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Bell Ringing Clubs

Home > London > Hobbies | Clubs | Music
Published March 13th 2011
Many adults who never learned a musical instrument as a child end up having piano lessons or guitar tuition at some point in their life.

A few will be lucky enough to uncover a spectacular talent they never knew they had, and within months will be performing for friends at beach parties, or serenading a loved one on a lazy Sunday morning.

But let's face it, for most it's a frustrating journey that ends horribly with a smashed up guitar, its remnants scattered across the living room floor.

There comes a time in the life of most adults when they realise they're not natural musicians; that to achieve a level of competence on the guitar, piano or trumpet will require many more hours of practice than they are able to give.

So perhaps an ideal compromise would be to nurture your love of melody by taking up a musical pursuit that doesn't place too much demand on finger dexterity and coordination skills.

Like, for example, handbell ringing.

The main requirements for handbell ringing are the ability to count, and being able to grip hold of things (such as bells). It's much easier than learning to play the guitar.

When enough handbells clang together in a timely and orchestrated fashion, great things can be achieved.

It's fun to play as part of a team instead of going crazy by yourself as you spend another wasted hour trying to nail a chord.

It's also a social event where new friendships can be forged.

If you fancy having a go at handbell ringing, there are plenty of clubs in and around London where you can get started.

Here are just a few of them:

- Sanderstead Handbell Ringers in South Croydon. They have two groups: 2 O'clock Bells, who meet at 2pm on Mondays during term time, and the SAS Ringers who are an evening group.

- St. Mary Teddington Bells in Teddington. This group meets every Monday evening. All ages are welcome, and their music covers several genres, including classical and jazz.

- Broxbourne Handbell Ringers in Broxbourne, just north of Enfield. Ringing on a regular basis since 1975, the Broxbourne Handbell Ringers meet most Fridays from 5.30pm.

- St. Lawrence Chobham Handbell Ringers in Chobham, south-west of London. Meetings take place on Fridays at 7pm, and all ages are weclome. Their youngest bell ringer is just 10 years young!

You may never play lead guitar in a world-touring rock band, but you could play one of the bells at your local bell ringing group, and be just as happy.
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Why? It's a fun way of improving rhythm and concentration, and you'll make new friends too.
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