Newsletter 2015

December Practice and Carol Service

Given the weather, there was a good turn-out of Shropshire Association ringers at this year's December practice and Carol Service, held jointly with the Church Stretton District of the Hereford Diocesan Guild, at St Chad's church, Shrewsbury.

Prior to the service there was ringing organised by the Ringing Master with help from Gill Glover and Mark Adams. Ringing included rounds, call changes, Grandsire Caters, Stedman Caters, Plain Hunt Cinques. Many of those who attended had little experience of ringing on 10 or 12 bells and the Ringing Master is grateful for all those who helped.

The service was held in the church and was led by the vicar, Father Mark Chadwick. The service, designed by Gill Glover, included biblical and non-biblical readings, and carols (with only three verses of each carol). Members of both Associations read the lessons, and the congregation sang the carols with gusto, accompanied on the organ by Tony Pinel. The Association's vice-president, The Venerable Paul Thomas, gave the address and regaled the congregation with several tales of Christmases past.

Following the service, mulled wines (with and without alcohol), mulled cider and mince pies were served in the church foyer by Shrewsbury ringers. There was also the opportunity to admire the 40 decorated Christmas trees in the church, including the ringers' tree which was decorated on the theme of the 12 days of Christmas, with delightful representations of all 78 characters involved.

Thanks go to the Shrewsbury ringers and all who helped to make this an enjoyable evening.

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December 6-Bell Practice

This was held at High Ercall under the leadership of Tony Freemont. Fifteen ringers, representing seven towers, attended and practised call changes, Plain Hunt Doubles; Plain Bob Doubles and Cloister Doubles. Thanks to Chris Yates and the High Ercall band for hosting this practice and providing refreshments during the morning.

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November Training Morning

The final Association Training Morning of 2015 took place at Edgmond Ringing Centre. Seven students attended in the hope of making progress with one or more of call changes, Plain Hunt, Plain Bob Doubles, Grandsire Triples. The students were Michael Aspey (Codsall), Diane Bodley (Shifnal), John Clark (Chirk), Matthew Goddard (Bicton), Geoff Harding (Baschurch), Dave Read (Meole Brace), and Rob Richards (Cheswardine).

Unfortunately, the first ring of the morning resulted in a broken stay on the 3rd. This meant that all further ringing took place using the 2nd plus the back five. It also resulted in the Grandsire Triples being replaced by St Clement's College Bob Minor.

The Association's Training Officer, Tony Freemont, was in charge once again. He was assisted by Mark Adams, Jacqui Barden, Jad Bienek, Edric Broom, Derek Dancey, Rob Davis, Peter Hall, Madeline Harris, Brian Kear, Peter Neil, Biff Paterson, Sue Perry, Cordelia Warr, and Peter Woollam.

Refreshments were available during the morning. The cakes and biscuits had all been consumed by 11:30am, which may or may not be related to the fact that one of the students is a teenager.

Thanks go to Edric Broom for getting the bells and the simulator ready.

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FirstPeal2015-logo

Congratulations to Nicola Adams of Wellington and Stephen Evans of Atcham for ringing their first peals.

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November Surprise Major Practice

Thirteen ringers attended this practice on the back eight at St Mary's, Shrewsbury. Cambridge and Pudsey had been requested in advance of the practice. Plain courses of Superlative and London were also rung.

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Ceilidh 2015

Shawbury Village Hall was again the venue for this festival of food and dancing, organised this year by Cordelia Warr. The music was provided by Born to Drink Mild, and Rosie was the caller, replacing Baz Parkes at short notice when he got the opportunity for a hip replacement. Peter Woollam organised the bar, with help from Tony Freemont and some young ladies. Peter reported that the beer ran out at just the right moment - the end of the evening. This year's cooks were Cordelia, Jan Snowball and Claire Unsworth. They provided diners with chilli con carne, butternut squash & goats' cheese casserole, and baked potatoes, with crusty bread and salad. The main course was followed by delicious desserts, including Eton Mess and gluten-free brownies.

The raffle, run by Peter Woollam with help from Jacqui Barden and Biff Patterson, raised £131. The prizes of confectionery, alcohol and toiletries were won by Abby Mangham, Chris Schup, John Jackson, Richard Balance, Jan Snowball, Sue Perry, Jade Mainwaring, Carol Morris, Colin Cockerham, Millie Mangham and Luke Wilson.

More than 80 tickets were sold for this event, significantly more than in 2013, and thanks go to all who promoted the event so widely, especially Chris Fraser, and all those who helped make this a very enjoyable evening.

Ceilidh band

Rosie and Born to Drink Mild

Ceilidh dancing

Dancing

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Ninth Peal of the Year

The ninth peal of the year for the Association was rung at Pulverbatch.

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Eighth Peal of the Year

The eighth peal of the year for the Association was rung at Pattingham. This was also the first peal of Lessness Surprise Major rung for the Association.

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November 6-Bell Practice

This was held at Meole Brace under the leadership of Tony Freemont. Twenty ringers, a large number of them from Meole Brace, attended and got to grips with Plain Hunt Doubles; Plain Bob Doubles and Stedman Doubles. There were also several opportunities for the local ringers to test their ropesight abilities. Noticeable progress was made. Thanks to the Meole Brace band for hosting this practice and providing refreshments during the morning.

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FirstPeal2015-logo

Congratulations to Biff Patterson of Shrewsbury for ringing her first peal. This was also Alan Glover's 50th peal for the Association.

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October Surprise Major Practice

Eight ringers attended this practice at Oswestry. Cambridge and Yorkshire were the focus of the practice. The Major ringing was preceded by a touch of Cambridge Surprise Minor, and followed by some call changes.

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October Practice and Quarterly Meeting

These took place at Ryton and then Beckbury under the guidance of the Ringing Master, Madeline Harris. Twenty ringers attended and the ringing included call changes, Plain Bob Doubles, Plain Bob Minor, St Clement's College Bob Minor, and London Surprise Minor.

The meeting was held at Beckbury. Peter Woollam gave the Bell Adviser's and Librarian's reports. Montford's 4th & 5th clappers and pulleys have been refurbished by Taylor's. The clappers are back in and the pulleys will soon be re-installed. A set of DVDs containing copies of all The Ringing Worlds from 1911 to 2000 has been purchased for the library. The paper copies currently held by the library were donated by Richard Offen and are an almost complete set from the 1950s onwards. Richard has said that they may be disposed of. If you are interested in acquiring some of these copies please contact Peter Woollam.

