Guild Newsletter

The Guild Newsletter is published quarterly and is distributed to the Districts at each of the quarterly Whole Guild Meetings which are held in January, April, July and October, in rotation between the districts.

Articles for inclusion in the next newsetter should be sent via email to

They will be published on receipt on this website and included in the next available edition of the newsletter. They can be accessed from the tabs at the top of this page.

Please ensure that all items for inclusion are sent in by approx. a fortnight prior to a meeting to allow time for the collation and printing of the Newsletter. The deadline is always shown in the current edition.

The current edition can be read online via the appropriate link in the Newsetter menu, as can PDF copies of previous newsletters.


First QP "Inside"

Congratulations go to Peter Gordon, one of the ringers in our Coventry Spires Youth Team, who has rung his first quarter inside.  The first of many, we're sure!

Studley, Warwickshire Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Saturday, 14 October 2017 (11)
1260 Plain Bob Doubles
1 Louise Grubb
2 Richard H Spray
3 Peter J Gordon
4 A J Barnfield
5 Rachel D Page (C)
6 Robert E Airlie
First inside at first attempt for Peter, aged 14, ringer of the 3rd.

8-Bell Ringing Competition Results

Here are the results of the 8-Bell Competition which was held at Brinklow on Saturday, October 14th.  Thanks go to the judge, Colin Lee of Adderbury.

Rang Team Method Peal Speed Score Position  Band Photograph
1st Rugby A Cambridge S Major 2h 45m 89% 1st
2nd Coventry A Cambridge S Major 2h 47m 79% 3rd
3rd Warwick A Cambridge S Major 2h 56m 84% 2nd
4th Rugby B Grandsire Triples 2h 57m 73% 5th=
5th Warwick B Grandsire Triples 3h 21m 76% 4th
6th Coventry DG Scratch Grandsire Triples 3h 25m 73% 5th=

 Congratulations go to Rugby A, who were the winners


 2017 Edition Available

The latest newsletter is available to view as "Current Edition" and a printable version has been put into "Downloads".

Please note that the deadline for the following edition is Saturday 15th December 2017 and items submitted after this date may have to be held over until the January 2018 edition.


2018 ART Awards

The ART Awards recognise people and groups who are leading best practice and innovation in the teaching and development of ringing and our Learning the Ropes achievers.

The teaching awards are open to everyone, not just ART Members or those using the Learning the Ropes Scheme. The ringing award is open to those who have completed one of the Learning the Ropes programmes (on tower or hand bells) or participated in the Learning the Ropes plus Scheme.

Details of the 2018 Awards are now on the ART web site – please have a look here

Safeguarding update for Ringing World September 2017

The last article regarding Safeguarding dwelt upon some of the processes being followed by the Church of England including responses to allegations. There were new issues arising from requirements for training and these have, to some extent, become clearer.

Regarding the York Minster situation, ringers will be aware of the appointment of a new Head of Tower, Angela Mitchell, reported in the RW issue of 16th June, p598. Subsequently the Minster has sought applications for a new band of ringers and has held interviews and made appointments, a definitive list being awaited. There remain issues over exclusions from the new team and the reasons for these decisions. The question of fair representation has been raised with the Church and it is ironic that earlier this year a new protocol for dealing with allegations against Clergy has given them greater rights of hearing. It is hoped that such machinery will be extended to lay persons who appear at present to be at a disadvantage.

There have been concerns raised about the extent and level of Safeguarding Training which is being demanded, not only amongst ringers but also involving other volunteers within the Church. The intention of the training guidance issued in January 2017 was to cover clergy, church officers and those having close contact with children or vulnerable adults where DBS checks were already required. However, under the guise of parishes having “due regard”, training is being extended to most volunteers whether flower arrangers or coffee servers. There is evidence that parishes are questioning this level of requirement but as far as both leaders and “rank and file“ ringers ( the church description), the current expectation by Church centre is as shown in the following table.

Requirement by
Tower Captain
or Leader
Trainer of
Rank and File
Role Description
and PCC Appointed
DBS Check YES YES   Query status of
Supervised Trainer
Basic Training
Level  CO
YES YES YES Renewable every 3 years
 Level C1 YES  YES   Renewable every 3 years 
 Level C2 YES YES    Renewable every 3 years
 Level S1 YES      
 Level S2 YES       

I have made no reference so far to “vulnerable adults” since this category is a contentious matter. There appears to be a difference between legal requirements as defined under the 2012 Protection of Freedoms Act and the latest definition issued by the Church which is as follows:

“a person aged 18 or over whose ability to protect himself or herself from violence, abuse, neglect or exploitation is significantly impaired through physical or mental disability or illness, old age, emotional fragility or distress, or otherwise; and for that purpose, the reference to being impaired is being temporarily or indefinitely impaired”

Following the 2012 Act, the definition of vulnerable adult was restricted to those in institutional or social care situations and I have not come across any instances of bell ringing being involved with training or supervising adults on behalf of such agencies.

