Learning Call Changes


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Understanding the difference between changing places and following different bells is key to ringing smooth and enjoyable call changes.”


Ruth Suggett
Bardwell Teaching Centre, Suffolk


Call changes are the building blocks of all change ringing. It’s important that you feel really comfortable with these seemingly simple changes, but it takes time. There is a lot to think about, even for one call, so don’t underestimate how much time and practice you need.

LT1_Building_blocks.jpg

Here are a few things to remember:

  • The call is made on a handstroke pull.
  • Wait! Stay focused on the bell you were following and don't rush to change as soon as you hear the call!
  • The actual change is made on the next handstroke, so keep following the same bell for the next backstroke after the call.
  • This takes quite a bit of practice, as often you really, really want to move straight away!
  • This is an important skill in its own right.

At a call, you may have to follow a different bell, but you might not have to ring in a different position. For example:

1 2 3 4 5 6

Call is ‘2 to 3’

1 3 2 4 5 6

At this call, the bells which change places are the 2 and the 3. They are the ones which have to change speed.

The 4 rings in the same position, in 4ths place, but the ringer needs to follow a different bell. In this case, it will be the 2, but it doesn’t have to change speed.

Understanding the difference between changing places and following different bells is key to ringing smooth and enjoyable call changes.

Here are some ways you can do this:

  • Stand behind someone ringing call changes and, at each call, tell them whether they are changing position or just following a different bell.
  • Call some simple changes yourself.
  • Write out some changes on paper or a whiteboard.
  • Instead of calling out the bells to change, try calling out the places which change. That’s quite a challenge!

There is so much to call changes and they are so rewarding.It’s really worth putting in the effort to get them spot on.