In Tony Freemont's absence the Ringing Master reported that on 24th October there is to be a session on Bob Calling - First Steps at Oswestry. The next Training Morning at Edgmond will be held on Saturday 28th November. The first of the regular 6-bell practices will be held at Meole Brace on Saturday 7th November. Contact Tony if you would like to attend any of these. Edric Broom will be running his Third Wednesday Morning of the Month practices at Edgmond starting on 21st October, from 10am to 12:30pm (see below).

Susan Capey, Association Treasurer, reported that she had been researching 90-day bank accounts for the bulk of the Association's funds. Her recommendation is a Julian Hodge Bank account paying 1.55% pa.

Peter Woollam reminded those present that all members have a responsibility to take care of themselves and others, to report all accidents, incidents and safety hazards and not misuse any ringing apparatus.

The Ringing Master gave notice that the membership will be asked to vote at the AGM in January on the proposal of Brian Kear and Andrew Gordon as Honorary Life Members of the Association.

Tickets for the Ceilidh to be held on 14th November at Shawbury Village Hall were selling well.

Peter Woollam outlined the Committee's suggestions for marking the Association's 90th year in 2016. The 80th year saw a target of 80 quarter peals by 80 members at all the towers in the Association. The suggestion for 2016 is for members collectively to achieve at least 90 memorable firsts e.g. first peal, first qaurter peal, first quarter peal as conductor, first calling of a touch, first calling of call changes... More details will be available in the new year.

Peter also spoke about the forthcoming Bellringers' Survey being carried out by the Ringing Trends Committee of the Central Council. He invited all those members who did not want to take part in the survey to let him know.

Mark Adams suggested that the Quarterly Meeting be held after the ringing so as to maximise the amount of ringing for those who turn up. Mark suggested possibly ringing from 7pm to 8:20pm then the meeting following on from that.

Madeline Harris reminded those present of the Carol Service to be held at St Chad's in Shrewsbury on Saturday 12th December. Nick Green pointed out that the church is large so a good attendance would be beneficial. Decorated Christmas trees will be on display in the church.

The raffle, run by Peter Woollam, raised £33 for the Bell Restoration Fund. The winners, who took home wine, chocolates and a mystery prize, were Mark Adams, Nick Green, Andrew Gordon and Maureen Broom. The mystery prize was a set of three decorative hand bells. Thanks to all who provide prizes.

Brian Kear was delighted to announce that there are 113 members of the 100+ Club. The winners of the third draw of the year are: Sue Richardson (Codsall) - £50; Peter Hampton (Meole Brace) - £25; Jacqui Barden (Shrewsbury) - £15; Simon Fraser (Shawbury) - £15; Derek Dancey (Bicton) - £12; and Rodger Baylis (Shifnal) - £10.

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FirstPeal2015-logo

Congratulations to Sharon Collins of Wellington for ringing her first peal at the first attempt.

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September Training Morning

The third Association Training Morning of 2015 took place at Edgmond Ringing Centre. For about 40 minutes Geoff Harding (Baschurch) thought that he would be ringing Grandsire Triples all morning, but then the other four students arrived and put him out of his misery. Those other students were Jo Schup (Unattached), Vicki Sivess, David Read, and Clive Morris (all Meole Brace).

As the Association's Training Officer, Tony Freemont, is recovering from foot surgery, the training was run by Madeline Harris (with Edric Broom on hand to lend support). They were also assisted by Mark Adams, Jacqui Barden, Jad Bienek, Alan Glover, Gill Glover, Nick Green, Gail Lawrence, Matt Lawrence, Biff Patterson and Peter Woollam.

The students made good progress with Plain Hunt, Plain Bob Doubles and Grandsire Triples, and were given a rest when some of the trainers practised London Surprise Major.

Tea, coffee, brownies, flapjacks and ginger biscuits were available throughout the morning. Thanks go to Edric Broom for getting the bells and the simulator ready.

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September Surprise Major Practice

Ten members made the journey to the practice at Market Drayton. The methods rung were Superlative, Pudsey, London (twice),3 leads of Bristol, and 6-spliced.

Thanks go to Rev Martin Tanner for allowing the use of the bells.

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Association Striking Competition 2015

St Martins is the ideal venue for this event: next to the church is an excellent hall with facilities for providing endless cups of tea; it has easy-going bells and a welcoming local band; it is as far as possible from the home ground of the reigning champions, leading to the hope that fatigue might affect their defence of the cup.

In the absence overseas of the Association Ringing Master, officer in charge for the day was Peter Woollam, who left no t's uncrossed in his opening remarks. He was ably assisted throughout the day by Jan Snowball.

With the judges, Tim and Jan Hine from Stafford, safely tucked away in the vicarage garden, the competition began.

The first team to ring was Oswestry. Tim described their Grandsire as 'good, enjoyable ringing', and they set the standard for the afternoon, while accumulating 20 faults.

They were followed by a scratch team from two towers on the Eastern fringes of the Association. The two less experienced members of the band performed very well, and the only slight problem came when a former Association Ringing Master and Training Officer failed to realise that the call 'four to five' would affect him on the fifth. Would that he had made such a slip when ringing for the winning band! Tim's assessment was that the practice was hard-going, but well used in that the test piece improved throughout. Their call changes were rewarded with 33½ faults.

The third team was Shrewsbury B, most of whom rang Grandsire. Tim noted some late backstroke leads before one of the band decided to experiment with improvements to the familiar line. Tim interpreted this as a method error but remarked that the band did recover and rang the last two leads well. 27½ faults was the verdict.

Edgmond then took to the stage, having chosen the potentially hazardous Stedman as their tune. A brisk rhythm was set and Tim's comments of 'magic rounds' and 'over 100 quite good rows' proved they had the skill and experience to carry it off. Their reward was a meagre 6 faults.

The fifth team was a second scratch band, with ringers from Chirk, Beckbury, Baschurch, Oswestry, St Martins and Chirk again. Tim had the impression that this was an inexperienced band. He noted that their test piece improved as it went on, with Tittums rung better than Queens, which reflected what they had worked on in their practice. This set of call changes earned 27½ faults.

Meole Brace were the sixth team to appear, also ringing call changes. Tim spotted 'signs of nerves and inexperience' and diagnosed 'some lumpy bits towards the end'. What he could not know was the huge improvement this band has made since its first appearance last year. Their approach is always individual, and this year featured the finely crafted Change-o-maticTM, requiring a seventh ringer as operator. If they can find another far-flung spot to employ their leader for six months, we can expect even more progress next year. 44½ faults were accrued for their efforts.

The penultimate band was from Wellington. Andrew Gordon led them through some call changes, which Tim thought 'rather uncertain.' He went on to characterise the band as 'triers', and awarded 51½ faults.

