Rutland Bell-Ringers Newsletter for September 2018

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For all Tower Captains


Whilst investigating a broken stay at Oakham this evening (September 5th) I discovered 4 further cracked stays.
It would seem that the extremely dry conditions over the summer have contributed to this problem. Even some spare stay wood has splintered and cracked.

I would urge all tower captains to check their bell stays for condition and tightness of stay bolts and wheels as a matter of priority.

The extreme cold, wet weather during the winter and spring months, followed by a prolonged heatwave, has undoubtedly had an effect.

Please can you all give priority to this health & safety issue. If cracked stays are discovered and no replacement available , I would caution on the bell being rung. If several are discovered at once then I would also urge a postponement of ringing until matters are rectified.

Both myself, Alan Ellis and Ted Phillips should be consulted if anyone is in doubt or have any queries.

Louis Totaro


Belfry Maintenance Workshop

Saturday 29th September 10.30-12.00
All Saints Oakham

Unfortunately, the workshop previously scheduled last month had to be postponed at short notice, due to a very limited number of people being able to attend that day. The date coincided with other events happening around the county.

Whilst disappointing to have to cancel a planned event, sufficient interest was expressed in trying again with another date. This can only be successful and worthwhile if there are sufficient numbers of participants in attendance (minimum of 5 or more).

I would still like to run a session whilst weather and climate conditions remain favourable, before the Autumn/Winter takes hold. I'm proposing a brief workshop in the morning (10.30 am - 12 noon) on Saturday 29th September at Oakham, on the basis of confirmed numbers able to attend. I believe this will be an extremely useful event for those members that are, or would like to be, involved in helping maintain their towers.

If you would like to attend please confirm to either myself, Alan Ellis or Sue Webster as soon as possible. If insufficient response 23rd September then we will again postpone the event until the Spring of 2019.

Louis Totaro

Items for the October newsletter by Sunday 30th September please, to Sue Webster

Branch Major & Triples Practices

Thursday 6th Sept. 7.30pm Uppingham

Tuesday 2nd October 7.30pm Oakham

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Uppingham intermediate 8 bell practice

Every 3rd Thursday. 7.30pm.
20th September & 18th October

All are welcome to join us

Fundraising Concert

Held 1st September 2018, Oakham

A truly excellent evening was had at Oakham for the concert, raising funds for the benefit of Oakham Bells and Bell Ringing for Rutland.
Performances by the Avesta Saxophone Quartet, Alma Trio Guitars, and Guitar, Voice and Bass Duos provided a varied repertoire and it certainly made the evening for the audience feel very special. It was so pleasing to several branch members in attendance and whilst we are waiting on final confirmation of the amount raised the concert was well attended with an audience of between 100-120!

If anything, holding events such as this and the Proms in the Park in June raises the profile of bell ringing to a wider public audience and we have received several inquiries from people interested in taking up bell ringing as a new hobby. Hopefully the money we have raised will help towards the cost of running repairs to Oakham's bells but also help fund the cost of providing a wireless simulator that can be made available to other Rutland Towers.

Special thanks must go to Gina and Sue Baker, for organising, hosting and performing at such an excellent event.

Louis Totaro Ringing Master

The Alma Guitar Trio, Avesta Saxaphone Quartet, Guitar & Double Bass Duo, Baker Dadson Voice & Guitar Duo

The Alma Guitar Trio, Avesta Saxaphone Quartet, Guitar & Double Bass Duo, Baker Dadson Voice & Guitar Duo

Quarter Peals

None recorded in Rutland during August

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Please click the button for listings




We are still waiting for the tower roof to be repaired at Brooke following the theft of lead and subsequent damage to the soundproofing.

As the roof timbers are still damp and not properly sealed against the rain we are unable to renew the soundproofing until the roof repair is completed, the noise is making practice night too difficult

Until further notice the Wednesday practices at Brooke will be suspended, so every Wednesday will be Braunston.

Richard Beadman


Alan Regin, the world’s most enthusiastic bell ringer, was awarded his MBE in the 2017/8 New Year Honours List, for services to campanology and its heritage.

With Armistice Day, 11th November 2018, commemorating 100 years since the end of World War 1, just days away, Alan will be giving a talk about his research into the 1400 bell ringers who died in World War 1, each of whom have their own fascinating story – and much more!

