[r-t] Changes to decisions again

Hayden Charles hcharles at grandsire.co.uk
Sun Jan 22 14:37:12 UTC 2006

Ben Willetts wrote on 22/01/2006 11:31:
> Graham John:
>>[Phil's] proposals could permit jump change methods,
>>which I believe go beyond change-ringing as we know it.
> This is part of the problem.  Everyone has different view of where
> "change-ringing as we know it" ends, and thus everyone has different views
> of what the CC should permit.

This is right at the heart of the debate, the matter of the CC and 
'permission'. As others have pointed out, the fact that something is 
apparently 'forbidden' by the CC does not in practice *prevent* those 
things from being rung. More accurately, it is a matter of 'recognition' 
in the sense of recording performances, specifically peals. Thus only 
those performances which conform to the CC decisions and rules are 
recorded in the CC analysis.

Most ringing is, in fact, 'unrecognised' by the CC, because the CC does 
not keep records of quarter peals or touches of less than a peal length. 
For quarters it is left to the band to decide what they wish to record, 
whether by sending to the Ringing World, to Campanophile or nowhere in 
particular. The only shorter lengths 'recognised' (or 'recorded') by the 
CC have to do with the naming of Minor or Doubles methods by ringing an 
extent. Despite this lack of 'regulation', in my experience most ringing 
does stay within the overall parameters set down by the CC rules.

Ben has a good point when he says that we all have different ideas of 
where the 'boundaries' should lie. For example, Graham mentioned 
recognising as a 'peal' all performances of 5000 changes and over. Given 
the historical struggle to find true extents of triples, and the effort 
to find bobs-only Stedman, it will be difficult to persuade some people 
that this innovation is worthwhile. I know that a bobs-only 10080 of 
Grandsire triples has been rung, but imagine the furore when someone 
claims the first bobs only over-4999-but-less-than-5040. Or perhaps that 
is the shock we need to jerk us all out of our complacency?

Looking at the CC rules and decisions, there is a lot about 'standards', 
giving them a sort of moral status. Even the language of peals ('true', 
'false') probably has moral overtones. (OK it's the language of logic as 
well). Taking one decision as an example:

' F(B) That in the opinion of the Council the publication of palpably 
false compositions and worthless methods reflects discredit on their 

I can see the point of discouraging the publication of compositions 
which set out to deceive, but what is a 'worthless method'? (Wait for 
someone to suggest Rutland?).

Looking again at the decisions, most of them are about peal ringing. 
Section D is explicitly titled 'Peal Ringing'. Of the others, E - 
'Methods and Calls', F - 'Compositions' and G - 'Method Extension' 
effectively apply only to peals because they all have to be complied 
with for a peal to be included in the CC Analysis. Only the naming of 
Doubles / Minor methods as already noted is not necessarily about peals. 
Decision B 'Recommendations to Associations' also has points pertinent 
to peal ringing.

So, the bulk of the CC's decisions are there to regulate peal ringing. 
Most of the ringing which takes place is not peal ringing and is 
therefore outside CC 'control' (for want of a better word). What 
proportion of CC members ring peals? Does this provide Philip with an 
avenue, ie not trying to affect what most people do most of the time, 
but just tidying up what a (significant) minority do in order to focus 
the attention of the CC onto activities such as 
training/fundraising/recruitment or whatever, which are more 
'worthwhile'. There you are, another value judgement.

Sorry for long ramble.

Hayden Charles

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