26th April – Malcolm Bowers

Welcoming and Accessible

I am writing these few words during Eastertide. So, I can continue to say Alleluia, Christ is risen. He is risen indeed! The Easter Season will continue until the Feast of Pentecost. The glorious fifty days. I hope many enjoyed their ringing on Easter Day and will continue to ring each Sunday as every Sunday is a little Easter Day. Did you know Sundays are not included in the forty days of Lent?

Easter Monday is also a time when many ringers go on an outing or tour which can be very enjoyable. Visiting other towers can also improve our ringing. Some bells are easy, others hard to ring. Some are odd struck. I always tell learners both eyes and ears should be used when ringing. I would hope however, that people with any sight or hearing impediment could also learn to ring. Perhaps someone could tell me if they taught such a person. I have not, although I have rung with people whose sight or hearing has become poor, and they have continued to be very good ringers.

What about other disabilities? Quite often we see ringing rooms moved from ground floor to further up the tower. Do we consider how we can make things easier for older people and those with a disability to be able to access the new room? Some of these ringers may have given many years of service to their tower and feel they have not been considered.

I hope you continue to enjoy your ringing at different towers and welcome visitors to yours and make your ringing rooms as accessible as possible.

Canon Malcolm Bowers