Central Council Decisions
The Central Council Decisions are frequently a subject of intense debate, particularly those that refer to change-ringing terms, classification of methods, conditions for peals, compositions, and method extension. The Council relies on the Methods Committee to advise and propose changes to the decisions, and as such, its members can be deemed to be the custodians of the decisions. Accommodating 400 year of ringing history, and the wishes, desires and strong opinions of ringers with many different views, and expressing these in a clear set of definitions and necessary constraints is a very difficult challenge, and any change proposed has to be very carefully peer reviewed and consulted upon before being put before the Council, as the Council meetings are not an appropriate forum for detailed debate of technical matters.
This area of the wiki highlights some of the contentious areas, and documents some proposals for change, together with comments and implications of making changes. Many of these changes have been discussed on the Ringing Theory list.
The relevant sections and sub-headings of interest from the decisions are as follows:
- (D) PEAL RINGING
- A. Conditions required for all peals
- B. Particular conditions required for peals on different numbers of bells
- C. Peals in more than one method
- D. Record length peals
- E. Analysis
- (E) METHODS AND CALLS
- A. Definitions and requirements
- B. Classification of methods with one hunt bell
- C. Classification of methods with two or more hunt bells
- D. Nomenclature and Extensions
- (F) COMPOSITIONS
- A. Variation and Authorship
- B. General
- (G) METHOD EXTENSION
- A. Definitions
- B. Requirements for all extensions by an even number of stages
- C. Extension of non-Little methods by an even number of stages
- D. Extension of Little methods, principles and differentials by an even number of stages
- E. Extension of a single-hunt plain method to a twin-hunt plain method at the next higher stage
For the detailed wording of the decisions, click here.
Proposals for Change
The following proposals have been put forward in recent years in an attempt to radically rethink certain aspects of the decisions:
2002 The Norwich Axioms (Mark Davies)
The Norwich Axioms were drafted by Mark Davies in 2002 prior to the Norwich Council meeting that year, following a groundswell of opinion that a significant shift in thinking was required. These proposals, which concentrated particularly on "What is a method?" were widely reviewed through email by interested parties at the time, and articles were published in the Ringing World. An open letter also was written to the Chairman of the Methods Committee. The proposals were not actually put to a council although there was some discussion of the subject.
The Norwich Axioms can be found here. Note that some decisions have changed since the Norwich Axioms were formulated.
2006 Harmonisation of Decisions to Include Quarter-peals (Graham John)
Following reports of some discussion at the Central Council Meeting in 2006 regarding quarter-peals, Graham John put forward some changes for consideration by the ringing theory list and the Chair of the Methods Committee. These proposals and some comments raised at the time can be seen here together with their responses.
2008 The Earis Proposals
Following discussion on Ringing Theory in July 2008, Philip Earis proposed a radical rethink of the decisions on peals and methods. These proposals, their implications, comments from others, and Philip's responses can be seen here.