In some Dioceses training modules are available on-line and whilst this does remove time attending lectures it does remove the opportunity for exchange of experience and views. There have been moves for training to be given on a delegated basis from the Diocese and possibly available to be given by fellow bell -ringers. This concession does mean that the circumstances peculiar to ringers can be accommodated within presentations thus improving the relevance of the information provided.

Another ongoing concern is that of treatment of visiting ringers and demands, whether by Parish or encouraged by Diocese, to seek “vetting” of visitors. Visitors may come to a tower as individuals or as a group as part of an outing or for a peal / quarter peal attempt. In the normal course of events none of these visitors are engaged in a regulated activity and there is no need for any confirmation of “DBS check” credit-worthiness. If a group includes juniors then the requirement for a DBS checked driver and permission from parent or guardian should have already been met as per CCCBR guidelines.

In the instance of a meeting or training session organised by the local ringing society, whilst it might be a one-off situation it is recommended that a DBS checked person be in charge or present. Training sessions might of course be of a regular nature and frequency triggering regulated activity needs. An individual “visitor” attending specifically to assist with teaching of young people should be DBS certified.

Finally, there is the question of treatment of persons who are either ex-offenders or have restriction orders placed upon them. Unless such persons have a specific barring from being in the presence of young people, then there is no reason why they should not join in ringing in an adult or mixed age activity provided they are not undertaking face to face training. The ability for tower leaders, let alone church authorities, to check the status of every ringer who visits a tower would imply either identity cards held by every one of 40,000 ringers or a doorstep interrogation which is totally unacceptable. There have been instances of ringers being refused visits even where restrictions are being complied with. The whole issue is very difficult to resolve since it relies upon the knowledge and discretion tower leaders being accepted and supported by local Parish authority.

I have had meetings with Church House, the lead Bishop for Safeguarding and my local Diocese and concerns and uncertainties relating to bell ringers and others have been raised. The Guidance documents issued by the Church are all subject to review and I will keep in mind the need to achieve good understanding with ringers and will update through the Ringing World as appropriate.

In the mean- time, I would reiterate my message given in March that as church workers we need to maintain good relationships and recognise our role in the field of Safeguarding.

Chris Mew, Safeguarding Adviser to CCCBR Tower Stewardship

First Quarter Peal Success for Berkswell Ringers.

Berkswell ringers Mary Jones and Theo Bratton have now successfully rung their 1st quarter peal and are well on the way to completing Level 3 of Learning the Ropes.

Mary’s QP in April was rung to celebrate the 91st birthday of Queen Elizabeth II, while Theo rang more recently in August, during the summer break from school.

Both were delighted with their achievement and are now looking forward to ringing the treble to their second quarter peal, which will take place during the quarter peal fortnight, November 12th to 26th.

Honiley, Warwickshire St John the Baptist
Saturday, 22 April 2017 in 42 mins (6–2–4 in A)
1260 Plain Bob Doubles
1 Norris Poon
2 Steven Tibbetts (C)
3 Richard East
4 Angela Roskelly
5 Annie Hall
6 Mary Jones 1st Quarter Peal for the ringers of 1 and 6.
Rung to celebrate the 91st birthday of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

Honiley, Warwickshire St John the Baptist
Thursday, 31 August 2017 in 40 mins (6–2–4 in A)
1260 Doubles (3 Methods)
240 Reverse Canterbury Pleasure Bob Doubles; 240 Grandsire Doubles; 780 Plain Bob Doubles
1 Steven Tibbetts
2 Janice Sheasby
3 Matthew Porter
4 Richard Turner
5 Raymon Sheasby (C)
6 Theo Bratton
First Quarter Peal for Theo Bratton

CCCBR reform – Phase II


I last wrote in late August, reporting on progress with reform and renewal of our central ringing organisation. I am now writing to give a further progress report, and to call for volunteers as Workgroup Leaders or helpers. All ringers are invited to volunteer, which can be either self-nominations or the nomination of someone else (in which case it requires their consent). Full details, and a link to the online form, are given below.

