Plain Bob Major Practice Night – Sproxton 5th January 2019

January 17, 2019

The first Saturday of the New Year, the Society of Framland Ringers concentrated on a dedicated practice night for local ringers to have a go at ringing Plain Bob Major.  We had 4 willing “learners” and 10 “helpers” participating in the event enabling us to ring courses of Bob Major with only one learner in at a time with someone standing with them for additional guidance.

Prior to the session, our designated ringing master had issued the learners with homework to familiarise themselves with the circle of work.  I must admit, that I also found this extremely useful.  I picked up additional signposts that I hadn’t noticed before.  The homework became clear once the learners got hold of the ropes to have a go at the method surrounded by experienced major ringers complete with a mentor guiding them through the process.

Once each learner had rung, we stopped for a deserved tea break complete with biscuits and mince pies.  As there was no heating in the church, we took little persuasion to return to the heated ringing room, keen to get back to ringing another plain course for each learner.  Now that we were all happy with the plain courses, the learners were taken to one side for a refresher course in the bobs.  While a theory session was taking place the “helpers” took the opportunity to ring Stedman Triples – grabbing the chance while they could!

Time was running short.  Only two learners were brave enough to attempt a touch, the other two wanted to consolidate their learning with the plain course.  We rang the touch with two learners inside at the same time, each with a mentor to guide them.  Both rang confidently throughout the touch putting the theory into practice.  We rang another plain course for those wishing to fully get to grips with the method, enabling us all to finish on a positive note.

All of us attending (learners and helpers) have benefitted from the dedicated practice.  It enabled the less experienced ringers to master a method with more experienced ringers around them.  Many of us in the “helpers” category commented on how much we enjoyed the practice.  We rarely have the opportunity to ring major methods in our own towers at a weekly practice night, so events such as these are good for us too.

Where do we go from here? As it happens, the next Framland meeting is at Melton Mowbray on Saturday 2nd February and one of the methods of the month is Plain Bob Major.

Thank you to everyone involved, especially to the Ringing Master for keeping us in order.  If you are interested in receiving training, either for yourself or for your tower within the Framland area, please do not hesitate to contact the society.


Striking Competition 2018

December 8, 2018

The 2018 Striking Competition was held at Twyford on Saturday 1st December.  Most of us arrived really early for this years’ competition – shows just how keen we are!  …. Only to discover, there wasn’t anyone to let us in.  We waited patiently (OK, we chatted in the church porch), until it got to the point where it was obvious no-one was coming to let us in.  We rang the church warden, who fortunately was close by and was able to open the church for us.

Patiently waiting to get into Twyford Church to ring

Despite the slight delay in starting, we soon sorted out the teams of ringers by drawing names out of the hat.  This year we only had twelve ringers willing to take part, so we had a nice easy split of two teams of six.  Each team had two minutes of practice time followed by the judged piece of 120 call changes.

Our judge Garry (assisted by his wife Sue) sat outside in their car while the two teams rang.  Those of us taking part were pleased with the standard of ringing and both teams knew that the points between the teams would be close, so it was any ones guess as to which team had won.

After the judged pieces, we took the opportunity to socialise over a warm drink and a festive nibble or two.  I don’t know how bell ringers have got this reputation of being hearty eaters!  As much as we wanted to carry on eating and drinking, we felt that it was time to hear the results of the competition.  Our judges gave their results speaking highly of both teams.  Both teams were commended on their ringing.  Neither team had “clashes” and so faults were gained by inconsistent leading and slight inconsistencies with the changes, but generally both teams produced very good ringing.  It was felt that the 2nd team to ring did not “flow” as well as the first team to ring.  The results were finally announced that the first team to ring had a total of 10 faults, and the second team to ring had 14 faults.  The ringers from the winning team received the trophy and posed for the compulsory team photo for the website report.

