Rutland Bell-Ringers Newsletter for March 2018

Teaching Sessions Coming to a Tower Near You

Saturday 3rd March 10am - 12. North Luffenham

‘Lets Start Ringing in Rounds’  


Our next monthly learners practice will take place this coming Saturday at North Luffenham, from about 10.15am-12.15pm.
We plan to focus our efforts on ringing rounds and call changes, recognising what the calls are, what to look and listen for, as well as good striking.

Last month's session was extremely useful and we had some really good feedback from ringers, new and old who found that they had picked up some really useful tips that they could take back to practice at their own towers.

Again, I look forward to seeing lots of ringers of whatever calibre.

(You are all learn or even teach). We can all share experiences together and make it another really good and valuable session.

Louis Totaro Ringing Master

This event was cancelled due to the recent cold weather and snow - hope to reschedule later this month

Branch Major & Triples Practices

Thursday 1st March. 7.30pm Uppingham (Cancelled due to Weather Conditions)

Tuesday 3rd April. 7.30pm Oakham

Thursday 3rd May. 7.30pm Uppingham 

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Uppingham intermediate 8 bell practice Every 3rd Thursday. 7.30pm.
15th March & 19th April

All are welcome to join us

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The Branch dinner this year will be at The Wicked Witch, Ryhall, a 3 course meal, as previously advised.


Please send your menu choices to John Tomalin by 19th March

Date: Friday 23rd March

Time: 7.00pmfor7.30pm

Venue: The Wicked Witch, Ryhall

Cost: £25.00 per head 3 course meal.

Membership Subscriptions


Current membership stands at 103 members, (89 Adult members, 9 Junior members, and 5 associate members).

Thank you to everyone who has paid their Branch membership subscriptions in full.
70% of subs were paid by the end of January

To those who haven’t paid yet ....

Please send to Jane McKee as soon as possible (The Vicarage, Ryhall, Stamford. PE9 4HR)

Alternatively, it is so easy to pay by BACS

Please put your surname and the name of your tower as the reference, and let Jane McKee know that you have done this! 

Items for the April Newsletter by Saturday 31st March, please to Sue Webster


None rung in Rutland during February 

February - 8 Bell Branch Practice: Oakham.

The focus for the branch practice in February was Plain Hunting on 7/8, Plain Bob Triples/Major, Grandsire Triples, and Cambridge Surprise Major.

Not many attended the session but nevertheless, we persevered and still achieved the above methods, albeit Plain Hunting on 5/6, Plain Bob Doubles/Minor, Grandsire Doubles and Cambridge Minor!!!!

The success and development of ringing across the Branch does depend on the support of the wider membership. I appreciate it is difficult for people to commit more time in their busy week, but I do see great swathes of progress and development when ringers come together and surely this must be celebrated!!

The practices are just once a month, alternating between Uppingham and Oakham, providing opportunity for ringers to access an 8 bell tower in either the North or South of the county. This should not encroach too much on existing practice times.

The next 8 Bell Branch practice will be held this coming Thursday (1st) at Uppingham and we plan to ring the same repertoire as noted above.

I would love to see more of the membership attend and you would all be most warmly welcomed.

If you have never attended before and are considering to do so then do speak with any of those ringers who have been, as they say themselves that they have found great value from these practices.

Louis Totaro

Bob Doubles Practice Sessions


Alan Wordie and Bob Willars have organised a series of practice sessions to help those trying to break into method ringing.

The sessions will be held on six Monday evenings in March and April, with each session being held in a different tower.

Everyone is welcome, either as someone who would like to learn or improve their Bob Doubles, or as a more experienced ringer who can help make sure that each learner rings alongside five experienced ringers.

Each session will run from 7.30pm - 9pm, except the practice at Empingham which will start at 7pm.

The dates and venues are as follows:

March 5th - Ryhall

March 12th - Caldecott

March 19th - Empingham

April 9th - Harringworth

April 16th - North Luffenham

April 23rd - Seaton

Bob Willars Empingham



The Ringing Simulator on the Uppingham bells has proved to be invaluable over the last year. Shoppers in the market place were blissfully unaware that the church bells were swinging noiselessly, but ringing over the computer in the ringing chamber, when a beginners’ training course was in session.

Teaching requires commitment and time but training sessions have continued throughout 2017, with experienced ringers helping and supporting when needed.

Alan Ellis has for many months now taken the weekly session, often giving up other activities in order to maintain the continuity. Louis Totaro, Richard Beadman and Rob Morris have all helped and taken sessions when Alan could not. Bob Williams, David Rippin, Huiyen Bloodworth and Brian Newman have acted as mentors, supporting learners as they began ringing at tower practices, and Sue Webster and I have been involved through the 13 months it has run.

Through the year, 11 learners have come for training, and 8 are now branch members and ringing in their respective towers. The Uppingham team is at last viable with 5 members, and our Sunday ringing is improving thanks to the wonderful support we get from other ringers, who kindly make up numbers.

As time went on, we were able to hold sessions on Friday evenings if there were clashing church events on Saturday mornings, so we are now able to be flexible to meet the needs of learners and the availability of trainers, thanks to the cooperation and support of the rector and church wardens.

It has been a learning curve for everyone involved. Every trainer has his/her own system and the learners all learn in different ways, so the shared sessions are particularly worthwhile. Most learners came with a smart phone, so the action could be videoed, and several have done their ‘homework’ with the help of You Tube and the many bell ringing websites.

There are other potential recruits waiting to learn, but a pause gives an opportunity for those involved to assess what has been learnt from the experience. Comments in the Newsletter, positive or negative, innovative or otherwise would be really useful. 

The Association of Ringing Teachers has spearheaded new ideas and there is plenty of help on the internet In this year’s branch programme. Louis has arranged several training sessions at Uppingham, using the simulator, so, come to the session, and you’ll be able to see it in action.

I know that all the learners would agree that a big Thank You is owed to the experienced ringers who have given so much, not only at the learning sessions, but also at tower practices when the learners have moved on to the mysteries of Plain Hunt and beyond.

Monica Spence

Sweatshirt with PDCBR logo Grey, Medium size.

Does anyone require a bell ringers sweatshirt? Monica Spence has one (unused) seeking a good home.

If interested contact Monica on - or 01572 820199 

Diocesan Guild Paper Quiz - London

There were 85 entries, with 9 all correct.

1st - £25.00 - Doreen Morrison of Woodford Halse

2nd - £10.00 - Mrs J Piggott of Kettering

3rd - £5.00 - Thanet Bellringers

Thank you all who supported the Bell Fund by buying a quiz sheet. 


Answers to all the questions in the quiz can be found

“Guild Sponsored" Rutland Water bike ride


This event, originally planned for the end of March, will not be taking place this year. This decision was taken at the Guild F & GP meeting.

We are running a "Kettering Branch" Sponsored ride on Easter Saturday, we would be more than pleased to see any members of your branch on the day. 

Guild Meetings for 2018

28.04.18. Spring Festival - Daventry Branch – VOT: Northampton Branch

09.06.18. AGM – Thrapston Branch – VOT : Daventry Branch

22.09.18. Summer Festival – Kettering Branch – VOT: Thrapston Branch