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Governance - a perspective

This page is incomplete, under development. It will be worked on during 2020.



Here I will raise issues related to formal structures of "management".


Bellringing is an unusual activity.
Anonymous people getting pleasure from someone else's equipment at minimal cost.
"Trust" is a major component of ringing.

Who owns the bells?

Commonly churches.
Rarely do the owners have any formal arrangements with the ringers
Usually someone has informal contact with the Church

Who can ring?

Just turn up and ring.
No need to register or identify yourself.
Your competence will soon become obvious.

Who is
"In Charge"?

Commonly, the "Leader" is self appointed.
Often a church member who is prepared to do the job.
The Church rarely checks the "Leader"'s competence.

Central Council
of Church
Bell Ringers

The nearest the ringing community has to a Trade Union.
Activists promote ringing and interact with the higher levels of Church hierarchy.
Disseminate lots of good advice and training resources.
But have no authority over bellringers.

Health & Safety

Don't mention it.
Bellringing is a 17th century tradition, not a 21st century activity.
Health & Safety is traditionally handed down. Competence is handed down.
There are training courses and qualifications, however these might not stand up in a Court of Law.
Insurance is a very difficult area to discuss, you are likely to be uninsured.
Learn who to trust, and trust them.


There is no standard qualifications system
People have tried to introduce "Standards" but as there is no enforcement possible,
many towers do not even bother to be interested in "Standards"

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Material Copyright © 2001 Derek C Johnstone

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Last Updated 24th March 2020