The winning team of the 2018 Striking Competition

… and a close second

We enjoyed a few more mince pies before rounding off the night with method ringing.  Despite being slightly lower on numbers than in previous years, we all had a very enjoyable evening.  Our thanks go to Garry and Sue for judging for us.

The Framland will meet again on Saturday 2nd February at Melton Mowbray.  Until then, the Society of Framland Ringers wishes you all a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Hoby – Commemorative Half Muffled Quarter Peals 2014-2018

October 27, 2018

Four Year Project Completed

Friday 19th October 2018 – the day of the final half muffled commemorative quarter peal.  Today we are completing the four year project.  During the last 4 years, the Society have successfully completed a total of 18 quarter peals, each commemorating the 100th anniversary of the death of the soldiers associated with the village of Hoby.  When we started this project, we were to ring 16 quarter peals, but as the research continued, it was discovered that there were 2 more soldiers who died during the war, and so we rang for these as well.

A total of 18 Framland members have taken part in this 4 year project commemorating the 18 soldiers.  Some ringers rang in several of the quarters, others rang in just one.  Some wanted to ring in specific quarters as it may have coincided with a certain battle that was significant for their own families.

For the final quarter peal, we had been invited to meet up in the church afterwards to round off the project before heading off to the pub for a drink.  The pressure was therefore felt by those who were ringing, as we knew that everyone was arriving in the church for a set time.  So, when we had to re-start after 30 minutes of ringing, we were aware of the fact that people were waiting for us downstairs and had to listen to it all over again.  It was such a relief to the ringers when we successfully completed the last ring.

As we were ringing the bells down, the church warden and vicar made their way up into the ringing room to thank us for our efforts.  We had a moment of silence as we remembered all of the men that we had commemorated over the last four years.

Since the last quarter, Hoby had a window repaired in the ringing room.  They took the opportunity to make a frame so it could open, and have a picture of a bell in the middle of it.  As it was dark, we were unable to get the full benefit, but were able to see it once we had taken a photograph with a flash.  The vicar took this opportunity to dedicate the new window and to our surprise, it was dedicated to the Society of Framland Ringers for our commitment during this project.  We feel very honoured by this.


Still aware of the fact that we were running behind schedule, we joined everyone else in the church to be greeted by members of the committee and ringers who have taken part in previous quarters.  We were also joined by members of the church and members from the “Hoby and District Local History Society”.  It is the history society that is the backbone of the commemorative events.  They had researched each of the men who had died during the war.  All of the events that took place throughout the village were because of their work.  There have been church services, flower festivals, village tours as well as the quarter peals.

Again, we had a moment of silence remembering the fallen.  The vicar, David, thanked us.  As the secretary of the society I was expecting to be asked to stand up and say thank you to those involved.  I had a few mental notes to thank the ringers, the committee and also the church warden for being the driving force behind the project.  What came next, I was not prepared for….  I was put on the spot by the vicar.  It had come to light that even though I make myself a “spare” ringer when organising quarters, I found myself ringing in the first 3 (at the last minute).  As a result, I set myself a personal challenge to ring in all of the remaining quarters.  This did have some issues, as I no longer had a back-up ringer just in case someone dropped out at the last minute.  I also found myself rescheduling some of my holidays by a few days to be back in time to ring.  So, instead of being asked to stand up and thank everyone, I was asked “how has this journey affected me”? I was not expecting that question.

….How has it affected me?  There were some days when perhaps I was very tired after a long day at work, and the last thing that I wanted to do was to ring a quarter peal.  Some nights it was extremely hot – too hot to ring.  Other days it was far too cold.  One evening we were flooded and we didn’t think we would even make it into the village because of the road closures.  We may complain about these little inconveniences, but then in the back of mind I realised that 100 years ago, these men did not have an option, they just got on with it and so should I.  They made the ultimate sacrifice for King and Country, so the least I can do is ring for 45 minutes in their memory.  And yes, it was quite stressful in parts.  We did not have the opportunity to go away and try the quarter again the following week.  It was vital that a quarter was completed on the exact day of the anniversary of their death.  Even though I rang in all of the quarters, it has been a team effort by the whole Society.  Special thanks go to those who rang and to those who conducted the quarters.  It is quite easy to get volunteers to ring, but getting conductors is another challenge.

