Eleven bellringers joined in the Bicester Branch Spring outing arranged by Anthony Cole. We were disappointed that Samuel and Grace Cole weren’t also part of the party as they tend to write the more entertaining reports of our outings but glad that their absence meant that Sarah Cole was able to do more ringing than on recent occasions!
However the first ring at all Saints, Middleton Cheney nearly caused all those present to call it a day immediately – the heavy bells and rather springy ropes challenged most of us but, undaunted, we then rang the lighter bells at Chacombe before relaxing over lunch at the George & Dragon – a great find!
At the enjoyable ground floor ring of Cropredy we discovered that our audience had contained Prunella Scales and Timothy West – an inversion of the more normal status quo! Those in the non-ringing party (including the three canine members) were able to enjoy the sun and a local bookfair before we left for Mollington and a, thankfully, light six.
It was especially good to have our Branch President, the redoubtable Willie Haynes, with us following a bout of ill health. Thank you from all of us, Anthony, for giving everyone a great day – and to those who opened their towers for us.
A mini-ring of 8 housed in a pub in County Durham appeared on ITV’s Countryside on Tues 12th April, 8pm. The Black Bull Inn, Frosterley, County Durham has a mini-ring of 8 as the landlord is a bellringer. See www.blackbullfrosterley.com/bells.html
11 members turned out to Brill on Monday 4th April for the Branch Practice. 6 towers were represented. We rang rounds, plain courses of Grandsire Doubles, a touch of Plain Bob Doubles, and a couple of plain courses of Plain Bob Minor. The bells caught a few ringers out, but sounded really nice. Unfortunately there was a little mishap at the end as we set up – pride and one stay hurt, but nothing that cannot be fixed. Looking forward to the Branch Outing on Saturday.
The triples/major practice this month was a fun evening – 9 ringers banded together to ring Grandsire Triples (plain courses), Kent TB Minor, Plain hunt on 7, Treble Bob hunting and we even tried a course of Stedman Triples – one ringer was heard saying: ‘I may not get this entirely right!’, but at least we tried. All in all a very encouraging evening which swept away a large number of cobwebs.
On Friday 4th March Ambrosden hosted a Branch Practice. The bells hadn’t been rung for some time (there is currently only one ringer), but 9 members of the branch (from 5 branch towers) met together to remind the locals there are bells. The vicar popped in on his way home – he had said to his wife earlier that evening that he missed hearing the bells, and arrived home to hear us ringing 🙂
We rang call changes on 6 and 8, Plain Bob Doubles, Grandsire Doubles and plain courses of Reverse Canterbury (following a request).
Sadly only 5 people turned up at the February Triples & Major practice so we only rang Doubles and, following a request, Stedman Minimus! I would really like to encourage more people to attend to make these practices useful for everyone.