Return to Ringing: Branch Practices, Striking Workshops

So Boris has spoken! With the lifting of social restrictions there will be more opportunities to resume ringing after 19th July.

However, whilst legal restrictions like the “rule of six” will have disappeared there may be other restrictions or mitigations suggested by any of the interested parties: The Church of England, individual incumbants, tower captains and indeed individual ringers. Any advice that emerges about masks, vaccination, lateral flow tests and tower ventilation will be circulated as it becomes available.

As far as branch organised ringing is concerned, we will NOT be having a branch practice on the first friday in August. My hope is that a practice can be arranged in September but I will confirm that nearer the time.

I am organising one or more striking workshops. These will suit people who can already ring plain hunt or above – if you already know that you ARE interested in attending a 2 hour workshop to work on rhythm listening and handling to allow better striking then please let me know.

Look to…


Return to Ringing Guidance from 17th May

The central council has published guidance for the proposed partial restart of ringing on 17th May

A summary can be found here with further links to the detail:

Your tower captains will be assessing your individual towers to decide if ringing can restart in your particular tower.

If ringing can restart in a particular tower it will be:

  • Restricted to a maximum of 45 mins
  • Limited to a prearranged six people
  • Face masks will be required
  • Hand sanitisation should take place when changing ropes
  • Lateral Flow Tests should be performed twice a week – preferably on the day on ringing
  • Social distancing of 2m when not ringing and 1m when ringing

You will of course come to your own opinion on your own risk and the appropriateness of returning to social activities like ringing. If you require guidance about your own personal risk assessment then the central council has proposed this advice:

Whilst of course the situation can change these are the proposed guidelines

Look to Treble’s Nearly Going…

James Thorpe

Palace Announces, Duke of Edinburgh has died

Dear All, following the announcement by the palace that HRH Prince Philip has died there are clearly a number of questions about how ringers should mark this moment whilst staying within the restrictions of the pandemic.

Whilst we await guidance from the Central Council you might consider if Tolling of the Tenor would be possible today. For safety reasons there should never be a ringer ringing alone, but if two members of a family/bubble were to be available then this would meet safety guidelines, be within covid restrictions and be appropriate on such a day of national significance. I would encourage you to seek approval of this plan from the incumbent of your particular church.

I will circulate more information on guideline and restrictions as they become available.


Ringing is (nearly) ready to return…are you?

Dear friends,
Whilst there is currently no change in the rules to celebrate, the end of restrictions is in sight!

As I am sure you know, from 17th May a version of the “rule of six” will be recommended for indoor activities. This is likely to allow some ringing to recommence. We are still awaiting clarification about social distancing rules that will apply and for how long we will be allowed to ring. In addition this stage of the restart is likely to involve individual tower’s own risk assessments in consultation with their incumbent. From 21st June a full resumption of ringing activities is currently expected.

As part of preparations for this return, I have been in touch with as many tower captains as I could reach in the branch. I am happy to report that the practices that were regularly being held prior to Covid are feeling confident that they have the experienced ringers available to be able to meet your needs as you regain your confidence.

I would love to hear from you, particularly if you have any misgivings about restarting so that support can be arranged. This link will allow you to tell me what you think about barriers to restarting


RESPONSE REQUESTED – Are you coming?

Please could I ask that all who are planning to attend the first friday practice at Castor this month, to please send me a message confirming that you will be coming  ?

If we are short – let’s find out now!  And if we are not I can stop worrying!!



Cambridge Minor

Have you wondered about making the leap into surprise ringing with Cambridge Minor?

Have you rung Cambridge but need more opportunity to crack it?

Have you tried to ring it but it didn’t go well?


If you recognise yourself in any of these descriptions then the branch Cambridge workshops are for you. There will be two workshops, one theory/learning at my home, the second practical at a tower.

If you are interested please drop me an email and we can arrange a date to meet that suits the group.

Finally, if you are not sure if you are at the right stage then your tower captain should be able to advise you, or email me to discuss.


Conducting Workshop

Dear Members,

We are planning another workshop on 13th July, afternoon in Barnack, details TBC. The subject will be basic Bob calling and conducting. This will focus around Bob Doubles and Bob Minor. This will suit those who are already comfortable ringing touches of these methods but want to be able call them and possibly keep the ringing right.
Could I have a virtual show of hands to see who would be interested? Please reply to me so I know who to accommodate.

Feedback Please – Response Requested

Prior to discussions at the upcoming Branch Committee Meeting – please could I ask for some feedback on Branch Activities:

In previous years we have run workshops on Striking and Ringing Up/Down.  If we were to put on some Workshops this year – what topics would you like to see covered?  (possible ideas: Bob Minor, Cambridge, Striking, Conducting, ?something else – do you have a better idea?)

The Castor once a month Branch Practice has recently struggled for support –  what do you like/dislike about this practice?  What sort of practice would you be interested in supporting? What stops you from coming?

I look forward to hearing from you,

James Thorpe