Handbell compositions

Some change ringing compositions lend themselves especially well to change ringing on handbells.  These articles either give specific handbell compositions which we or other contributors have used, or discuss the merits of handbell-specific compositions.

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Yesterday we scored our peal of Superlative, using the composition from my previous article. Most of the peal was quite good, after some initial settling down, although we did have a too-exciting rough patch very near the end. It was much easier with 5-6 coursing throughout. Something to watch out...Read more

Back in March, I wrote about compositions of Superlative, in advance of a peal attempt with Mike and Ian. We didn't get that peal, and yesterday we had another go and failed again. Perhaps there was another attempt in between; I don't remember. Despite the possibilities for compositions that...Read more

The week before last we were away on the annual "Hulliday", a big group of ringers with families who have been going on holiday together for a few years. These days the holiday doesn't involve much ringing (the amount of running is increasing steadily), but there is usually some handbell...Read more

Next month's peal with the Edinburgh crossover band is going to be Superlative. It has interesting possibilities for handbell-friendly compositions, because the 24 courses with 3-4, 5-6 and 7-8 all coursing are mutually true. These are the coursing orders of the form xxyy2, xx2yy, 2xxyy where xx can be 34...Read more

We're doing well with the "Edinburgh crossover band" - we rang a peal of Lincolnshire last month, using one of the rotated William Barton compositions. Last week we rang Rutland. What was the composition? Rutland isn't a particularly popular method on handbells (in fact last week's peal was my...Read more

After our promising Cambridge Maximus session, I started wondering what would be the best peal composition. I don't remember seeing many compositions that are billed as being suitable for handbells. After a little thought, it seems to me that the challenge is to balance two goals: to keep as...Read more

As well as our long-established band with Jonathan and Angela, we have been ringing with the "Edinburgh crossover band" involving Mike and Ian. We are trying to get into a routine of a monthly peal attempt. Towards the end of last year we scored a peal of Yorkshire, and in...Read more

To return to our Horton's Four project, we decided to ring a quarter of each method individually. I have written several articles about handbell-friendly compositions, but Horton's Four is an extreme example of ringing an ordinary composition (actually its difficulty makes it far from ordinary) on handbells, so I decided...Read more

Spliced Kent and Oxford Treble Bob has almost disappeared from the tower bell repertoire, except for Minor, but on Major and above it is still actively rung on handbells. "Treble Bob Variations" refers to a style of composition in which there is a basic course of spliced Kent and Oxford...Read more

The Cam and Granta variations of Treble Bob consist of Kent, with leads of Kent Little Bob or Bastow Little Bob when the back bells should be in the slow. What does this mean, and why is it interesting? We will see that it provides an easier way into ringing...Read more


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