The X-File (No.29) - May 1998

A mere 17 new methods to choose from in May - perhaps Lenten fasting was taken to new extremes this year. The spread of ability, however, had the usual pattern and 6 methods made the cut. There were one or two well worthy of a review that had appeared in some similar guise or other before (Douglas S. Major) or of a simple nature with just that few too many ugly contiguous places that the X-File is well known to abhor (Montana D. Major). Those meeting this month’s selection criteria are varied and interesting - features sometimes compromised by budding composers in their search for the truth……

Method

lh

FCH

Rung at

On

Conductor

Pg

Blackburn with Darwen

l

BK1a1c (out)

Blackburn

1/4/98

G H Campling

434

Trenemene

b

Bc (out)

Loughborough

8/4/98

B G Warwick

482

Hothorpe

h

Dcd

Haselbech

17/4/98

M A Coleman

483

Thornly

g

Eac

Warnham

20/4/98

D D Smith

510

Leybourne

b

Bcde

Birling

18/4/98

S Jenner

529

Alisonian

f

Bac

Higham Ferrers

2/5/98

R E J Dennis

534

Blackburn with Darwen Delight Royal : x56x4x56x1x4x5.34x4.5x4x5 lh 10

Having said that this month’s selection was varied and interesting, here’s the exception. Apart from the stupidly long name (OK - it was appropriate given the footnote, but surely some more sensible paraphrase could be found), B.w.D. is a trivial variation of Cornwall on 10 with the back 6 positions just treble-bobbing around and the front 4 doing the variating with some points and fish-tails. A simple concept, but not really original. Unlikely to become a classic although the L method group is nice and mobile.

Trenemene Surprise Royal : x3x4x5x6x7x8x6x7.458x4.9 lh 12

Mr Warwick’s band gets a lot of stick in this column for ringing methods that appear to have nothing original nor musical to speak for them whatsoever - and rightly so! Trenemene is an unusual exception. Cambridge above (what else?) and a work below that doesn’t exactly sparkle with music in the plain course, but can be arranged simply to give some 4-bell roll-up possibilities through wrong-hunting in positions 1-4. A ‘wrong’ double dodge in 56 and 78 across the half lead fixes the lines and the effect is quite pleasing.

Hothorpe Surprise Major : x5x4.5x5.6x4x3.2.34.2.8 lh 18

Hothorpe is very nearly Bristol over Rutland: the only difference being the double-dodging on the front in Rutland replaced by some unsightly lead-2nds-lead-2nds etc. and 5ths made at the half-lead. In this regard it is a trivial variation of Silsden S. Major that really is Bristol over Rutland with 58 at the half-lead (and is cps too - unlike Hothorpe). Old methods arranged in new ways in this manner always warm the cockles of an old fashioned heart especially when course bells meet in 12, 34, 56 and 78 at some stage as they do here. Perhaps Hothorpe is included here only to reaffirm Silsden as a jolly good method - but so what?!

Thornly Delight Major : x5x4.5x56.3x4x1x.36x36.1 lh 18

Yet another cracker from David Smith’s band in Sussex, Thornly starts with the underused Zanussi (or Ariel) ‘big dodges’. Under the treble, the work is Glasgow with the 3rds on the end of the 34 places moved forward a place in the notation. There are 23 possible roll-up positions with 78 together (11 at the back, 12 at the front) and they are distributed evenly throughout the course. The E falseness is very tame and only comes into play around the course end.

Leybourne Surprise Major : x5x6x2x3x4x3.6.34.6.7 lh 12

Stan Jenner seems to like hunting sets in positions 1-3 and 4-6 when the treble gets to the back. Leybourne is another of his methods to have this feature. The effect on the front is that the 4-bell roll-ups hit you rather by surprise and may often be difficult to see coming. This could be a detrimental feature to good ringing, but I can’t imagine an experienced band having much trouble. Pure Pudsey adorns the method above the treble (well, the good news had to end somewhere didn’t it?!) which is at least quite straightforward.

Alisonian Surprise Major : 3x56.4.56x2.3.4x4.4.4x236.7 lh 12

Alisonian makes a nice change from the usual methodology with a varied line and a hat full of musical opportunities. It’s nearly all wrong-place except round the treble and has relatively few sudden changes of direction. Describing the method construction is tricky because it’s fairly unusual, but there are certainly shades of Glasgow and London in there somewhere. It’s a pity about the 236 notation, but sometimes that’s just the way it has to be!

This file is now closed.

"MOLDY"



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