Ardingly & West Hoathly - working together!

Change to Joint Practice

Local ringers will be aware that, for some years now, our two towers have combined our practice nights by arranging to ring at each tower on alternate Thursdays. This has had a very positive effect on established and new ringers by ensuring we always have sufficient ringers to bring on new members and also to satisfy those who want to try new methods. This has also been useful in that we can more effectively help each other out with weddings and other commitments at a time when ringers are sometimes scarce, busy elsewhere or on holidays.

With winter fast approaching, accompanied by dark nights and colder, wet weather we have been considering how best to continue. As most of us are no longer working, we feel that we should change to Friday morning practices, again alternating between our towers, commencing at 10.00am and, with a break for coffee, ending at 12.00. These arrangements have been agreed with the respective Rectors and may only be affected should some other church event prevent us ringing on any one date.

This new arrangement will start on Friday, 5th November, at West Hoathly, followed by 12th November at Ardingly and so on. Our usual ringers will of course routinely be kept informed by email but it would be wise for any visitors (and you will be more than welcome) to check with either Rachel of myself before coming, just to avoid a wasted journey.

May I remind visitors to Ardingly NOT to park in Church Lane but, instead, to park in the lay-byes outside the Church Centre, 100 yards before the church itself.

Lynn Wilson (Ardingly Tower Captain)

ART course at Arundel - training the trainer

ART logo

Are you interested in attending an ART course on learning to teach people to ring? We propose running one of these courses at Arundel sometime in the New Year but need to know if there is enough interest to make it viable.

If you are interested in attending, let Moya know (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) – no commitment at the moment (cost £20)

General Committee Meeting - June 2021

How can you beat going to the June SCACR General Committee meeting?

What we talked about:-

Membership Trends

As you might expect, has been a small fall in membership numbers this year. Sue Gadd has produced a very useful tool showing trends over the last four years which can be broken down with District and Tower by Adult members, Junior members and Long-service members. Coloured graphs add to the excitement! Very useful for District Secretaries to highlight where there are ongoing problems at individual towers, and, perhaps, to pick up good practice from the more successful towers.

Bell Restoration Fund

Taking into account recent promised grants, the balance in the fund could well be less than £1,000 if all the grants are taken up. We need to boost the income into the fund to meet future demands. As well as the usual fund-raising activities - e.g. raffles, collections, etc – should we be asking our members to consider setting up a regular standing order using Gift Aid. Or perhaps asking them to round up their annual subscriptions. How about it? (Contact Sue Gadd for details - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

Getting Back to Ringing

Districts are in the process of contacting local Towers to assess the level of support the need. Those towers that have restarted ringing have received very positive feedback from the community.

We will continue to run our 4-6 p.m. Saturday afternoon Ringing Room training session until Covid restrictions ease further. At present these extend from Plain Hunt Doubles up to Stedman Triples and are much appreciated by those taking part. We do need more helpers to keep these going. Can you spare an hour or two on a Saturday afternoon, either occasionally or on a regular basis? If so, contact Jonathan (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

Going forward, we realise that many of us are apprehensive about going back to the tower. Accordingly, the Districts will be looking to establish at monthly “real” ringing sessions to give people the confidence to ring actual bells. The plan is also to continue our Ringing Room sessions, but perhaps on a monthly basis.

Young Ringers

Young Ringers have been meeting across the county. Future afternoon gatherings planned are:

  • 13 June: Heathfield
  • 27 June: Arundel
  • 18 July: Rodmell (probably)
  • 30 July: outing to Hastings

Do encourage any youngsters (25 or under) to come along. Contact Marisa for details (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

Jonathan Franklin

Handbell Morning Report (May 2021)

The first weekend following the gradual releasing of lockdown meant a slightly reduced attendance at the handbell morning on Saturday 22nd May. However there was no reduction in the enthusiasm. Twenty hardy SCACR ringers from around the country logged on via Zoom and RingingRoom.

There were five breakout rooms, in which you could hear everything from Plain Hunt through to Kent Royal and Stedman Caters. It was great to hear people chatting in the breaks about their accomplishments during the morning and it is clear that these sessions are helping people progress. There was some discussion regarding the opportunities for regular handbell ringing prompted by a recent article in the Ringing World. It feels like SCACR have more opportunities than many other places to ensure this side of ringing receives as much support as the tower bells.

We shared stories about the return to physical ringing that is starting to happen. Although the next handbell morning will be another virtual affair, booked in the diary for 31st July, we are very hopeful that September or October may see the return of a physical event.

If you haven’t had a go at handbells yet or would like to further your skills, do sign up for the next session by contacting Hamish McNaughton at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Alison Lucas

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