This morning Ian was trying out a new search engine he’d heard about called Duckduckgo. Typing in “Morland Court Lodge” revealed a few things we haven’t come across before. One of them was a document about different types of peals performed by bell ringers. The document is called Fun Methods! It’s an extract from a book entitled The Method Ringers Companion, by Steve Coleman pp402-408.
One of these fun methods is called “Bastow Little Court”, and this is what it says about it:
“Bastow Little Court is one of the few methods to be named after a person rather than a place. It was first rung on 6th October 1934 in a peal at Lamberhurst in Kent to celebrate the marriage of Miss G.L. Bastow of Kensington to Mr. J.C. Morland of Court Lodge. For good measure the band also rang Morland Special Alliance but we are not concerned with that here.”
Miss G.L Bastow and Mr J.C. Morland were my grandparents! I never met John, my grandfather, as he died before I was born, but Gwennie, my grandmother was very much a grandmotherly presence in my childhood. This is a picture of them on their wedding day, taken in the conservatory at Court Lodge:
I love the fact that the author of Fun Methods is not concerned with the fact that they also played the “Morland Special Alliance”! Are either of these peals ever still played? Are they ever played at Lamberhurst?
The document, Fun Methods, continues:
“Whether or not Mrs. Morland is still enjoying a long and happy marriage, I do not know. But her maiden name lives on in a method which has enjoyed a consistent, if limited, popularity ever since. Pronounced to rhyme with hoe rather than with cow, it is an extremely useful method for providing the struggling band with a step between Plain Bob and Kent.”
Sadly Mrs Morland did not enjoy a long and happy marriage, as she and John separated and divorced after only a few years. But they were together long enough to produce my father.
I’m glad to know that Granny has left as a legacy such a useful and fun method!