Chairman's Chatter - May 2020

How will ART operate during lockdown with no ringing, which means no courses, no workshops and no teaching? And with no course fees how stable is our future? First, a word of reassurance – our financial position is strong. Over the years our reserves policy has meant that we’ve built up a financial cushion so that we can operate for a year with no income – which is what the Charity Commission recommends. Reasonable financial forecasts, predict that with existing membership fee income and continued financial support by our generous supporters, we will sustain a loss for the year that we are comfortable with.

Our thoughts are also with the teachers and ringers progressing through our various progammes. We have taken the decision to extend any ART time limits by six months. For example, teachers will now have 2½ years from their day course to accredit and ART Members have the option of extending their membership by six months.

Although we have suspended all courses and workshops ART is planning to be as busy as ever. Our biggest project is the building of an online learning platform, available to all ringers. The basic platform is in place and we have an Editor-in-Chief who is working with volunteers to build curriculums and develop content. The courses will be mixed media and we aim to make them as professional and useful as possible.

We will also be taking this opportunity to review and revamp all our day courses and workshops, build our Learning the Ropes listen and strike resources (including practical tools) and complete the Son of SmART Ringer specification and move onto implementation.

As always, we rely on volunteers to make all this happen, so if you have some spare time and would like to contribute then please get in touch. We’re looking for volunteers with a variety of skills – organisation, IT or word-smithing – however the most important thing is that you have a passion for teaching and want to help others teach or learn better. We are committed to both supporting and training you as necessary.

Our aim is to use our time and resources profitably; building an ART which is fit and able to help ringing emerge from this enforced period of inactivity stronger and better.

I know that the next months will affect all of you in unexpected ways – financially, personally and through your families. Keep safe, follow church and CCCBR advice about ringing and look after your family and friends.


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Lesley Belcher - ART Chair