image of The Alphabet Ring, Bridgetown

Alphabet Ring moved to Bridgetown

The Alphabet Ring has moved AGAIN! Due to a lifestyle change decision by Corinne and myself, it is now situated in Bridgetown, three hours south of Perth in the incredibly scenic south-west of WA. Our new house looks over the Blackwood River valley and is within easy walking distance of the centre of town, which has good cafes, three pubs and a micro-brewery/cidery (to name the most important facilities). The house has a large shed attached which means that there's a bit more space available for a mini-ring frame than we've had previously. The keen-eyed may spot that there is also room for a beer/wine fridge, plus chairs and things.

Alphabet Ring, December 2020
The Alphabet Ring with extended frame

One of the 'issues' with the Happy Frame was that, as a result of the compact design, the rope circle was not really very circular (but it fitted into the spaces that were available). So now, I've added an extra blank 'file' in the middle of the frame, which makes a closer approximation to a circle - one in which the ropes are at least spaced a more-or-less equal distance apart from each other. The 'Happy Frame v. 1b' uses most of the original frame pieces, but with some new parts which have yet to be painted as you can see.

Our experience with the first iteration of the Happy Frame in a tin shed with a concrete floor was that the bells sounded rather harsh, but ringing them with the current arrangements they seem to sound much better - possibly because we were able to carpet a large area under the frame which presumably absorbs some at least of the reverberation. We're still waiting for a 'proper' test of the installation, shortly after Christmas if all goes to plan. The shed is well ventilated too as it has another door at the back and being on the side of the valley, we seem to catch whatever wind is passing so overheating doesn't seem like it's going to be a problem (which it was in the summer in West Wyalong).

Hopefully we'll get a few more visitors than in Kalgoorlie so the bells can be rung more often. There's a lot of other touristy things that you can do in the area. Bunbury, with its rather underused ring of bells, is just under an hour away. And we'll see if any of the locals can be persuaded to give it a go too. No swimming pool to cool off in any more unfortunately, but we do have the river at the end of the road! And there's still a room or two for ringers to stay if they wish and at least two other accommodation options within 5 minutes walk.

Alphabet Ring, December 2020
A view of the Alphabet Ring prior to the sound boards being fitted

Adam Beer
December 2021

Alphabet Ring on the Move Again

Following a change in jobs for both of us at the beginning of the year, we've decided to commit to Kalgoorlie for a few years more. So rather than continue to rent, we've bought a place. There were several criteria which any potential purchase had to meet, including of course, an air-conditioned room big enough to take the Alphabet Ring. Several places actually met this critical condition, and we picked the one with enough other features to be our ideal home.

Alphabet Ring, September 2019

The actual ringing room is somewhat bigger than the previous location, and we've decided to leave the soundboards off for the moment as, with the higher ceiling, the bells sound quite good without them and you can see what's going on. The new location is only slightly further away from the pub/bottleshop than the previous one and has similar amenities (pool for post-ringing cooling off in the summer, couple of rooms for ringing guests, outdoor eating area, etc.)

Oh, and the new address? See the ANZAB mini-ring directory. It's just round the corner from the old place. So, as the French have it, il ne faut que vous!

Adam Beer and Corinne Rule
September 2019

The Alphabet Ring returns to WA!

After a brief sojourn in NSW, the Alphabet Ring is now back in WA. The move to NSW had separated the bells from the frame in which they were originally hung (the borrowed Cygnet Ring frame), so a new frame was designed and constructed (and painted!) from scratch. This came in handy for the move back to Kalgoorlie, as the new frame 'merely' had to be dismantled and re-erected. The main issue was where to put it - fortunately our new house has very high ceilings and quite large rooms (despite a rather small shed), so one of the spare bedrooms has been re-designated the 'Music Room'.

Alphabet Ring frame

The frame fits!

The internal location, in an airconditioned room eliminates three of the major issues with the original installation in Balga - heat, rain and the potential to annoy the neighbours with the noise. So now it's all set up, all we need is some extra bodies to ring them with us! Kalgoorlie can be easily reached by road, rail or air, and our house is equipped with large entertainment areas (inside and out) and also sports a swimming pool to cool off in after you've rung! We're 5 minutes walk from our local hotel, offering a 7 day bottleshop, restaurant, bar and motel-type accommodation. So if there's four or more ringers who fancy a quick trip to ring Kalgoorlie's first ring of bells, in a very hospitable setting, you know who to contact!

Alphabet Ring installed

The ring installed

Alphabet Ring from below

Colour from below

Alphabet Ring

And from the side

Hope to see at least some of you out here soon!

