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Chair's Chat February 2024

Dear Ringers,

I’m wondering if it’s too late to wish you a Happy New Year – particularly

when I have seen many of you at the Birthday Rally and/or at our first

South East Region Bell Orchestra rehearsal – but with all the Christmas

articles in this newsletter, it still seems appropriate!

It really is good to hear about everything that you are doing around the

region. As one of the biggest and most active regions of HRGB, we never

seem to have any trouble filling a hall for a rally - in fact we are

sometimes having to turn people away! However, it is becoming clear that

it seems to be the same people and teams who are willing to run or host

events for the region. While it is lovely to go back to the same places,

parcitularly when we know a venue works well for our needs, it would be

equally lovely to go to some different parts of the region. Please do have

a look around your local area – is there a large church hall, or a school

which might be able to be used for a rally? It doesn’t need to be a huge

space, just enough for a few teams – and we will provide all the help you

need to run the event (the form, the music, the conductors, even the

cake if necessary!). Let us know if you have anywhere which might be


I would like to take this opportunity to welcome our new members. We

have many independent members who have joined HRGB recently, some

teams which have been revived or have reformed with a slightly

different name, and many teams are also reporting new members.

Sadly, we also have some teams which have disbanded and members who

have chosen not to renew their membership for a number of reasons,

and we are sad to see them go.

Moving forward we have a number of events planned for the year – the

next being our AGM Rally. While it does contain the AGM (held just

before lunch as an incentive to me to get through the official business

as quickly as possible!), most of the day will be taken up with ringing.

Alongside our transport themed massed ringing pieces, we are hoping a

number of teams will perform solo items. Please remember that it

doesn’t need many people to ring something, and if you are short of team

members on the day, you will be in a room full of ringers and many of us

are quite happy to step in and help out, so please do not be afraid to ask!

Some of you may be aware that the Harlequin Theatre in Redhill, where

SERBO were due to perform in May, is currently closed. Their website

says “The Harlequin Theatre & Cinema building remains closed due to the

extensive presence of RAAC. We are working with the holder of the head lease

of the building to reach a resolution, but the reality is we anticipate the theatre

will be closed for some time.” This means that SERBO have unfortunately

had to find an alternative venue for the concert. We are very lucky that

North Camp Methodist Church, as well as having a hall which is big

enough to accommodate our rehearsal, are also able to let us use the

church for the concert. This means that the concert will take place at

the same time as originally advertised, just in a different venue. Tickets

will be available soon and we will send out information when everything

has been finalised.

Don’t forget to send in any snippets about what you or your team have

been up to – no matter how small. We can all find inspiration in

something someone else has done.

Keep Ringing!

Yours, Helen

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