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Orleans Training Update

by Ed Futcher

A little less than one year ago Whitechapel Bell Foundry installed a wonderful ring of ten bells in Orleans, MA at the Church of the Transfiguration. Over 30 willing learners from their Community signed on as total novices at that time and ringers from Boston began the business of training them.

During the late Summer and Fall of 2009 the focus was on rope handling, and ringing rounds and call changes. There were extended training sessions in Orleans, Boston and Groton as well as a visit to New York which enabled the local band to ring their 10 bells almost every day during the Fall and Winter. Due to the unique ringing chamber (open to the elements) there were few visitors in this time and there was no extended ringing. This Spring the focus moved to ringing changes, and the local band was quickly able to ring plain hunt on 6, 8 and 10 bells after some sessions with New York and Boston ringers.

The latest stage in training took place over 3 days in July with the aim of progressing a core of the local band to competence in Plain Bob Doubles. 10 ringers from Boston and Washington worked with 10 of the 30+ local ringers to ring several hundred courses of PB Doubles. Skills were cemented by completing 4 quarter peals which included several first quarters. The last session on Wednesday had the local band ringing courses of PB Doubles on their own with the teachers watching and listening.


back row: David Westmoreland, Sr Alicia Mitman, Geoff Davies, Br. Christopher Swidrak, Lexa Hale, Sr. Seana Shannon, Br. Matthew Gillis, Ed Futcher, Wayne Schuman

front row: Jeremy Haig, Quilla Roth, Elaine Hansen, Sr. Victoria MacNeil, Br. Anthony Kanaga

Posted Jul 23, 2010

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