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Some AGMs are boring and routine. Some are tense and unpredictable. Some are inspirational. The ringers’ AGM at the end of January combined all three! The year’s affairs had been competently managed under Julie Goodchild’s leadership. The bells had been regularly rung, bolts had been tightened, dust removed, methods learnt, money raised for charity, and so on. The finances balanced, despite continuing our practice of making a donation to the PCC to cover the year’s maintenance costs, in this case nearly £200 to buy some new ropes.
Julie stood down after two years office, but her succession was unsure until the last minute. The ‘obvious’ candidates were either too heavily committed with work and other commitments or were already nominated for other ofce. Jon Tutcher volunteered to take the post of treasurer & secretary, thus allowing John Harrison to take over as foreman. Jon and John have both done several previous stints in most tower offices. Nigel Herriott and Arthur Moss remained in post as deputy foreman and steeple keeper respectively.
We also had a paper proposing actions to solve some long standing problems. The problems and some of the ideas for solutions have been around for many years, and following discussion at last year’s AGM, John Harrison had gathered the available information into a paper for us to consider the way ahead. By this stage in the meeting we did not have time to do justice to such a weighty topic, so we will convene a special meeting of the band in the next few weeks to discuss it properly. We will update you on the outcome of that meeting in due course.
Perhaps the inspirational remarks of the evening was when Janet Lucas, who chaired the meeting, told us of someone who through hearing the bells had come to look at the church, had subsequently been married and was now a regular member of the congregation at Woosehill.
Ringers used to call the faithful to worship. These days they don’t hear us until they get out of their cars almost here, but it is good to know that the bells speak also to those who might never come to church.
John Harrison (Jan 1999)
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