With two ringing parents, it was inevitable that Simon too would learn to ring! He was taught to handle a bell at St Mark, Swindon (a pleasant, easy-going 11cwt 8) in 2004, at the age of 10, and has never looked back. Simon’s first peal, Plain Bob Major at St Mark, was in 2007; he said afterwards that he would never ring another – how wrong he was! He was captain of the Gloucester & Bristol (G&B) team which won the RWNYC in Birmingham in 2012, and still attends the odd Youth Team practice as the honorary (and self-christened!) “old lag”.
Simon organised his first outing in 2007, although he really ramped up these activities in 2011 when he started ringing a number of quarter peals, some of which he had arranged. A week away that he organised for some friends in 2015 ultimately grew and developed into The Lilliputters Guild. Little did Simon know at the time what he had started! Simon remains the Secretary for The Guild and has been looking forward to these activities resuming following the pandemic.
Although still based in Swindon, Simon has rung at some 1300 towers across (and outside of) the UK, and does like ‘ticking’ a new tower off! He currently enjoys a good mixture of ringing, balancing ‘recreational’ activites like peals, quarter peals and Lilliputters with training and local ringing commitments. Simon’s favourite thing in ringing – apart from Grandsire Major! – is helping others develop and achieve in their own ringing, and he is especially happy to ring in a “first” for someone.
Many will recognise Simon from YouTube, where he goes under the name of “simonbellringer”. Simon serves as the Peal Secretary and a Central Council representative for the G&B, and has previously held the posts of Secretary and Ringing Master for the Swindon Branch. Outside of ringing, Simon is a Cub Scout Leader, having been involved in Scouting since the age of six, drawing many ideas from this part of his life in setting up and running the Lilliputters activities.
This entry was written in October 2021.
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