The working group has completed it's task and submitted a report and recommendations to the Central Council for Church Bellringers.   This website is minimally maintained as an archive and a benchmark to measure future progress.


Women who disappear from ringing

One of the most beneficial things for fighting gender bias in ringing, in my opinion, is the presence of confident, skilled female ringers--as role models and as evidence against bias. Often women disappear from ringing after they leave university or after they have children. (How many women participate in annual tours and other events for university ringing society alumni--particularly, how many women who aren't married to alumni?) It's discouraging to see women stop ringing while their husbands are somehow still able to find time for it. The most urgent problem is surely that social structures outside ringing make it difficult for women to find childcare, but I think we also need to examine how ringing culture is optimized for a particular type of man. Attending ringing practices is a lot less appealing if you don't particularly enjoy the post-practice pub session, and it's reasonable that women with children--and non-drinkers, and anyone who isn't a white British man with someone to look after the kids--might choose to spend their limited free time doing something else. I would be interested to hear stories about more inclusive, varied or family-friendly ringing events that allow people to enjoy ringing and ringing society without being or pretending to be a real man's man.