President’s blog June 2018 – what happens now

Central Council reform – what happens now

In last week’s Ringing World (p 515) I wrote, among other things, that following the adoption of an entirely new rulebook, this is “… the end of the beginning.   …   Let the new work begin.”  Gaining an 85% majority vote in Lancaster has provided a strong endorsement of the work so far, and the Executive team are humbled, heartened and energised to continue this important direction of travel.

Over the past week, commentary on various chat lists and social media rightly asks – what happens now?  This update seeks to highlight our next milestones.

Strategic Objectives

The CRAG report proposed the following mission statement for the central ringing organisation:

To be the strategic leader and public voice of the ringing community, the arbiter of standards; and to promote an environment where ringing can flourish.

Using the above mission statement as our starting point, the Executive undertook an exercise to identify specific strategies on which the new central ringing organisation will focus in the medium and long term.  Further information on these high-level strategies can be found on the Council website –      or here:

In brief, our strategic objectives can be summarised as:

  1. To recruit and develop new learners and new leaders
  2. To engage maturely with the Church and other relevant stakeholders
  3. To continue to raise positive public awareness of ringing
  4. To celebrate and promote the historical legacy of ringing
  5. To promote excellence in standards
  6. To increase direct participation in the central ringing organisation’s activities

Confirming Workgroup Leads

A high priority for the Executive team following the Lancaster meeting has been to formally confirm the appointment of Workgroup Leads.  Although certainly not a “rubber stamp” exercise, at a formal meeting on Sunday 3rd June the Executive voted to confirm those Workgroup Leads who have been working in shadow since November 2017, as follows:

Workgroup Leader Executive sponsors
Volunteer & Leadership Development Tim Hine (Staffordshire) David Smith
Technical & Taxonomy Graham John (Berkshire) Christopher O’Mahony
Communications & Marketing Louise Nightingale (Kent) Alison Everett
Stewardship & Management Alison Hodge (Worcestershire) David Kirkcaldy
Historical & Archive Doug Hird (Buckinghamshire) Mary Bone

Whilst some of these individuals are known to many ringers, some are not, so we are collating a brief “who’s who” of both Executive and Workgroup Leads – to be circulated this month.

Next steps

Workgroup Leads will be consulting widely among Council members and in the ringing community to scope out the activities of each group.  This exercise will most likely include further invitations to participate in specific aspects of work.  Workgroup Leads are also liaising with Council’s previous Committee Chairs, mapping existing Council services to the new Workgroups and developing budgets. Workgroup activity statements will be circulated as soon as possible.

The CCCBR website is being updated as quickly as we can manage to reflect our new structures, postholders and contacts.

Given the extent of the task involved in embedding these new structures and ways of working, it is only right that we build in a review point, and so in December 2018 we will conduct a six-month assessment of our work.

In conclusion

There’s plenty going on, and the leadership team is authentically pursuing a “real renaissance for ringing”.  At the same time, we very much welcome feedback and input from all sources – it’s important that ringers feel a genuine sense of “ownership” with the Central Council.  Thank you for your forbearance during this implementation phase – “Roma uno die non est condita”!

Yours in ringing,

Christopher O’Mahony

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