Getting the band back together

Yesterday we rang with our 10-bell band, all together in person, and scored a quarter of Littleport. This was very satisfying because I think the only time we've rung a whole course before was in Ringing Room, with some quite difficult internet delays. But yesterday we just sat down and rang it without any false starts.

The first course was a little shaky because we were getting to grips with the method, and then the second and third courses were better. The fourth course showed signs of tiredness, but we kept going until the end. The method holds together pretty well because all the landmarks from Bristol Major are still there, and the back bells provide a lot of stability especially when they are working together.

Finding a good composition takes a little thought. The leads are the same length as Bristol Major, i.e. 32 changes, so you need 40 leads for 1280. There are 9 leads per course, so 40 leads is 4 courses plus 4 leads. With 4th place bobs (adding an extra lead per bob) that means either 4 courses with only 1 bob per course, which can't be done, or 3 courses with 13 bobs, which is possible but means a lot of calls, as in this composition:

1280 Littleport Little Surprise Royal
Richard C Offen

M  W  H  23456
2     2  32654
2  2  2  53246
   2  1  23456

Instead, inspired by the Five o'Clock Club's frequent use of compositions with different types of bob, I came up with this one:

1280 Littleport Little Surprise Royal
Simon J Gay

B  W  23456
x     35264
x  2  64352
2 part.
x = 16

What I didn't realise until afterwards is that it's not particularly easy for 5-6, with at least some work in every position. 3-4 also ring every position except the 5-6 position. But we coped, and it was a good (although belated) start to this year's campaign.

Next week we're going to try Bristol. Four of us rang it with Nick a couple of years ago,  but it will be new for Peter.