Central Council Representatives
Central Council Meeting 2018 – Lancaster
After the considerable travel of the previous year’s meeting in Edinburgh, the 2018 meeting returned South of the border and was based around Lancaster University. As, for the first time in many years, no territorial society had offered to stage the meeting it was left to the Council’s Administrative Committee to make the arrangements.
The format for the meeting was changed from previous years, the ringing tours now replaced with seminars and discussion groups and for the first meeting that I have been to, there was no formal service.
The Saturday was taken up with seminars and a Youth Leadership Forum, these sessions were open to all. In the evening there was a meal followed by a social event. Penny and I had been staying in Cumbria for the previous week and travelled down to Lancaster on the Sunday morning. I helped to man the Friends of the Central Council Library table until the Ringing World AGM, which, for the first time, was held on the Sunday afternoon. This was followed by a further seminar entitled ‘Ringers and the Church, running simultaneously was a seminar explaining the rationale behind the Central Council reforms.
The Ringing World AGM reported a further fall in subscription but for the second year running recorded a surplus. Although subscriptions are falling in the paper copies, online subscriptions continue to increase. The Editor and the Board of Directors must take credit for the way that they have gradually turned their financial fortunes around. There is still a possibility that the journal will become published fortnightly but as a result of the improved finances, the board will be able to give a year’s notice of this eventuality.
The formal opening and the first session of the 43rd Council started promptly at 5:30 pm and continued until adjourning for the 121st Anniversary Dinner which took place in the University Great Hall. A lovely meal was server with either Lake District Lamb or a vegetarian Parmigiana being served as main course. The Queen and the Church were proposed in great style by CCCBR President, Chris O’Mahony. Following a demonstration of handbell ringing, the toast was ‘Ringers of the World, proposed by Vice President David Kirkcaldy of Sussex and being responded in his own inimitable way by Robert Lewis, editor of the Ringing World.
After the acceptance of the minutes of the Edinburgh meeting and the adoption of the accounts, the main business of the meeting was to approve the new rules which would change the constitution and structure of the Council. If accepted the proposal was to abolish the admin committee and replace it with a new eight-member executive consisting of the four ain officers in addition to 4 members elected from the floor. This executive would assume all decision making and the 15 committees would be replaced by five workgroups which could consist of both Council members and other ringers. Another proposal was the scrapping of the triennial basis on which representatives are elected leaving associations free to elect them for whatever period that suited them.
After much discussion, the proposals were overwhelmingly accepted.
Vicki Chapman of Chelmsford spoke on the drive to recruit ringers as part of the ‘Ringing Remembers’ campaign. The aim is to train 1400 news ringers across the Country in recognition of the number of ringers who gave their lives during the First World War, this has made good progress, from memory this target has now been surpassed.
The rest of the meeting passed uneventfully, the various committees presented their reports, there was a discussion on peal ringing, in particular the possible ‘legalisation’ of jump changes, this would allow a peal, on a ring of 12, where doubles were rung on the front six and minor on the back simultaneously!
This year’s meeting will be in London at the new September date.
Ian Self Submitted for 18/5/19 TDGR AGM