Succumbing to the inevitable

C used to ring handbells fairly regularly and notched up several quarter peals in years gone by. When his mum died he spent some of the inheritance on a set of 12 handbells. Sadly, those handbells haven’t seen much light. We did have a couple of goes once but I was totally rubbish and couldn’t get my head around it.

I always admire the fact that he could pick up pair of handbells and without too much trouble join in something.

A couple of years ago I was a student on a handbell training course and with proper instruction, helpful advice and lots of patience I did manage to get through Plain Bob Minor on all pairs. It completely did my brain in but I was pleased to have done it. It always seemed like one of those things I should have a proper go at. I’ve not rung handbells since then.

Since lockdown handbell ringing has really enjoyed a resurgence. Its the one thing that people could meet in small groups outside, when that was allowed. Then came along the creation of Handbell Stadium the virtual version of handbell ringing with Men in Black avatars. The next upgrade came with the creation of e-bells. Realistic looking, feeling and weighted handbells that plug into your computer that you synchronise with Handbell Stadium for a more realistic experience, rather than pushing keys.

So, eventually C decided that he’d like a pair of e-bells for his birthday. I ordered two sets and the companion book Change Ringing on Handbells by Tina Stoeklin and Phil Gay. They arrived today, excellent service given he left it late to tell me that’s what he wanted. I’ll leave him to do the technical set up and I’ll have a few goes on my own with my two new avatar friends before I join in with anyone else.

Don’t think you’ll be seeing me featured on Bellboard any time soon though.


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