Gifts were presented in the church followed by the compulsory group photo.  By this time, we were ready for the pub.  One of the best things about bell ringing is being able to socialise in the pub afterwards.  It was a lovely evening and the Society would like to thank all of those from Hoby Church who made this project possible.

Members of the Society of Framland Ringers

Compulsory Group Photo – Everyone say “Ding Dong”

More details about the Hoby and District History Society can be found via:


Hoby – Commemorative Half Muffled Quarter Peal

October 26, 2018

19th October 2018 – Private William Henry Crane

Today is the last of the 18 commemorative quarter peals to be rung at Hoby.  Tonight we are commemorating Private William Henry Crane.  He was born in 1882, married in 1904 and had two children.  The census records from 1911 states he was working as a carter for a builder.  William was one of the first volunteers to sign up.  The United Kingdom declared war on Germany on 4th August 1914, he enlisted on the 5th (two days before Lord Kitchener issued his first call for volunteers).  Having impressed the army, William rapidly reached the rank of Corporal in the 5th Battalion of the Leicestershire Regiment.  Unfortunately, his army career was cut short as only 4 months later (December 1914) he was honourably discharged on medical grounds.  Following his discharge from the army, it was suggested that he may have worked in a recruiting office, although this has not been confirmed.  At the age of 37, he died of pulmonary tuberculosis on the 19th October 1918, less than a month before the war ended.

To commemorate 100 years after William’s death, 5 Framland ringers met at Hoby to ring in the final half muffled quarter peal.  The pressure to complete this quarter peal was felt by all of the ringers.  Having successfully completed 17 quarter peals throughout this 4 year project, we did not want to let anyone down in this one.  The plan was to ring Grandsire, Reverse Canterbury, St Martins, St. Simons, Plain Bob – all very straight forward methods, all of which we have rung before.  We were ringing well and managed the transition from Grandsire into Reverse Canterbury without any issues.  The transition into St. Martins did not go as smoothly as it should and the method just did not flow.  We had a few stumbles that led into a trip hazard which escalated.  We were not able to recover, so the command to stand was the only viable option.  What is it about St. Martins that has thrown us off course in so many of these quarters?  It has always been the same method that catches us out.  Having already rung for nearly 30 minutes, I think most of the ringers were ready to call it a day.  However, as we agreed to take on this project, we were not leaving the tower until we had completed a quarter peal.  At this point we were aware of the fact that other ringers and members of the church were already assembled in the church for a little bit of “a do” afterwards.  Although it was tempting to go and join them straight away, we made the decision to ring immediately but stick to Grandsire and Plain Bob only.  Thankfully, this time we rang with more concentration and successfully rang the quarter.  What a relief!

Monthly Meeting Calendar 2019

October 24, 2018

The calendar of meetings for 2019 is now available to view.  You can use the Google calendar here and link to your own Google calendars.

Alternatively, view, download or print the pdf here Calendar 2019.

Hoby – Commemorative Half Muffled Quarter Peal

October 7, 2018

1st October 2018 – Second Lieutenant John Charles Wheatley

John Wheatley was the son of the village schoolmaster in Hoby.  He was only 19 years old when he died of his wounds.  John was a Corporal in the Rifles.  He was then commissioned in the Sherwood Foresters and posted to the 1/5th Battalion in France in July.  He was involved with the battle at Ramicourt on 3rd October 1918 which cost him his life.  The area around the village of Ramicourt was part of the Hindenburg Line system of trenches.  These were fortified villages with gun emplacements forming the last line of German defences on the Western Front.  On 3rd October 1918, waves of allied soldiers were advancing behind an artillery barrage towards the well defended enemy.  John was amongst the soldiers who lost their lives in this battle.  He was awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal. He is commemorated on the memorial at the Vis-en-Artois British Cemetery.

