First Ever South East England Contest 2016!


Dear All

The very first South-East England Youth Striking Contest was held today at Christ Church, Epsom and was a resounding success. Six teams took part, so we had over 48 youngsters (some teams brought ‘reserves’) plus assorted parents and hangers-on, all enjoying listening to some very good ringing in the sunshine. Whilst awaiting their turn the teams kept themselves entertained with ball games and handbells – three enterprising young ringers even locked themselves in the baby changing room for an impromptu quarter peal attempt (sadly unsuccessful). Refreshment was provided in the form of tea, coffee, cold drinks and home made cakes (thanks to Kathy Pearson), followed by a fish ‘n chips lunch. After the judging a number of the youngsters went off to ring at St Martin’s Epsom and then to Ewell.

Congratulations to everyone involved in the organising, particularly David Pearson for his hard work in getting this brilliant idea off the ground. It was really encouraging to see and feel the enthusiasm of so many young people enjoying their ringing – and to hear them hoping that this contest will become an annual event.

The judges were Phillip Ridley and Alban Forster, results were as follows:

1stSussex Young Ringers76%
2ndKent Young Ringers70%
3rdEssex Young Eagles68%
4thYoung @ Herts67%
5thGDG Young Ringers65%
6thW&P Young Ringers50%

The Guildford team were: Matthew Pearson, Laura Gill, Matthew Gill, Harriet Armitage, Sam Norman, Jack Edwards, Kathy Collins and Jacob Webb. Well done to all!
Photographs will be on the Guild web site soon.

Margaret Bale
Guild Secretary


Many congratulations to David Pearson on organising and running this really excellent young ringers event.

From the feedback during the day it looks as though there is enough enthusiasm for this to become a fixture in the ringing calendar with Herts being the first society to offer to host the event next year. I’m sure all the other societies would have been willing to act as hosts as well as they all seemed very keen to tae part again next year.

Although a lot of fun, bands took the competition very seriously, with W&P pulling half their band from the Isle of Wight and the other half flown in from the Channel Isles, how’s that for commitment?

Congratulation to Sussex who were clear winners, to the middle rankings who were all very close, and to W&P for a valiant and spirited effort. It was really great to see so many young ringers coming together, ringing together, and enjoying the day.

Below is an email from David Pearson to the Guild Young Ringers group.

Mike Bale
Guild Training Officer


Dear all

Thank you so very much for all your efforts to make today run as smoothly as it did, and in the face of some real curve-balls! In particular I know that Ruth, Barbara and Kathy put in a real shift in the kitchen, Mark and Clare as tower stewards, the Bale/Brown certificate publishing company did a great job creating and writing them all, and Jacqui and Chris with the marshalling and photo-taking. It was a great team effort.

I have received compliments from all the bands that came saying the young ringers really enjoyed the day, which is what it is all about.

Thank you again, and best wishes,

David Pearson


A quick update for you. The next young ringers practice is booked for Saturday 7th May at Ashtead Weybridge – Postcode is KT13 8DN at 4:30.

We hosted the first-ever S.E. England Youth Striking Competition on Saturday 2nd April at Epsom Common, with six teams in all entering including the Winchester and Portsmouth that had 4 members flying in from Guernsey!!! It was a really great day; a keenly contested competition won by Sussex Young Ringers, and after lunch in the sunshine, a couple of towers to grab before everyone headed home. The GDGYR team came fifth, with the teams placed 2nd to 5th all within 5% points on each other, so it was really close. Looks like this will become an annual event, so we can look forward to going to Hertfordshire next year.

On March 12th a young ringers team entered the Guild 6-bell competition at Ash. They rang a method, rather than call changes, and rang really well so well done to the team.

Look forward to seeing you on the 7th May

Best wishes,