The University of Sheffield
Sheffield Universities' Guild of Change Ringers (SUGCR)
Sheffield Hallam University

Easter 1999 Somerset Tour

Account by Emily Horler

Friday 16th April 1999
It was a long journey but we made it: a four hour long drive from Sheffield Arts Tower to The Old School House, Kilmersdon, Somerset. My parents were greeted by sixteen hungry and travel weary bellringers hoping to bed down in their house for an entire weekend. Having been watered and flapjack-ed we were sardined into the three rooms where we were to spend the night *. Of course, by SUGCR standards, carpeted floors and a fully equiped bathroom facility are a luxury and consequently we awoke the next morning refreshed and ready to ring!

* The author would like to mention - on request - that one of these rooms was the kind donation of Miss Gwyneth Horler, otherwise resident of the pigsty that is the attic bedroom.

Saturday 17th April 1999
After scouring many country lanes, often more than twice over due to the poor navigation of a confessed local with a twenty year old map, we eventually found Pig-le-Tower, owned and run by Mr and Mrs Chapman of Piglet-in-the-Wild, Marston Bigot. We were clearly in the heart of the West Country. With a 9lb tenor the bells were reminiscient of a similar miniring encountered in Dublin last summer and we were ably guided in the new handling technique by the hospitable owners. Next port of call was the nearby village of Nunney where we found the church and recently rehung peal of six alongside the ruins of a medieval castle which dominates the peaceful village.

We decided to work off the ample pub lunch by climbing Glastonbury Tor, from here and on the walk back to the church we briefly took in the impresively historic town and bells. It was a fairish drive home to ring at my two home towers: both comfortable peals of six - Kilmersdon juxtaposing the earlier miniring with a 21cwt tenor. What awaited us back at home was a meal for sixteen, alcohol for 32 and plenty of silly games befitting of usual SUGCR gatherings.

Sunday 18th April 1999
With Lump * tied to the roofrack, luggage and ringers boarded the minibus to head North, not however before visiting the most beautiful city in the area: Bath. Here a short and exceedingly ameteur tour was attempted by myself followed by ringing at St Michael's with St Paul's church.

Top. L to R: Paul, Hayley, Fiona, Lesley, Adrian, Jon.
Bottom. L to R: Fleur, Stu, Gill, Sarah, Gill, Judith, Astri, Emily, Claire.
Photo courtesy of Fleur Kellett.

Clockwise from far left: Judith, Claire, Sarah, Adrian, Emily, Fleur, Jon, Paul, Fiona, Hayley, Lesley.
Photo courtesy of Fleur Kellett.

Lump.
Photo courtesy of Fleur Kellett.

Though the itinerary had anticipated being home in time for service ringing at St Marie's, most were glad to find that this was an overestimated possibility and were happy to return home to baths and beds.

* Undefinable, inanimate, fluffy, purple creature currently masquerading as Guild mascot.


The University of Sheffield, Western Bank, Sheffield, S10 2TN, UK