100 years later, 5 Framland ringers met at Hoby to ring in the penultimate half muffled quarter peal to commemorate Jo Wheatley.  The realisation as to how long WW1 went on for was beginning to sink in as some of us have been involved with this 4 year commemorative project from the start.  The soldier we were commemorating was only 19 when he died.  It seems such a tragic waste of a young life.

For this quarter we decided to ring mixed doubles methods with places in 3/4, Reverse Canterbury, Winchendon Place, St. Nicholas and a final flourish of Reverse Canterbury.  This is a composition that our Chairman has called for us before so we knew that it was a tried and tested method.  However, I think it was one of those days where simple mistakes were being made (I was the guilty party for these), so with a few minor hic-ups the conductor put me right and we continued without any further glitches – apart from a slight distraction from the treble ringer when the rope caught her glasses.  For a couple of rows of music we are all looking for the glasses on the floor so we know where not to put our feet in case we break them.  Despite not being able to see properly, we continued to ring yet another successful quarter peal.  A sigh of relief from all of us when the conductor calls “That’s All”.  When we had finished ringing, the church warden came to thank us.  We heard other voices coming up the stair case – who could it be?  A couple of non-ringers had come out of the local pub and heard “a lovely noise” coming from the church. Instead of driving straight home, they sat in their car to listen to us, so when we had finished they just had to come up to see what it was all about.  They watched us ring the bells down and seemed fascinated by it all.  You never know, we might have encouraged someone else to take up the art of ringing.

The pressure is now on to ring in the final quarter on the 19th October.  Details about the commemorative events and half muffled quarter peals can be found via

Hoby – Commemorative Half Muffled Quarter Peal

September 16, 2018

14th September 2018 – Major Arthur Jardine Beresford-Havelock

Five members of the Society of Framland Ringers have met at Hoby to ring in a half muffled quarter peal to commemorate the life of Major Arthur Beresford-Havelock.  Little is known about Arthur.  He gained the rank of Major in the North Staffordshire Regiment.  He was killed in action at Baku in Azerbaijan.  He was only 28 years old when he died on 14th September 1918.  Arthur was mentioned in dispatches and is commemorated on the Haidar Pasha Memorial.  Although Arthur never lived in Hoby, he is commemorated on the South Chancel window in All Saints Church, along with other members of the wider Beresford family who died in the First World War.

We rang, what is now a familiar composition of mixed doubles; Plain Bob, St. Martins, St. Simons followed by the final burst of Plain Bob.  We achieved the quarter peal on the first attempt, with only a few stumbles moving into St. Simons from the St. Martins, but these were corrected immediately and we were back on track.

Once we had finished, we rang the bells down and were greeted by the church warden – very handy to take the compulsory group photograph for us!  The vicar at Hoby also came up to the ringing room once we had finished, thanking us all for our continued efforts throughout this 4 year project.

We have commemorated the lives of 16 men associated with Hoby.  The final 2 men will be commemorated in October.

Details about the future half muffled quarter peals can be found via


Hoby – Commemorative Half Muffled Quarter Peal

September 16, 2018

1st September 2018 – Private Sydney Graham

It is the first Saturday of the month, the Society of Framland Ringers are due to have their routine monthly ringing meeting.  Tonight it is at Gaddesby, but today is also the day that we are ringing a half muffled quarter peal at Hoby in memory of Private Sydney Graham.  So that we could combine both events, we held the quarter peal at an earlier time.  There is always the added pressure of these quarters when we know we have a deadline in which to compete it in.  We are constantly calculating in our heads how much time we have to spare if there is a false start.  As it happens, we rang a successful quarter on the first attempt.  We stuck to a tried and tested combination of mixed doubles; Plain Bob, St. Martins, St. Simons followed by the final burst of Plain Bob.  We rang well.  It felt that we had been ringing at quite a pace, however, the church warden had been recording some of the ringing from the church yard and played it back to us afterwards.  We all commented on how much slower it sounded, as we all felt it had been quicker than that.  Perhaps it is deceptive with the muffles on.  It was a worthy quarter in memory of Sydney.