The final band was Shrewsbury A, ringing Grandsire Doubles. Tim found the practice piece 'bright' and searched in vain for many errors in leads 3, 4, 5 and 6, but found a total of 8 faults throughout the piece.

An ample spread of savoury and sweet goodies had been available throughout the afternoon, and further inroads were made while the judges made their stately progress across to the hall. That there was food left at the end is not unconnected with Andrew Gordon's current dietary regime.

Tim and Jan gave their comments and scores with the explanation that a perfect row scored no faults, a 'slightly ropey' row 1 fault, and a 'decidedly dodgy' row 2 faults. Total faults were then halved to make the competitors feel better.

The Ernest Willcox Cup for the fewest faults was collected by Edric Broom for the Edgmond team.

The Call Change Trophy was collected by Michael Harding for the Meole Brace team.

The slightly arcane rules concerning the award of the Charles Allmand Memorial Shield saw its being presented to Andrew Gordon for the Wellington team.

Proceedings ended with gifts of a liquid nature being given to Tim and Jan, and a vote of thanks being offered to the St Martins ringers for the use of their bells and for providing ample sustenance for all the bands. The inevitable draw raised in excess of £70 and provided prizes for the following: Kim Lupton, Mick Holford, Will Lander, Paul Lewis, Andy Gordon, Edric Broom and Andy Digby.

Oswestry band

Oswestry

(l-r) Brian Rothera, Frances Major, Peter Woollam,
Cordelia Warr, Peter Neil, Richard Major

Scratch A band

Scratch 'A'

(l-r) Mark Adams, Kathryn Greaves, Tom Ollivier,
Paul Lewis, Edric Broom, Chris Ollivier

Shrewsbury B band

Shrewsbury 'B'

(l-r) Gill Glover, Biff Patterson, John Neal,
Alan Glover, Brian Kear, John Crum

Edgmond band

Edgmond

(l-r) Gail Lawrence, Mark Adams, Edric Broom,
Matt Lawrence, Chris Wulkau, Paul Lewis

Scratch B band

Scratch 'B'

(l-r) Jan Snowball, Kim Lupton, Will Lander,
Geoff Harding, Andrew Gordon, Mick Holford

Meole Brace band

Meole Brace

(l-r) Mike Carding, Lewis Roberts, Vicki Sivess,
Peter Jenkins, Andy Digby, John Crum

Wellington band

Wellington 'B'

(l-r) Nicky Adams, Sharon Collins, Marion Lake,
Sue Turnbull, Andrew Gordon, Rob Davis

Shrewsbury A band

Shrewsbury 'A'

(l-r) Dawn Offen, Gill Glover, Jad Bienek,
Nick Green, Alan Glover, Jacqui Barden

Meole Brace and Change-o-matic

The Meole Brace band with their Change-o-Matic equipment
and chief operating officer

Ernest Willcox Trophy presentation

Tim Hine presenting Edric Broom with the
Ernest Willcox Trophy for Edgmond

Call Change Cup presentation

Tim Hine presenting Mike Carding with the
Call Change Cup for Meole Brace

Charles Allmand Shield presentation

Tim Hine presenting Andrew Gordon with the
Charles Allmand Shield for Wellington

Team Faults Ringing
Edgmond 6 Method Ernest Willcox Trophy
Shrewsbury 'A' 8 Method
Oswestry 20 Method
Shrewsbury 'B' 27½ Method
Scratch 'B' 27½ Call Changes
Scratch 'A' 33½ Call Changes
Meole Brace 44½ Call Changes Call Change Trophy
Wellington 51½ Call Changes Charles Allmand Shield
Report by Alan Glover
Photos by Nick Green
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Fifth Peal of the Year

The fifth peal of the year for the Association was rung at Clunbury to mark the Queen's becoming the country's longest reigning monarch.

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Fourth Peal of the Year

The fourth peal of the year for the Association was rung at Church Stretton to mark the Queen's becoming the country's longest reigning monarch.

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All Change at Wem

Karen Compton has taken over as Tower Correspondent for Wem. She can be contacted on 01939 236561.

Practices at Wem will be held on the third Friday of the month, from 7pm to 8:30pm. All are welcome to come along.

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August Joint Practice

The August Association practice was held at Cardington and was a joint production of the Church Stretton District of the Hereford Guild and the Shrophsire Association. Eleven ringers from the Shropshire Association and seven (including one local Cardington ringer) from the Church Stretton District participated. Helen Sharpe (CSD RM) directed proceedings and the ringing included call changes, Grandsire Triples, Stedman Triples, Kent Treble Bob Major, Cambridge Surprise Major, Bristol Surprise Major and 5-spliced Surprise Major.

Helen thanked everyone for attending and Madeline Harris (SACBR RM) thanked Helen for Church Stretton's hospitality and reminded everyone that the next joint get-together will be the Christmas Carol service at St Chad's, Shrewsbury on Saturday 12th December.

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Improvements at Montford

The clappers and pulleys of the 4th and 5th at St Chad's, Montford, have been removed and will shortly be going to Loughborough for refurbishment by Taylors. On their return and re-fitting, the rope drops will be attended to - at the moment, the holes in the belfry floor are not correctly aligned. An application for a grant from the BRF was approved with an award of 50% of the costs at a recent committee meeting.

This follows similar work to the tenor last year and it is hoped eventually, as church funds permit, to give the same treatment to all six bells. The current work is expected to take a few weeks to complete.

Peter Woollam
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July Surprise Major Practice

This practice was held at High Ercall. The evening started with Dixon's Bob Minor while those present awaited the arrival of an eighth ringer. A total of eleven members made the effort to attend and were rewarded with some well-struck courses of Bristol, London, Pudsey, Superlative and 6-spliced.

Thanks to Chris Yates for organising the use of the bells.

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Shropshire Wins Lichfield Diocesan Striking Competition 2015

The inaugural striking competition between the three associations within the Lichfield Diocese was held at Codsall on Saturday 25th July 2015. The three associations each entered a 6-bell band and an 8-bell band. The 6-bell bands rang 240 changes of either Doubles or Minor, and the 8-bell bands rang a plain course of Yorkshire Surprise Major. The faults for each association's bands were added together and the winning association was the one with the lowest combined faults.

The judge was Simon Linford.

The North Staffs band rang Grandsire Doubles. The judge commented that they had a purposeful beat with some minor hesitations. The Shropshire band also rang Grandsire Doubles, with the judge commenting that they had longer stretches of good ringing. The Lichfield and Walsall band rang Plain Bob Minor which the judge said had some nice leads and was a good solid piece of ringing.

