Thanks to the magnificent poster created by Bamford Print residents of Heywood could have been in no doubt about what was happening at St Luke’s on St George’s Day.

Early arrivals at Balderstone were treated to toasted tea cakes. A shock was waiting in the ringing room though where the plaster from almost an entire wall had crashed into a heap on the floor. More entertainment was provided by the 5th rope which was so long it was easier to ring kneeling down!

There was a double celebration at Leesfield as the 24th April marked the 150th anniversary of the bells. Look out for Brian Hayes’ book ‘The Song of the Bells’ on sale from 25th May.

Tower Captain Robert Hodgetts made good use of the opportunity of being interviewed by the local press to promote the cause of ringing in East Crompton.

St Thomas Newhey 1260 Kent and Plain Bob Minor
1. Kathy Stott    4. Carole Clarke
2. Thomas Chapman    5. Phil Hope
3. Helen Rigby    6. Stephen Kershaw (c)

We were indebted to John Caternach for operating the chimes at St Barnabas Shore.

Following this a wedding at Todmorden Unitarian Church benefitted from Rolling Ringing at the last but one tower of the day.


The final ring at Todmorden St Mary got off to a slightly inauspicious start when someone who shall be nameless (Thomas!) snapped the rope on the 5th. Despite this two bands managed to ring a course of St George Minor with the first also slaying a course of The Dragon for good measure.

A day of continuous ringing was without doubt thirsty work and before long the lure of tea and fresh home baking proved overwhelmingly irresistible.

Thanks are due to the Todmorden catering team, the Bamford family for printing such great posters, and last but not least to Debra for her peerless organisation of a highly successful and   enjoyable St George’s Day Rolling Ring.


An extra vote of thanks to Newchurch ringers Jane Giles and John Howard for their support. The award for most towers rung at during the day went to John with our best wishes for a speedy recovery from the head wound that he sustained from a close encounter with the stonework at Middleton!


The band at Rochdale St Chad did a sterling job in setting off the Rolling Ring and it is only fitting that they have the last word in wishing Many Happy Returns to John Ripley who celebrated his 17th birthday on St George’s Day. Quarter peal next year?


Ringing for England

In springtime, the only pretty ring time,
When birds do sing, hey ding a ding, ding
                                                                As You Like It



St George's Day falls on a Saturday this year and what better way to celebrate our famous dragon slayer than by marking the occasion with a great, and almost unique, English tradition?


  On 23rd April we aim to join many other parts of the country by ringing out as many church bells as possible in Rochdale, Oldham and Todmorden. We are challenging ourselves to a Rolling Ring starting at Rochdale and then ringing in succession at other churches including Heywood, Middleton, Balderstone, East Crompton, Oldham(Leesfield), Newhey, Littleborough(Shore) and finishing in Todmorden with ringing at the Unitarians and St Mary’s. Listen out for the bells ringing across the towns celebrating England’s Day.

Go to for more on ringing for St. George’s Day.

Download a copy of the Poster

Publicity Notes


Please can you display the Rochdale Branch programme in your tower and encourage your ringers to attend the meetings.

Everyone is welcome and it is an opportunity to meet ringers from other towers, to ring new methods and to practice methods we might not get chance to ring at our own towers.

Please can you check when we are planning to visit your Tower and confirm that the bells will be available on the proposed date.

Please note the February Meeting will be held on the first Saturday, 6th February. I have also attached a separate notice advertising this.

This year St George’s Day is on a Saturday. This is a great opportunity for us to ring and get some publicity at the same time. I will send out further details soon.

And finally in October we are proposing to hold a Quarter Peal Day instead of our usual branch meeting. Details to follow.

Please get involved in Branch activities. Everyone is always welcome.