Being an unofficial “member” of the UL, getting up at 6am voluntarily to be in London for 8.30am would sound quite crazy to anyone reading this. Nevertheless it was done, leaving Uxbridge at 7am still half asleep I managed to make it to Kings Cross on time to meet the others.
The winter tour this year was organised and coordinated by Lizzy Stokoe, who kept everyone together and punctual at all times. We got to Peterborough in more than enough time for the first tower, Peterborough Cathedral, so we casually wondered around the town centre, a few of us contemplating mini donuts at 10 in the morning before it was time to ring.
The Cathedral, a lovely ring of 12, 21-1-20 in E, was run by Katie Town. An unforeseen event occurred at this tower, Hong King managed to break his first stay quite spectacularly, not letting go of the rope until 6ft off the ground. Thankfully, he survived and managed to get himself back in the circle to ring more rounds and calls, whilst some took it in turns to hold the bell with no stay in between methods!
We then moved on and went to find the bus station to get the bus to Market Deeping. Eventually the bus arrived and we were on our way to the next tower. We first stopped off for food and drink at The Vine Inn (Lizzy’s local), a miniature pub that the UL managed to fill! A lovely buffet was arranged with sandwiches, buckets of chips and other nibbles. After a two hour stint in the pub and many pints to pass the time, we headed to the second tour of the day, Market Deeping.
Lizzy was in charge of Market Deeping, 8 bells 13-3-25. This being her home tower she recruited some of her many siblings to help out. After ringing for 45 minutes here we then heading off on a trek to the next tower in Deeping St James.
Deeping St James was quite a heavy ring of 6, 16-3-22 in Eb. We rung here for another 45 minutes led by Heather Forster. Many methods were rung here but not without some extra effort on some of the bells! All in all, a nice finish to a well structured and organised outing by Lizzie.
After completing the grab we headed back to Peterborough on the local bus and then caught the train back to London Kings Cross. Lots of cookies and biscuits were traded and consumed on this journey – happy days!
Once we were back in London what better way to complete the day than the traditional UL visit to an Indian. I cannot remember which one it was but nevertheless it didn’t let me down plus student discount – score!
The evening finished with of course a pub – what else – with more drinking and merriness to complete a fantastic winter day tour.
By Annelise Felton