Re: [Bell Historians]  You & Yours

Richard Offen richard.offen at o...
Fri May 7 23:53:32 BST 2004

--- In bellhistorians at, Robert Lewis <editor at r...> 
> Did anyone else hear the Radio 4 'You & Yours' item on bell listing 
> broadcast at 12.20 today?
> Aside from the inevitable jokey reference in the introduction, I 
> it was fairly well produced and balanced. Interesting that EH 
> denied any direct involvement with the listing revision process - 
> in mind that Graham Pledger sits on the CCC Bells & Clocks 
> (albeit, perhaps, without his EH hat on - but would he be there 
> one wonders?)
> Paula Griffiths banged on about the listing being ADVISORY only ... 
I am 
> really surprised that CCC are pushing that one so hard, since it 
> patently clear that a great deal of weight is given to the fact 
that a bell 
> is listed in any decisions that are made about its future. How 
often are 
> listed bells boiled-up or tuned?

I agree, I thought it was a well balanced and produced item and loud 
applause for Bob Cooles and Alan Hughes who put the case for ringers 
and bell founders very well indeed.

Paula Griffiths may harp on about the lists being advisory, but my 
researches of the last few weeks show that many diocesan advisors 
(and others) are definitely treating them as mandatory, with no room 
for careful consideration of each case on its merits. 

The inconsistency of the whole system is amply demonstrated by the 
Ridge case, mentioned already, where the advisor concerned would not 
allow an unlisted, and dreadfully out of tune, bell to be tuned, but, 
more recently, has allowed some listed bells in another diocese where 
he is advisor to be tuned! Can anyone explain the logic of this to 

Having now read the draft paper several times, it seems at best to be 
woolley and, in some places, doesn't even make grammatical sense! 
Not really the way to win friends and influence people!

In the programme Paula Griffiths again mentioned this magic figure of 
only affecting 3% more bells, but no one has yet given a satisfactory 
explanation of how this figure has been arrived at. This makes it 
very difficult to know whether the bell founding industry is crying 
wolf or not, but, I have to say, I am now of the opinion that they 
are not!

I reckon it's going to take years to revise all the lists, so it 
could be a slow and painful death of a thousand cuts for the bell 
founding industry over a prolonged period!


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