Not long after moving to the area, a chance discussion between Elizabeth LeMoine (herself a novice ringer of less than two years) and churchwarden Vera Hullyer prompted an invitation to start a local band. The current Stepney band held its first practice in May 2007.
On 13 May 2017 the band held a 10th anniversary party, attended by current and past members, supporters, members of the clergy and congregation – including Vera, whose husband Charlie worked for the foundry – Vera brought a wonderful bundle of related newspaper clippings. Representing the previous band, we were delighted to welcome Liz, Peter, Matthew and Heather Rayner who have been great supporters of the current band, especially appreciated in the early days when there was a lot of teaching to be done.
A quarter peal was rung that included all of the Tower Captains of the current band. There was too much food, the ice cream van playing ‘Oranges and Lemons’ stopped by, there was open ringing, speeches and lots of photos. Perhaps the latter speak best about the afternoon’s celebration.
With great thanks to everyone who came and to all the Docklands, Middlesex and local ringers who have supported and continue to support the current Stepney band through its first 10 years – and here’s to the next 10!
Photos by Heather Rayner and Éva Rédei.