Implications of New Decisions

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Below is a comparison of the new decisions proposed by Philip Earis and the current decisions, showing deleted text from the original decisions highlighted in bold italics, possible implications of their removal highlighted by Graham John in a pale blue box, and Philip's comments in a pale yellow box.

A. Conditions required for all peals

1. A peal shall start and end with rounds and shall be rung without interval.

Peals may start at a row other than rounds.

Yes, intended. A peal is a performance, and one starting with a row other than rounds would still meet Don Morrison's "thought experiment" criterion of "is this change ringing?"

2. No row shall be struck more than once before the next change is made

While removal of this clause accommodates the situation that can occur in some multi-extent blocks, it also allows a band to ring a peal of Minor using one extent with each row repeated 7 times.

Yes, intended. I don't see why this should not be permitted.

3. Every bell must sound at every row throughout the peal.

Can continue if the clapper falls out? Can ring a peal on something other than bells?

This is a bit trickier. I don't think any Decisions can legislate for absolutely any eventuality, and this text seems a bit redundant. I think you by and large have to rely on ringers' reasonable consensus, rather than attempting to define every possibility. For example, the current Decisions say nothing about power-assisted ringing - I could in theory design and build a ringing machine that would basically turn in Liverpool Cathedral tenor for a peal, and provided I kept my hands on the rope this wouldn't be forbidden by the current decisions. This doesn't mean that such a new Decision ought to be included, though.
As for ringing on something other than bells - the current Decsisions do not at any place define what a bell is, and so there's no real change here.

4. Each bell must be rung continuously by the same person or persons.

Relay peals are acceptable?

I'm not sure about this one. Whilst someone ringing a peal just by taking the final backstroke seems silly, I didn't want to forbid the same group of ringers circling the tower in the same peal. Perhaps this needs re-adding in a modified form - eg "the bells must be rung continuously by the same person or persons"

5. For handbells the bells shall be retained in hand.

You can put your handbells down while you have a sandwich?

Not intended. I've now reinserted the text. Also "A peal shall be rung without interval"

6. For tower bells the bells shall be audible outside the building in which they are contained.

You can ring with simulated sound internally?

Intended.

7. No assistance of any kind shall be given to any ringers by any person not ringing in the peal.

Phil says unfair assistance. What then would be considered fair assistance?

I think the current Decisions are a bit unreasonable when the say "no assistance of any kind". Lots of things could be thought of as assistance of some kind. Imagine you are ringing a peal, and as time goes on it gets darker and you realise you have forgotten to put the light on. Some time on, some random chap is wondering round the church and you ask him to flick the light switch - they happily oblige. This is clearly assistance - does it invalidate the peal? How about if you are ringing a peal at night, and you start with all the lights on. Unfortunately half way through the vicar turns the lights off, forgetting that anybody is in the church. The conductor shouts out "please turn that back on", and after a few seconds the vicar realises what has happened and happily obliges. Now should this really invalidate a peal? It is certainly assistance on some kind, and so technically is currently forbidden, but I don't think many ringers would regard this as "unfair" assistance. Again, it comes to to trusting a consensus of reasonable expectations.

8. The use of physical aids to memory in conducting and ringing is not permitted.

9. No error in calling shall be corrected later than during the change at which the call or change of method would properly take effect.

Presumably left to be covered by 10 below based upon an interpretation of immediately.

Indeed, having both Decisions seemed redundant.

10. Any shift or error in ringing shall be corrected immediately.

11. The methods and calls used in all peals shall conform to the Definitions and Requirements given in Part A of the Decisions on Methods and Calls.

If the rules in this section are followed, anything is allowed, including jump changes.

Absolutely - this is fundamental to the changes!

12. Any objection which may be taken to a peal other than one with respect to the truth of the composition, shall be raised in writing to the conductor and Society concerned at the earliest date, and in any case within one month after the publication in The Ringing World.

The implication of omitting this rule is unclear. Does it mean that nobody can raise an objection, or that if the do, they can raise it at any time after the event? The original rule does not seem to oblige the council to do anything in respect of such complaints. The new decisions have applied objection just to Record peals and then by reporting it to the Ringing World in an specified time limit, not the conductor and society.

I've now edited and reordered the bit on objections to make it (and the implications) clearer.

B. Particular conditions required for peals on different numbers of bells

1. Peals of Minimus shall be rung on tower bells only.

Peals of Minimus can be rung on handbells etc?
Peals on three, two or one bell are possible (Because this section defines the allowed stages)?

Yes, peals of Minimus can be rung in hand. The situation of 1, 2 or 3 bell peals doesn't change - the stages are listed elsewhere, and explicitly start at Minimus.

