At a recent ringing course it became clear that the Birmingham mother/son team of Susan and Thomas Lagrone really should ring a peal. And it seemed apposite to do it before the end of the year, since there is an effort to get as many first peals this year as practical. As Birmingham is both a little isolated, and a bit loud for the neighbors, it was decided to ask for permission to ring in Hendersonville, with its excellent sound control, and a somewhat more central location. Maintaining concentration during a first peal can be a challenge, so we decided to mix up a few different methods in an effort to stimulate attention. Susan and Thomas had both just rung their first quarters of Cambridge Minor, so that was a method clearly to be included. And since they'd swotted up Kent for the course, too, that was an obvious second choice. The Birmingham band has been ringing lots of quarters of St Simon's Bob Doubles and its various friends with different front works, so they were stirred in, too, plus a helping of Plain Bob, both Doubles and Minor. Ted Clark, who taught Susan and Thomas to ring, was naturally a part of the band; it was filled out with David Porter from Charleston, Noah Smith from Clemson, and Don Morrison from Pittsburgh. After a one course false start, owing to a severe bout of nerves, the peal was rung without incident, both Susan and Thomas doing very well. Unlike many first pealers, there were even claims of "I enjoyed that."
The Hendersonville band made us most welcome, and enabled us to sandwich the peal into a pleasant whole weekend of ringing, 9-11 October. Things started with the earliest arrivals on Friday night, appropriately spending the evening working on Cambridge Minor and St Simon's Doubles with many of the Hendersonville ringers. Before the peal attempt Saturday afternoon the Hendersonville band kindly made the whole peal band most welcome at their usual Saturday morning practice, where we manage to ring all eight quite a bit, as well as six, including Norwich Minor. Sunday morning we were all made welcome at Sunday service ringing; a further welcome visitor Sunday morning was Andy Johnston from Washington. Sunday afternoon those of the peal band still in town were joined by Andy, Bob Aldinger and Don Johnes for two quarters. And, of course, there were beer and vittles both Friday and Saturday nights, in the charming center of Hendersonville.
Thanks very much to the Hendersonville band for making us so welcome!
Brimingham ringers Susan and Thomas Lagrone ring their first peal, in Hendersonville.