This week I went to a foreign land (Kent) to judge a striking competition. Despite being VERY FAR AWAY, they were quite like us. They were friendly, they liked tea, cake, sausage rolls and other things that you only ever get at a bellringers tea, and they enjoyed ringing. I felt very much at home.
David Hengeli (SE District Deputy Master) accompanied me and supplied all the soundbites for the results. It was his first (but I’m sure not last) go at judging a striking competition, although he is a veteran competitor. He was quite pleased to get out alive, following our comments, but we were very kind.
The ringing was great (nothing better than sitting in the shade of trees with a cup of tea, listening to good Erin Triples), and the top 3 bands rang excellently. Luckily we were in agreement on the winning team (Rochester) – congratulations to them for an excellent performance.
Inevitably, on the drive home we were both thinking about our own striking competition finals in a couple of weeks. The 6 bell competition is due to be held at Great Totham (just down the road from me) and the 8 bell final at my own manor, Goldhanger. I was horrified when I discovered that our steeple keeper had put a new (elastic) rope on the 6tha couple of weeks ago, but some stretching with a heavy weight has sorted that out, and it’s behaving normally now. I’m really looking forward to seeing all my ringing friends in my own village (nothing to do with becoming Master – this was arranged before my appointment) and introducing them to the Chequers Inn (where I occasionally visit…).
See you all on the 14th– it’s going to be a great day!