2. Peals of Minimus, Doubles, Minor and Triples shall be rung on four, five, six and seven bells respectively, or on five, six, seven and eight bells with the tenor as cover, and shall consist of at least 5040 changes rung in any combination of the following, each starting from rounds:-

(a) Extents, in which each of the possible rows at that stage occurs once and only once.

(b) Round blocks of two or more extents in which each of the possible rows at that stage occurs the same number of times.

Peals of Major, Caters, Royal, etc. shall be rung on eight, nine, ten, etc. bells respectively, or on nine, ten, eleven, etc. bells with the tenor as cover, and shall consist of at least 5000 true changes.

Peals don’t need to be rung on bells?
Peals can have multiple cover bells.
Peals below Major can have between 5000 and 5039 rows.
Peals don’t have to start in Rounds.
The tenor does not need to be the cover bell.
One partial extent is permitted.
One partial extent is permitted in a round block.
Major and above can be rung in multiple extents or round blocks including a partial extent.

A "bell" is not defined either under my Decisions or the existing ones. I think this is best left to reasonable expectations - if somebody just plays a peal through Abel, it can be covered under the objections clause.

Absolutely to all of the rest!

3. Peals of 'Variable Cover Minimus', 'Variable Cover Doubles' and 'Variable Cover Minor' shall be rung on five, six and seven bells respectively and shall consist of at least 5040 changes rung in any combination of the following each starting from rounds:- (a) Variable cover extents, in which each of the possible rows, treated as being at the next higher stage, occurs once and only once.

(b) Round blocks of two or more variable cover extents in which each of the possible rows, treated as being at the next higher stage, occurs the same number of times.

(c) Extents or round blocks with the tenor as cover as permitted in 2 above.

4. Peals of 'Variable Cover Triples', 'Variable Cover Major', 'Variable Cover Caters', etc. shall be rung on eight, nine, ten, etc. bells respectively, with a cover bell which is not always the tenor, and shall consist of at least 5000 true changes. The truth is determined by treating all the rows as being at the next higher stage.
5. Peals of 'Minimus and Doubles', 'Doubles and Minor' and 'Minor and Triples' shall be rung on five, six and seven bells respectively and shall consist of at least 5040 changes rung in any combination of the following each starting from rounds:- (a) Extents or round blocks at the lower stage as permitted in 4 above.

(b) Extents or round blocks at the higher stage as permitted in 2 above.

(c) Mixed stage extents, with a cover bell when ringing the lower stage, in which each of the rows possible at the higher stage occurs once and only once.

(d) Round blocks of two or more mixed stage extents, with a cover bell when ringing the lower stage, in which each of the rows possible at the higher stage occurs the same number of times.

The peal is described as 'Variable Cover Minimus and Doubles', 'Variable Cover Doubles and Minor' and 'Variable Cover Minor and Triples' respectively if the cover when ringing the lower stage is not always the same bell.

6. Peals of 'Triples and Major', 'Major and Caters', 'Caters and Royal', etc. shall be rung on eight, nine, ten, etc. bells respectively, with a cover bell when ringing the lower stage, and shall consist of at least 5000 true changes. The truth is determined by treating all the rows as being at the higher stage. The peal is described as 'Variable Cover Triples and Major', 'Variable Cover Major and Caters', 'Variable Cover Caters and Royal', etc. if the cover when ringing the lower stage is not always the same bell.

7. Reports of variable cover peals shall state the number of different cover bells and the number of changes of cover bell.

The new decisions are silent on Variable Cover, but do not specify that the tenor has to be cover either. Determination of extents and truth etc in respect of variable cover may be undefined. It is intended to cover this by defining methods included the cover bell, but then definition of an extent is a problem.
You don’t need to state the number of different cover bells or changes of cover bell.

C. Peals in more than one method

1. Compositions in more than one method in which the change of method occurs at the lead-head and/or the half-lead shall be called 'Spliced'. In the case of compositions containing changes of method at both the half-lead and the lead-head, all the methods shall be symmetrical about the half-lead with no two of them differing only in the places made at the half-lead and/or the lead-head.

Any peal containing more than one method is described as Spliced, with no restrictions.

2. Peals consisting of extents and/or round blocks shall only be called Spliced if each extent or round block is spliced.

Any peal containing more than one method is described as Spliced.

3 Doubles variations may be included in an extent or round block provided that either all the variations and methods have the same call or calls, and there is at least one plain lead of each, or all the variations and methods have the same plain course with no calls common to any two or more, and all the distinctive calls are made for each variation and method.

Doubles variations are not covered.

4. Peal reports shall state the number and names of all methods and all variations separately. For peals of Spliced the number of changes of method at lead-head and at half-lead shall be stated separately, and for peals of Triples and above the number of changes rung in each method shall be stated. In peals consisting of extents and/or round blocks the methods rung in each extent and/or round block shall be listed separately.

