The Ely Diocesan Association of Church Bell Ringers (Ely DA)

Association News

Association 10 ad 12 bell practices

As well as events organised locally by the Districts, the Association itself organises events including practices on 10 and 12 bells. These are often on fifth Fridays or Saturday in any month that has them, but sometimes have to be moved. For 2024, these practices will be:

Unless mentioned otherwise these practices are open to anyone who can handle a bell independently and everyone will at least get to ring rounds or call changes. Depending on the abilities of those present these practices will also involve opportunities to ring method, including Grandsire, Cambridge and Stedman.

For any questions or enquiries about ay of this please contact the Association Ringing Master as rm@elyda.org.uk.

Association Merchandise

The Association has a variety of merchandise available featuring the Association logo.

Scam Emails

Some members of the association  have recieved forged emails from unusual @gmail.com email address. Currently these are addressed to Association and District officers via the @elyda.org.uk email addresses, claim to be from plausible contacts and contain a short message such as "Hello Xxxx, are you free at the moment?" These are likely to the start of a attempt at a social engineering attack of some sort. They can be reported to Google using the form at https://support.google.com/mail/contact/abuse as should otherwise be ignored.

Society of Cambridge Youths 300th Aniversary

The Society of Cambridge Youths are celebrating their foundation 300 years ago in 1724 and the tercentenary of the first peal by the Society, rung at Great St Mary's, Cambridge on 5th November 1725. The first proposal for a diocesan association was made by the gentleman bellfounder Gervas Holmes in 1882. Although by then better known as a member of the Cambridge University Guild, his membership of the Cambridge Youths began while he was a student in 1856. The founding meeting of the Association was held at Cambridge in 1897 and presided over by the vicar of Great St Mary's.

For the 300th Celebrations, the society has published the full towerbell peal records for the Cambridge Youths and Great St Mary's on BellBoard. To date there have been seven peals rung jointly for the Ely Diocesan Association and the Cambridge Youths. The first was in 1951 and the most recent in 1994. Four were at Great St Mary's, one at Little Shelford, and the other two at Shoreditch and St Mary, Redcliffe. The EDA itself has rung a further 51 peals at Great St Mary's. The first was in 1905, and the most recent was on the 4th January this year.

In order to recognise the past and present connections with the Ely Diocesan Association, the Society would be delighted if any members were able to attend the celebration dinner, which will be held in the Great Hall of Trinity College, Cambridge on Saturday 21st September 2024. We will be publishing details of further activities via the Cambridge Youths website. There is also a book, Foolish Youths and Substantial Rewards: a History of Ringing in Cambridge, available for pre-order through the Ringing World shop for delivery in September.

On-line membership management

The Association’s Administration Sub-committee is investigating the idea of on-line membership management for the Association. See On-line membership management for more details.

Someone from the  Sub-committee plans to be at every Annual District Meeting in January 2024 to talk briefly about this and to take the views of members. In addition, everyone is welcome to comment directly by emailing webmaster@elyda.org.uk. 

The sub-committee have a list of features that they would like to see available in any system adopted by the Association.

Wendy Piercy

We are sorry to pass on the sad news that Wendy Piercy died 0n 20 September. Wendy lived just outside the association boundary in Eaton Socon, but used to ring regularly in the Huntingdon District and was a member of the Ely DA.

Peterborough Diocesan Guild 100th anniversary

In 2024 the Peterborough Diocesan Guild will be celebrating the 100th anniversary of its creation. During the year a number of events are being planned, there will be some aims and challenges for members to aspire to, and merchandise for sale. 

The events are taking place one in each month, and usually on the second weekend, mostly Saturdays.  The full list of events is available of their website at https://pdg.org.uk/pdg-100. A list of the merchandise available for the anniversary can be found at https://pdg.org.uk/pdg-100/centenary-year-merchandise

Ridgman Trophy 2023

On Saturday 17 June, the Peterborough Diocesan Guild of Church bellringers hosted the Ridgman trophy, a 10 bell striking contest for associations that border the Ely DA. The competition was held at Towcester and the test piece was 216 changes of spliced Plain and Little Bob Royal. The judges were Andrew and Joanne Wilby.

The results were as follows:

Bedford did not complete the test piece.

The 2024 competition will take place on 8 June in Biggleswade.

Association Events

There are a number of semi-regular Association  events which will be of interest to the wider membership:

Advertise your tower open day with the Ely DA banner

If you are organising an open day at your tower or having a presence at local fetes or other events, the Association Mobile Demonstration Bell, Display Stand, Hand-out Leaflets and Advertising Banner are excellent ways of attracting attention and making people more aware of ringing and its benefits.  

The mobile demonstration bell, display stands and banner are available to borrow. More information here.