Adam and Corinne
August 2018

The Alphabet Ring is on the move again, May 2018

The Alphabet Ring is being relocated from West Wyalong, NSW to Kalgoorlie, WA (May 2018). It must surely be up there as the world's most travelled mini-ring!

Test Ring of the Alphabet ring at West Wyalong, 3 November 2017

We are pleased to report that the 'test ring' of the Alphabet Ring's new frame (the 'Happy Frame') was 100% successful. A team of ringers from Sydney and Hobart joined us for Friday arvo, and observations of frame movement (virtually none) and comments from the 'testers' suggest that no further modifications (other than additional painting) are required for the bells to be declared 'open'!

The Alphabet Ring is the first mini-ring in NSW, and is a ring of actual bells, cast by Matthew Higby, with a tenor weight of 15lbs (rather than being a simulator). The Alphabet Ring is located at: 3 Lady Mary Drive, West Wyalong, NSW 2671.

A quarter peal of Cambridge S Minor was successfully rung, but an attempt at a subsequent qp of PB Doubles came to grief due to the tricky nature of handling mini-ring bells. But the principal objective of determining the ringability of the setup was achieved.

Alphabet Ring, Test Ring at West Wyalong, 3 November 2017

The 'testers' for the Alphabet Ring's new frame, plus Norm & Ruth (seated),
who kindly gave permission for the Alphabet Ring to be put up in their shed.

Moving forward, the bells will be available for ringing pretty much any time on request, but ringing after 7 pm is not preferred until the neighbours get used to it. Tower 'outings' will be particularly welcome.

We look forward to welcoming ANZAB members to the Alphabet Ring in its new location/frame.

Corinne Rule and Adam Beer

The Alpabet Ring moves interstate - 2017

In 2017, the Alphabet Ring moved from Balga WA to West Wyalong NSW. A new frame for the bells is currently nearing completion.

New frame for the Alphabet Ring - 2017

Once this is fully assembled there will need to be a trial ring to adjust heights, assess the need for sound control, etc., which should see the bells becoming available before the end of the year.

Adam Beer

The Alphabet Ring comes of age - 3 May 2015

After their arrival in October last year and being rung to quite a few quarter peals since, I suppose it was inevitable that the first privately-owned mini-ring in the Southern Hemisphere would get around to being pealed eventually. The bells are a superb example of the mini-ring founder's art, and a credit to Matthew Higby, their supplier.

A couple of ringers had been making increasingly frequent noises about ringing a peal on the bells, and that, combined with the arrival of the Southern Hemisphere's second privately-owned mini-ring at Twizel and a very appropriate occasion (300th Anniversary of the first recorded peal at St Peter Mancroft, Norwich) provided sufficient impetus for an attempt to be arranged. A late addition was the arrangement of official Alphabet Ring shirts for the band - I had originally thought of these to wear to ANZABelaide to see if I got a reaction, but it was suggested that it would be appropriate if they could be worn for the peal attempt. For various reasons (WAANZAB 'Country Meeting' and Richard's jet-lag), the attempt couldn't be scheduled for the exact anniversary (2nd May), but was arranged for the following afternoon.

As the Alphabet Ring bells are currently hung in an open frame exposed to the elements, the weather can be of concern (mainly in the winter in Perth). An originally good forecast at the beginning of the week was gradually replaced with an ever greater forecast chance of rain, but Sunday dawned dry and fairly bright so I reckoned we could 'wing it'. The method selected was Plain Bob Triples, a method not known for excitement but it was the method rung 300 years ago. The peal was duly rung at the first attempt in 02:14, the breeze keeping the mozzies at bay, which was helpful.

Alphabet Ring Peal Band

Mike Collinson, Lloyd Cartwright, Adam Beer, Richard Offen, Andrew Ling, Jos Sloan, Mary Townsend, Andrew Baxter

The band was very grateful for the refreshments arranged by Corinne afterwards; 10 minutes after we finished ringing the Bureau of Meteorology was proved right and a torrential downpour began!

After the Alphabet Ring's first peal

As an appropriate afterthought, thanks to a bit of engineering by social media (email and Facebook), the performance was soon propelled to the second most-liked performance on BellBoard (second only to Mancroft's own anniversary peal)!

Balga Peal on BellBoard

Adam Beer

This page supplements the ANZAB Mini-Ring and Simulator Directory, and records further information about the ring or simulator and its ringers.

Some of this has been provided by the owner or custodian, but most is historical and has been gathered by the ANZAB Webmaster since 2012.

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