The annual meeting of the Southampton District of the Winchester and Portsmouth Diocesan Guild was held at Southampton on January 14th. Over 70 members and visitors were present from most of the towers in the district and from places as far away as Hyde, Portsmouth, Salisbury and Bournemouth, and included Messrs. G. Williams, F. W. Rogers, W. Andrews, W. T. Tucker, F. Romaine, etc.
The service was held at Holy Rood Church, the Rev. G. H. Goodall officiating, and the ringers had tea in St. Michael's Hall.
At the business meeting, the Rev. G. H. Goodall presided.
The secretary (Mr. G. Pullinger) presented the accounts, which showed a very satisfactory state of affairs. Although the total membership was four below that of last year, being 116 against 120, increased balances were paid to the general treasurer and also carried forward. Several towers in the district, the secretary said, were below strength, St. Mary's, Southampton, being one.
In every case where there was a shortage of ringers Sunday service ringing suffered, the services of the church suffered and the reputation of the Guild suffered. Every effort would have to be made to remedy this by bringing in new ringers who would treat their ringing as a contribution to the work of the church. Irregularity and unpunctuality on the part of some ringers, which made Sunday service ringing but a half-hearted affair or ruined a practice, was often the cause of bands falling away. He appealed to all concerned to remedy this. At Romsey monthly practices had been arranged and this effort was making steady progress. At Upham a course of instruction was being given. Most promising of all, however, was the number of keen young ringers, both men and women, who were coming along in various parts of the the district.
No restoration work had been carried out in the district during the year, and, generally speaking, the bells were in good order.
The Rev. R. A. R. Spread (Vicar of St. Michael's) thanked the ringers for their work and paid a tribute to Mr. Pullinger.
The district officers were elected as follows: Chairman, the Rev. G. T. Tritton; Ringing Master, Mr. G. Williams; hon. treasurer and secretary Mr. G. Pullinger; auditor, Mr. C. Fray; representatives on Executive Committee, Mr. R. Brown (Southampton) and Mr. W. Viney (Romsey).
District meetings were arranged as follows: Bishopstoke, February 18th; Fawley, May 20th; Sherfield English, July 22nd; Upham, October 28th; annual (Southampton), January 13th.
During the afternoon and evening ringing took place upon the bells of St. Mary's, Holy Rood, and St. Michael's Churches, and ranged from rounds and call changes to Surprise Royal.
The Ringing World No. 1453, January 27th, 1939, page 55