The Essex Association of Change Ringers   President: The Right Reverend the Lord Bishop of Chelmsford

Health and Safety Guidance

The Central Council has issued Health and Safety Guidance which the Association endorses and encourages all towers to adopt, unless it is in conflict with local Parish policy, in which case that should take precedence. The CCCBR guidance can be found through this link.

The CCCBR guidance covers many aspect of the safety of towers and ringers. Guidance Note (GN) 1 covers Insurance and Ringing and GN4 covers Safety and Risk. This guidance includes the need for formal documented risk assessments which may also be a requirement of your Church's Insurance Policy - examples of risk assessments are on the CCCBR website, you can tailor these to your particular circumstances. The Ecclesiastical Insurance Office website also offers guidance here.

Health & Safety Guidance for Association and District Ringing Events

The following guidance applies to Association and District Events, including meetings, socials and training days:

It is the responsibility of the person organising the event and/or running the ringing to assist in minimising the risk of harm to all present. It is the responsibility of all present to co-operate fully in achieving this.

The following guidance is offered to the person in charge of an event:

  1. It is assumed that the person running the ringing or other event will, in most cases, be familiar with the tower or venue where the event is held. Where this is not the case, steps should be taken to ensure that any local safety issues are identified, including any particular to the type of event.
  2. A formal risk assessment may be required or be advisable. If a tower or venue already has a documented risk assessment that is appropriate to the planned activity then you may adopt this, otherwise you should consider creating a specific risk assessment. You can find out by asking local ringers if there are any significant issues, or by asking this question when bookings are being made. CCCBR guidance is that risk assessments should be documented if there are significant risks and more than 5 people are likely to be exposed to them. Sample risk assessment forms are available through the CCCBR and EIG links above.
  3. Where inexperienced or non-ringers are present during ringing they must be offered basic safety guidance and appropriate supervision.
  4. During ringing the person in charge must use their experience and knowledge to identify potentially risky situations and seek to mitigate them.
  5. At a social event or meeting care should be taken over access, trip and other hazards, escape routes, etc.
  6. Just because it is obvious to an experienced ringer, or assumed to be obvious to anyone present, does not mean the risk(s) should not be highlighted to everyone.

If in doubt ask the advice of other Association Officers who may have been involved in organizing or running similar events.

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