Changes in Central Council PR Committee

by John Harrison

The Parish Centre at Wellesbourne, Warwickshire has become a popular venue for several Central Council Committees to meet. On 6th July the Public Relations Committee held its first meeting of the new triennium there, and we welcomed two new members, Rosalind Martin and Giles Blundell, both of whom have track records and ideas for publicising ringing. The third new member, Kate Flavell, sadly could not be with us but in her absence we elected her Chairman. She had agreed in advance, and having just stepped down as President clearly needed a new job to keep her busy! As outgoing chairman I proposed her. I had been chairing two committees (the first to do so for over sixty years) since taking over when Barrie Dove stepped down last year. Lynne Hughes was elected Secretary.

High on our agenda was the forthcoming Ringing Roadshow on 6th September. Jackie Roberts reported arrangements progressing well with most stands taken, a full seminar programme and lots of mini-rings. Tickets are on sale. The website is continually updated with more information.

The Committee discussed plans for its own stand. We will be displaying information about publicity, with posters video and leaflets. We will also be inviting visitors to talk to us about what they have found successful, as well as giving us their ideas on things like the image of ringing and how to enhance it. We are planning a couple of ‘meet up’ opportunities. One for overseas ringers who are in the UK and one for anyone who would like to meet and ask questions of Council officers.

We will also have a couple of ‘lodgers’ on our (double) stand – other committees whose presence is important but who don’t have their own stand.

On the communication front, in addition to our mailing list of society secretaries, we are compiling and updating mailing lists of association Public Relations Officers, newsletter editors and webmasters, so that we can communicate directly with them on matters of shared interest. As part of our intention to communicate more with the church via the dioceses we agreed to refine not just the messages that we would like to project but also what we can offer to the dioceses to encourage them to communicate with us.

Several other successes were reported. Our presence on social media is growing. Our publicity leaflets continue to be in demand. Our article about the work on branding ringing undertaken by students at Reading University should be published shortly. Our liaison with Bells on Sunday continues to thrive, and a recording of the winning team at the Ringing World National Youth Contest in Worcester was broadcast the following Sunday.

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Central Council of Church Bell Ringers