Summer 2000 North Wales Tour
Account by Jon Collett
This year, for a long weekend in the middle of July, SUGCR visited the North Wales, Shropshire and Cheshire area. Based in a little Village called Coedpoeth (pronounced Co-ed-poe-eth) we spent four days ringing in four different counties and two different countries.
We left on Thursday 13th July in a half full minibus which Stu the Driver (unfortunately I canít think of alliteration for this) assured us was the best minibus that we had ever hired. After journeying over snake pass and down some motorways we arrived at my house, our home until Monday. After going to a pub (typical students) were we did a pub quiz, and going to the Station (Typical Paul), we decided where we were going to sleep, and we settled for the night.
On Friday, we ventured down to Shropshire to the first tower: Oswestry. After realising it was unwise to start at an 8 bell tower with only 8 ringers, we were thankful when another two turned up. The next two towers Great Ness and (after lunch in Shrewsbury) Ightfield, both had 6 bells and so were a bit easier as we were still short on ringers. The final tower of the day was Hodnet (a very nice 8 bell tower), two more ringers had turned up by now and made life even easier. When we had finished, we left Hodnet, then we came back and left in the correct direction and went home were we ate a poor pub dinner then went to another pub.
On Saturday we went to the seaside, or more precisely we to Bangor and Anglesey. We rang at a place called Mold on the way, then went to Bangor and rang there. The tower could only be described as awful, particularly as the bells were inaudible. This didnít help us as the bells were also very hard to ring. From here we walked into Bangor to have lunch. Beaumaris was the next tower, one of the two that has bells on Anglesey. After we had rung there, we went and got up to various antics on the beach. These were optional, and the choices were:
Sarah and Steve fell off the wall, most of us played with the Frisbee or went to sleep, and much to our chagrin, the people who went to the castle came back(!).
On Sunday, we rang at Wrexham for their Sunday service. This was an interesting experience as Wrexham has 10 bells, and it was a first for a few people. After making a reasonable noise we left and went to Gresford to ring after their service. We would have rung immediately after the service, but unfortunately the tower captain thought we were coming the next week so we got in a bit late. For lunch, we ate in a small park and wished Stu, our driver happy Birthday and ate his cake for him. We promptly forgot all about this and went to ring at Ruabon. After this we went to Chirk, and Stu got his Birthday present: he ran the tower (wasnít he lucky!). The final tower of the day was Llangollen, a very nice ring of 8 bells, but unfortunately had long ropes (this was demonstrated by the fact that I, a six foot tall man, could ring the tenor kneeling on the floor with easily enough rope in my hand). The day was finished off by yet more people leaving after a reasonable meal at a pub called 'The Moor'
Monday was the final day. We tidied up the house and left to go back to Sheffield via the two towers of Holt and Bosley. A leisurely drive over the peak district and we arrived in Sheffield in the middle of the afternoon. The day and the tour were finished by entering the pub quiz at Aunt Sallies.
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