Site last updated 13 October 2019
The Shropshire Association covers the towers in the Salop Archdeaconry of the Lichfield Diocese, and is roughly the area north of the River Severn, from near Wolverhampton in the southeast to Selattyn in the northwest. The rest of Shropshire is in the Hereford Diocese.
If you would like to know more about bellringing click here www.cccbr.org.uk/what-is-bell-ringing/.If you like to learn to ring please contact our secretary [ ], or go along to a tower near you on a practice night.
Information about the towers in the Association, practice nights and Association events, and much else, can be found by following the links on the left or below.
Wednesday Morning Training at Lilleshall - October
The next Wednesday morning practice will be held at Lilleshall on Wednesday 16th October from 10am to 12:30pm.
Ringers of all abilities are welcome. These practices are a useful way of receiving some expert tuition in a friendly atmosphere. A £2 donation is requested to cover refreshments, a donation to the tower, and to the church.
So that he can be sure that there will be sufficient ringers available for this practice, please let Matthew Lawrence  know if you are planning to attend.
October Quarterly Newsletter
The October quarterly Newsletter has been sent to towers and individuals via email and post.
A Peal for Bill
The tenth Association peal of 2019 has been rung at Lilleshall to remember Bill Reynolds.
Lilleshall, Shropshire - at the Church of St Michael and All Angels
On Saturday, 28 September 2019, in 2 hours and 32 minutes
A Peal of 5040 Minor
4 Methods: One extent each of
Oxford Treble Bob, Kent Treble Bob
and St Clement's; and four of Plain Bob
Tenor 9 in A b
|Ian Friend||Treble||Christopher Adams||4|
|William S Deason||2||Mark Adams||5|
|Gail K Lawrence||3||Matthew Lawrence||Tenor|
Conducted by Matthew Lawrence.
Rung to celebrate the life of Bill Reynolds who died on the 10th
Bill was a lifelong resident of Lilleshall, a ringer at this church since 1943
and Tower Captain for over 50 years.
The same methods as those rung in Bill's last peal, here in September 1973.
Photo from Reynolds family collection
September Surprise Major Practice
Thirteen ringers turned up at Wem for the September practice, making attempts at Bristol, Cambridge, London, and Yorkshire.
Thanks to Gareth Jones for organising the use of the bells.
Association Striking Competition 2019
On a beautiful late summer afternoon teams representing six towers gathered at Albrighton for the 2019 Striking Competition.
The draw for the order of ringing was held in the Parish Centre, and tea was served there throughout the afternoon.
Every band chose to ring call changes, which meant that the band with the highest score would win both the Call Change trophy and the Ernest Willcox cup. A scratch band also rang.
Chris Adams and Rosemary Wright, were the judges. Before giving brief remarks on each band’s ringing and the points scored, Chris explained how they had marked the test pieces. Chris made short comments on each band’s ringing. The first band’s ringing was good with smooth ringing and a nice rhythm, with only minor errors; the second band spent more time settling down and the ringing got better as it went along; the next band rang better in the test piece than in the practice, and most faults were gaps rather than crashes; the fourth band made a good effort but the transitions were not always crisp; the fifth band were galloping along at the start then settled down and the ringing became pleasant; the sixth band to ring had minor blemishes in most rows, with gaps at the backstroke lead; the last band to ring appeared not to have practised much together, they were steadier in the test piece.
Interestingly, the order in which the bands rang was also the order in which they were placed.
The Ernest Willcox Cup for the fewest faults was presented to Rob Herbert for the Edgmond team.
Rob also collected the Call Change Trophy for Edgmond.
The Charles Allmand Memorial Shield, for the highest placed band which had not won a trophy in the preceding two competitions, was presented to Naomi for the Lilleshall team.
The Albrighton ringers and helpers were given a round of applause for the use of their bells and for providing a sumptuous tea. Thanks were also given to Chris and Rosemary, and to all those who had taken part and had made the afternoon fun. Chris and Rosemary were presented with bottles of wine as a thank you for their expertise.
