From 20th to 23rd March, seventeen bell-ringers from Stoke St Milborough undertook a tour of eight different churches on and around the Suffolk coast. The aim of the trip was to give the Stoke ringers the opportunity to try out the bells in another part of the country, both to hone their existing skills and to add some brand new experiences. For example, the tower at Grundisburgh has 12 bells (four more than we are used to at Stoke), so we were able to ring methods and call changes which would not be possible in the local area.
Ringers of all levels were present on the trip and their various needs were amply catered for: with at least 45 minutes of ringing at each tower, there was more than enough to keep everyone busy.
There was also ample opportunity to look around the churches themselves, complete with detailed and fascinating historical notes compiled in advance by Peter Cornah. Other churches on our circuit were at Chediston, Wissett, Blythburgh, Reydon, Ufford, Orford and Aldeburgh.
We enjoyed taking the time to look around the towns and villages during our ‘down time’ and evenings were rounded off with fantastic meals in assorted local hostelries.
Huge thanks go to Peter and Sue Cornah for organising the trip and to the captains at the towers we visited for their kindness and hospitality.