A bit of careless talking by Greg at the last DRC AGM led him to be volunteered as organiser of an outing to Oxfordshire on Saturday, July 12th. As this was a trip to the countryside with little public transport and a tight schedule, car sharing was arranged for the attendees.
First up at 09.30 White’s of Appleton.
As Greg’s trip notes read ‘Visit the oldest bell-hanging company in the UK, and ring the ‘Balscote Ring’: Rings of 12 + 5: tenor: 1.2.16 in Bb. No stays or slides’. White’s are not really a bell foundry, but they have lots of bells in various stages of being worked on. They also have a storeroom with a mini-ring up in its attic.
The Balscote Ring hiding in the attic at White’s (photo by Andrew)
I do not particularly get on with mini-rings as it’s a bit like drinking half-pints and I just don’t see the point. It turned out that Greg grew up in Appleton, and was aware of White’s as a boy, but had no interest in those days. So, a bit of unfinished business for Greg, and off we went to –
11.00-12.00 St Michael’s Church, Cumnor 8 bells (13.1.4 in F)
Ed did a very nice sketch of Cumnor, which I attach here
Cumnor was a lovely old church with a wonderful wooden staircase as these pics by Elizabeth show –
Graffito on staircase at Cumnor (photo by Elizabeth)
Ringing at Cumnor (photo by Nolan)
12.15-13.45 Lunch at the Rose Revived
An eponymous pub on the river with a nice view as captured by Ed –
Sketch from The Rose Revived pub (by Ed)
14.00-15.00 St James’ Church, South Leigh 8 bells (10.1.26 in G)
After an excellent lunch, we resumed our itinerary. I must mention Greg’s directions here – I don’t know whether this was Greg’s natural playfulness, poor typing skills, or just general silliness, but just about every direction had an error ‘turn left’ actually means ‘turn right’, postcodes were incorrect for satnavs etc. I thought this added to the ambience as our cars scattered across South Oxon with people making different judgements.
15.30-16.30 Church of St Peter & St Paul, Long Hanborough 6 bells (13.1.24)
17.00-18.00 St Mary Magdalene Church, Woodstock 8 bells (12.3.24 in F)
Kings Arms, 19 Market Street, Woodstock, Oxfordshire OX20 1SU
We actually went to a different pub on the recommendation of the gentleman who let us into the church. A couple of pints and we headed back to London in the cars. An excellent day out to a part of the country that I didn’t know. Well played Greg for organising the outing and dealing with late cancellations and changes. Thanks to Chris and Andrew for organising the ringing.
p.s. as my memory of the afternoon’s churches is non-existent, pls send me text and I will add it. Same for photos.