The 2014/5 Ringing Theory Discussion Group Rules Debate

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Definitions and Requirements for Method Ringing: A Proposal by the Ringing Theory Discussion Group, June 2014 – April 2015

This Changeringing Wiki article, which is very much a work in progress, summarizes the results of a debate and series of polls by the Ringing Theory discussion group ("r-t") that started in June 2014 and is still ongoing. The debate is concerned with what an improved set of CC Decisions might look like, and is leading to the proposed new set of Definitions and Requirements for Method Ringing that is contained in this article. The content below does not represent the views of all members of r-t - only the majority (or in some cases plurality) of the subset of r-t members who chose to take part in the debate and various polls.


[To be added. Likely comprises:

  1. Who and what the Ringing Theory Discussion Group ("r-t") is
  2. The proposal that was carried at the May 2014 CC meeting that, noting the strong groundswell of opinion, both inside and outside the Council, it was time for a fundamental review of the CC Decisions
  3. The interest by some members of r-t in contributing to the development of an improved set of rules through debates and the conducting of polls to determine list members' views, leading to the proposal contained in this article
  4. A summary of what are considered to be the shortcomings of the existing Decisions
  5. How it is hoped the movement to improve the current Decisions will progress from here in the lead-up to the May 2015 CC meeting]


Principles that emerged during the debate included that new rules should be:

  • Simple
  • Generic
  • Consistent
  • Descriptive rather than prescriptive, only imposing restrictions that are considered fundamental to method ringing, such as the requirement for truth
  • Elimination of restrictions that are arbitrary


  • Methods
  • Method Classification
  • Calls
  • Stationary Bells
  • Compositions
  • Performances
  • Method Extension
  • Method Naming


  1. Row: A sequence of N bells in which each bell rings once and only once.
  2. Place: A position of an individual bell within a Row.
  3. Stage: A name that represents the number of bells, N, that form a given Row, as shown in the table below.
  4. Change: A transposition of bells at a given Stage from their Places in one Row into the Places of the next Row.
    1. Simple Change: A Change where the transposition moves every bell to either the same Place it previously occupied, or to an immediately adjacent Place.
      1. Null Change: A Simple Change where the transposition moves every bell to the same Place it previously occupied.
    2. Jump Change: A Change that is not a Simple Change.
  5. Method: A process for generating a sequence of Changes at a given Stage.

Table of Stage Names:

N Stage N Stage
1 [tbd] 2 [tbd]
3 Singles 4 Minimus
5 Doubles 6 Minor
7 Triples 8 Major
9 Caters 10 Royal
11 Cinques 12 Maximus
13 Sextuples 14 Fourteen
15 Septuples 16 Sixteen

Method Classification

  1. Static Method: A Method that can be defined by a fixed sequence of Changes.
  2. Dynamic Method: A Method that is not a Static Method.
  3. [Other method classification rules to be added here.]


[The following to be debated and voted on]

  1. Calls alter the Changes that would otherwise be generated by the Method that is being rung.
  2. Calls are never rung in their own right - they are only used to alter the Changes generated by a Method.
  3. Calls are defined locally as part of a Composition (see later section). There is no central recording of named calls or similar.
  4. Calls may:
    1. Modify one or more adjacent Changes of a Method
    2. Remove one or more adjacent Changes of a Method without replacing them
    3. Insert one or more adjacent new Changes into a Method without removing any of the Changes of the Method

Stationary Bells

[This section will define terms such as Cover Bell]


[This section will define terms such as Lead, Course, Rounds and Truth, and give requirements for Compositions, such as starting and ending in rounds and being true]


[This section will define touches, QPs, half-peals, peals, long lengths, record lengths and miscellaneous performances, and provide the requirements for peals, etc]

Method Extension

[Rules for whether a method at a higher stage can be given the same name as a method at a lower stage]

Method Naming

  1. Methods may be named and recorded in the Central Council’s Method Library, subject to the following requirements:
    1. A Static Method may not be separately named and recorded if its place notation is a rotation of a another Static Method that has already been named and recorded.
    2. [Other criteria for the central recording of Methods to be added here, such as ringing the Method in a peal or QP.]