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Belfry News October 2018

The Striking Competition

With apologies from the webmaster for the late posting of this article

Fortunately none of us were selectively "bumped off" as happend in the TV Midsomer Striking Competition and thus all eight of us of the Elloe Branch survived to participate in the Lincoln Diocesan Guild eight bell striking competition this year held at St Mary, Long Sutton. This tower's eight bells are a 1934 recast installation by Taylor of Loughborough and are excellent, both in tone and clarity of sound in the ringing room-ideal for this event. Saturday afternoon, October 13th, could have been midsummer apart from the autumnal colours and falling leaves and all were enjoying the company, the tea and cakes, listening to the competing bands, or just conversing with old friends. However readers, despite the friendly atmosphere these events are serious cut throat affairs with each band going in to win, so what is "striking"? Well in every day expression "timing" is the equivalent word, an evenly spaced rhythm, all crochets at "eight to the bar". The judges will penalise any "dotted notes".

The test piece was 210 changes Grandsire Triples which takes about 8 minutes. Six bands competing , the first, Central Branch, were in the ringing room 5pm, door closed and into the test piece, some of us listening critically in the church yard, the judge, Ian Lloyd, in a quiet corner of the church hall car park.Central were followed at 20 minute intervals by the other five competitors, Eastern, West Lindsey, Southern, Northern and Elloe. Winners were the West Lindsey Branch with 17 faults, in second place Southern with 24 faults. We, the Elloe Branch, who rang last at 6.40pm had 29 faults and came third, so I guess we won a "bronze medal". Our thanks go to Father Jonathan for permission to ring, and to Marion Meadows, Sue Smith, and Carol Little who worked so hard preparing the "eats" and who maintained those steaming tea pots of hospitality, not forgetting Ray Patrick who acted as doorman at the ringing room. Thanks also to our judge, Ian Lloyd, for carefully listening and whose constructive criticisms were well received.

John Bennett

Postscript: The results in full are as follows

  • 1st place - West Lindsey Branch with 17 faults
  • 2nd place - Southern Branch with 24 faults
  • 3rd place - Elloe Deaneries Branch with 29 faults
  • 4th place - Central Branch with 30 faults
  • 5th place - Eastern Branch with 34 faults
  • 6th place - Northern Branch with 37 fault