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Essex Association of Change Ringers

St. Peter's Great Totham


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News from the Belfry 
Most months an article "News from the Belfry" appears in the Great Totham Parish Magazine. Links to some of the articles are below. You will require Adobe Reader to open them. The February 2018 edition of the magazine included an entertaining article "Diary of a Novice Campanologist" see below.
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Diary of a Novice Campanologist   20 Years of Campanology    Bell Ringing in Capetown

Congratulations to Mandy and Peter Mickelsen who were duly nominated and elected as members of the Essex Association of Change Ringers. This occurred at the EACR South East District meeting held on 7th September at St. Mary Burnham-on-Crouch. This was only achieved through the excellent guidance and tuiton of our tower capatin Janice.

Tower Outing Saturday 23rd February 2019
On a bright Saturday afternoon in February a team of bell-ringers from St. Peter's Tower in Great Totham set off with a mix of enthusiasm and intrepidation to visit four church towers in Essex.
Tower Captain Janice Spalding organised the afternnon and we first went to Downham St. Margarets Church near Hanningfield. The view from the church hill was stunning and we did our very best to match the view and ring the bells with skill. Our second church tower was All Saints in Rettenden and again with different ropes and an unusual ringing chamber, the Totham ringers did well.
Following Janice's map references we set off to Danbury and St. John the Baptist Church Tower. The rope chamber was unusually approached via a trap door, on which one bell-ringer would stand. Now this tower presented the Totham Campanologists with a new challenge 8 bells instead of 6. Could we cope? With Janice's help of course we could!! With 5pm approaching the intrepid band from Great Totham were at All Saints in Maldon. Another 8 bell challenge but the recently over-hauled bells were a delight to ring and sounded great.
Now we were looking forward to "fish and chips" at "Friendly Frier" cafe to round of the day. Our thanks go to Janice and all who helped organise the afternoon an enjoyable sucess.
Duncan Grant.

On Remembrance Sunday 2018 there were nineteen ringers present to ring before the 11.45 service. It was fortunate that ringing started forty-five minutes before the service started instead of the normal thirty minutes. So we all had the opportunity to ring! The band comprised four visitors and fifteen Great Totham ringers. The five ringers in the photograph, back row Peter, Cliff and Mandy and front row Henry and Jessica, were Ringing Remembers Recruits. At 12.30 there was open tinging, the half muffles having been removed for Ringing Remembers. The band comprised sixteen Great Totham Ringers. Rounds and Call Changes on six, Plain Hunt and Plain Bob Doubles were rung.

Clif and Sandra, two of our new ringers were elected members of the Essex Association of Change Ringers at the South East District meeting held 1st September 2018 at St. Thomas Church Bradwell-on-Sea.

Twelve teams took part in the Essex Association 6 bell striking competition held at St.Peter's Church Great Totham on Saturday 16th July 2018.

Twenty members of Great Totham WI visited St. Peter's Church on July 12th 2018 to the sound of the bells being rung. Janice our Tower Captain gave a talk on bell ringing, and with the aid of a model, explained full circle ringing. Daphne spoke about hand bell ringing. There is a band of hand bell ringers at St. Peter's Church. Andrew talked about the Ringing Remembers campaign and made reference to the two Great Totham ringers who served in the First World War. Charles Henry Ballard died and Frank Newman servived. Finally Duncan gave an insight of his experience as a learner. Note the Dairy of a Novice Camanologist, above, written for the Parish Magazine above. Six of the ladies had a go at chiming a bell. Two of them subsequently tried ringing the backstroke with the assistance of Janice. There was a demonstration of handbell ringing before we adjourned to the church extension for tea and cake provided by members of the WI.

Tower Bells Floral DisplayThe bi-annual St. Peter's Church Flower Festival was held over the May Day Bank Holiday weekend.Handbell Ringers Floral Display This year the theme was songs. Chris and Jenny created the floral display "I'm Getting Married in the Morning" on the behalf of the church bell ringers. Daphne, Irene and Redbeka created the handbell ringers floral display "Oranges and Lemons."  The church bells were rung for the festival opening on the Saturday morning and again in the afternoon. It was ringing as normal on Sunday and the bells were also rung before Evensong. The handbells were also rung during the festival.

Our post Christmas lunch was held on January 28th at Forrester Park Great Totham. Ringing friends from Maldon All Saints, Danbury and Halstead joined Great Totham tingers and partners for lunch.

The Essex Association of Change Ringers six bell Call Change Competion was held at All Saints Church Inworth on Saturday 13th May 2017. A joint All Saints and St. Peter's band entered the competition. The band comprised three ringers from each tower. I am pleased to announce that the band were the winners of the competition.



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Updated October 2019

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