Please join us at All Saints Church, Campton, SG17 5NY

For Alan’s talk on Friday evening, 2nd November. 7.30 for 8.00pm

Received via The Secretary Peterborough Diocesan Guild

News from Peterborough Guild
Summer Festival - September 22, 2018

The Summer Festival and 8-Bell Contest Annual inter-branch 8 bell striking competition for the Harry Wooding Memorial Trophy will take place on the light eight at Holy Trinity Church, Rothwell.

The contest starts at 3pm. Buffet Tea (Gluten/Dairy free available) during the afternoon.
Have a go on the Maplestead Mini Ring while you are waiting to ring or listening.

Ringing on 10 bells afterwards.
Please come along and support your Branch team.
To enter a team contact Simon Dixon.

For more information about the day contact: Helen Churchman

Tinwell Tower Update

(August 2018)

With the technical examination and knowledge of Ted Phillips, our Rutland Steward, plenty of help and encouragement from Derek Brown who lives next door to the church, and myself organising new rope guides/bosses, getting dirty helping with cleaning, and test ringing, we are at a stage where the bells have all been rung mostly without significant problems.

About 10 years ago the bell frame was declared unsafe in the tower, so huge galvanised metal corner pieces were installed, but no further ringing took place, so the bells gathered dust and were exposed to bird ingress.

Being on the Ketton PCC (part of the same benefice as Tinwell) , and generally someone who doesn’t like seeing bells not used, I commenced a programme, supported by the gentlemen above. Ted’s report in the August newsletter indicated that there was not as much work to be done as I had feared.

So far we have rung all bells up individually, the tenor bell was unusually hard work, but I managed it. With the help of a couple of ringers from Ketton/Wing (David Rippin and Nigel Pask), we did some rounds on the front three, which felt fine. This leaves only the tenor bell to master, possibly after further examination and lubrication of the plain bearings.

I have had an offer of spare new bearings from Tony Clark of Wing, which would help reduce the effort needed for the tenor bell. Kate Riley has been in contact and given me some information on the history of the bells and confirmed they are not an easy ring.

It is true that there will always be restricted space in the ringing chamber, but all the cupboards and other items which were being stored in the ringing chamber, have been moved, and it is safe to ring from a rope point of view.

Further test rings are planned after further lubrication.

The ultimate plan is to ring them for harvest festival, then once a month for Sunday service, and for the Armistice 100 celebrations, and of course Christmas, and weddings.

Simon Forster, Branch Treasurer and ringer at Ketton and Wing.

Central Council Church Bell Ringers

Remembers – August 2018 Update

What an incredibly busy couple of months it’s been. We are really excited to now be able to share with you the latest numbers registered on the Ringing Remembers database is just over 1,700. Yes, you read that correctly, over seventeen hundred! This is a fantastic number and well over our target of 1,400.

That number does need to be read with a note of caution however. It represents the number of people who have registered on the database. We do expect there to be a percentage of registrants that decide that they are no longer interested and have withdrawn, but that’s a difficult number to assess. So, as with all investments, the final number could go down, as well as up!

Of this number we are currently able to ascertain that 80 are registered as “Returning Ringers”, those that chose this project as a catalyst to return to ringing after an absence of a number of years. We are grateful for their return to help with the Armistice Centenary, and beyond.

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At the risk of repeating ourselves, “Ringing Remembers” is the campaign officially endorsed and sponsored by HM Government and is encouraging muffled/half-muffled ringing for the 11am Act of Remembrance followed by open ringing at 12:30pm on Sunday 11th November – aligning with the published agenda for processions and marches in celebration of peace. Nevertheless, knowing the national mood to acknowledge this centenary, CCCBR encourages all ringers to respond as they see fit, taking into account the wide variety of local circumstances. Ringing open at or around 12:30pm is the ideal and recommended option, but any time that afternoon / evening is also supported.

Vicki Chapman
CCCBR Ringing Remembers Project Coordinator

Ringing Remembers on BBC Radio Leicester

President of the Central Council, Christopher O’Mahony, was interviewed by Jo Bostock on BBC Radio Leicester on 19th August. You can listen back to the interview on iPlayer Radio.

Fast forward to about 1h:10m:30s for the start of the Ringing Remembers piece.