Sydney was the youngest of eight children, born in Hoby in 1896.  The family lived at Lodge Farm.  The 1911 census shows that Sydney was still living in Hoby working as a page boy at Brooksby Hall.  He enlisted on 1st March 1916 at the age of 19.  He was transferred to the 6th Battalion of Leicestershire Regiment during the Battle of the Somme. He had a broken forearm as a result of a gunshot wound in October 1916.  Sydney returned to active service in February 1917.  However, by the following month he was sent back to England with a chest condition.  He returned to France in June and for the remainder of 1917, his regiment was involved with the battle of Polygon Wood near Ypres.  By November, Sydney was suffering from trench foot and was sent back to England for treatment. He returned to France on 31st March 1918.  Five months later, Sydney was involved in the actions around Bapaume resulting in his death on the 1st September 1918.  It was part of the Battles of Amiens.  This is considered to be the turning point of the War on the Western Front by the British Offensive where 60 miles had been advanced in 80 days.  The Hindenburg line was broken and 67000 prisoners had been captured before the Armistice on 11th November 1918 which ended the war.  Sydney Graham was posthumously awarded the British War Medal and Victory Medal.

Details about the future half muffled quarter peals can be found via

Outing to Stamford 2018

July 20, 2018

Saturday 14th July 2018 – The Framland Outing visiting five towers in and near Stamford.

Greatford St. Thomas a Becket (6) 6-1-4

West Deeping St. Andrew (6) 9-3-11

Uffington St. Michael & All Angels (6) 11-1-22

Stamford All Saints (8) 14-1-14

Breat Casterton St. Peter & St. Paul (6) 5-1-18

Although we were low on numbers at the start of the first tower, more and more ringers turned up on what seemed to be one of the hottest days in the summer heatwave.  We finished with 15 brave ringers attending the outing.

We started the tour at Greatford, a lovely ring of six on the ground floor.  Knowing that we needed to pace ourselves to survive the day, we rang simple methods – no need to be over ambitious when we had an entire afternoon of ringing ahead of us.

We went on to ring at West Deeping, another ground floor ring of six.  This time the bells were a little heavier which some of our members preferred.  We were however in competition with the organist who was having their organ practice at the same time as our outing.  Most of us have rung for weddings and competed against the organ for a few minutes while the bride leaves.  You often rely on rope-sight alone as you cannot always hear the bells.  This was the case for West Deeping.  It did make the ringing “interesting”.

The third tower was at Uffington.  We were a little surprised to come across a sign saying that the church was closed for building works.  Fortunately, the church had been unlocked for us, so we managed to enjoy another ring of six.  This was however, once we had finished moving excess items away from the ropes in the ringing room.  I suspect the builders had moved loose items into the ringing room to give them space to work.  These bells were a little heavier again.  We were more ambitious with our choice of methods at this tower as we knew we would be having a well-deserved coffee break before the next tower.

We all made our own arrangements before ringing at the next tower.  It isn’t always easy to find somewhere to park in Stamford on a busy Saturday afternoon, but we all managed.  Some found a nice coffee shop to go to, others found the ice cream van by the river.  Some took the opportunity to walk their dogs that were also joining us on the outing.

Break time over – off to find All Saints in Stamford.  This was the only eight bell tower that we were visiting on the tour.  By this time, we were starting to feel the heat and finding it difficult to ring major methods continuously.  Despite being hot and bothered, we did ring well and enjoyed the tower grab there.

The last tower was at Great Casterton.  This was the lightest ring of the outing which came as a surprise to some when they first pulled on the bells.  It was lovely to have been met by one of the local ringers who stayed to have a ring with us.  It is always a pleasure to be joined by the locals.