Variations don’t need to be reported.
The number of changes of method doesn’t need to be reported.
Extents don’t need to be reported separately
A peal of Minor in seven extents, would be 7-Spliced S Minor.

D. Record length peals

The Record Length Peal in a method or group of methods on a given number of bells shall be the longest length complying with parts A to D. Tower-bell and handbell records shall be kept separately. Variable cover records shall be kept separately.

Record Length Peals of 10,000 or more changes must comply with the additional conditions below. Any such performance not rung in full compliance with these conditions shall not be published in The Ringing World. The Editor of The Ringing World shall refer all peals of 10,000 or more changes to the Peal Records Committee before publication.

The peal will be published in the Ringing World, before referral to the Peal Records Committee, even though it may not comply.

(a) Not less than 14 days' notice shall be given in The Ringing World, stating the place, date and hour at which the attempt is to be made, and stating the method, number of bells and number of changes proposed to be rung. A copy of the notice shall be sent to the Peal Records Committee.

(b) The ringing to be heard and the figures of the composition to be checked throughout the peal by a competent umpire or umpires.

(c) If a record length is rung the peal report and the figures of the composition, if not previously published, shall be sent immediately to the Chairman of the Peal Records Committee.

(d) For handbell peals, every ringer shall ring at least two bells. Additionally, arrangements shall be made for interested persons to be able to hear the attempt.

Ringers may ring one bell for record handbell peals.

E. Analysis

The Analysis shall include all peals published in The Ringing World and shall identify peals not complying with parts A to D above.

Not required by the new decisions.

(E) METHODS AND CALLS

A. Definitions and requirements

1. (a) A change is the progress from one row (permutation) to the next, effected by the interchange of bells in adjacent positions in the row.

A change is not defined.
Jump changes would be accepted.
Repeated rows would be accepted with the constraints of multiple extents.


(b) A method is defined by the places made between successive rows of its plain course, which shall be a true round block, divisible into equal parts which are called leads. Starting the plain course from a different change does not give a different method.

A method can be false in the plain course.
A lead is not defined.
Starting in a different place gives a different method?

(c) The first row in each lead is known as the lead-head. The last row in each lead is known as the lead-end row. The change following the lead-end row is known as the lead-end change.

Terms not defined.

(d) Bells that are in the same position at each lead-head in a course are known as hunt bells. Bells that are not in the same position at each lead-head in a course are known as working bells. There shall be more working bells than hunt bells.

There can be more hunt bells than working bells.

(e) There are four types of method:

i. Methods with hunt bells are known as hunters if all the working bells do the same work in the plain course and the number of leads is the same as the number of working bells.
ii. Methods with no hunt bells are known as principles if all the working bells do the same work in the plain course and the number of leads is the same as the number of bells.
iii. Methods with no hunt bells are known as differentials if all the working bells do not do the same work in the plain course or the number of leads is not the same as the number of bells.
iv. Methods with hunt bells are known as differential hunters if all the working bells do not do the same work in the plain course or the number of leads is not the same as the number of working bells.

Differentials and differential hunters no longer exist as a separate class

.

(f) Except for Minimus methods, no bell shall make more than four consecutive blows in the same position in a plain course.

Bells may make more than four consecutive blows in one place regardless of stage.

(g) A method has palindromic symmetry if it is the same method when rung backwards, that is when the order of the changes is inverted. A method has double symmetry if it is the same method when reversed, that is when the places within each change are inverted. A method has rotational symmetry if it is the same method when reversed and rung backwards.

Symmetry is not defined.

2. A call is a means of passing from one course of a method to another. It is effected by altering the places made between two or more consecutive rows, without altering the length of a lead. It is not part of the definition of the method.

A call can move to a different point in the same course.
A call only affects two adjacent rows (reverting to a previous version of the decisions before it was changed to accommodate Grandsire Single and Scientific etc in 2004).

3. (a) Standard calls are defined for the following plain Doubles methods. For methods with palindromic symmetry and one plain hunt bell, standard calls are those that only affect the places made when the plain hunt bell is leading. For methods with no internal places made below two coursing hunt bells, standard calls are those that only affect the places made while the first hunt bell hunts down or is leading and that cause the changes rung to be symmetrical about the first hunt bell's lead. For methods with no internal places made above two coursing hunt bells, standard calls are those that only affect the places made while the first hunt bell hunts up or is lying behind and that cause the changes rung to be symmetrical about the first hunt bell's lie behind.

(b) Where standard calls are defined for a plain Doubles method, a variation is defined as the use of calls other than the standard calls.

