Combining towers

Over the last few weeks Chawton and Bentworth have joined forces, coming together for Sunday ringing and for Monday practices and this has proved greatly beneficial to both bands.

On Monday this week the practice was held in Chawton. Ten people turned up and we rang call changes, plain hunt, plain bob minimus, plain bob doubles and grandsire.

Excellent practice, admirably led by Chris Hurley from Bentworth.

First Quarter Peal

Yesterday, Sunday 6th April,  a Quarter Peal of Plain Bob Doubles was rung here to mark the 50th birthday of the brother of one of our ringers. Ringing commenced shortly after 5:30pm and “That’s all” was called at 6:20.

The band comprised:

  1. Bob Stammers
  2. Judy Sparling
  3. Mike Novell
  4. Matt Watts
  5. Andy Sparling – Conductor
  6. Jill Burry

and after the ringing, the debrief.theband


Crowded practice

Excellent practice session this evening made possible by a wealth of visitors from Milland (not even in Hampshire!), from Alton and from Blackmoor.

Ringing included rounds & call changes, Plain Hunt, Plain Bob Doubles, Grandsire Doubles and Stedman Doubles – how good is that? Lots of practice for Bob preparing for his debut as a Quarter Peal treble ringer. A good varied evening with something for everybody present (including a trip to the GreyFriar for “asbo”)

Wondering what all those strange names are (Plain Bob Doubles, etc)? They’re names of “methods”, the bell ringing equivalent of a tune, patterns of sequence changes which the ringers learn by heart. Wikipedia provides this explanation.

One man’s ringing week

Last Saturday I attended an education day run near Andover by the Winchester & Portsmouth Guild on the topic “Plain Hunting on 5 Bells & Trebling to Doubles Methods”. It was an all-day intensive course covering the subject matter both in theory and practice. The first practical session started with me (and others) fumbling basic bell control but the last session in the afternoon saw me trebling to several plain courses with considerable ease.

I was tired on Sunday, I am quite old after all.

On Monday with St Nicholas still flooded, five of us (and several from St Lawrence, Alton) joined the practice at Bentworth where we were all able to progress our skills at comfortable rates. We were introduced to the delights of a “special for beginners” version of Plain Bob – Nervous Breakdown Bob Doubles.

On Friday I accepted the kind invitations to ring at Blackmoor (the tower that wobbles during ringing) where I indulged in some Plain Bob Doubles.

This morning two of us attended the Learners & Improvers session in St Lawrence, Alton before indulging in a lunchtime pint in the Eight Bells while setting the world to rights.


Striking practice

At last evening’s practice we enjoyed having visitors Nigel & Jennifer from Romsey, Mike & Jill from Alton, very handy as we were otherwise three down: two on holiday and one inhibited by flooding. Stella brutally worked us through Rounds and Call Changes, several courses of Plain Hunt Doubles as well as some Plain Bob Doubles. Some faults were picked up, some eliminated, some scheduled for elimination. Nigel explained to us how striking competitions work and what’s involved and generally encouraged us to enter the six-bell district inter-tower at All Saints, Alton on 17th May. We have five already, can we get a sixth by then?