It’s surprising how many people you meet who ‘used to ring the bells’ but have given up ringing for a number of different reasons. These may no longer be relevant, perhaps they moved away, got a job, got married, or had a temporary physical problem (such as a bad shoulder) which meant they stopped ringing, then got out of the habit of ringing.
It’s often said that learning to ring is like learning to ride a bike. The basic technique can be relearned relatively quickly (obviously this is dependent on the level of competence before lapsing), so encouraging lapsed ringers back to the exercise would be great way recruit some 'new' ringers when we finally return to less restricted ringing. Provide the right atmosphere and you'll have a ready-made and motivated ringer joining your band.
Do you know any lapsed ringers out there? Why not get in touch as see if they can be persuaded to return. Why not invite them along to a virtual ringing session and or see if they can be persuaded to give ringing another try. Or why use local social media or newsletters to reach out to any potential lapsed ringers in your local area.
Since ringing resumed in July 2021 there has been a noticeable increase in enquiries from previously lapsed ringers wanting to start ringing again. Pip Penney has written this article, published in the Ringing World about how best to re-introduce such returning ringers into ringing and your band.
Alison Smedley has carried out this piece of action research as part of her BA course in Charity & Social Enterprise Management with Anglia Ruskin University.