Ringing is not ‘instant’ and it does take a little while (sometimes a few months) to become competent ringer, but it is very satisfying when you reach the stage at which you can control your bell and join in with the other ringers. Once learnt, it is a skill which is never forgotten (like riding a bike!)
You are always learning and there is always something more to do, if you want to, which is one of the reasons why people who have been ringing a long time are still interested in, and enthusiastic about, bell ringing
Stage 1 – Technique
The first stage in learning to ring is to develop the skills to ‘handle’ the bell. That means the technique to control the bell using the rope. This is done on a one-to-one basis with the Tower Captain and is often done on a silenced bell.
Stage 2 – Ringing with Others
The key skills learnt are the ability to watch and listen to the ringing to know when you pull and sound your bell and to be able to varying the pace of your ringing to fit in with the team.
Stage 3 – Start Ringing Changes
To get the most out of bell ringing, the challenges lie in change ringing. This is when bell ringers follow a pattern called a method, where the bells change the order in which they strike each time.
After this it is up to you if you want to develop your change ringing skills and become an even more experienced ringer. There are lots of other towers nearby, in Cheshire, in England and in the rest of the world! You will have learnt a universal skill and the technique is the same everywhere.
If you are interested in finding out more about being a bell ringer at Poynton, please contact our Secretary.