of work and time they gave to the cause of ringing during the period they resided in the district.
The financial position of the district was sound, the balance being £8. A total of 124 members paid their subscriptions, against 106 in the previous year, although several subscriptions are still outstanding. There are several keen young ringers coming along at various towers in the district, which augured well for the future. The district contains 16 towers, 11 of which are affiliated to the Guild.
The Rev. G. T. Tritton (Dibden) was re-elected chairman, Mr G. Williams District Ringing Master, Mr. G. Pullinger hon. secretary and Mr. G. J. Fray auditor. Messrs. W. T. Tucker and L. Knott both of North Stoneham, were elected representatives on the Executive Committee, Mr. Knott succeeding Mr. J. W. Faithfull, who resigned owing to the ties of business.
The meetings for 1938 were arranged as follows : North Stoneham, February 19th; Broughton, May 21st; Eling, July 16th; Romsey, November 29th; Holy Rood, Southampton (annual), January 14th, 1939.
Five members were elected, and Mr. F. Fanstone and Mr. A. J. Corrigan were elected as compounding members.
A subscription to the funds of St. Michael's Church was voted as a mark of appreciation for the use of the room, and votes of thanks were proposed to Canon R. B. Jolly, the Rev. R. A. R. Spread and the Rev. F. S. Marle (of Dean).
The Ringing World No. 1401, January 28th, 1938, page 62