Ely DA

Welcome to the main website for the Ely Diocesan Association of Church Bell Ringers

Bell ringing is a team activity that stimulates the brain and helps keep you fit ... it also makes a glorious sound!

This website is primarily intended to keep local ringers informed of news and ringing events. We hope other ringers will find the details of towers, practice nights and the ringing calendar useful.

The association is composed of four districts, each with their own website.

Interactive map of towers is here.

* New News *

Ringing Recovery

All Ringing Recovery documents here.

Ely DA Superlist is launched - see below


  • Ringing courses and more at the Stretham REC

  • Teaching and Learning Documents here

  • Walsoken Teaching Hub here.

Association garments from Expertees of Huntingdon.

Dates for the Association (larger calendar here)

Here are all the dates for the Association, Districts and Stretham REC shown as a Google Calendar.

Chairman's Christmas Message

Once again, Christmas is almost upon us, and, hopefully, it will be a better one than last year….we can only hope.

I’d like to take this opportunity of thanking all of you, for your part, however big, however small, in helping to keep bellringing going over the past year. Those of you who have rung in, and those who’ve run, Zoom/Ringing Room practices whilst we couldn’t ring “live”; those who have supported, and those who have run, “live” practices when we had a gradual return to “normal ringing”, and those who’ve started to teach bell control and indeed Call Changes and method ringing to novice ringers. Thanks to you all. Everyone in the Association has done their “bit”.

Unfortunately, the future is still very uncertain. Still, if we have to go back temporally to Zoom meetings, at least we’ll know what to do and how to go about it! That’s something we had to learn during the first lockdown….but we did it!

So, whatever 2022 throws at us, however bad it gets (and hopefully things will improve gradually) let’s face it together and continue to support ourselves and one another; we’ve proved that we can do it!

May I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from myself and my family. Stay positive, stay safe and…..carry on!


More chats here.

Ely DA Training Day, Saturday 2nd October

Details of the six workshops, and how to book, are available here. We have used Eventbrite, a free service, to collect reservations for each of the six workshops.

If anyone would like to come along to a workshop to help (apart from the Tower maintenance session) please contact Dee directly by e mail rato_at_elyda.org.uk

Any questions please contact Dee at rato_at_elyda.org.uk. Dee can also provide a print-friendly version of the workshop details if you would like a poster for your tower noticeboard,

Alan Barber

Sue Marsden writes:

I'm sorry to have to announce the death of Alan M Barber today, 12th July. Alan was a member of the Ely District from the early 1960s until the late 1970s, but always maintained his connection with the Ely District and Association. He was a first class conductor and composer, and was Ely Peal Secretary for a number of years. He moved to the North East a while back. He will be very much missed, and I was honoured to count him as a friend. May he rest in peace.

The Ely DA Superlist is here!

You asked for a diocesan-wide mailing list for the Ely DA, and we have set one up. Welcome to <elyda-superlist@groups.io>. The list will mirror information from the ElyDA which is currently (and will continue to be) sent out via district mailing lists, Facebook groups and websites. However, the list has potential to be much more useful than this - it depends entirely on what use you make of it. You can have discussions amongst yourselves about Pickled Egg methods or Young Ringers or anything else you like.

Anyone who signs up can post to the list, and posts will be unmoderated (except for one initial post). Hashtags are used to enable individual list members to configure their own delivery of emails - you can mute certain topics, or receive notifications only of specific topics.

If you already have a groups.io login then it is simply a question of going to https://groups.io/g/elyda-superlist/ and clicking the "join this group" button at the bottom of the page.

If you do not have an account then you must first click on "Sign Up" at the top right. Enter your email address and a password for this account. (It's also possible to use a Facebook or Google account). You will get an email asking you to confirm that your email address is valid and that it really was you who asked to create the account. Once you have the account you can log in and join the group -- see the earlier paragraph.

A few hashtags for the list have been pre-populated in a dropdown (for admin, individual districts, handbells, practices, etc) - please use these first, and only set up your own hashtags if your topic is missing. Have fun!

JoAnne Rutter, May 2021

Ely DA Subscriptions in 2021

Ely DA membership subscriptions for 2021 would normally be due at the beginning of the year. However, the Ely DA General Committee unanimously agreed the following resolution at its meeting in December 2020: ‘That the collection of 2021 subscriptions be deferred until after the 2021 AGM, and that the General Committee would recommend to that AGM that the subscription be set at £0 for this one year only’.

Donations in lieu of a subscription are, of course, welcome and encouraged.

If you donate to the Bell Restoration Fund (which is a charity) then the donation can be gift-aided. A gift aid form is available on the BRF page here; the gift aid form can be completed online. You can make a donation to the General Account via BACS, please contact any District Secretary or Nicholas Small as Treasurer (treasurer_at_elyda.org.uk ) for account details. If you intend to make a donation to the BRF in lieu of a subscription, then please make the donation initially to the General Account, informing the Treasurer of your intentions. Then, in case the General Committee’s resolution is not passed at the AGM, the donation can be re-purposed as a subscription.

Lockdown Bellringing Activities

Dee Smith, as RATO for the Association, has provided a summary of suggested activities. The current list, dated 23/04/20, is here, and Dee will provide updates as new events arise. Contents of the summary: Cambridge District Webinars; Drop-in and Help sessions on Saturday mornings; Ringing Room.

More photos and reports

More photos and general reports of interest to the Association are here. See also Learning and Teaching, including Training events.

Advertise your tower open day with the Ely DA banner

If you are organising an open day at your tower or having a presence at local fetes or other events, the Association Mobile Demonstration Bell, Display Stand, Hand-out Leaflets and Advertising Banner are excellent ways of attracting attention and making people more aware of ringing and its benefits.

The mobile demonstration bell, display stands and banner are available to borrow. More information here.