Ask for a ‘Demo’ or Talk
Many handbell ringers or even full teams may be willing to come along to a WI or other organisation's meeting to give a demonstration, a short talk about handbells and ringing and maybe even to let you ‘Have a go’. See if there is a group near you here or contact the National Secretary.
Handbell ringers are generally friendly and informal – and you’ll have a good session with them!
There may be a small charge for this, or a contribution toward expenses but you’ll usually find that handbell ringers are more interested in telling you about their hobby (and perhaps trying to recruit a new ringer) than making money.
When you ask, there are a few things the ringers will need to know:
● Is there parking nearby? (They often have a lot of equipment)
● Is there enough space? (Larger teams have equipment that needs to stand on tables and which can often take up a significant amount of floor space; they may have their own tables or may ask you to provide them. Smaller teams may just use a music stand or two)
● How many people will be attending - and will they expect to 'have a go'? (The team may need to bring more bells)
● Can they get into the venue in advance to ‘set up’?
Strangely enough the sound of a handbell doesn’t carry very well out of doors, so indoor venues are best - with a hard wall behind them rather than curtains.
…and they’d certainly appreciate the offer of a cup of tea!