Rutland Bell-Ringers Newsletter for January 2018


Branch AGM Saturday 13th January 2018

3.00pm - 7.30pm

Open to all members

3.00pm - 3.45pm.
Ringing at St Peter & St Paul, Gt Casterton

4.00pm - 4.30pm
Ringing at St John the Evangelist, Ryhall

4.30pm Service

5.30pm Tea

6.00pm AGM

Ringing after the meeting until 7.30pm


Tower Captains’ Meeting

It is hoped that Tower Captains will make themselves available for a meeting prior to the AGM

1.00pm Saturday 13th January 2018 The Green Dragon, Ryhall

Lunch options available

Menus will be provided before the event.

Confirm your attendance to Jane McKee ( by Saturday 6th Jan whether you hope to attend, and whether you wish to buy lunch .


AGM Tea - offers please

After ringing at Gt Casterton and Ryhall, and the bell-ringers service at St John the Evangelist, we shall be looking forward to tea and chat before getting down to AGM business, and bell ringers’ teas are legendary.

The Ryhall team would very much appreciate offers of help by way of cakes, sandwiches, sausage rolls etc.

Please let Jane McKee or Huiyen Bloodworth know if you can offer something so that they can plan the tea with plenty of variety.

Jane McKee ( 

Hui-yen Bloodworth (

Branch Major & Triples Practices

Thursday 4th January. 7.30pmUppingham

Tuesday 8th February. 7.30pm.Oakham

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Uppingham intermediate 8 bell practice Every 3rd Thursday. 7.30pm.

18th January & 15th February

All are welcome to join us

Items for the February Newsletter by Wednesday 31st January please, to Sue Webster



Peterborough Diocesan Guild Oakham, Rutland
All Saints

Thursday 21st December 2017 in 51 (24–2–9 in E

1260 Plain Bob Triples

  1. Pat Munro

  2. Marilyn Tomalin

  3. Alan Ellis

  4. John Tomalin

  5. Rob Morris

  6. Louis Totaro

  7. Richard Beadman (C)

  8. Philip Tomalin

Rung in Memoriam to celebrate the life of
Reverend Brian Nicholls, Priest of the Rutland Water Parish, Bell Ringer and previous Tower Captain of Oakham, All Saints.


News from the Around the Branch

New Year Ringing

Just three towers managed some ringing for the start of the New year.

Empingham St Peter
Four ringers; Bob Willars, Nick Meyrick, Kate Neale and Monica Hurst, rang call changes and plain hunt at midnight to start 2018
We were greeted by about 15 revellers when we’d finished, with whom we shared a glass of bubbly.

Bob Willars

Langham St Peter & St Paul
Langham ringers rang in the New Year again at midnight then had an 11.00am "Bell Service" on
New Year's Day to celebrate bells and ringers....... (not just Langham's).

Rob Morris

Ryhall St John the Evangelist
The Ryhall bells were rung at noon on New Year's Day for about 45 minutes. Some well-struck call-changes and a touch of Bob Doubles.

Jane McKee

An excerpt from The President’s Christmas Message 2017

Not all of our towers are able to ring for Christmas, sadly, and this is a situation that’s the subject of much debate and activity. Bellringing has been described as an essential part of the “soundscape of the nation” (not forgetting our international ringing fraternity!) Let’s not succumb to the sound of silence. All of us, whether in our local towers, branch, guild and the Central Council, have a vested interest in preserving and augmenting our wonderful exercise. What are we all doing about it? Plenty! Can we all do more? Absolutely!

At the risk of repetition, I share my “New Year’s Resolutions” for 2018, which I hope we can all embrace:

  To recruit and develop new learners and new leaders

  To engage maturely with the Church and other relevant stakeholders

  To continue to raise positive public awareness of ringing

As we reflect on the events, challenges and successes of the passing year, may all of us celebrate the wonder of the Christmas message, ringing out with joy to the world, looking forward with hope and optimism to the year ahead.

Christopher O’Mahony

President, The Central Council of Church Bell Ringers

The Reverend Brian Nicholls 1939 – 2017

Brian – some memories


“Before he was the vicar here at Edith Weston he had the photography shop in the High Street, you know”

“Brian took the family portraits when the children were small – and got them to sit still”

“I remember him taking my first passport photograph – difficult because he made me laugh”

“He was associated with the RAF as well”

“Whenever I went to photograph a steam-hauled train at Oakham you would meet him on the platform. Very knowledgeable he was too.”

“Did you go to his carol services? Nobody could do them like Brian; he even got Vic to do a solo for the twelfth day of “The Twelve Days Of Christmas”

“He was spiritual but approachable; always had time for you.”

“I do remember our theological - errr - “discussions” in his study!”

“He did the blessing of our marriage most movingly, and helped sensitively with the untimely death of a child”


“I did not know he rang bells.”


Yes, he did. He and his wife Liz had been valuable members of the Oakham team. Brian became tower captain, until his theological studies and ministerial duties took precedence.

In retirement in Oakham he told me he could hear the bells on practice night from their home.

November 2016, meeting in the Oakham church car park, clothed in his cassock as he was about to take part in a funeral service and I was about to join the ringing team, he said how much he had enjoyed hearing our half-muffled bob triples the previous practice night. “That's what I want for my funeral.” he told me happily, “half muffled bob triples; I'm putting my order in!”

We laughed. I promised. Silently I wondered if I would still be ringing when he would need bells rung for his funeral. “I'll hold you to it!” He called, waving his arm in the air.

Only a year later and we do ring half-muffled plain bob triples before the service. After the moving service six of us were able to stay and ring for another half hour. In the evening, after the muffles had been removed, a special quarter peal of plain bob triples was rung in memory of and dedicated to Brian.

I am sure I was not the only person to whom Brian mentioned “plain bob triples”; but I do smile at the thought of him checking up on me!

Jean Tinsley