Memories of Katherine Daniel

I started ringing when I was twelve. As weeknight practices finished after my bed-time, the only place I could learn to ring was St Oswald’s, Hooe, on Saturday mornings. And very glad of that I am now. Under the guidance of Katherine I learnt good technique and to ring by places very early on; this put me in good stead for progressing my ringing over the last 24 years. Katherine was a tremendously patient teacher, with up to four children learning at the same time. Her patience also showed when teaching my father a number of years later.

I don’t remember Katherine ever missing a practice, service or wedding, even though her standard of ringing was far greater than us other Hooe ringers. Eventually I grew up and moved away from Sussex. On my returns home to visit family and friends, and of course St Oswald’s, Katherine would greet me with a gentle hug and ask all that I had been up to since my previous visit. Despite my moving around from city to countryside to another city, never a year passed without birthday and Christmas cards from Katherine with news from Hooe and best wishes.

Latterly, Katherine became unable to physically ring but she continued to attend practices and services every week to guide the regular band. Eventually, Katherine was unable to get to church but when I went to visit her, she still showed great interest in my ringing and career.

Katherine died on 28th April after a degenerative illness and she will be sorely missed. However, her spirit lives on in all the dozens of ringers she taught at St Oswald’s and elsewhere in Sussex. Many of these ringers have now moved away, so with any luck, there’s a little bit of Katherine somewhere near us all.


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