Down St Mary Bellringers competition win

By Alan Quick   |   Editorial Manager/Photojournalist   |
Tuesday 24th May 2022 8:00 am
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The winning Down St Mary team, from left, Andy Cleave (Tenor), Gary Quick (Second), Jenny Sparling (Third), Ian Fielding (Treble), Ali Waterson (Fourth) and Bob Robinson (Fifth).
The winning Down St Mary team, from left, Andy Cleave (Tenor), Gary Quick (Second), Jenny Sparling (Third), Ian Fielding (Treble), Ali Waterson (Fourth) and Bob Robinson (Fifth). (submitted )

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THE team of Bellringers representing St Mary’s Church, Down St Mary, won first place at the Devon Association of Ringers annual “Devon North Church Bellringing Competition” to retain the “George Facey” Shield on Saturday, May 14.

Held for the first time since 2019, this year’s competition was hosted by Dolton Bellringers in Torridge district of Devon.

The competition forms part of the qualifying round where the top five placed teams go forward to the Devon Association of Bellringers Major Final being held at Molland, Exmoor on Saturday, June 11. There they compete against the five qualifying teams from Devon South.

Competition peals consist of 66 changes where bells are required to alter position following a set pattern known as 60’s on Thirds. The rules dictate a team will be automatically disqualified if they deviate from this pattern or the duration of the peal is less than 15 minutes.

Expert judges listen to the ringing and award faults depending on a number of factors, which include: fluency of ringing, speed of ringing, clearance of the bells from one another including the quality of rising and lowering of the bells to and from a stopped position.

Results: 1 Down St Mary 22½– George Facey Shield, 2 Bow 33 – Arnold Cup, 3 Sampford Courtenay A 391/3, 4 Sampford Courtenay B 52, 5 East Anstey 53 and 6 Tiverton St Paul 591/3.

Anyone interested in learning to ring is invited to find out more from Bob Robinson, Morchard Bishop and Down St Mary Tower Captain on 01363 877523 or email: [email protected] .

Bob explained: “Anyone is able to ring, the general rule is, if you are able to ride a pushbike, you will be able to ring church bells.”

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