Ringing societies guide to life after the pandemic

Ringing societies have an important role to play in facilitating a successful return to ringing. Look for ways in which you can support, complement and enhance the activities of tower captains who are concentrating on rebuilding their own bands:

  • Organising events, training and recruitment projects that span a number of towers.
  • Identifying bands or areas that are struggling and focus on helping them.
  • Taking stock of what's happening across groups of towers and offering solutions that work for the benefit of the group.

Organise courses and workshops

Identify what needs to be organised centrally. For example, is there a need for a centralised recruitment campaign or for some form of tower captain training?

Some courses and workshops are now being offered online, so that they can be accessed before ringing resumes. Other courses, which have a physical component, are being offered as small, local courses which delegates may find reassuring.

» List of courses and workshops

Run a large recruitment project

If several bands are struggling with numbers then a centrally planned and coordinated recruitment drive might be the best way of finding new recruits and teaching bell handling.

Pooling of tasks and expertise can often lead to a better outcome and be less stressful. There are a number of models already available so planning a bigger project need not take more time than a smaller one.

» Recruitment and retention – planning for success

Group ringing, learning and teaching

There has been a move towards group ringing which can take many different forms, depending on the needs and aspirations of those taking part. Look out for opportunities for group ringing as you plan for the resumption of ringing.

Group ringing benefits everyone. Learners motivate and support each other when progress is slow. Organisers can play to their strengths, and everyone can cope better with changes in family and working life.

» Ringing clusters – the what, the why, and the how

Help struggling bands

Identify which bands need help and the help they need. Maybe it's obvious who they are, but if not a survey might help – these are also useful ways of seeding ideas.

A follow-up phone call can identify what help is required. Short term interventions are probably required with an eye to how to make the band self-sufficient in the medium to long term. Your objective is not to be the go-to conductor or bell handling trainer in two year's time!

» Ringing surveys

Encourage mutual help

Find ways that bands can help each other. Could you host an online meeting to share ideas and concerns? Combined with the results of the survey even a single meeting could kick-start people into action.

Forward all information you receive. The act of sharing makes people feel part of the wider ringing community, and you don't know what will trigger someone to act or pick up a new idea.

» Mentoringto be developed

Promote new ways of doing things

Seed ideas by seeking out new ways of doing things and sharing them with as many people as possible.

Why not do some research on what others are doing, or become a Recovery Champion? You could float one or two ideas at an online meeting and see what response you get, and if you are convinced an idea is just what your area needs then get a few ringing friends together, convince them and just go for it.

» Become a Recovery Champion

What else?

This page will be developed further in partnership with the Recovery Champions network, based on what they need and new ideas that they are developing in their own area. If you think we're missing something or have something that you think would be useful to others than please let us know.

» Contact Lesley