On the 8-bell band bands the judge commented that the Lichfield and Walsall band made a nice start, became choppy and unsettled in the middle and then improved towards the end. The North Staffs band started off nicely, became unsettled and their best lead was the last. The Shropshire band had a better degree of control with particular mention of the treble ringer, the band recovered quickly from an unsettled period.

The bands were scored as:

6-bell
faults
8-bell
faults
Total
faults
Lichfield & Walsall 60 118 178
North Staffs 52 72 124
Shropshire 52 47 99

and the Shropshire Association bands were duly declared the winners. Congratulations! The certificate awarded to the Association can be seen here (opens in new window).

SACBR 6-bell band SACBR 8-bell band
The 6-bell band
(l-r) Ann Williams, Peter Woollam, Peter Neil,
Jonathan Marsh, Andrew Gordon, John Neal
The 8-bell band
(l-r) Alan Glover, Gail Lawrence, Nick Green, Chloe Darby,
Bill Deason, Mark Adams, Edric Broom, Matt Lawrence
SACBR group pic
Both bands (minus A Glover) with the judge, Simon Linford
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July Association Practice and Quarterly Meeting

These took place at Market Drayton under the guidance of the Ringing Master, Madeline Harris. Twenty one ringers attended and the ringing included call changes, Grandsire Triples, Plain Bob Triples, Stedman Triples, London Surprise Major and three leads of Bristol Surprise Major.

The quarterly meeting took place in the ringing room. Kay Thornton (High Ercall) and John Jackson (Stanton-upon-Hine Heath) were elected as members of the Association.

In Peter Woollam's absence, the Ringing Master gave the Bell Adviser's and Librarian's reports. Improvements to the 4th and 5th at Montford are under way following the approval by the Committee of a BRF grant for 50% of the cost of this work. The Committee has also approved the purchase of a set of DVDs produced by the Central Council Library Committee containing all editions of The Ringing World from 1911 to 2000 together with its predecessor publication Bell News. The DVDs are searchable and the Librarian will be happy to respond to enquiries from members wishing to verify, for example, details of a quarter peal in which they rang.

In Tony Freemont's absence the Ringing Master reported that the next Training Morning will be at Edgmond on Saturday 26th September. On 24th October there is to be a session on Bob Calling - First Steps. Contact Tony if you would like to attend either of these. Andrew Gordon reported on the recent Bob Minor training session held at Wellington which had attracted eleven ringers and had been successful.

Mention was made of the Association's Health & Safety Policy and Risk Assessment for Association events. Copies of these two documents were circulated to towers with the most recent quarterly Newsletter. Members are urged to read them.

Nominations for Honorary Life Membership of the Association must be made in writing (including electronically) to the Association's Secretary, Jan Snowball, by 31st August, so that the nominations can be discussed at the Committee's next meeting, on 6th September.

The Association Striking Competition will be held on Saturday 12th September at St Martins. Towers are encouraged to enter a band (or more). Please let Jan Snowball know how many of your band will want to partake of the tea.

The next social event on the Association calendar is the Ceilidh to be held at Shawbury Village Hall on 14th November. Tickets will be available in due course. It is hoped that there will be a good turn-out.

Andrew Gordon gave details of the arrangements for the next quarterly meeting. There will be ringing at Ryton from 7 - 7:30pm. From here ringers will travel to Beckbury for the meeting and then more ringing. Following the ringing all are invited to adjourn to the Seven Stars and to partake of chip butties and beer. Andrew will need to know, by 1st October, who will want chip butties.

Nick Green raised the issue of local ringers not attending Association practices (only one local ringer was attending, and this had been true at the two previous practices). There was some discussion about this. Reasons suggested included the feeling some ringers had that those who attend the practices are good ringers and the local ringers would feel out of place; it is a bit daunting to turn up to a practice where you know nobody; practices are on Saturday evenings and some ringers (especially those with non-ringing partners) like to spend time with their families. It was also stated that these practices are good opportunities to have a go at something your band is not quite familiar with. The experienced ringers who attend the practices are more than happy to help less-experienced ringers.

The raffle, run by temporary raffle-tsarina Jacqui Barden, raised £31 for the Bell Restoration Fund. The winners who took home wine, fresh strawberries, and chocolate were Chris Fraser, Nick Green and Sue Perry. Thanks to all who provide prizes.

Brian Kear was delighted to announce that there are 113 members of the 100+ Club. The winners of the second draw of the year are: Roy Bloor (Market Drayton) - £50; John Williamson (Newport) - £25; Maureen Broom (Edgmond) - £15; Ben Roper (Hinstock) - £15; Alan Glover (Shrewsbury) - £12; and Keith Swinnerton (Hinstock) - £10.

The next Monthly Practice will be held at Cardington on Saturday 15th August from 6:30pm to 8:30pm (note that this is the 3rd Saturday of the month and that the practice starts earlier than Association's normal practices) and is the annual practice held jointly with the Church Stretton District of the Hereford Guild.

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Another Peal

The third peal of the year for the Association was rung at Hodnet on Saturday 11 July.

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June Surprise Major Practice

There was another good turn-out for the Association's Surprise Major practice, held at Edgmond on Friday 25th June. Eighteen ringers had a go at Ashtead, Bristol, Rutland, Superlative, Yorkshire, and 6-spliced.

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Meole Brace and Wellington(s)

Bellringers at Holy Trinity Meole Brace have been busy announcing and celebrating important national events recently. Last month they dashed up the tower to be one of the first bands in the country to announce the birth of our new princess and a few days later they rang in commemoration of VE day. This week the Meole bells have rung out to mark anniversaries of Magna Carta and Waterloo. The band are pictured wearing their logo sweat shirts and wellington boots, in honour of the duke.

Meole Brace ringers in wellies

Meole Brace ringers in their wellies

Text by Mike Carding
Photo by Peter Jenkins
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First Quarter Peal Congratulations

Congratulations to Jo Schup on ringing her first quarter peal. Jo has been learning to ring with Chris Fraser at Stanton/Moreton Corbet/Shawbury for about 18 months.

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John Blackall

It is with great sadness that the death of John Blackall, tower captain at Atcham, is reported.

John's funeral took on Wednesday 24th June. Donations in his memory will be gratefully received for the RNLI through the Funeral Directors, Perry & Phillips (01746 765255 or www.perryandphillipsfunerals.com).

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Association Outing - 13th June

Cordelia Warr, the Association's Social Secretary, planned a day's ringing at towers in the Warrington/Manchester area. The day started very wet but the group left the rain behind them as they journeyed north.

