• A J Barnfield
    213
    I see that there is an ad in this week's RW for a salaried Ringing Centre Manager. This must be one of the most cheerful of ringing moments.
  • Alan C
    49
    I see that there is an ad in this week's RW for a salaried Ringing Centre Manager. This must be one of the most cheerful of ringing moments.A J Barnfield

    Indeed. I must admit my interest is piqued as to who can afford to have a salaried Ringing Centre Manager?

    Curiosity satisfied.
  • John de Overa
    238
    And providing paid for lessons, using simulators, as well. An interesting model, one to watch for sure.

    http://bellsofstclements.scy.org.uk/index.php/learn-to-ring/learning-at-st-clements
  • Tristan Lockheart
    74
    I understand that many voluntary organisations are recruiting paid staff to support the work of volunteers. People have less time to dedicate to voluntary activities than they did in the past, so paid support could keep things going without burning out existing volunteers.

    Certainly interesting; could we see more of a culture of investing money into the development of ringing?
  • Simon Linford
    220
    Yes a very interesting development indeed. And potentially precedent setting for those contemplating setting up new ringing centres. @John de Overa - coming on the day we were discussing what salary would be needed to attract people to be president of the CC!
  • John de Overa
    238
    Is there an amount that's large enough? It's a labour of love, surely? :wink: :lol:
  • Tristan Lockheart
    74
    Enough to pay for the counselling afterwards at minimum…
  • John Harrison
    184
    Is there an amount that's large enough? It's a labour of love, surely?John de Overa

    An interesting comment, worth unpacking. There are two ways to interpret 'labour of love': the standard ringing way = 'do everything for nothing' and a more nuanced way = 'requires a committment over and above the monetary payment'.
    I think anyone appointed to such a key ringing post, whether paid or not, would be likely to have the latter by virtue of other necessary attributes. But the difference between a paid and non-paid appointment would be whether the person put in all the time the job needed to succeed or just the maximum that could be squeezed in around other other revenue earning activity.
    But I wonder whether the President should be the first paid role? Some other organisations that are run by a mix of volunteers and paid staff retain volunteers as policy makers but relieve their load with paid staff to 'do the work' . The RW and ART obvious examples in ringing but there are organisations outside ringing that are more like the CC, for example Making Music (which formerly had the more descrpitive titile National Federation of Music Societies).
    How much of the current President's work could have been delegated I don't know. Some I am sure couldn't but I'm equally sure that a lot could (for example a lot of the leg work behind the meeting in Nottingham).
    But to have the debate about which roles to support or replace with paid effort we first ned two things.
    1 - Those with influence in the ringing community must accept the principle that payment is possible.
    2 - The Council finances need reforming in order to make it possible (on a sustained basis, not just by eating into reserves..
  • John Harrison
    184
    could we see more of a culture of investing money into the development of ringing?Tristan Lockheart

    That was the motivation behind The Ringing Foundation, modelled on comparable bodies in other activities. But the ringing community had an unexpected immune response to the idea, which generated a lot of opposition that undermined it and eventually killed it.
  • PeterScott
    28
    Advert says "Salary pro rata FTE £30k for 40 hr/wk" and taking account of holidays, that's about £16/hr. The webpage suggests "a 30 minute introductory lesson" and that "To make any real progress will take a lot longer, and a much cheaper rate will be available to those who pay in advance for a minimum of three hours of lessons"

    ART has always advocated paying for training and paying those who provide the training. Bellhandling on a paid basis (rather than just managing volunteers doing the job) ought to cover its costs: when I was charged out professionally this was at least three times annual salary, so the lessons might reasonably be about £50/hr. The niceMrGoogle suggests £60/hr for golf with a PGA professional, which seems a reasonable benchmark activity.

    This afternoon I was invited to do a demonstration and taster bellhandling session for three people who had booked the parish centre for an activity unrelated to ringing or the church. It was fun and no money changed hands. Of the three, all of similar middle-age and none with any bellringing experience, one would have been handling a bell on their own with, say, four hours more ropetime, and the others would have taken a lot longer - maybe plan for up to twenty more hours with a review-of-progress after ten.

