[r-t] A Review of Diary Compositions

Mark Davies mark at snowtiger.net
Thu Nov 25 22:25:30 UTC 2004

Andrew Johnson writes,

> Here are my thoughts on the Carlisle page in previous diaries.
> ... fewer 65's ... must have no 65's ... not so many 65's ... etc.

Andrew, this is simply madness. One of the pleasures of ringing Carlisle is
the many and beautiful 65s at backstroke the method so easily produces. I
would take great issue with anyone attempting to reduce the number present
in the Diary touches.

Instead, and more importantly, we should be looking at how to maximise the
number of wraps across the change in Minor compositions.

My biggest issue with the Diary's selection of quarter compositions (apart
from the Maximus examples, which are quite simply tragic) is the extensive
but uniformly poor selection in the Caters and Cinques sections.

The long-course 1259 of Grandsire Caters I have a certain fondness for, as
it was the first I ever called; however it is well past its best and should
be replaced with something more modern. The other 1259s are acknowledged
classics, and I don't have any issue with keeping those, although I don't
see why they couldn't be rotated every couple of years with some similar
alternatives. However, the 1277 and in particular the 1278 are a waste of
space - surely we could have something better here. With so many
compositions, there must be room for something more modern, perhaps a
near-miss composition or one of my simple little-bell arrangements, which
really are fabulous.

The Stedman compositions are primarily disappointing because they are so
over-complex for such little reward. If we're going to have complex
compositions, again why not some worthwhile ones, like a near-miss
arrangement, or some 680 fiestas. But, we should also have simple, musical
examples - I say drop the 5-and-two-16s / 6-and-two-19s and feature some
blocks-of-15 /-18 for pure 65 courses throughout. I mean, why ever not? Just
to maintain the fiction that Stedman is difficult to call?


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