About the research project
The research project has been set up to explore the question posed by President of the Central Council, Simon Linford:
"Why is it that there is an even gender balance among ringers in the early stages of ringing, but the gender distribution changes at more “advanced levels”?
The aim of the research project is to determine what data is available to support this question, and to determine possible barriers and causes for why this is happening.
Data gathered will be both quantitative and qualitative with the most important part being an analysis of themes from people's stories. We encourage you therefore to tell us your story or thoughts on the subject of gender in ringing. We fully hope and expect, that the findings will go forward into a number of initiatives that will bring change within bell ringing.
This website is to a space to gather information about the topic, present findings, and explore ideas for bringing change which will enable the bell ringing community to achieve gender balance in ringing.
About the research group
All participants are passionate that every ringer can reach their full potential with no barriers to their progression.
Bryn Reinstadler - has been ringing for about 3 years, mostly in and around the Boston, USA area. She is working on a PhD in Computer Science at MIT, focusing on applications of AI and machine learning. She's interested in conducting and composing, and just recently called her first peal in hand. As an 'adult learner' herself, she believes that change ringing is composed of learnable skills that can be taught to people of all genders, ages, and backgrounds. Inclusion and diversity at all levels of ringing can only enrich our tradition!
Dorothy Hall - started ringing when she was 12. She’s had the pleasure of being in several women only peals and quarters, attempts and successes. She believes a lack of conductor or someone to turn in the tenor can hold a whole band back, these are key skills that everyone should have the chance to develop.
Elva Ainsworth - Elva has enjoyed ringing on and off since she was 12 and has loved ringing on 12s on Sundays - in central London, Amersham, Boston and now York. She now helps run a local school band, runs regional workshops on “Making a difference” and sponsors the ART Leadership Award. As an Executive Coach and an author she supports women in senior business roles and is frequently advising on the challenges of changing cultures for diversity and inclusion. She believes that growth and development is always possible where there is intention and openness and that women often need help in pushing through cultural norms.
Julia Cater - has been ringing bells since she was 7 years old and contributes both locally at a grass roots and a national level. She has participated in a number of 12-bell competitions as both participant (including in the back half of the circle!) and judge, and was Chief Judge of the RWNYC for a number of years. Running a HR Consultancy, she feels comfortable in the topics of recruitment, training and leadership development. She is a firm believer that size, weight, age and gender should not be a barrier to where you ring in the circle and is passionate about demystifying the techniques for ringing big bells, so that anyone can ring anywhere in the circle with confidence.
Lucy Warren - learned to ring at around the age of 10 in Lancashire, but didn't really get into method ringing until she moved to Bristol to study Veterinary. Since then she has rung over 400 peals, including multi-spliced minor, 23 spliced surprise major and cyclic compositions of royal and maximus. She particularly enjoys conducting peals, but in doing so has felt very much in a female minority and would like to encourage more women to turn their hand to conducting.
Tina Stoecklin - learned to ring handbells in Kalamazoo before learning to handle a tower bell, and enjoys ringing both from her current location in Glasgow. She has held various offices in the Scottish Association and in the North American Guild, representing both societies are various times in the Central Council. She was the first (and so far only) female editor of The Ringing World. She is a member of ART, and ran a primary school handbell club for several years, and is co-author and creator of the Learn to Ring Handbells blog.