Don Morrison's Peal Compositions
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Here are collected 5617 of my peal compositions, in a variety of methods from Minor to Sixteen-in. They are arranged primarily by stage, with some further subdivision within those stages for which there are many compositions.

If you do choose to ring any of these I'd enjoy hearing about it. My email address is dfm@ringing.org. Feedback on what does, or does not, work well in practice is always helpful for producing better compositions in the future. And when the information is available, I do try to include details of the first performance of compositions in this collection.


Bands or conductors looking for something amusing, or just a little different from the usual fare, may want to have a quick look at some of the following:

Most peals of spliced minor, even those using complicated multi-extent blocks, concentrate related methods into extents or roughly extent sized blocks, and then move onto to different methods in the next section of the peal. Several peals of spliced surprise minor instead attempt to use the aesthetic popular in surprise major, with all the methods distributed evenly throughout the peal, and frequent changes of method. They use modest numbers of methods, and contain primarily the most familiar surprise minor methods.

The principle Shipway Major was first rung to a peal over 150 years ago, but has only been rung a handful of times. Based on alternate quick and slow eights, it's one scheme for adapting Stedman to even bell ringing, and is worth more attention that it's had, as musical and tidy compositions are possible.

5,088 Bristol Major is a simple three part with sparse calls, concentrating on 5-6 music instead of combination rollups. Many folks may find it a pleasant change from the usual 144 cru three parts. More complex is 5,026 Bristol Major which packs in more varied music, bringing up some rollups in unexpected ways, and building to a surprising finish. 5,152 (5,024) Bristol Major combines all the 5678s forwards and backwards at both ends of the change with 142 crus (135 in the shortening to 5,024), including all the 56s, 65s, 46s and 45s. 5,024 Bristol Major, 5,056 Bristol Major, 5,120 Bristol Major, 5,056 Bristol Major and 5,184 Bristol Major combine 5-6 music with little bell rollups.

Alone Surprise, Branodunum Surprise, Brocavum Surprise, Corda Delight, Grundisburgh Surprise, Mandessedum Surprise, Meletium Surprise and Omicron Surprise are all Mx Major methods that were first rung between 1960 and 1991, and have not achieved any great popularity. Most have at best moderate opportunities for rollups off the front in a tenors together composition. But with appropriate combination calls large fistfuls of rollups off the front can be produced, often in ways likely to take the band by surprise and produce a smile, and can be combined with good music at the back. When paired with suitable compositions these methods are worth more airings than they've had. Pepys Surprise is a newer method purpose built to be suitable for similar treatment.

Burton Latimer Alliance Major is sort of Bristol speeded up 25%. A surprising quantity of music can be packed into a tidy six part 5,040. Summer Alliance Major similarly has a speeded up London backwork. Spin Dryer Little Alliance Major method also has a speeded up backwork similar to London; all 144 crus can be be had in an unusually simple and tidy six part 5,040.

For bands that are feeling a bit silly there are some spliced curiosities. Rounds and Stand Surprise and Four Candles and Fork Handles Surprise are two such possibilities. Several alloyed compositions are clearly appropriate for bell ringers. And there is a rather salty composition. More challanging is a series, which clearly has a strong opinion of its own about what tower it should be rung at.

5,120 4-Spliced Major is an unusual construction that manages to squeeze all the work of Pitman's four into an exact ten part.

5,184 8-Spliced Surprise Major is a simple, tenors-together six part of the standard eight, but contains all the 5678s and 6578s off the front.

5,152 23-Spliced Surprise Major and 5,152 23-Spliced Surprise Major use the methods of Smith's and Chandler's popular peals, respectively, but structured with cyclic part heads, and arranged to attempt to maximize the numbers of interesting rollups produced. 5,152 23-Spliced Surprise Major goes one step further, selecting methods specifically to allow lots of rollups. A good variety of methods is used, and many will already be familiar to regular ringers of multi-spliced surprise major. There is a progression from nine methods to the full 23, or there is a series of 23-spliced peals enabling a progression from the Smith's methods to these. There are also cyclic part head peals of the standard eight, Pitman's four, Pitman's four plus Glasgow, and Horton's four.

There is a series of more aggressive cyclic part head peals, using variable hunt: 5,120 (5,632, 6,400) Spliced Surprise Major and 5,120 Spliced Surprise Major. Something similar is believed to be the first truly each lead different peal of spliced: 5,008 Spliced Major, where even the hunt bells do something different in each method.

Several peals of London Royal use courses turning the back bells to increase the little bell rollups available, most concentrating on 3456s. Peals of Cambridge Royal, Yorkshire Royal, Bristol Royal, Rutland Royal, Lockington, Northallerton Delight, Bob Royal, Cambridge Max and Lincolnshire Max use similar tricks to extend sequences of little bell rollups.

Meall nan Eun Surprise Royal has a somewhat spiky and interesting line. It was designed around having j1 lead end order, so that fourth place bobs repeat two leads, and was crafted so that the leads so repeated would produce rollups both at the back and off the front. The result is that some surprisingly simple compositions can produce large numbers of 7890s off the front interleaved with good big and/or little bell rollups at the back.

Littleport Little Surprise Royal starts with a cyclic construction, and then uses the lead repeating feature of the method to extend the occurances of the the longer rollups. The result would be challenging to call and ring, but probably reward the effort!

5,040 Barford Max and 5,148 Cantuar Max both contain little bell rollups in every course.

5,216 Spliced Max, 5,216 Spliced Max, 5,216 Spliced Max, 5,016 Spliced Surprise Max and 5,016 Spliced Surprise Max explore how succint a link can be made to join the parts of a cyclic peal. The first three have a link only two changes long. The latter two splice a pair of judiciously chosen methods at the half-lead to reduce the link to length zero!

Short course peals of Grandsire Caters typically give up a quarter of the rollups in the positions they adopt, as getting all the rollups requires having courses with the bell normally in 5th at the course end in the hunt. 5,184 Grandsire Caters explores one possible way around this problem.

Unusual are peals of Spliced Grandsire Triples and Major and Spliced Grandsire Caters and Royal.

5,057 Stedman Caters, 5,009 Stedman Caters and 5,105 Stedman Cinques combine cyclic part end style rollups with blocks of more traditional Stedman music.

5,007 Stedman Cinques turns the back bells frequently, using simple turning courses, to get 36 65 course ends into a treble and 6 fixed peal. 5,007 Stedman Cinques uses a different scheme to get 36 56 and 65 course ends into a treble (mostly) fixed peal, this time leaving the back bells fixed for six or more courses at a time.

Several peals of Stedman Caters and Stedman Cinques fix the treble in first instead of seconds place. While this still allows only 6 of the 8 possible 56/65 course ends for any given back bell position, all six of these can be joined with a simple block of calls at one position without disturbing the 6th place bell.

5,079 Stedman Caters uses a block concentrating on 1234 and 4321 rollups at the back, in addition to the usual 56/56 course ends. Several peals of Stedman Cinques instead concentrate on positions with the five little bells coursing.

Several peals of Spliced Erin and Stedman Cinques attempt to retain many of the musical benefits of Erin while reducing the tedium that some ringers find in whole peals of it.

There is also a page of compositions of methods that have not yet been rung or named. These are primarily treble dodging methods, at various stages, and range from simple to complex.

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