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Shropshire Bell Ringers Meeting

On Saturday 10 January we were hosts for the AGM of the Shropshire ssociation of Church Bell Ringers. The meeting attracted over 60 nembers from across the northern half of the county.

Proceedings started with ringing at 4 pm which allowed the members to experience the improved sound and handling of the bells following the restoration project. This was followed by a short service taken by the Vicar, Rev Philip Edge, at which the Archdeacon of Salop, the Ven Paul Thomas (who is Vice President of the Association) gave the address. He spoke about the evocative and emotional effects that sounds have on people, particularly the sound of bells. Some enthusiastic hymn singing was accompanied by the organist, Malcolm Powell.

After the service we moved into St John's room where a splendid buffet was provided and the ringers tucked in, leaving little at the end. The buffet was provided by Vermeulen's and our thanks go to Annabelle and Jen for providing such a good spread and for their hard work in setting it out and clearing up after us.

The business of the meeting continued for a further 2 hours and afterwards some of the ringers returned to the tower for a further session on the bells, whilst others retired to one of the local pubs.

On 24 January a team of 8 ringers from the Association rang a quarter peal (1260 changes taking about 45 minutes) of a method called Quedgeley Surprise Major (don't ask me - it's well beyond my abilities!!) to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the Death of Sir Winston Churchill.

After all the turmoil of the bells project and hosting this meeting we are now back to "business as usual" with our practices on Friday evenings from 7.30pm to 9.00pm and our regular ringing at 9.45am before the Sunday morning services.

We extend a warm welcome to anyone wishing to take up our ancient and fascinating activity -just get in contact with any of the ringers and we will show you what is involved and how you can join in.


Peter Leigh
for the Tower Captain and Bell Ringers