The first tower of the day was at Rostherne (20cwt six). A feature of the churchyard here are the horizontal gravestones. Then it was on to everyone's favourite tower of the day - Bowdon, a lovely 18cwt eight. Ringing is from a balcony overlooking the nave. Bowdon has some of the most expensive houses outside London! Grappenhall was the tower immediately before lunch. The ringing room here features yellow walls with blue highlights and pale yellow sallies. The group was joined here by a Shropshire Association worthy who called his first peal at Grappenhall. Most of the group had lunch at The Ram's Head Inn, where the meals were served correctly and quickly. Some lunched at The Parr Inn, the village's other pub. The first tower after lunch was the 29cwt six at Lymm. We arrived as the May Queen Festival was taking place so parking was at a premium. It may just have been a coincidence that the traffic was much less when we had finished ringing here. The final tower of the day was Mobberley, another balcony ring, which features a two-tiered arrangement - the back three on the lower level, the front three on the upper level.

There was a good mix of experienced and not-so experienced ringers on the outing and the ringing reflected that. Call changes and Plain Hunt were rung at all the towers in addition to Grandsire and Stedman (Doubles or Triples depending on the tower). Other methods rung included St Simon's Bob Doubles, Cambridge Surprise Minor, and Yorkshire Surprise Major.

Thanks go to Cordelia for making all the arrangements, to all those who came along and made it such a pleasant day, and to all those who ensured that we didn't have a lock-out.

Outing group at Mobberley

Six sevenths of the group outside St Wilfrid's church, Mobberley

Photo by Natasha Compton
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Edgmond and Friends Outing 2015

This year, on 6 June, the Edgmond and friends ringers' outing ventured into Staffordshire, under the excellent organisation of Kathryn. With the outing based in the Alton area we were a bit concerned about traffic problems around Alton Towers but to our good fortune, but sadly for others, it was still closed following the accident.

First tower was the moderate six at Ellastone, where among the normal fare, 3-Spliced Surprise Minor was rung. Next tower was the pleasant eight at Rocester, where as well as call changes and triples, we rang a tidy touch of 5-Spliced. Then on to the lovely heavy eight at Alton (22cwt) where we rang (nearly!) good touches of Bristol and Stedman, among the more regular fare. On Matt's recommendation the venue for lunch was the Ramblers Retreat, near Alton, and it proved to be a very good choice. After lunch and some parking difficulties in Cheadle, we rang at the 13cwt six at St Giles. They were not the easiest ring but they sounded good outside. Next was Draycott, a decent eight, where we managed a touch of 8-Spliced. The last tower was the recently augmented ten at Stone, where after a very welcome cup of tea kindly provided by the local ringers, we rang rounds and call changes, Plain Hunt Caters, Stedman Caters and a very respectable half course of Yorkshire Royal. This was the first opportunity to ring on ten bells for our newest recruits, Rob and Annette. These bells are a great improvement on the previous eight and go very well.

Thanks to all who came, and especially the visitors who helped to make a very good day. And many thanks to Kathryn for her excellent organisation.

Edgmond outing 2015 at Stone
Report by Edric Broom
Photo by Helen Foster
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Second Association Peal of 2015

On 30 May a peal of Bristol S Major was rung at St Peter's Edgmond, Shropshire, conducted by Chris Wulkau. This was Chris's 1000th peal, and the 100th for his wife Abigail Hind. We congratulate them both on these notable achievements.

Chris learned to ring at Sherfield-on-Loddon in Hampshire, where he rang his first peal in 1978. He moved to Sawley, Derbyshire, in 1979 where his peal activity burgeoned and peaked in 1981, with 128 peals in the year. A fifth of the 1000 peals were of Bristol and he conducted 394 of the 1000. His peal career highlights are: ringing in the longest length peal on 12 bells (20,064 of Bristol Maximus in 13 hours and 58 minutes) in 1987 at All Saints, Worcester; ringing the tenor (72cwt) singlehanded to a peal of Stedman Cinques at Exeter Cathedral, in 3 hours 59 minutes in 1993; and also ringing six consecutive peals of Orion Maximus (five in hand and one on tower bells) in Spring 1993. Then he married Abigail in 1994 and it all slowed down.

His thousandth peal band was made up of Sunday service ringers at St Peter's, Edgmond, where he and Abigail have rung since 1990 when they moved to the area. His ambition was for his 1000th peal to coincide with Abigail's 100th and their twin daughters' first peal but they have never been persuaded that ringing is not uncool, so this was not to be.

Since moving to the Edgmond area Chris has conducted most of the peals rung at Edgmond and conducted many quarter peals, helping several local ringers to progress through the standard eight and beyond.

Edgmond peal band

(L-R) Paul Lewis, Mark Adams, Bill Deason, Abigail Hind, Chris Wulkau,
Matthew Lawrence, Gail Lawrence, Edric Broom

Text by Edic Broom
Photo by Chris Taylor
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May Surprise Major Practice

This was held at St Mary's in Shrewsbury and utilised the back eight there. Eleven members had a go at Ashtead, Bristol, Cambridge, and Superlative.

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May Association Practice

This was held at Ruyton XI Towns and was attended by eleven ringers, ten of whom rang. The Ringing Master, Madeline Harris, directed proceedings. The ringing included Stedman Doubles, St Paul Bob Doubles (which is St Martin's Bob Doubles with Reverse Canterbury bobs), Stedman Doubles, Plain Bob Doubles, All Saints Doubles, Double Oxford Bob Minor, Plain & Little Bob Minor, Kent Treble Bob Minor, Cambridge Surprise Minor, and Dixon's Bob Minor.

Peter Woollam sold raffle tickets, raising £15 for the Bell Restoration Fund. The prize winners were Jad Bienek and Madeline Harris, who took home wine and chocolate.

Thanks to the Ruyton ringers for opening up the church and for the use of the bells; it was pleasing to see one member of the local band at the practice.

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May Training Morning

The Edgmond Ringing Centre was the venue for the Association's May Training Morning. The students were Christine Harris (Shifnal), Claire Unsworth (Stanton), Kate Sampson, Jackie Trynor (both Ellesmere), and Geoff Harding (Baschurch). They came along to get help with at least one of: call changes, Plain Hunt, Plain Bob Doubles, Grandsire Doubles, Grandsire Triples. Tony Freemont, the Association's Training Officer, was assisted by Mark Adams, Jad Bienek, Edric Broom, Chris Fraser, Nick Green, Madeline Harris, Brian Kear, Peter Neil, Sue Perry and Peter Woollam. Refreshments were available throughout the morning.

Thanks go to Edric Broom for getting the bells and the simulator ready for the session.