Peter Woollam ran a raffle, raising £66 for the Bell Restoration Fund. Thanks go to all those who donate raffle prizes. The winners of the wine and chocolates were Kathryn Greaves, Jane Hughes, John Whitham, Karen Bryant, Geoff Harding and Tim Mear.
The next Association practice will be held at Whitchurch on Saturday 12th October, from 7:00pm to 8:30pm. The ringing will be followed by the quarterly meeting.
(l-r) Kathryn, Rob D, Rob H, Mark, Bill, Matt
(l-r) Louise, Rob, Annette, Naomi, Gail, Matt
(l-r) Madeline, Jad, Dawn, Lisa, Jacqui, Gill
(l-r) Judith, Karen, Frances, Gareth, John, Heather
(l-r) Peter, Frances, Chris, Jan, Richard, Oliver
(l-r) Jayne, Mary, Trudi, Jane, Shaun, Catherine
(l-r) Emma, Matt, Rob, Lisa R, Geoff, Lisa B
Chris presenting Rob with the
Rosemary presenting Rob with the
Chris presenting Naomi with the
|Edgmond||23||Call Changes||Ernest Willcox Trophy & Call Change Trophy|
|Lilleshall||34½||CallChanges||Charles Allmand Shield|
|Scratch band||47½||Call Changes|
Two More Peals
The eighth and ninth peals for the Association in 2019 were rung at Selattyn and Whittington.
Selattyn, Shropshire - at the Church of St Mary the Virgin
On Saturday, 14 September 2019, in 2 hours and 45 minutes
A Peal of 5040 Doubles
3 methods: 14 extents each of St Martin's Bob,
and Reverse Canterbury Pleasure Place
Tenor 5-2-3 in C#
|Peter J Woollam||Treble|
|Andrew W Gordon||2|
|E Ann Williams||3|
|Kevin M Price||4|
|Peter L Furniss||Tenor|
Conducted by Kevin M Price.
Has pealed all the ringable fives in Shropshire - 3.
First peal on the bells since 1960, that being the only other peal.
Whittington, Shropshire - at the Church of St John the Baptist
On Saturday, 14 September 2019, in 2 hours and 35 minutes
A Peal of 5040 Minor
7 Methods: One extent each of Cambridge Surprise,
Kent Treble Bob,
Oxford Treble Bob, St Clement's College Bob,
College Bob, Single Oxford Bob and Plain Bob
Tenor 9-0-15 in A
|E Ann Williams||Treble||Cordelia Warr||4|
|Nicola J Galton||2||Kevin M Price||5|
|Anthony J Freemont||3||Andrew W Gordon||Tenor|
Conducted by Kevin M Price.
September Training Morning
The third Association Edgmond Training morning on the 7th September started 15 minutes early (at 09.15) because of village’s Scarecrow Festival with which the church was closely involved. ( https://www.shropshirestar.com/entertainment/telford-entertainment/2019/09/07/first-scarecrow-festival-at-shropshire-village-is-huge-success/ )
We had six students: Darren, Louise and Pam from Broseley, Ollie (a junior member) from Oswestry, Lisa from Atcham and Vicki from Meole Brace.
The ringing varied from bell handling to Stedman Triples with rounds and call changes, plain hunt, Plain Bob Doubles, St Martin’s Bob and St Simon’s Bob Doubles singly and spliced together, with Grandsire Doubles and Plain Bob Minor in between.
Some of the trainees who had come armed with the knowledge (and expectation) to ring plain hunt found themselves ringing the treble to Doubles, which they did commendably well.
I am, as ever, very grateful to all those who supported the students including, Matt Lawrence, Kathryn Greaves, Ginette Pardoe, Bill Deason, Cordelia Warr, Mark Adams, Rob Davies. As usual, some of the more advanced learners played their part as helpers.
