Welcome to the website for the Ladies' Guild of Change Ringers

The object of the Ladies' Guild of Change Ringers:

“to bring together ringers both nationally and within local districts, to encourage new ringers and to improve the standard of ringing amongst women”

For more information about ringing church bells and learning to ring:

   

Dates for all Districts



Edna Bradley of the East Midlands District

Janet Stevenson writes:

I have just been informed of the death of one of East Midlands district most loyal members at the age of 93.

Edna Bradley was a remarkable woman, who learned to ring in her 70s. She only ever rang one quarter peal and that was with the Ladies Guild but she was a great enabler of others. She became tower captain of Clarborough in North Nottinghamshire, and arranged for the teaching of a band from the village. Later her infectious energy and enthusiasm led to the augmentation of the ring of 6 to 8 bells; the two new bells and the necessary changes to the treble and frame being paid for by Edna. The bells are now rung regularly and there is no doubt that this is largely due to Edna. If you ever get to ring at this lovely church spare her a thought. 

AGM 2017 at Bexhill

For details of ringing, and suggestions for accommodation see AGM. This is preliminary information, tea and ringing tickets will be available nearer the time. 12/03/2017 - Agenda for the AGM is now included on the AGM page.

Funeral arrangements for Freda Cannon and Jill Staniforth

Freda Cannon, a former President of the Ladies Guild and Vice-President of the Kent District, passed away peacefully on the 14th January. Freda's funeral service will be held at St Alfege, Greenwich, at 1.15 pm on Tuesday 14th February.  There will be general ringing before and after the service.

Val Webb and Diane Moore, as secretaries of the East Midlands District, report:
It is with the deep regret that we have to inform you of the sad loss of Jill Staniforth, who passed away on the 7th January 2017.  The family would like to advise you that there will be a service of thanksgiving at 2.30 pm on 9th February 2017 in Leicester Cathedral, and request that mourners wear bright colours. Family flowers only, donations in memory of Jill should be made to the Cathedral.

DLS award for the Young Lady Ringer of the Year 2016

The deadline for applications for this award has been extended to 31st March 2017. All other requirements remain the same, in particular the applicant must have been under the age of 18 on 31st December 2016. Full details, and a link to download an application form, are here.
Helen Webb, President

Southern District outing on Saturday 22 October 2016

The members of the Southern District recently had an excellent ringing outing around the northern part of Dorset, organised by Mary Melbourne. It was a typical autumn misty morning when we arrived to ring at our first church, the 6-bell tower of St James’s just outside Shaftesbury. We then went to St Peter’s on Shaftesbury‘s High Street but there was time in the programme for a welcome cup of coffee. Most of us managed to get a coffee at the Salt Cellar café which is situated at the top of Gold Hill and which has a wonderful selection of cakes. Unfortunately we were unable to raise the second bell at St Peter’s, however we gamely carried on and managed to do a few bits and pieces on the remaining 5 bells, though it didn’t sound too pretty.

We had lunch at Compton Abbas Airfield, a stellar choice as the views were wonderful (the autumn mist was clearing by this time), and such a lot of activity with helicopters and light aircraft buzzing around, and a good meal.

In the afternoon we were kept busy with three towers to visit - Compton Abbas, Durweston and Bryanston School chapel with a nice ring of 8 bells. Some of us found Compton Abbas church hard to find as Sat Nav’s took us to the village rather than the church. Driving to the various churches through the Dorset countryside, however, was delightful as it was a still, sunny afternoon and the autumn colours were at their best.

We all had an excellent day’s ringing on a mixture of bells, some more difficult than others, before driving home with a glorious red sunset glowing on the horizon and good memories of a most enjoyable day. Thank you to Mary for organising it all.
Jenny Watson, Sparsholt Tower

Isabel Pearce - Honorary Life Member of the Guild

At the AGM in June, Isabel Pearce was elected as an honorary life member of the Ladies Guild. Because of other commitments that weekend, Isabel was not able to attend the AGM to collect her certificate in person (not that she knew about the certificate!), so she decided to join the walk between Wye and Canterbury, and raised £520 in sponsorship. Isabel was finally presented with the certificate during the South Eastern district outing to Oxford on 23rd July. Thanks to Julie McDonnell for the photos, and to Helen Webb for the information.

Isabel receiving her certificate from Helen
 
Isabel with other ringers on the outing

A quarter peal for Mrs Tiggy-winkle

Ringers l/r Kate,Judith,Pat,Nicki (hidden),Mary,Sally
  Winterborne Kingston, Dorset,  St Nicholas (9–1–19)
Thursday, 28 July 2016 in 46m
1260 Plain Bob Minor
1 Patricia Davidson
2 Nicki Tinkler
3 Mary Melbourne
4 Sally Jenkins
5 Judith Williamson (C)
6 Kate Brice
Rung by members of the Ladies Guild (Southern District), with a local ringer, on the 150th Anniversary of the birth of Beatrix Potter and dedicated to Mrs Tiggy-winkle. Thank you to Kate for standing in at short notice in place of Polly Osborne who had injured her foot the previous day.

AGM Saturday 25th June 2016

Details on the AGM page here. Liz Davey retired as president, and Helen Webb was elected in her place. The other officers were re-elected unchanged; Rosemary Hemmings, Helen Webb and Jan Wyatt were elected as Central Council Representatives.

THE LADIES’ GUILD ANNUAL HOLIDAY 2016      

The ethos of Ladies Guild to bring lady ringers together nationally and to encourage new ringers has always been well met within the Ladies Guild holiday. It is a meeting of friends, new and old who share some social time together fostering great friendships. 2016 found 39 intrepid members meeting up again for our much anticipated Annual event – this year to Norfolk.

