[r-t] Methods Committee proposed proposed changes

Ted Steele teds.bells at tesco.net
Tue Mar 21 19:51:36 UTC 2017

On 21/03/2017 10:21, Philip Earis wrote:

> Personally, I think the Methods Committee should have no remit in *how*
> things are rung - decisions on simulators, corrections to shifts etc
> aren't method related.

I was going to respond to this point in similar terms but I find myself 
wanting also to mention further points raised by others in the string of 
messages I have just read; so here is a generalised response to the 
request for comments.

My interest in and understanding of ringing theory is miniscule compared 
to many contributors to this list, but I suspect still a little greater 
than that of your average bog-standard ringer. As such it may perhaps be 
more directly indicative of the attitude to be expected at the next 
CCCBR meeting than what would be preferred by theoretical purists or 
some black-zone ringers.

Firstly with regard to simulators; NO, NO and again NO! Not only is this 
not within any remit of the methods committee that I recognise but it is 
a fairly sure way of antagonising the majority of mainstream ringers and 
thereby undermining the credibility of the proposers of change, to the 
detriment of the other theoretical proposals. Why start out by shooting 
yourself in the foot?

Peals on simulators are not peals on bells (even if it is the normal 
motion of the bell that triggers the sensor that triggers the sound 
production) and the business of the CCCBR is bells. Simulators have many 
good uses but any performance upon them remains a performance on a 
simulator, not a bell performance for which the naturally occurring 
sound of bells is an absolute minimum requirement. I may reconsider this 
when the Black Dyke Mills brass band wins a competition by blowing 
through mouthpieces that trigger the simulated sound of trumpets, horns 
and trombones, and when people start paying to hear them do it.

I think that relaxing the requirement for the bells to be audible 
outside the building in which they are rung would prove equally 
unpopular; where would the concept of performance be in that? It would 
be more akin to private rehearsal. Leave that well alone and stick to 
the business of methods.

With regard to multi-stage peals and all the convoluted considerations 
to which they give rise, I would simply say ring whatever combination of 
stages and methods that you like but accept and adhere to the basic 
historic principle of change-ringing that there be no more repeated rows 
(in which I include all cover bells) than is necessary to produce the 
peal length. Most ringers do not aspire to such stuff but nor I think 
will they have very strong feelings about it. Alan Barber expressed this 
very well.

Concerning correction of errors in calling I think that the point is 
being misinterpreted. If a call is missed and the conductor is able to 
contrive an alternative calling which on subsequent checking is shown to 
be true then that is fine, and I think has always been so. Is not the 
relevant point whether a missed call can be reinstated or a wrong call 
altered? If so it must surely be before the affected bells have struck 
in the relevant positions; effectively within about a row and a half, 
meaning that the call will be just late rather than actually missed. 
Anything beyond that requires amendment of the method and or the 
composition rather than correction of the calling error and the issue 
becomes whether the chosen method of correction is "true" and whether 
the peal can still be correctly described as intended.

Consider the common case of a peal containing a simple 720 of PB6 which 
is two bobs-only 360s joined by singles. A missed or incorrect call at 
halfway will obviously invalidate that as a true extent. No amount of 
subsequent correction of the calling error will alter the fact that the 
extent and thus also the peal is false. The same thing could occur less 
obviously in many cases and could not be made acceptable by subsequent 
"correction" of the calling error. There will be situations where 
correction can maintain truth but that is fine, as noted above, and does 
not require a new rule. If a rule is made that cannot apply equally to 
all calling errors then probably no rule at all should be made.


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