Recent adverse publicity regarding bellringing and bellringers will not have escaped the attention of the Association's Members and, in particular, news which came to prominence nationally regarding the suspension of ringers at a tower in the north of England. Whilst the full story is still emerging, it is becoming clear that child protection is a factor in these events. Whilst all this was happening, the Association's Management Committee was considering issuing Guidance to our Members in respect of Safeguarding and Health & Safety following the publication of the Church in Wales Safeguarding Policy in April 2016.
This mandatory Policy is now being implemented by PCCs across Wales and several parts of it are of relevance to bellringing and our activities. Tower Captains, tower Officials and, in particular, those who come into contact with young ringers and vulnerable adults should familiarise themselves with our Guidance. There are no particularly onerous recommendations in the Guidance; it is mainly common sense and good practice which will hopefully be of assistance when discussing these matters with Incumbents and PCCs as they implement the new Church in Wales Policy. Following the Association's Guidance will help our ringers respond to this and I strongly commend it to all ringers in our Association's area.
The Association's new Guidance is available here.