We met at the spacious Country Club at Taverham just outside Norwich, our trip carefully planned with the help of several local area members - namely Elisabeth Spry, Theo Crowder and Betty Baines, and we were very fortunate to enjoy some wonderful towers during the week. We started on Monday with the 8’s at Happisburgh, Northrepps, Cromer and then Theo’s home tower at Holt. Cromer were augmented to an 8 in 2014 and very enjoyable, some excellent towers to start our holiday. Tuesday found us at the detached tower at East Dereham and climbing a delightful old wooden staircase - at 22 cwt they were a lovely deep sound - then on to the 9 cwt 10 at Gressenhall which were rather good too. Reepham after lunch, and then onto the six at Weston Longville to finish the day. 
 
On Wednesday we set off bright and early for the 8 at Felmingham followed by the 17 cwt 10 at Aylsham. Then we settled with our ice creams/sandwiches on the little Bure Valley train down to the boat at Wroxham and spent the next two hours ‘cruising’ on the Norfolk Broads with a varied commentary on much of the wildlife we observed, nice change. Back on the coach again we had just time for a quick ring at the Buxton ground floor 6 before heading back to the hotel for much needed sustenance! Thursday we set off for Raynham Park and the fairly new 8 there, rung on a mezzanine level through a trap door which proved quite a challenge to get everyone up and down within the time. Then onward to 10 cwt 6 Castle Acre and a leisurely lunch time to look around this most beautiful castle and priory area. The 8’s at Swaffham and Ashill finished our agenda for the day. 
 
Friday brought us to New Buckenham and Kenninghall and to meet up with our good friend Betty Baines and then on to Diss, her home tower. Here there is a very interesting arrangement of ropes ringing through some beams, a new experience, and lastly Redenhall - both these afternoon towers were 22 cwt and by now we were perhaps tiring a little, some of us very much looking forward to a drink and supper!

And so on to Saturday and two light rings of 8 at Saxlingham Nethergate and Loddon, both ground floor, excellent rings, and then a free afternoon to wander in Norwich which completed our tour. All too soon it was Sunday and we were saying goodbye for another year. The great thing about the Ladies Guild Tour is meeting up with friends sharing their company and a common interest, memories of past misdemeanours and fun – and the week seems to fly by. Good planning, an excellent accommodating hotel with friendly staff and two lovely coach drivers completed our very successful week. It is a team effort to organise and as always, thanks to my co-organisers, Mary Sterry, Polly Osborne and Margaret Laver. Here’s to next year.
Pearl Jeanes

Peal reports

Reports of peals rung for the Ladies' Guild since 2011 are now in the Performances section, here, including one rung on 29th May 2016 for the Queen's 90th birthday, and some other significant birthdays. If anyone has photos of peal bands which are not already included then please send them to the webmistress. Reports of earlier peals will be added 'soon'.

Southern District Quarter Peal Day – Wednesday April 27th


Nicki, Julia, Polly, Sarah, Pat and Louise
at Worth Matravers
  Following on from the successful quarter peal day held last year in the Andover, Hampshire area our second was held in the East Dorset area on Wednesday April 27th, Swanage being the home tower of one of our members Sally Jenkins.

The day started cold, but bright and sunny, with six members meeting at Canford Magna Church in the grounds of Canford School. Following a successful quarter of Cambridge Surprise Minor some moved to Lychett Matravers and others to Corfe Mullen where they were joined by other members for further quarters.

It was then off to The Bankes Arms, Corfe Castle for lunch. With the sky becoming darker and darker outside and a sudden hail storm we appreciated the warming soup and other delights on offer.

Following lunch some stayed to ring at St Edward’s in Corfe Castle while others went on to the beautiful village of Worth Matravers enjoying the panoramic views of Swanage Bay en route.

The day concluded with ringing at Swanage, one of the finest rings of 8 in Dorset (if not the finest!). They were indeed a joy to ring and a very enjoyable quarter of Grandsire Triples was rung, with thanks to Mike Jenkins for covering on tenor behind.

We scored four out of the six quarters attempted with 15 members (and one associated ‘laddie’) taking part. Although it is always good to score, members were encouraged to participate in the day and quarter peals were planned to suit their varying levels of experience. Quarters scored included doubles, surprise minor and triples, with two ‘firsts’ achieved. Details of the quarters are here.

Everyone enjoyed the day in this beautiful part of Dorset and maybe the Quarter Peal Day will become a permanent fixture in the yearly programme of events!
Pat and Polly

Iris Webb 1926 - 2016

Iris Webb, Daventry Branch Secretary from 1968 until 1985 (excluding 1981) died at Kilsby House on March 3, 2016 aged 90.   Iris joined the Guild with husband Stan in 1954, took over as tower captain when Stan died in 1984 until February 2006 by when dementia was so severe that she moved to Kilsby House.  During Stan and Iris’ time, Staverton practices were a local centre of ringing and well attended.  They were also active handbell ringers.  Their four children were of course required to ring and son John still lives in Staverton   where Iris ran the Post Office in the hall of the house for several years.  There will be a private cremation.  A celebration of Iris’ life will take place at Staverton Church with the Revd. Liz Cowley (the most recently retired Vicar of Staverton), on Wednesday, April 27 at 3 pm.  There will be open ringing before and after the service, organised by Richard Hartley who would be pleased to know in advance of anyone who wants to ring, so that the appropriate arrangements can be made and notified.  

Iris was also a life member of the Ladies Guild Northampton District from its inception in 1977.  She was Vice President from 1977 to 1978.
Rosemary Hemmings (email khemmings123_at_btinternet.com)