How to lead: An interview with the inspiring Linda Garton

White woman with glasses smiles on a plain red background with white handbells and the Fun with Bells Logo. Title text: How to lead: An interview with the inspiring Linda Garton

Show host Cathy Booth aims high this month in conversation with accomplished ringer and leading light Linda Garton.

Linda strongly believes that “success breeds success” and, as you’ll hear, this is amply illustrated in both her own ringing career and the winning bands that her leadership has inspired.

So muster your motivation, make a plan and put some of Linda’s practical ideas on training and development into action. You’ll then be set to celebrate all levels of ringing, from rounds right the way up to the Society of Royal Cumberland Youths* and beyond.

*Other ringing societies also available

About Linda Garton

Linda Garton learnt to ring at Barton Seagrave, Northants in 1972. Early exposure to Multi-Spliced Doubles followed, since Barton Seagrave was at that time one of the UK’s leading 5 bell towers. Another member of the band, Derek Sibson, gave her wider opportunities to progress and she joined the Society of Royal Cumberland Youths in 1979. At university in London during the early 1980’s she rang with the ULSCR, this at a time when it was very strong. She has been an active member of the Society of Royal Cumberland Youths since her time in London, becoming Master in 1990-3 and secretary between 1998-2001.

Linda was a secondary school teacher for over 20 years and has carried over the skills and positive attributes developed to the benefit of ringing. She communicates, motivates others and is an excellent organiser. She combines her ability to ring at the highest level – she has rung about 2300 peals – with running towers and teaching at a more local level over the last 25 years. This includes a focus on youth – she was involved in Bedfordshire’s RWNYC run of wins 2013-2016 and was RWNYC contest organiser 2016-2018. She is Currently President of the Bedfordshire Association, introducing much needed change to an organisation that has seen little change since it was founded in 1882.

In addition to ringing, Linda has a love of travel, sometimes combined with ringing! With handbell peals in Antarctic and South America in 2022, she and husband John Loveless have now rung peals in every continent!

Linda Garton

Top 5 Takeaways

  • Planning a striking competition? Open it up to all ringers, put on a picnic and make it a celebration!
  • If some of your ringers need more time to master a skill, consider putting on some intensive all day courses with small numbers
  • Evolve your practices as your students progress
  • Have a target – give your ringers something to aim for
  • Does your tower have a set of hand bells? Where’s the most unusual location they’ve been rung? Why not take them out for a day trip!

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