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Central Council Annual General Meeting

Alan Glover and Peter Woollam attended the CCCBR AGM in Hull on 25th May. All of the committee reports published in the recent RW supplement were ratified and elections for vacant committee posts were held. No discussion on the Decisions took place as the consultation process is still underway. Breakout groups considered a 'Change Ringing for the Future' discussion paper, which suggested that a regional network be set up to manage recruitment and retention initiatives. The West Midlands group was not keen on the idea, seeing it largely as another tier of bureaucracy that was likely to achieve little.

The RW AGM gave us details of the parlous state of the finances. A switch to a fortnightly format, a significant increase in annual subscription rates, a minimum fee for publication of peal and quarter peal reports, or some combination of these seems inevitable. Payment of peal and quarter peal donations via BellBoard using PayPal yields significant savings in admin costs and is very strongly preferred.

Peter Woollam
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Shrewsbury Ringers' Outing April 2015

Worcester was the destination for the Spring outing of the Shrewsbury ringers and friends. The first tower was booked for 9am – yes 9am! This was St Swithun's, a church in the care of The Churches Conservation Trust. The church has examples of Georgian box pews and a triple-decker pulpit. Three of the bells here (the current 3,4,5) were cast in Worcester sometime between 1400 and 1420, while the other three were cast in Worcester in 1654, making them one of the oldest rings of six in the country. Ringing, by the seventeen ringers present, comprised Plain Bob Minor, Grandsire Doubles, Cambridge Surprise Minor and Carlisle Surprise Minor.

A short stroll from St Swithun's took the group to Old St Martin in the Cornmarket. The bells here are in complete contrast to the previous tower – a modern, light ten. The band was joined by a visiting group of Swedish choristers. Ringing here included call changes, Plain Hunt Caters, Plain Hunt Royal, Erin Caters, Grandsire Caters and Little Bob Royal.

The final tower before lunch was All Saints – a walk back past St Swithun's and through the shopping area. This tower has hosted some of the longest peal lengths rung and there was much admiration for the band that rang a peal of Bristol Surprise Maximus in 13 hours 58 minutes. Ringing here included call changes, Plain Hunt Cinques and Grandsire Cinques (but not Bristol Max.).

Peal Borard All Saints Worcester

Lunch was taken in the King Charles House, the speciality of the house being pies. While most of the band was soaking up the atmosphere of Worcester city centre on a fine Saturday afternoon, six members rang a quarter peal of Cambridge Surprise Minor at St Swithun's, starting into changes just as a noisy demonstration against badger culling was passing the church.

The first tower after lunch was St John in Bedwardine, a short drive across the River Severn. A feature here was the periodic muffling of the sound as sallies passed through ceiling bosses. Included in the ringing here were Grandsire Triples, Stedman Triples and 5-spliced Surprise Major.

Another short drive took the band to St Stephen's at Barbourne. The bells here were removed from St Nicholas, Halewood in 2012, after the tower there was found to be structurally unsafe, and then installed at St Stephen's in 2013. Ringing here was Grandsire Triples, Stedman Triples, 3 leads of Bristol, and Yorkshire S Major.

The final tower of the day was St John the Baptist at Claines. This has a ground floor ring of 10. The font separates the 9th and tenor, and the ropes for the front 4 bells hang close together and not very far out from the walls, which focussed the mind somewhat. The ringing included call changes, Grandsire Caters and Stedman Caters.

By the time the bells had been lowered the rest of the band had made their way over to the Mug House, a hostelry just across the churchyard. Drinks all round and a group photo here.

Thanks go to  Noj (aka John Neal) for organising a good day out – he already has plans for another outing. Thanks also to all those who allowed the use of their bells and those who contributed to there being no lock-outs.

Group photo Claines

Most of the band in the garden of The Mug House at Claines

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April Practice and Quarterly Meeting or Still Springy After All These Years

These took place at Cheswardine, where the springiness of the ropes was the subject of some discussion. Twenty four ringers attended and the ringing included call changes, Plain Bob Triples, Grandsire Triples, Stedman Triples, St Simon's Bob Triples and Yorkshire Surprise Major.

Tea, coffee and biscuits, kindly provided by Peter Hall, were available in the cunningly disguised kitchen area.

Tony Freemont (Training Officer) reported that there had been a Training Morning at Edgmond in February and he thanked Edric Broom and Mark Adams for their help with that. Tony reported that he had one student, so far, for the next session to be held on 16th May. Please contact Tony if you would like to attend.

Peter Woollam (Bell Advisor) reported that the PCC at Montford would be making a grant application to the Bell Restoration Fund for help with work on two more bells there. Work has previously been carried out on the tenor.

Cordelia Warr (Social Secretary) spoke about the June Association outing to five towers on the outskirts of Manchester. Once she has received confirmation from all these towers, details will be sent out to members. Peter Woollam offered to drive a minibus for those who did not fancy driving themselves. The cost was likely to be about £15, depending on the numbers taking up this offer. Peter would like firm expressions of interest so that he can determine whether or not this is a feasible project.

The Ringing Master mentioned the proposed Lichfield Diocese Striking Competition between the three Associations that cover the Diocese. This is to be held on Saturday 25th July, from 2pm to 4pm. There will be a 6-bell competition for which the test piece will be 240 changes of Doubles or Minor; and an 8-bell competition for which the test piece will be a plain course of Yorkshire Surprise Major.

Events for which ringing is encouraged, and which have previously been mentioned in the quarterly tower newsletter and on this website, were mentioned.

Peter Woollam announced that he had displayed at the back of the church a small set of ringing related books which had been in his possession and which had not previously sold. The books were available for a small donation, any left after the meeting would be disposed of. Peter said that he would continue to keep copies of the One Per Learner books and Crib Lines for sale.

Peter Woollam raised £43 for the BRF from the sale of raffle tickets. Prizes of wine and chocolates were won by Matt Lawrence, Jad Bienek, Barry Lewis, Tony Freemont and Karen Compton.

Brian Kear was pleased to announce that there are 110 members of the 100+ Club, which means that he can offer six prizes every month. The winners of the first draw of the year are: Julie Allport - High Ercall (£50), Cynthia Costelloe - Market Drayton (£25), Tom Yates - High Ercall (£15), Dot Williams - Ruyton XI Towns (£15), Paul Roberts - Bicton (£12) and Mary Anne Oakley - Ruyton XI Towns (£10).

Thanks go to Peter Hall for organising the use of the bells and providing refreshments.

The next Monthly Practice will be held at Ruyton XI Towns on 9th May, from 7pm to 9pm. The next Quarterly Meeting will be held at Market Drayton on Saturday 11th July.