    So, as tutors, we should be describing to our students the commitment which we are seeking for them, and putting this in money-terms is helpful to that process, as well as (incidentally) raising some funds for ringing. With the student paying for tuition, they can expect a professional assessment of progress and prediction of further training and supervision needed.

    With our prevalent voluntary system, there are lots of people who struggle to make any real progress, while everyone around is politely praising the indiscernable progress since the last-time, and we all suffer from the inevitable disappointment when some external trigger causes our hapless student to drift away ...

    The Money would give us all more Focus.

    Perhaps... (Discuss ...)
  • PeterScott
    28
    ...organisations that are run by a mix of volunteers and paid staff retain volunteers as policy makers but relieve their load with paid staff to 'do the work'...John Harrison
    and charity law requires, for charities, that it be that way round.

    So for our hypothetical, employed, Central Council Leader, they would have to be some sort of Chief Executive, reporting to a wholly-volunteer trustee board, which would probably need a Chairman ...
  • Simon Linford
    220
    That's how CAMRA is organised. National Exective of about 12 including the Chairman, all of whom are volunteers, but then they have a Chief Executive as the head of the paid staff https://camra.org.uk/about/about-us/our-staff/
  • Simon Linford
    220
    Following up on people valuing what they pay for, one of the Brumdingers missed three consecutive weeks because she was doing some TaeKwando, and I found out that the reason she went there instead of bellringing on those days was because her parents pay more for the TaeKwando...
  • A J Barnfield
    213
    Interesting question as to how much of the funding for the training should come from those learning and how much from some form of taxation from ringers in general. We will need to take care not to exclude people from learning because they can't afford it. We would not want to end up spending large amounts of time teaching people who have lots of spare cash but making little progress while not teaching those with exceptional potential who don't, would we?

    And I suspect that the St Clement's type initiative is far more likely to take place in more prosperous parts of the country. A Central Membership organisation would enable subs to be collected on a national basis and spent where it is needed nationally and this would help with levelling up. And at association level perhaps there could be a training levely/component of the subs to help run ringing centres.

    And yes, I am being political.
  • John de Overa
    238
    Some background info on costing of volunteer time, taken from the Heritage Lottery website, which we followed for our bid:

    We use a standard rate to calculate the value of your volunteer time:
    • professional volunteer (for example, accountancy or teaching): £50 per hour
    • skilled volunteer (for example, leading a guided walk): £20 per hour
    • volunteer (for example, administrative work): £10 per hour

    When we went to their funding workshop they also made it very clear that they were in the business of supporting people working in the heritage sector, not keeping them in penury. Any costings for non-volunteer services had to be realistic, and if they weren't the bid would be rejected.

    I also came across a salary guidance document from the organisation representing professional archivists, the recommendation for a director level role was ~£60k p.a.

    There is some more detailed and interesting information on the Arts Marketing Association website, the salary for a director level role was £40k+ and for CEO £50k+, although salaries tend to vary widely based on the size of the organisation.

    I'm sure there are lots of other similar documents, these were just the first ones I found, but they suggest that the "going rate" for a paid head of the CCCBR would be in the £50k - £60k p.a. range.
  • John de Overa
    238
    We will need to take care not to exclude people from learning because they can't afford it. We would not want to end up spending large amounts of time teaching people who have lots of spare cash but making little progress while not teaching those with exceptional potential who don't, would we?A J Barnfield

    Yes, but there are ways around that - as I understand it, some associations offered support for the recent NW Ringing course in the form of bursaries. One youth arts project I'm aware of requires that people apply and selection is based on potential. If applicants are accepted then the majority of the costs, which include a residential element, are covered.
  • Andrew Kelso
    2
    Also following this with interest. We are actively considering a paid position in Essex, with heavy support from the membership, but lots of concerns from our trustees about liability and practicalities - hard to align the two. Concerns that paying someone will disincentivise volunteering. However, society has moved on: our members have less and less spare time to "give back" and the membership of territorial societies have higher (and justifiable) expectations of what we should be able to deliver.
  • Simon Linford
    220
    I don't think there is any evidence that the organisations that now do mix paid posts and volunteers, i.e. ART and MRDC, have found volunteers disincentivised. The paid posts come with responsibility whereas the volunteers are under less pressure I suppose.
  • A J Barnfield
    213
    Organisations like preserved railways seem to work well with a mixture of paid professionals and volunteers.
  • Tristan Lockheart
    74
    Without paid staff, would the workload of the volunteers lead to burnout?
  • John Harrison
    184
    it can cause burnout but often results in the Wooler done, or the rate of doing it, being what people feel like doing rather than what needs doing.
  • Jason Carter
    55
    I have often wondered if the night school model could help recruitment. We have all had the autumn brochure through the letterbox from the council that offers French lessons along with a myriad of other subjects: singing, dance, origami, chess etc. Why not bellringing...?