I was disappointed to learn that Madeline Harris couldn’t attend, not just because she is a great ringer and trusted helper, but also because she brings the cakes!! However, as luck would have it, the ladies of Edgmond had a cake stall within the church. Good to know that we were able to contribute to the financial success of the Scarecrow Festival!
We overran our time (with Mark’s permission), and our trainees and helpers became part of the ringing demonstration.
It is with great sadness that I have to report the death on Tuesday of our Tower Captain Bill Reynolds. Bill learnt to ring at Lilleshall when the ban was lifted in 1943 and remained a loyal member of the band until his recent poor health prevented him from climbing the hill to the church. He was for a time a member of the Association and rang 11 peals. Most notable of these was a fathers and sons peal in 1973 by a Lilleshall Sunday Service band. His funeral will be held at 3.30pm on Monday 23rd September at Telford Crematorium.
A quarter peal was rung at Lilleshall in memory of Bill.
A Peal at Ellesmere
The seventh Association peal in 2019 has been rung at Ellesmere to mark the retirement of the Rev. Philip Edge.
Ellesmere - at the Church of The Blessed Virgin Mary
On Sunday, 8 September 2019, in 3 hours 3 minutes
A Peal of 5088 Yorkshire Surprise Major
Composed by Donald F Morrison (No 565)
Tenor 18–0–18 in Eb
|Thomas D Miles||Treble||Timothy M Davis||5|
|Gail K Lawrence||2||Stuart C W Hutchieson||6|
|Elizabeth Hutchieson||3||Matthew Lawrence||7|
|William J Lander||4||Andrew C Ogden||Tenor|
Conducted by Matthew Lawrence.
Rung to mark the retirement of the Reverend Philip Edge
after 27 years as vicar of Ellesmere.
Suspension of Ringing at Moreton Corbet
There will be no ringing at Moreton Corbet after 16th June 2019, until November 2019. Ths is because of construction work at the church.
Monday practices will be held at Stanton (at Shawbury on the first Monday of the month).
In 2018 the Shropshire Association's 100+ Club continued the trend of recent years with more than 100 members. There were twenty winners and the total prize money awarded was £468, with £784.98 being raised for the Bell Restoration Fund.
Five grants totalling £1988.97 were awarded from the Bell Restoration Fund in 2018. Your support of the 100+ Club will help the Bell Restoration Fund grow and ultimately increase the size of the grants awarded for bell restoration projects within the Shropshire Association.
Gill Glover, who has taken over from Brian Kear as the organiser of the 100+ Club, has distributed application forms for 2019 to tower correspondents. To be a member of the Club you must be over the age of 16 years and a member of the Association. More members means more and/or better prizes.
To be in with a chance to be a winner, please return your completed application form and cheque for £12 to Gill at the address given on the application form. Cheques should be made payable to SACBR Bell Restoration Fund.
Support Your Association with SACBR Clothing
We can now offer members a range of items embroidered with the SACBR logo. These are embroidered to order: contact Biff Patterson [ ] for details or to place an order.
The background colour for ‘corporate’ events is burgundy (as shown) but feel free to choose a different background for personal use. Check availability but navy or black are obvious options.
Polo shirts, as worn by those manning the Lichfield Diocesan Mobile Belfry at Newport Show, £15. Biff has one lady-fit medium in stock. If you would normally buy small, this is for you.
Sweat shirts £17.50 Rugby shirts £25.
If you supply a garment it can be embroidered for a cost of £6.
SIZING – READ CAREFULLY PLEASE
The polo shirts are pure cotton, wash very well, BUT are skimpy. Biff suggests going up one or even two sizes on what you would normally select. Available in standard rectangular shape (men or unisex), quite long in the body; or lady-fit, which is shorter and more shaped. Choose from M, L, XL, XXL, XXXL.
Sweat shirts are only available unisex: S, M, L, XL, XXL, XXXL.
