Education officers report 2017.
Next year (2018) is the 100th anniversary of the end of the Great War. The Central Council of Church Bell ringers and the Ministry of Housing, Local Government and Housing are launching a campaign to have all of our bells rung on the 11 November 2018 and to teach 1400 new ringers nationally, being the number of bell ringers who died in the Great War.
Why not use this as an opportunity to encourage new ringers at our churches. 44 ringers from 38 towers lost their lives from Cornwall, and each of these towers could use this initiative to teach more ringers.
New ringers mean thinking about how we teach and minimise risks to them. Here are some ideas on recruiting and teaching new ringers.
The poster is downloadable from the CCCBR site and is editable. So St Agnes could put a picture of their ringer on their poster or you can just advertise your church or churches as we have done here.
Scouts and Cubs Ringing Badge
Scouts and Cubs and Guides and Brownies are a good place to look for volunteers. In 2017 the Guild President and the Bishop of St Germans launched with the Cornwall Scout Movement and the Guild the only specific Bell Ringing Badge in Britain at the Royal Cornwall Show.
The photo shows one of the St Mabyn Scout Group ringers who is one of the 36 scouts and cubs from across Cornwall who have so far received their bell ringing badge.
Details and a downloadable booklet are available from the education officer. The badges are free.
The criteria including a letter of recommendation from the scout movement and the ‘learning to ring church bells’ booklet we use at my towers are attached in appendix 1 and appendix 2
BBC Make Music Day
BBC make music day gave the ringers in Cornwall an excellent opportunity to promote bell ringing on 15 June 2017. The event will be held again in 2018 and once again is our opportunity to recruit new ringers and use the publicity that surrounds the event to publicise our local tower and keep us in the mind of the public.
Here 56 junior ringers, including scouts and cubs from four groups across Cornwall, and Lerryn, St Winnow and Bradoc met on a balmy evening under a marquee to ring the portable bells and hand chimes on the banks of the Lerryn river, and eat burgers cooked by the mums at Lerryn School. It attracted over 200 non-ringing adults! The Lerryn river forms the border between St Veep with their historic bells rehung and the new bells at St Winnow.
Royal Cornwall Show
Promoting bell ringing can be great fun. Here President Annie and helpers are promoting our art to new and lapsed bell ringers across Cornwall and Devon. Why not join her at the Royal Cornwall and donate an hour of your time to getting all of our towers ringing again for the armistice celebrations and beyond.
With 130,000 visitors, a prime site and around 1000 people having a ring, the press and television the guild and parish churches of the diocese cannot have better exposure.
Please let me know which days you can attend, it does not matter if you have ever rung the portable bells or not.
The Sarah Beacham School Group Award
Congratulations go to Lerryn School who were awarded the 2018 ‘Sarah Beacham Schools Group Award’ by the Association of Ringing Teachers. This school is one of the smallest in Great Britain and it is lovely to see the enthusiasm of the teachers and pupils to all forms of bell ringing. Have you considered involving your local school as a source of ringers for the future?
I am grateful to the districts for their continued emphasis on improving the ringing in their areas.
If you want training or refresher courses teaching learners, Health and Safety or want to see state of the art equipment please contact me.