A bell in each of the parish churches rang out today to mark the anniversary of the first COVID lockddown and to commemorate those who have lost their lives due to the pandemic. Thanks to Sharon at Over Whitacre, Roy at Shustoke, Mike at Nether Whitacre and Steve at Lea Marston for ringing at 12.01 just after midday.
The ringers all celebrated Dicks 90th birthday with a socially distanced party. Originally planned to be on the lawn of his house an illness hiccup forced us to be creative. Each ringer was delivered a piece of cake and a scone baked by Helen and Sharon respectively along with a card to remind them to toast Dick. We hope that Dick enjoyed his cake, scone, card and present and had a lovely day. Shame we could not celebrate and ring the bells too.
In line with advice all further ringing is suspended till further notice.
About thirty of us met in the church car park to join a 1981 Leyland Leopard bus for a proper coach based outing to celebrate a birthday. We travelled to Meriden where the birthday boy had rung an all under eighteen quarter peal and managed to get the bus up the country lane approach. Next was Ryton which had last been rung as a six but was now an eight. Lunch at a great pub in Hillmorton (Stag and Pheasant) then squeezed the bus under the low railway bridge to ring at the church. Good ringing here with memories of Tony Pickering (ex RAF hurricane pilot). Onward to a very vertical ladder entrance at Claybrooke which finished with a very good touch of Stedman Triples and finally repeating the end of the very first outing of Whitacre tower organised by the birthday boy's father way back in 1979. Mancetter back then was a ground floor ring and very hard work now transformed into a upstairs ringing chamber but still very heavy! Not helped by the third and fourth being put up wrong but many found these quite a challenge. However we did managed a super course of stedman doubles at a suitable stately pace on these half muffled bells. The coach then dropped us home having kept us warm and dry during the day. It was lovely to have some many join us to celebrate.
We welcomed a number of Coleshill ringers tonight to welcome Rev Becky Stephens, as their loss is our parish's gain. We rang several times covering some very good rounds and call changes as well as a few courses of Plain Bob Doubles. It was lovely to have a choice of ringers. The service was well attended with a lot of visitors including the Bishop of Aston. During the service the new Rector has to ring a bell and the number of times it rings is reputed to be the number of years that she plans to stay. So watch this space in eleven years time.....
Once again we rang all six for the morning service with the bells half muffled. Service was lovely with a live bugle player to make the two minutes silence even more special.
Come and see this weekend the Flower Festival in St Giles church. Its theme is the countryside but be sure not to miss our very own window. The Bellringers window created by Helen is all about the impact of the local railway on our landscape and includes a replica in flowers of a 1839 locomotive which was first built for our line when it was brand new.
St Giles Bellringers
The trials and tribulations of a small village bellringing band.