The Ancient
Society of
College
Youths
Est. 1637

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COUNTRY MEETING 2004 in THE CITY OF YORK
Thurs 15th - Sun 18th July, 2004
(Click image to enlarge)

Report by Dickon Love. Photos are by Dickon Love and Brian Diserens.

In recent years the College Youths have dined at some very stylish venues at their annual ‘Country Meeting Weekends’ with the most recent being Worcester Cricket Club and the Great Hall of St John’s College, Cambridge. The tradition continued this year as we visited the Mallard Room at the National Railway Museum in York. Tables for about ninety people were set up against a backdrop of distinguished steam and diesel locomotives from our railway history. The centrepiece of the room was The Mallard, which in 1938 achieved a record breaking 114mph.

The dinner, which was held on Sat 17th July, was the culmination of a weekend of ringing and camaraderie. Peals were rung at Escrick on the Thursday and at Northallerton and the York towers of St Wilfrid and St Martin-le-Grand on the Friday. At the pub on Thursday lunchtime, Adam Greenley received a masterclass from Stef Warboys on how to circle a tower ("you shouldn’t have to ask to ring any particular bells … it should just happen …"). Simon Linford, as now seems to be the custom, organised golfing activities for members on these days as an alternative to ringing. Another custom was observed by Chris Kippin as he walked to York from Peterborough. In doing this he remembered the College Youths of years gone by who were forced to attend ringing events on foot as the luxury of quick and easy travel round the country was not available to them.

The focus of the weekend was Saturday where general ringing took place at the city centre churches of St Laurence, St Martin-le-Grand and St Wilfrid. Unfortunately nobody appeared with a key to permit the ringing at St Olave’s to go ahead. Lunch was held at the headquarters pub, The Three-Legged Mare, where various offerings from The York Brewery were bravely tackled. The day’s ringing culminated with a couple of hours at the Minster where the Master, Colin Newman, ran a practice to enable everyone to have a ring on these fine heavy bells.

A short business meeting was held in St Olave’s Church Hall where the Society was formally welcomed to York by David Hull. Members stood in silence to remember the recently deceased former York ringer, Stephen Rich, and on a happier note welcomed some local ringers into membership (Alison Edmonds from York and Ian Staves from Northallerton).

But the highlight was surely the dinner. Chris Kippin was clearly in his element as he wandered from locomotive to locomotive. John White too proudly pointed out the engines that he used to drive. Even many of the local ringers confessed to not having visited the museum for some time even though it was on their doorstep. The Master entertained the diners by taking wine with various groups and congratulated Jennie and David Town on their wedding anniversary. 

After the dinner a serious attempt to drain the five barrels of Old Guzzler was made, an attempt that proved largely successful by the time last orders was called. Those still up for continuing the evening walked the short distance to the Master’s hotel and took advantage of the bar (the Master bravely agreeing to put all drinks orders through his hotel bill). A party was discovered in another part of the hotel where the hosts were extremely pleased to see the influx of new blood and quickly took advantage by dragging them on to the dancefloor and trying to get intimate! For some it ended up being a long night of drinking and partying, although it didn’t prevent a large number of people being present for Sunday morning ringing at the various York towers. 

The weekend was expertly organised by the Master and Secretary – Colin Newman and Phil Rogers, with the help of many of the York ringers and the Stewards, Simon Linford and Stef Warboys. Our thanks go to everyone involved in arranging such an excellent weekend.

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The Master (Colin Newman) with Rob Lee and the Senior Steward (Simon Linford). Adrian Malton, Tim Bradley and Andrew Stubbs.
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St Laurence's, York. Ringing at St Laurence's.
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Run by the Junior Steward.

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St Martin-le-Grand, York. Ringing at St Martin-le-Grand.
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Ringing at St Martin-le-Grand. Adam Greenley talking to Rob Hawtree and Dinah Reed.
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Adrian Malton David Baverstock Mike Chilcott
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John Warboys Rob Lee Dickon Love
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Stef Warboys Colin Newman Simon Linford
RINGING AT ST MARTIN'S - Click for a video of ringing (1.8MB) (recorded BPD)
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St Olave's, York. Standing outside St Olave's waiting in vain for a key.
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Keith Game. David Potter and Steve Waters.
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Rob Childs, Adam Greenley and Andrew Aspland. Dickon Love and Rob Lee.
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The Master in the beer garden with St Wilfrid's church in the background. St Wilfrid's church with the Minster in the background.
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York Minster, inside and out.
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Eleanor Kippin and Stef Warboys: but who are they discussing? Stedman Cinques
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Eleanor Kippin Andrew Keech, Vicky Halliwell and Ros Keech Tim Bradley, York Minster Ringing Master,
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Michael Wilby More Stedman.
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Ringing at the Minster York Minster tenor box - but who owns the shoes?
RINGING AT THE MINSTER - Click for a video of ringing at the Minster (4MB) (recorded DrL)
RINGING AT THE MINSTER - Click for a video of ringing at the Minster (3MB) (recorded BPD)
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In the beer garden of the Minster Inn after the meeting. Chris Kippin chatting to Andrew Higson.
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Martin Kirk and new member, Ian Staves. Cecilia Pipe, Hannah Wilby and Becky Sugden.
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The Webmaster asked Chris Kippin to choose his favourite locomotive ... here it is (and I am assured that all good railway buffs will recognise it). Chris walked to York from Peterborough to join in the festival. Michael Wilby and Tim Bradley standing next to the most famous locomotive in the Museum: The Mallard.
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Tables of diners in the National Railway Museum.
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Rachel Town, Rob Lee and Stef Warboys.
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Andrew Keech, Rob Childs and Graham Bloom. Another new member, Alison Edmonds, with Becky Sugden,
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Andrew and Ros Keech flank David House. Dorothy Hall, Paul Williams, David House, Jennie Town and Christopher (K) Cooper.
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The Master and the Secretary, now that the hard work is done, enjoying the post prandial drinking. Vicky Halliwell, Michael Wilby, Barbara Foster and Andrew Wilby.
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Nigel Bailey and Stef Warboys. Back at the Master's hotel: Michael Childs, Matt Young, Colin Newman, Rob Lee with Rob Childs and Hannah Wilby in the foreground.
Photo: a couple of nice girls in York
2:15 in the morning at Ziggy's nightclub - some of the last remaining drinkers: Rob Childs, Matt Young, Dickon Love, Rob Lee and Michael Childs, in a worryingly boyband pose!

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