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National 12-Bell Striking Competition Comes to Shrewsbury

St Chad’s church, Shrewsbury, will be hosting one of the National 12-Bell Striking Competition Eliminator rounds on Saturday 28th March 2015. Seven bands will be ringing six leads of Cambridge Maximus, and will be hoping to make it through to the final at St Peter Mancroft, Norwich, on 27th June. The bands competing at Shrewsbury are Birmingham, Cambridge, Exeter, Reading, Stockton-on-Tess, University of London, and York. The other eliminators are being held at Liverpool and Wakefield on the same day. A Birmingham band has won the competition eight times out of the last ten; so they’re quite good.

This will be an occasion to hear excellent striking. If you are in Shrewsbury on 28th March, come and listen to the bells. The ringing will start at 11:30am and finish at about 3:00pm; the judges’ remarks and the results will take place in the church from about 4:30pm.

As hosts, the Shrewsbury band will be serving refreshments throughout the day, starting at 10am.

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March Surprise Major Practice

This very well-attended practice was held at High Ercall. A record-equalling nineteen members rang plain courses of London, Rutland, Superlative, and Wembley. 3 leads of Bristol, and 8-spliced were also rung successfully. Thanks go to Chris Yates for organising the use of the bells.

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March Association Practice

This was held at Oswestry and was attended by fifteen members from all corners of the Association and beyond. The ringing included call changes, Plain Hunt on five, Plain Bob Triples, Stedman Triples, Grandsire Triples, Little Bob Major, and Yorkshire Surprise Major.

Peter Woollam sold raffle tickets, raising £34 for the Bell Restoration Fund; the prizes of alcohol and confectionery were won by Tony Freemont, Sue Townsend and Andrew Gordon. Thanks to all who donate prizes and buy tickets.

The next Association practice, incorporating the April quarterly business meeting, will be held at Cheswardine on Saturday 11th April from 7pm to 9pm. The special methods will be Double Norwich Court Bob Major and St Simon's Bob Triples. Other methods rung will depend on those present at the practice.

The first draw of the year for the 100+ Club will also take place at this meeting. To be in with a chance to be a winner, please return your completed application form and cheque to Brian Kear prior to the meeting.

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February Surprise Major Practice

This well-attended practice was held at Edgmond. Sixteen members attempted, with a high degree of success, to ring Bristol, Lincolnshire, London, Rutland, Superlative, Wembley, and 6-spliced.

Thanks to Edric Broom for allowing the use of the bells.

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February Association Practice

This was held at Ightfield and was attended by fourteen ringers. The Ringing Master, Madeline Harris, directed proceedings. The ringing included Grandsire Doubles, April Day, St Martin’s Bob Doubles, Stedman Doubles, Plain Bob Minor, St Clement’s College Bob Minor, Double Oxford Bob Minor, Little Bob Minor, Kent Treble Bob Minor, and Cambridge Surprise Minor.

Peter Woollam sold raffle tickets, raising £25 for the Bell Restoration Fund. The prize winners were Graham Parker, Peter Woollam, Malcolm Monie and Nick Green. They took home chocolates and wine.

Thanks go to the Ightfield ringers for allowing the use of the bells; it was pleasing to see some of the local band at the practice.

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February Training Morning

The first Association Training Morning of 2015 took place at the Edgmond Ringing Centre. The students were Christine Harris (from Shifnal), Ernie Martin and Matthew Goddard (both Bicton), Peter Hall (Cheswardine), Jo Schup (unattached), and Geoff Harding (Baschurch). The Association’s Training Officer, Tony Freemont, was assisted by Mark Adams, Jad Bienek, Edric Broom, John Burton, Susan Capey, Karen Compton, Derek Dancey, Kathryn Greaves, Madeline Harris, Paul Lewis, Cordelia Warr, and Peter Woollam.

Each student had specific reasons for attending the training, and these were met through the ringing of call changes, Plain Hunt, Grandsire Doubles, Grandsire Triples and Stedman Triples.

Tea, coffee, brownies, flapjacks and tea bread were available throughout the morning. Thanks go to Edric Broom for getting the bells and the simulator ready.

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February Surprise Minor Practice

This was held at Atcham. Fourteen ringers participated and admired the newly-installed gallery on which the ringing was carried out. Under the direction of Chris Fraser, Cambridge, Ipswich, London, Norfolk, Norwich, Beverley, Carlisle, Water, and 6-spliced were attempted, with a high degree of success.

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Last Duty as Ringing Master

My last duty as Ringing Master was a very pleasant one, which involved presenting the ringers at Meole Brace with the St Alkmund’s Canons trophy. The Meole Brace band are an enthusiastic, committed, friendly bunch of ringers who, despite their Tower Captain leaving them for the sunshine of Kuala Lumpur, have continued to ring regularly and make steady progress. Considering they all started at the same time only just over a year ago, I think this is an impressive achievement. If you are ever at a loose end on a Thursday evening, pop along to their practice, they’ll make you very welcome.

Meole Brace presentation

Andy Digby accepting the St Alkmund's Cannons from Sue

Sue Buckingham
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January Surprise Major Practice

This was held at Hodnet and was attended by ten ringers. Madeline Harris directed proceedings. Lincolnshire, Pudsey, Rutland, and Superlative were rung, along with some 3-spliced and 5-spliced.

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Phil Rothera

With great sadness, the Oswestry band announces the death on 13th January 2015 of Phil Rothera after a four year battle with cancer. Aged 71, he died peacefully at home surrounded by family. Phil was listed in the Association Handbook as an Oswestry ringer and, for many years, as the contact for the (unringable) tower of Selattyn, where he was landlord at the Cross Keys Inn. Phil was father to present Oswestry Tower Captain Brian Rothera, and the extended family includes many bell ringers. He recently celebrated 50 years as a member of The Ancient Society of College Youths, and a College Youths band, including our own Nick Green and Peter Furniss, rang a peal of Bristol Surprise Major at Oswestry in tribute last November, as Phil had been too unwell to attend the AGM the previous month. Phil was also a past master of the Freemason’s Clavis Lodge in Oxfordshire, established by and for church bell ringers.

Phil was, until very recently, a regular ringer for Evensong at Oswestry and anyone who has ever rung with him will testify to his unfailing cheerful and enthusiastic nature. He will be sadly missed and the Oswestry band is planning its own peal and quarter peal in celebration of his life.

Peter Woollam
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Association Practice and AGM - January 2015

These were held at St Mary’s church, Ellesmere. About 40 ringers met in the ringing room for call changes, Grandsire Triples, Stedman Triples and Cambridge Surprise Major, prior to the Service of Thanksgiving.

