Andy first learnt to ring in 1964 in the small Berkshire village of Brightwell-cum-Sotwell , and soon mastered the technique of bell handling, quickly learning the basic methods on six bells and ringing his first quarter peal the following year in Dorchester Abbey. A year later, in 1966 Andy rang his first full peal in his home tower, of Plain Bob Minor.
On the passing away of the tower Captain in that same year, Andy was asked to step in and become Tower Captain at Brightwell at the young age of 17 which he carried out for the next 5 years until his career took him away from the area and he had to relinquish the role. Ringing still featured strongly whilst working and he joined a band in Clerkenwell and St. Mary’s High Street Kensington whilst in London, also ringing the occasional peal and many quarter peals.
Due to a new family life and work commitments, Andy had to put his ringing on hold and only occasionally had the opportunity to ring, mainly for Sunday services and it wasn’t until 2015 that he returned to ringing proper, having retired and now living in the Bolton area. Andy became a member of the Lancashire Association and started back ringing in Blackburn Cathedral and other local towers.
Having been approached by the President of the LACR, Andy completed a maintenance check of the bells at All Souls Bolton and decided, there and then that this Churches Conservation Trust church was an ideal location to introduce and train new recruits and since 2016 has been very involved in just such activities with great success.
All Souls with Andy and his group of new learners.
This entry was written in November 2022.
This second sojourn into ringing in redundant churches sees show host Cathy Booth discovering two more exciting projects where ringers have joined forces with the Churches Conservation Trust. When someone suggests you take the keys and check on the bells in a redundant church, big things can happen. Such an invitation p...