Rugby shirts are available in men’s or women’s: S, M, L, XL, XXL, XXXL.
Photos by Biff Patterson, Edric Broom
The Central Council of Church Bell Ringers (CCCBR) has produced an update to Guidance Note 3 (GN3) - Child Protection in Bell Towers. This Guidance Note can be found at https://cccbr.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/GN3-Child-Protection-Issue-12-Oct-2017.pdf. The Appendix to the Guidance Note describes in more detail the ringing activities which require a ringer to be DBS checked.
Books For Bellringers
Are you looking for some practical, written help for yourself or your tower but don’t know what is out there? If so, Books for Bellringers may be what you need. It is a small collection of books aimed mostly at beginners but with some material for those learning methods. Towers can borrow the collection for a period of up to two months so that everyone has a chance to see what they might find useful. Individuals or towers can order copies of the books using the details in the catalogue supplied.
If you would like to borrow the collection please contact me at: or telephone 01939 291014.
Shropshire Young Ringers
Do you have young ringers at your tower?
We have started a youth group designed to get the young people ringing together and help them to progress.
There have been three practices so far, attended by six ringers from different towers across the Association area and we hope to have a regular monthly practice going forward.
The leader is ART (Association of Ringing Teachers) trained and DBS cleared and can offer instruction in bell handling through to ringing call changes, plain hunting, methods and striking.
The aim is to encourage the next generation of ringers and recruit more young people to the exercise.
Please email Matt Lawrence
Young ringers at Atcham
Photo by Matt Lawrence
Tower Access Guidance Notes
The Towers and Belfries Committee of the Central Council has produced some guidance notes on the various ways we access towers. The notes cover the condition of stairs and ladders; handholds; lighting; doorways and trap doors; and some potential hazards.
The notes can be found at, and downloaded from, https://cccbr.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/stairways.pdf
PowerPoint Presentations for PR
The Central Council Public Relations Committee has created a set of PowerPoint presentations that ringers can use to explain ringing to others. The set is available on the Council’s website: https://cccbr.org.uk/2017/03/19/powerpoint-presentations-to-use-for-pr-purposes/
Would you like to ring a Peal? Andrew Gordon is offering to make arrangements and co-ordinate towers and ringers for Peal attempts. Please contact Andrew on 07973 398289.
In order to ensure that all ringers have the opportunity to read the quarterly Newsletter, and to help keep costs down, it would be helpful if the Newsletter could be delivered electronically. Is there someone in your tower who would be willing to receive the quarterly Newsletter by email, and be willing to make at least one copy of it for your tower notice-board? This person should be someone who checks their email frequently (not just once or twice a year!).
Please contact Peter Woollam [ ] with the name, email address, and tower of your tower’s email correspondent and of any other members who would like to receive their own copy. Email addresses supplied will be stored on the Newsletter Editor's computer and used only for the distribution of the newsletter. They will not be made available to anyone else.
Paper copies will still be sent out to those towers who do not wish to receive it electronically.
Association Monthly Surprise Major Practices
These practices are usually held on the last Friday of the month and at various locations.
The practices are not only aimed at members who want to progress in their Surprise Major ringing, but at those who feel they are capable of starting their Surprise Major ringing career. Those who aspire only to ring the treble may attend, but clearly they may not get much of a ring - there is only one treble in each touch. We rely on the experience of more seasoned Surprise Major ringers to strengthen bands; the ringing master is grateful for their support.
The practices will as far as possible be tailored to the needs of those attending. There will be one or two 'special' methods - probably one of the 'standard eight' plus something of the Ringing Master's choosing. The 'easier' methods of the standard eight will also be rung e.g. Cambridge and Yorkshire. Please let the ringing master know of any special request.
The next Association committee meeting will be held on Sunday, 15 September 2019.
Peter Woollam is Editor of the printed Newsletter as part of his Publicity portfolio. He would welcome any comments on the future format of the Newsletter and any items for inclusion in it.