Snips of clips of dings and dongs

Every Sunday during lockdown C and I have been ringing 2 bells at our tower ahead of the live streamed service.  I record these on my phone camera and upload the video to my youtube channel, which has a grand total of 15 subscribers, mostly family!  I only really do it for my own interest and to link to it on our #bellringing Twitter page so that the church and community can see what we do and that we’re doing our bit to keep the bells going. It always gets retweeted by the city community radio station and the diocesan account.

I send a link to my personal Facebook profile so that my #bellringing friends can watch it if they want to.  I suspect no one is really bothered, but again, it’s just about keeping #bellringing out there.

Over the last couple of weeks it’s been surprising to hear that a number of people actually look forward to me posting our exploits.  One of the first times I posted a clip of C and I making places and dodging, someone commented on our ringing as being a “master class in bell control”.  I don’t know about that.  Someone else said that they look out for the post every week and watch it.  I guess it might be helping some people feel connected and offering something when so many other people can’t go out and ring their bells yet. 

Off the back of all of that we’ve just been asked if an extract of one of my clips can be used as a training aid and a demonstration of good bell control.  I’ve never really considered my bell control as being worthy of such interest.

Sometimes, our Sunday morning #bellringing isn’t so great.  It can be surprisingly difficult to count to 3.  We swap places for a whole pull, hand and back stroke, then back again 1,2,1.  Then we dodge so the 2nd bell pulls in at hand stroke and the 1st bell holds off, then at back stroke the now 1st bell holds up and the 2nd bell pulls in.  We do that 3 times so that the bell that started off life in 2nds place is now leading first, so we go back to making places, whole pull swap, then swap back again.  Then we dodge the other way around so that the pull in and holding up is done the other way around.  We do that 3 times, so now we’re back to where it all started.  We continue doing that until it either starts to sound a bit scrappy, we lose count or we get bored. 

We tend to fit in 3 sets of about 5 or 6 minutes each time.  If the first attempt goes well, I won’t bother recording any more, but if it sounded rubbish, or the organ starts blasting part way through, or something else happens that means it wouldn’t be a good sound / visual, I’ll record each time and then pick the best one to upload. 

If you go back to the beginning when I first started recording, I had to balance my phone on the table, or the cabinet in the corner, keep it propped up with something so it didn’t slide about or fall over, and put it on selfie mode so that I could see what it was focussing on and make sure everything was in the image.  That meant that it looked like the bells had be rehung anticlockwise.  Last Christmas C bought be a gimbal so that I can mount my phone steadily and have it record the right way round even with the screen facing you, it’s not on selfie mode that way.  It also makes it easier to zoom in or position the view higher or lower, left or right.  It would also mean that I could set it to track something moving, or have it perfectly balanced even if I was walking around holding it.  At some point I’ll get some decent footage of the bells themselves. 

It’s good to hear that my recording are being enjoyed, even if only by a few, and that someone feels that they are good example of bell control.  I don’t think I’m in for a BAFTA or Oscar anytime yet though.


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