    If we ran a 12 week course for bellringing - at a very reasonable rate - £5 per hour session (Or more... I was born in Yorkshire :yikes: so don't judge me!) then we could give some initial tuition (and enough to enable most people to have mastered basic handling) Then at the end of the course you could tell them bellringing is free/cheap and just to keep going (and by the way the money you paid will be reinvested in recruitment of more ringers) Whilst it might need a period of volunteer support, if it worked, eventually you may be able to pay (or at least support) someone to lead this activity on an ongoing basis...

    btw - I have this weekend posted on FB about 'Ring for the King' and have two new interested recruits coming on Thursday... I know FB is not the ultimate way forward...but... a constant stream of recruitment is what we need. As Nike would say: Just do it!
  • A J Barnfield
    213
    With regard to night school type classes I recall an ART meeting in Worcester a bit back where a couple of ringers who had been doing just that gave a talk. If only I could remember who they were...
  • John Harrison
    184
    quite a few people have run local education ringing courses over the years.
  • John Harrison
    184
    I believe some were but I wasn't involved with any, they are just things I've read about or heard of over the decades.
  • Alan C
    49
    I'm sure there are lots of other similar documents, these were just the first ones I found, but they suggest that the "going rate" for a paid head of the CCCBR would be in the £50k - £60k p.a. range.John de Overa

    Well it's fascinating stuff, but where would the money come from?

    I see the CCCBR 2022 budget seems to shrug off a £20K deficit with an income of less than £10K.
  • Alison Hodge
    106
    ... a sensible level of annual subscription or weekly contribution by members and participants, as is expected for most other activities / hobbies and pastimes. The membership subscription may include newsletters or similar at a local and wider scale perhaps monthly or quarterly, plus otehr benefits such as some limited training.

    Additional training and events, activities etc are mostly at cost - as has been discussed elsewhere - with paid trainers and paid for materials.

    This is a rather different way of operating from what has become the norm in ringing.
  • John de Overa
    238
    Well it's fascinating stuff, but where would the money come from?Alan C

    This press release from an organisation I've been involved with dropped into my inbox this morning. I had a look at their accounts - in the last year their income was approximately £1 million. That's for an organisation started by a small group of people who had nothing but their shared passion, and have built a substantial and well-funded and clearly well regarded organisation from the ground up.

    Ringing ticks most of the same boxes they do in terms of culture, community involvement, wellness and many more, but they had none of the advantages that ringing has - no existing national organisation, no access to infrastructure that in ringing's case is probably worth billions of pounds. They are visible to the public perhaps a few dozen times a year, ringing is visible at least once a week in thousands of locations across the country. Global Grooves don't have centuries of heritage in this country to draw on, ringing does. By comparison, I think the case ringing could make to funding bodies is an exceptionally strong one.

    As far as I can tell, what ringing doesn't have is an ongoing fundraising effort with contacts to the relevant funding bodies in the UK. Any publicity and fundraising seems to be episodic and based around individual national events such as The Millennium and Queen's Jubilee. Clearly it will good if Ring For The King delivers a crop of new ringers, but if that's all it does I think it will be a missed opportunity. It seems like an excellent launchpad to move funding of ringing onto a long-term, sustainable basis.

    What could ringing do with £1 million a year?
  • Alan C
    49
    What could ringing do with £1 million a year?John de Overa

    I see 'Global Grooves' is, according to their web site, supported using public funding by Arts Council England.
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