The Service was led by Revd. Philip Edge. The address was given by the Archdeacon of Salop, The Venerable Paul Thomas, and the organist, Malcolm Powell, kept the hymns going at a good pace. The Archdeacon spoke about how evocative some sounds can be, particularly the sound of bells.

The ringers were joined in the Parish Room by about another sixteen Association members. The catering team had provided a sumptuous meal of quiches, pork pies, salads, potatoes, crisps, bread …, with trifle, fruit pie and brownies to follow, plus tea and coffee. As is to be expected from a group of ringers, there was very little food left at the end of the meeting.

Sue Buckingham, Ringing Master, introduced Archdeacon Paul who thanked the Association for its ministry in north Shropshire and got the meetings underway.

At the Quarterly Meeting which preceded the AGM, the following were elected as members of the Association: David Read, Nick Scott (both Meole Brace); Peter Furniss, Beverley Furniss (Chirk); Kate Sampson, Keith Parry, Jackie Traynor (Ellesmere); Jennifer Hodnett (Shifnal); Tabitha Byne (High Ercall); Matthew Goddard (Bicton); Robert Herbet, Annette Bailey (Edgmond). Penny Salisbury, Anne Ogden and Simon Adams were ratified as Non-Resident Life Members.

After the usual business of apologies, minutes of the last AGM, and matters arising from the Minutes, Sue Buckingham gave her Ringing Master’s report. Sue thanked the Committee for their hard work, Brian Kear for running the 100+ Club, and Paul Smart for help with splicing ropes for the Rope Bank. Sue touched briefly on the highlights of the year, including:

Susan Capey (Treasurer) presented the accounts of the Association and they were approved by the meeting. The Independent Examiners, Brian Kear and Karen Compton, had inspected and approved the accounts and Brian reported that he and Karen were happy with how the accounts had been presented.

Peter Woollam (Bell Adviser) gave his usual detailed report. He had carried out only two inspections in 2014, at Church Aston and at Malinslee. BRF Grants totalling £14113.85 had been given to Clive, Wem, Ellesmere, Meole Brace, Oswestry, Montford and Shifnal. Peter’s challenge to steeplekeepers in 2015 – why are dead flies, cobwebs, thick layers of dust, threadbare carpets etc, which would be unacceptable in other parts of the church, acceptable in the ringing room?

Rodney Upton thanked everyone for their help with the Ellesmere project. Peter Leigh reported that because of changes to the Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme the project had come in under budget, largely because of the ability to reclaim VAT on the work done, and he presented the Treasurer with a cheque for £1000 as a return of part of the BRF grant that had been awarded for the project.

Chris Fraser (Report Editor) reported that there are ten advertisers for this year’s Handbook, and just over 60% of towers have sent reports for the 2014 Report.

Peter gave the Librarian’s report. He reported that he had had the same number of request for book loans as in 2013. He had also been able to supply some information to the Central Council (CC) about F Hector Bennett who had been a former CC rep for the Association. Peter then spoke about the Association’s Honorary Life Membership award. There is currently only one Honorary Life Member (HLM) resident in the Association – Ken Brice. It was agreed that members could submit nominations for this award. Nominations must be accompanied by a written justification for the nomination. Peter also talked about the peal and quarter peal statistics for 2014 including the fact that Nick Green has been the leading quarter peal conductor every year since 1997.

Tony Freemont (Training Officer) reported on the success of the Training mornings held during the year. Tony thanked, especially, Edric Broom Mark Adams for their help at Edgmond, and all those who came along and helped with the training sessions. Tony reported that an In-Tower Training morning had been held at Moreton Corbet and that the ringers from there who had attended had made good progress during the session. Contact Tony if you would like to participate in any of the Association’s training opportunities.

Madeline Harris (PRO) reported that twenty four towers and sixteen individuals received the quarterly newsletter by email; she gave a brief mention of the press coverage of several local ringing projects, and also that there appeared to have been no negative reporting of ringing in the local press.

Chris Fraser (Children and Vulnerable Adults Protection Officer) reported that there had been no actions during the year. Members should approach their own church about applying to the Disclosure and Barring Service before they start teaching a young person to ring.

Biff Patterson (LDMB Trustee) reported on the activities of the Mobile Belfry, and mentioned that there had been no Shropshire visits by the Mobile Belfry. Biff said that she had enjoyed ringing a quarter peal on the bells, and recommended its use for the promotion of ringing at village fetes etc. It’s not a good tool for teaching handling.

Sue Buckingham on behalf of the Central Council Representatives reported that the CC meeting had been held in Maidstone and that Alan Glover had been re-elected as CC Librarian.

Elections for the Committee for 2014 were held. Madeline Harris takes over as Ringing Master; Cordelia Warr takes on the role of Social Secretary; Peter Woollam becomes the Association’s second CC rep representative (all three of these roles having been held by Sue Buckingham in 2014); Biff Patterson joined the Committee as an Ordinary Member. All the other 2015 Committee positions were filled by their incumbents.

Under Any Other Business,

Peter Woollam thanked Sue for her time as Ringing Master and said how enjoyable meetings had been. Sue was presented with a planter and a card signed by those present.

Sue thanked the vicar for taking the Service, the Archdeacon for chairing the meeting, and Terry Davies and Rodney Upton for their hospitality and for arranging a delicious tea.

Peter Woollam sold raffle tickets raising £95 for the Bell Restoration Fund. He thanked all those who donated prizes. The prizes of confectionery, alcohol, cheese board and chocolate fountain were won by Matthew Goddard, Susan Capey, Tony Freemont, Andy Wilson, Kate Sampson, Sue Ganley, Steve Evans, Malcolm Monie and Kathryn Greaves.

The final draw of the year in the 100+ Club was made by Brian Kear who reported that there were 114 members, the highest number ever, and about £750 will have been made for the BRF. Brian said that forms for 2015 would be going out to towers in February. The winners were: £50 – Maureen Broom (Edgmond), £25 – Chris Menhinick (Baschurch), £15 – Vic Young (Wellington), £15 – Eric Pilling (Bicton), £12 – Sharon Collins (Wellington), £10 – Derek Dancey (Bicton).

The next AGM will be held at Edgmond on Saturday, 9th January 2016. The next Quarterly meeting will be held at Cheswardine on Saturday, 11th April with ringing starting at 7pm.

AGM Tea AGM Tea AGM Tea
Before the hordes got to the tea table Matthew and Sue, with presentation planter Raffle prizes donated and won by members
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100th Peal Congratulations

Congratulations to Andrew Gordon who rang his 100th peal for the Association, on 3rd January 2015 at Coalbrookdale. Andrew becomes the twelfth person in this select band of ringers.

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