A ropeful of resources for ringers during COVID19 and beyond

In these extraordinary times, the ringing community has found a number of ways to keep ringing going, even whilst we are not able to ring bells for real. Practices, pub sessions and quiz nights have transferred to Zoom, Ringing Room appears to have hit it off rather well, and handbells are coming into their own – never have we seen so much love for Minimus!

Thanks to so many who have helped in building a bank of resources for ringers during this time of lockdown and social distancing.

Ringing with others

During this period where we are not able to physically ring together, ringers are increasingly turning to online, virtual practices to develop their ringing skills and keep in touch. In this article – virtual platforms are so now – two ringers share their account of virtual ringing and offer advice on how to get started.

There are two main places to ring online with your friends or you can join open practices:

  • Ringing Room - a virtual space specifically for ringers to continue ringing with one another even when socially distanced. Register for free and have a go! There's also a Facebook group if you're stuck or looking for people to ring with.
  • Ding allows you to practise as a team, as an individual or as a small group with "Bob" filling in for the other ringers.
  • Some useful tips on using Ringing Room and a short users guide.
  • Handbell Stadium, a ringing platform to simulate handbell ringing – for beginners or pros alike.
  • Muster is the latest online platform ... keep an eye on this and expect future developments.

If you're not confident about using Ringing Room then we've produced a couple of YouTube videos to help you get started. You can also sign up for a free Ringing Room Workshop to get expert technical help and new ideas about teaching online.

Ringing handbells

Handbell ringing has become a lot more popular this year both online and in people's gardens and we're now seeing ringers who've learned in the Summer themselves starting to teach new bands.

  • A set of handbell resources for teachers and new ringers.
  • Handbells feature on YouTube taking you from how to handle a bell to ringing Plain Bob Minor.
  • Handbell Stadium, a ringing platform to simulate handbell ringing – for beginners or pros alike.

You can ring handbells with others using Handbell Stadium, Ringing Room and Ding.

Online learning

Practising online at home has become ever more popular.

If you're new to using online simulators, this series of short YouTube videos will help you get the most out of Abel and improve your listening and striking skills from the comfort of your home. And this wonderful series about Virtual Belfry.

  • The Tadhill resources are an excellent way of improving your listening and method learning skills. They come with a health warning though – the activities can be highly additive!

Just because there's not ringing, doesn't mean that there is no teaching and learning. Why not use the lockdown to continue learning and teaching? Here's some great examples:

Keeping in touch with your friends

Missing ringing and your ringing friends?

  • Have you tried hosting an event using the Webex platform?
  • Zoom into fun, laughter & ringing with friends.
  • Discord is another option that is commonly used by the gaming community. Some people like it because you can appear to talk over each other more naturally.
  • Let your imagination run riot - how about this Cheese and Wine evening organised by the Welsh Colleges?

Webinars and group calls don't have to be educational. Guest speakers aren't charging fees at the moment, but we've heard of a local talking about climbing Everest, learning about Devon Call Change ringing and a very high profile ringer talking about making marmalade!

Looking for some inspiration to keep in touch with your bell ringing?

  • Why not try these daily challenges – one for each day of the month?
  • The Society of Royal Cumberland Youths have produced a "Lockdown Challenge" for their members. But they have kindly said "please do share this with ... other members of your tower or branch who may find it interesting", so here it is. You may wish to use the template to design a similar quiz for your local ringers.
  • There are some great quizzes appearing on the Bellringers Facebook group –- name the tower, Word Winks, impossible anagrams and amusing, but perhaps deadly serious, virtual competitions (e.g. the best ring of 12).
  • Each week the Ringing World publishes a weekly puzzles page, some of which are fiendishly difficult.
  • Mark Davies has just published Methodoku Mayhem! based on these puzzles. Available from the Ringing World shop

What's happening?

Why not find out what's happening in the wider ringing community? Social media, a major part of modern society anyway, is playing a not insignificant part in the current climate. YouTube, blogs and podcasts are all ways of finding out what's happening and what people are thinking.

  • Simon Linford, President of the CCCBR, is writing a biweekly blog which informs and inspires in equal measure.
  • The Accidental Ringer is blogging every day and found out that she can ring more complicated things on two bells than she can on one!
  • The Fun with Bells podcast releases an episode every month covering an eclectic range of ringing subjects and people.
  • The Ringing World is responding to the challenge of not having (many) peals and quarter peals to publish by filling the space with more and varied articles.

Up to date advice

Advice about ringing and COVID-19 is provided by the CCCBR.

Talking to other ringers

Which virtual platform or app can I use to communicate with other ringers?


If you like these resources then please share them with your ringing friends.

Thanks to all who have contributed to this library of resources.

If you have feedback or something you'd like to add, then please contact the ART Resources Administrator