By way of a brief reminder, the Council Review and Action Group (CRAG) was set up following a vote at the Central Council’s meeting in 2016. Its recommendations were brought to the Council’s annual meeting in May 2017. The full CRAG report, including its scope, methodology and proposals, can be found here:

The story so far In the CRAG final report, Appendix Q proposed an indicative timeline for activities surrounding the reorganisation of CCCBR. Here is a taste of key actions from that timeline:

  • A ii Develop and publish draft 5-year strategy for consultation September – November 2017 - Commenced
  • B vi Make appointments to Executive June – November 2017 - Completed
  • C Confirm workgroup configurations and responsible Executives June – August 2017 - Commenced
  • C i Recruit Workgroup Leaders September – December 2017 - NOW OPEN!
  • E i Develop service offering for direct membership June 2017 – May 2018 - Commenced
  • F ii Scope out creation of employed professional support group June 2017 – May 2018 - To start
  • G Appoint neutral ringer to undertake Decisions replacement June – August 2017 - Completed
  • H Recruit Rules redesign group June – August 2017 - Completed

Having reported on appointments to the Executive (in my message of August 2017), I am now inviting expressions of interest for leadership and helper roles on “workgroups”.

What are Workgroups?

Recommendation C of CRAG’s final report is introduced as follows –

“The new Executive will, by November 2017, realign the current committees into a significantly reduced number (single figures) of Workgroups, each led by an individual Workgroup Leader.”

The CRAG report describes this concept at length. Although it may appear that this realignment is merely an aggregation of CCCBR’s existing Committees, the concept is much bolder than that. Workgroups are the way that the CCCBR will deliver its plans. While they will of course continue some of the work of the former committees their priorities will be determined by the overall strategy of the CCCBR and what is necessary to strengthen and refresh ringing. Workgroups and their leaders will work closely with the executive, other workgroups and people from outside the CCCBR for a healthy future for ringing.

The CRAG report proposed a set of workgroups that require skilled, charismatic and handson leaders and helpers. These are as follows:

  • Volunteer and Leadership Development (working with David Smith and Alison Everett)
  • Tower Stewardship and Management (working with David Kirkcaldy and Ernie de Legh-Runciman)
  • Communications and Marketing
  • Historical and Archive
  • Direct membership channel (helpers working with Phillip Barnes)

There is one other workgroup for which a leader has already been identified, and this will be announced in due course.

How to get involved Using the same mechanisms as in Phase I, I invite all interested ringers to visit the “reform” page on the CCCBR website and complete the nomination form:

The online form will be open until Friday 29th September. I should clarify that those who responded in Phase I are still very much in the mix, and don’t need to re-submit. Furthermore, existing Central Council Representatives are particularly encouraged to put their names forward to assist with these new structures.

Do please think carefully about what you can do for ringing, and volunteer for one (or more) of these roles. This is a fantastic opportunity to make a difference. To give something back to ringing. To build and secure a bright future for ringing.

Yours in ringing,
Christopher O’Mahony
President Central Council of Church Bell Ringers

Pudsey Banner

The Central Council Public Relations Committee has been working with the BBC’s Children In Need campaign for 2017, collaborating on an idea which should both raise national awareness of bell ringing, as well as money for a great cause!

We are hoping that many groups of bellringers will get themselves sponsored to ring bells to raise money for Children In Need, and this could be on tower bells, hand bells, or mini-rings. Anything from rounds and call changes, touches, extents, quarter peals, peals, – any sort of ringing that you would like to do. If you can ring a Pudsey Method, then even better, though it is not obligatory! (Pudsey is the name of the bear mascot of Children in Need). There is to be a special page created on the BT MyDonate website for ringers to show everyone what they have done and how much money they have raised, and an event on Bellboard to link to your performance. In this way we will be able to demonstrate, hopefully on the final TV show, what bellringers as a whole have done to support the cause.

The above logo has been produced, and is intended to be used for promotional material for any ringing activities associated with the campaign. We hope that it will gets lots of use and help to raise the profile of bellringing in a very positive way.

The campaign runs from October 5th to November 17th (which is Children In Need night) and you can do your sponsored ringing any time between those dates, – more than once if you wish! There are still some further details of other proposed activities to be worked out, and we will keep you informed when we know more.

Central Council PR Committee

The Education Column

The first series of some well written education articles from David Smith, Chairman of the Central Council Education Committee are available to read and/or download for printing at:-

The Education Column

The second series will be available from the same link when all have been published.

Coventry DG Brokerage Scheme

The Guild is hoping to be able to give a helping hand to ringers and towers in the area by arranging for ringing support for what YOU want to be able to do next.

Do you need some ringers to provide a steady band around a learner in a given method?  Do you just need the odd ringer extra so you can make the next step with your, or your tower's, ringing?  Do you need a conductor for a quarter or a peal?  Do you want to ring a quarter peal or a peal and don't know the next step?

Help is at hand!  Simply download the CDG Brokerage file that you can find from

, in both pdf and Word format, complete it and then send it off.