Time had beaten us at the last tower.  Some were so keen to get to the pub, they had already departed before we took the compulsory group photo – perhaps we should have taken it earlier in the day before some ringers escaped.  We did however get most of us in the picture.



The outing ended with a group meal at a pub in Ryhall.  The food and company was very enjoyable.

Our thanks go to our Ringing Master who made all of the necessary arrangements organising the towers (and pub) for us.  It is very much appreciated by all of those who took part in the tour.

Hoby – Commemorative Half Muffled Quarter Peal

May 7, 2018

5th May 2018 – Rifleman Charles Edward Gamble

It is the first Saturday in May; traditionally it is the date of the Annual General Meeting for the Society of Framland Ringers.  It was also the 100th anniversary of Rifleman Charles Edward Gamble who lost his life during WW1.  As a result, the Society managed to get 5 “willing” ringers to meet earlier in the afternoon so that we could ring the quarter peal at Hoby before going on to the AGM at Kirby Bellars.  It also happened to be one of the hottest days of the year so far, but fortunately, it was a little cooler inside the tower so ringing was comfortable.  With the additional pressures of completing the quarter on time before the AGM, we opted for a “now very familiar” composition of mixed doubles; Plain Bob, St. Martins, St. Simons and a final burst of Plain Bob.  We rang at a reasonably quick pace, so it did not seem long before the second method was called, and then the third.  The final burst of plain bob was completed finishing the very successful quarter in only 41 minutes.  What a relief to us all that we achieved the quarter on the first attempt.  Perhaps the added pressure of the AGM later in the evening was enough to keep us on our toes and concentrate on ringing.  Perhaps it was the temperature that influenced our ringing.  Either way, it worked; no false starts, or late bobs.  We did not have any hesitations or missed dodges.  It was a very enjoyable ring.  As always, it was an honour to celebrate the life of a war hero.

Charles Gamble was born in 1899 in Gaddesby.  He was the son of John (a farm labourer) and Jemima (domestic cleaner).  They were from Church View, Hoby.  Charles had one older and one younger sister.  Although his service records appear to have been lost, it is known that he enlisted at Melton Mowbray.  He was posted to the 1st /6th Battalion of The Kings Liverpool Regiment.  In February 1918, his Battalion formed part of the West Lancashire Division which relieved the East Lancashire division in the front line at Festubert and Givenchy (East of Bethune in Northern France).  This area had been fought over since 1914.  In March 1918, a number of enemy raids had been fought off.  Unfortunately, this was only the prelude to a full scale German assault at Givenchy in the April of 1918.  The successful defence of Givenchy is considered to be a major part in blunting the German offensive.  The village has since been selected as the memorial site for the Division and for those who died serving in it.

Memorial to the 55th Division at Givenchy

The main assault at Givenchy was over by the beginning of May, however, artillery bombardment was a constant danger for those near the front line and caused many casualties.  The notes from the 1st/6th Battalion showed they had not suffered any casualties while they were in the Givenchy sector.  However, it was on the following day (5th May 1918) heavy German artillery had been very active demolishing almost all of the Battalions dug-outs and tunnels.  14 of its garrisons had been buried.  Only 4 garrisons had been recovered and listed as wounded.  The other 10 were missing.  Charles Edward Gamble was amongst those not recovered.  He is one of the more than 20,0000 British soldiers with “no known grave”.  Their names appear on the Loos Memorial to the Missing.  He was awarded the British War Medal and the Victory Medal.  At only 18, Charles is the youngest of the men from Hoby who died during WW1.

It is a very sobering thought that we as a Ringing Society have been involved with this 4 year project commemorating the lives of brave men from Hoby who lost their lives fighting for King and Country.  We have taken part in 14 quarter peals and have 4 more men to commemorate in the final months of the year.  The next is on the 1st September 2018.  Details about the future half muffled quarter peals can be found via