Group name - Hull Handbell Change Ringers

Treble B. Minor

  Treble Dodging Minor - Hull Surprise

Hull Surprise Minor

About Hull Surprise Minor

Hull has 6ths place when Treble leads, whereas Bourne has 2nds place, apart from that the method structures are identical. The methods Bourne and Hull belong in the “Cambridge above the treble groups” along with Cambridge (1-2) and Primrose (1-6).

Below the treble, the structure is a simple variation on Norwich Surprise, the only difference being that 3rds is made at the half lead rather than the 1-6 half lead of Norwich. These seemingly simple variations make Hull and Bourne feel very different from Primrose and Cambridge in that the thirds place half lead creates a 5-pull dodge in 1-2.

The 3rds place half lead also joins together the places in the first and second halves of the lead to create a crankshaft in the middle of the grid. This crankshaft is the key to Hull and Bourne as it relates to the other 4 bells in pure natural coursing order.

Surprise Minor methods are worth ringing in their own right, and as with all method learning the techniques relevant to Hull Surprise Minor should be used with a view to their application to the more complex Major methods. The most important related skill is to follow the course of the treble and hence to associate the method structure with the work of the treble. Further details of this are noted below

Table Sections

Tabular Index to the 147 Regular Treble Dodging Minor Methods.

Site Sections:

A set of 12 handbells

A set of 12 handbells
Method Ringing

A set of 12 handbells

A set of 12 handbells

A set of 12 handbells

A set of 12 handbells
Hull Project

A set of 12 handbells

Page Index

Hull Surprise Minor is a static method known for the long series of dodges in 1-2, and lasting the whole lead. The associated long place work, lasting from Lead Head to Lead End, is a key feature.

Method Structure.

Place Notation:
X 36 X 14 X 12 X 36 X 34 X 36, 16; Bob 14, Single 1456.


Hull Surprise Minor change rows with grid

Diagram: Hull Surprise Minor, plain lead, change-rows and grid.


Learning Hull Surprise Minor.

The Rules

Hull Surprise Minor - the rules
Ring Primrose over Norwich with 3rds at the half lead.
This "rule" is only useful to ringers who have already rung Primrose and Norwich Surprise.

The Structure

Familiarity with the grid is very valuable owing to the separation between the pair in 1-2 versus the other 4 bells. Use of the grid is helped enormously by an ability to see the position of treble.

Counting the dodges

A key issue with Hull Surprise is to know when 5 dodges have been performed. Clearly counting to 5 is an option, and should be practised. Equally, associating the work of the pair with the work of the treble is helpful:

Working Pair Treble's work
X 12 x Dodge 3-4 up
Dodge 1 Hunt 4-5
Dodge 2 Dodge 5-6 up
Dodge 3 Lie behind, half lead
Dodge 4 Dodge 5-6 Down
Dodge 5 Hunt 5-4
X 12 x Dodge 3-4 down

The up versus down nature of the dodging in the 5-pull has been found in practise to be slightly trickier than expected; this is caused by the X12X elements at either end. 2nds place bell dodges down before leading in order to turn round and leave the front.

Pivot bell

4ths Place Bell Treble's work
Make 3rds Dodge 1-2 up
Make 4ths Hunt 2-3
Dodge 3-4 down Dodge 3-4 up
Make 3rds Hunt 4-5
4ths, both over same bell Dodge 5-6 up
3rds pivot point Lie behind, half lead
4ths, both over same bell Dodge 5-6 down
3rds Hunt 5-4
Dodge 3-4 up Dodge 3-4 down
Make 4ths Hunt 3-2
3rds Dodge 1-2 down
Hunt 4-5, 5ths place bell Lead full

Double Blue Lines

Double Blue Lines

The Double Blue Lines give a useful overview of the method, adding context which is helpful for overcoming trips.

For each pair, the double place bell sequence should be learned. This is especially important for Hull with the 1-6 lead end which always seems less well defined than a 1-2 lead end.

Hull Surprise Minor, 1-2

Hull Surprise Minor on 1-2

Diagram: Hull Surprise Minor, 1-2.


Hull Surprise Minor, 3-4

Hull Surprise Minor on 3-4

Diagram: Hull Surprise Minor, 3-4.


Hull Surprise Minor, 5-6

Hull Surprise Minor on 5-6

Diagram: Hull Surprise Minor, 5-6.

Place Notation


The Blue Line features worth noting are:
The nature of the 5-pull dodging (see above)
The crankshaft (4ths place bell)

Place Notation and Grid

The choice here is personal preference. The author’s preference is the visual nature of the grid, but finds himself saying 1-4 (with implied dodge in 5-6) as the treble hunts 2-3 for example.


If Cambridge has been studied, then the 3-6 / 1-4 hunting boxes in the first section and cross section will be familiar.

Section by section

Section by Section

The information above has been gathered from a couple of practise sessions with ringers who are already familiar with tracking the treble. So no specific sectional analysis was performed. If a band is less experienced then further analysis and memorisation might prove valuable.


Ringing Hull Surprise Minor.

Track the treble

Awareness of the position of the treble is a key skill for most bellringing methods, and a significant help in ringing Hull Surprise Minor. Some hints and tips for developing the skill are given in the techniques section.

Positional Awareness

Location 3rds and 4ths can be tricky in fluid methods, in Hull, the static nature of the 5-pull is of great assistance.

Place Notation Elements

The method only contains 5 elements (X, 34, 14, 12, 16, 34), all of which will already have been rung.

Place Bells, Pivot Leads, and Staging posts

The double place bells sequences should be memorised, 3-4 is easier than 5-6.

4ths place bell is the pivot bell, see notes above.

The 5 pull dodging will be seen as a staging post, but take care over up versus down.

Awareness of other bells

The x34x when treble is dodging in 5-6 should be noted and used.

Coursing Order in Hull Surprise Minor

Natural Coursing Order is preserved in the work above the treble, as per Cambridge / Primrose.

Ringing the Method

Just enjoy it, it’s easier than expected, especially if you have rung Cambridge and Norwich.


Bobs and Singles.

Bobs replace the 6ths place at the Lead End with 4ths. This introduces a dodge in 5-6.


Touches of Hull Surprise Minor.

4ths place bell is the pivot bell, and hence the first lead end is 156342 giving calling positions from the tenor as:
Out, Home, 4ths, In, Wrong, .

For 240 Hull S Minor, call Tenor Out, In, Out, In.
For 720 Omit first call "Out" and repeat twice for a 3-part.