2016 AGM

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The 2016 Annual General Meeting was held in the Pimlico area of London. We were very fortunate to ring at three rare towers which the Guild had not rung at before, especially St Barnabas. We were very grateful to Geraldine Forster for organising these for us. It was also much appreciated that all the venues were within walking distance.
The day began with a quarter peal of Grandsire Triples at St Saviour, Pimlico with some additional members visiting to grab this tower.
The rarity of the towers was reflected by the number of people attending with 46 people in the afternoon. This brought its challenges and our Ringing Master, Peter Robson kept us in order with bands of 8 ascending and descending the first two towers in strict order. Our first tower was the 8 of St Gabriel, Pimlico. Signs of Christmas were highly visible here with Christmas Trees being sold in the grounds and the Advent Carol Service rehearsal in full flow. The bells date from 1855 cast by Whitechapel and on their plain bearings they were quite challenging.
Next stop was the 8 of St Stephens, Rochester Row. The bells date from 1850 (Whitechapel) but have just been rehung by Taylors in a new frame.
Many had time for a short tea break after this as we headed for our last tower of the day the 10 o St Barnabas Pimlico. The bells here are as they were first hung and are not rung very often. Indeed having had permission to ring it was touch and go as  whether we could still do so as  work had been carried out in the tower the day before. However we did manage some Erin there. It is obviously a well frequented and well looked after church and a band were in place decorating for Advent.
Darkness had drawn in when we finished and it was 30 minute walk to the Morpeth Arms in Westminster. We held a brief business meeting first and then 38 of us sat to a meal in the upper room there. Whilst coffee was being served we had the customary hand bell ringing to close the day.