This 5 minute YouTube video gives a quick introduction to bell ringing. While this 48 minute video also on YouTube gives a good background to more aspects. There is also a very full explanation of the whole topic of change ringing on Wikipedia.
In the usual English way of inventing things, it is the North American Guild that sells ringing the best! Although the Churches Conservation Trust has come up with a new angle! Here are some typical myths and answers.
Change Ringing is a social team sport, a highly coordinated musical performance, an antique art, and a demanding exercise that is conducive to well-being, involves a group of people ringing rhythmically a set of tuned bells through a series of changing sequences that are determined by mathematical principles and executed according to learned patterns.
Some consider ringing to be their contribution to church life, most do it for the pure pleasure, fun and the company it brings. Ringers come from all walks of life and range in age from ten, through teenage years, universities to those in their eighties.
"When I'm ringing I forget all the tensions and frustrations of the day. Even better: I couldn't wish for a nicer group of friends!"
Could I become a ringer?
"if you can ride a bicycle you can ring!"
Ringing is well within the capabilities of most people. The initial learning takes several weeks, after which you can begin to ring with the rest of the band. Most ringers practise once or twice a week and ring before or after church on Sunday.
"Being able to count is all the maths you'll need and you can become a very good ringer without knowing anything about music."
Why learn to ring?
- Lifelong learning experience
- Learn and practise a traditional skill
- Team activity
- A great mental workout
- A good recreation
- Friends around the world
- Opportunity to visit amazing places
- A service to the church
Come and see
Listen for the bells at a church near you or look for a tower here. Then go along and see what ringing is all about.
Beware! once you've got the bug, you'll find it hard to give up:
"I learnt to ring over forty years ago and I still get the same buzz that I did when I first started."
With thanks to CCCBR Public Relations Committee and North American Guild
For information about handbell ringing click here.
Page last revised: 15/1/2016. Initial YouTube added 15/12/14 Link to University website myths added 13/8/15. CCCBR Tower Stewardship link updated to v8 6/9/15. Safeguarding logo and link added 24/3/16. Recreation added. 12/4/16, Universities added 12/8/16. W&P video added 2/4/17