Summer Tour 2012 Part B – Manchester, Liverpool & Bolton

Monday, 3rd September

The morning started off with a hand bell quarter in the kitchen. Theoretically it was the remnants from the gin drinking session the previous night with a 6 am start. This was the first summer tour quarter peal and also the last!

University of London Society

Bolton, Lancashire
Orlando Halls, Flat Six Kitchen (06:40am finish)

Monday 3 September 2012 in 40 mins (Big in G)

1260 Plain Bob Doubles

1-2 Andrew M. Hills (C)
3-4 Benjamin J. Meyer
5-6 Jennifer C. Willis

Rung in celebration of Ryan Noble’s 20th birthday.
First quarter peal on the ULSCR Summer Tour 2012

Two hours after the quarter, it was time to depart the halls and head to the first tower – the majority of the party feeling the after effects of the night before! One car and a minibus made for the first tower of the day: Leyland, a 22cwt ten.

After Leyland we took a short drive up England’s oldest motorway to Lytham (13 cwt 8). We then headed into the coastal town of Blackpool and had lunch at the Ramsden Arms. We did not manage any ringing in Blackpool; however we did visit the Eiffel Tower of the north, Blackpool tower with everyone gingerly crossing the glass floor at the top. (Insert picture here)

We continued from Blackpool (where the car in our convoy managed to score a speeding ticket) into the Ribble valley to ring at Penwortham (8cwt 8). This is followed by a short drive to Preston Minster (17cwt 12). Due to the London Livery Companies Guild holding their once every 20 year event, the town centre was closed – a swift (un-Jacqui friendly) walk up the hill was required!

After Preston, we returned to Bolton for an all you can eat Chinese buffet and lots more gin drinking in the kitchens! We decided against using the common room…

Tuesday, 4th September

Tuesday morning started with a massive packing up session. This was planning in case we were thrown out that evening!

We hit the road and travelled to Stretford St Matthew (11cwt 8) which was followed by a visit a Victorian cotton mill, Quarry Bank Mill. Cue National Trust membership cards! After the mill, we travelled across the county to Cheshire and headed for Wilmslow for a 1300 lunch and several pints at a local pub. Wilmslow (13 ½ cwt. 6) and Bowdon (18cwt 8) Greater Manchester were the next towers. On route back to the accommodation, we rang at Flixton (13cwt 8) stopped at a supermarket to buy provisions for the evening meal and lunch for the next day.

The evening was fairly subdued with Jenny cooking us a lovely meal. Champagne was also flowing as an engagement was announced on the trip (Chris Brown & Jacqui Bale). More drinking and merriment followed, especially after successful “negotiations” meaning we were able to remain in halls!

Wednesday, 5th September

Wednesday, started with another early start and a short journey to Eastham (12cwt 6), located at the end of the Manchester ship canal. We continued on our travels to Port Sunlight (14cwt 8).

After the second tower of the day, we made a speedy departure to catch the 1230 ferry from Seacombe for a cruise along the Mersey. Once on the ferry (little chilly), we had our packed lunches and saw the sights.

With two towers left for the day, we once again hopped aboard the bus and rang at Walton on the Hill (9cwt 8) and Wigan (9cwt 8). Wigan is home to the largest wetherspoons pub in the country, sadly we didn’t have time for a quick drink. After four towers, and several miles later, we returned to Orlando halls where Luke Camden cooked us all dinner. Gin drinking went on late into the night!

Thursday, 6th September

The first tower if the day was only a short drive away to the village of Prestwich (16cwt 8). We then drove up into the peak district where we rang at Chapel-en-le-Frith (11cwt 6). Tideswell was the next port of call for a pub lunch and ringing at the 13cwt 8.

With only one tower left on this action packed summer tour, we headed for Glossop (14cwt 8) and then back to spend our final night in the halls.

Chris Brown