(c) Each variation must by itself be capable of producing a true six-score, and may be given its own name.

The new decisions have no separate treatment of Doubles or allowance for variations.

B. Classification of methods with one hunt bell

Definitions:

(a) A well-formed path is one in which the hunt bell has the same path if it is rung backwards and is symmetrical about two places made half a lead apart.

(b) In Plain methods the hunt bell has a well-formed path and strikes two blows in each position of the path within the lead.

(c) In Treble Dodging methods the hunt bell has a well-formed path, strikes more than two but the same number of blows in each position of the path within the lead and makes only two places within the lead.

(d) A cross section is a change at which the hunt bell passes from one dodging position to another.

cross section is undefined.

Methods with one hunt bell are classified in paragraphs (a) to (h), and are further classified as Little if the path of the hunt bell is restricted to fewer positions than the number of bells.

Little is undefined.

(a) Place methods are Plain methods in which the path of each bell consists only of hunting and place-making.

(b) Bob methods are all other Plain methods.

(c) Treble Bob methods are Treble Dodging methods in which the hunt bell dodges in only one position, or that have no internal places made at any cross section.

(d) Surprise methods are Treble Dodging methods in which at least one internal place is made at every cross section.

(e) Delight methods are all other Treble Dodging methods.

(f) In Treble Place methods, the hunt bell has a well-formed path, strikes the same number of blows in each position of the path within the lead and makes more than two places within the lead.

(g) In Alliance methods, the hunt bell has a well-formed path, but does not strike the same number of blows in each position of the path.

(h) In Hybrid methods, the hunt bell does not have a well-formed path.

C. Classification of methods with two or more hunt bells

Each hunt bell is either a principal hunt or a secondary hunt. The properties (a) to (e) are considered in turn and the paths of the hunt bells are examined until a hunt bell is found whose path has that property. The principal hunts are all the hunt bells whose paths have that property, unless the paths of some but not all of these hunt bells are Little, when the principal hunts are those hunt bells whose paths are not Little.
(a) Plain hunting;
(b) Treble Dodging;
(c) Treble Place;
(d) Alliance;
(e) Hybrid.

Methods with two or more hunt bells are classified using the definitions and classifications for methods with one hunt bell but with reference to all the principal hunts, and with the following exception.
(a) Slow Course methods are Plain methods with one principal hunt and a secondary hunt that has a well-formed path and makes second's place when the principal hunt is leading.

Slow Course methods are no longer an exception.

D. Nomenclature and Extensions

The stage names for different numbers of changing bells are:- 4 Minimus, 6 Minor, 8 Major, 10 Royal, 12 Maximus, 14 Fourteen, 16 Sixteen, etc. 5 Doubles, 7 Triples, 9 Caters, 11 Cinques, 13 Sextuples, 15 Septuples, etc. (a) The title of a hunter shall consist of Name, Class (with the exception of Grandsire, Double Grandsire, Reverse Grandsire, Little Grandsire, Union, Double Union and Reverse Union) and Stage.

Class not used in method names for hunters.

(b) The title of a principle shall consist of Name and Stage.

(c) The title of a differential shall consist of Name, "Differential" and Stage.

Differential is not a classification.

(d) The title of a differential hunter shall consist of Name, "Differential", Class and Stage.

Differential is not a classification.

(e) If a non-Little Plain method with double symmetry and either one plain hunting hunt bell or two or more principal hunts, all of which are coursing, has the same number of leads in the plain course as the corresponding method with no internal places below the hunt bell or principal hunts, they shall have the same name but with the prefixes "Double" and "Single" respectively.

(f) Where a principle or differential has a distinct reverse, both methods shall have the same name but one with the prefix "Reverse".

Reverse not a naming requirement?

(g) A method may not be given a name if the title excluding the Stage would be the same as a method in a different type or class.

3.(a) Methods at different stages in the same type and class shall only have the same name if they are related as in the Decision on Method Extension.

(b) Methods at different stages in the same type and class that are uniquely related as in Parts A to D of the Decision on Method Extension shall have the same name, and where not uniquely related one relationship shall have the same name.

(c) Methods in the same class that are related as in Part E of the Decision on Method Extension shall have the same name.

The formulaic rules for extension have been removed, as naming an extension is left to the discretion of the band.

The band that first rings a peal, complying with Parts A to D of the Decision on Peal Ringing, of a new method or an extent in the case of Doubles or Minor, or includes it in a multi-method peal complying with Parts A to D of the Decision on Peal Ringing, shall name the method and publish it in The Ringing World, subject to D.2 and D.3 above, and to the power of the Council to change the name or leave it unnamed if it considers it necessary.

A method can only be named if it is rung in a peal i.e. more restrictive than now.