With the current lockdown ending on Wednesday, and Cornwall lucky enough to be in Tier 1 afterwards, it means we can start shooting again. We will start on Sunday 6th December, and will follow the same times and COVID rules to be sure of keeping everyone as safe as possible. ArcheryGB have recently released guidance to clubs with different levels of precautions for each Tier in the system. Naturally the higher the Tier in a given area, the tighter the restrictions are. The system we have in place already meets the Tier 1 requirements, so we are good to carry on as we were.
Well, indoor shooting didn’t last very long! We have been going for a few weeks now with our new system at Ludgvan and it has been working well. However, the government have said earlier this afternoon that there will be a 4-week lockdown across England starting on Thursday 5th November. All non-essential businesses will need to close. We are sure this will include indoor archery, so we will stop shooting for the duration of the lockdown. We hope we will be able to start again in early December, but we will review it at the time.
Until, then, do stay safe everyone.
Indoor shooting has been somewhat uncertain until fairly recently. We have had discussions with Ludgvan Community Centre, done risk assessments and worked out shooting procedures to keep everyone at a safe distance apart and comply with the current ArcheryGB and government requirements. We will be shooting in two details of four, keeping the details apart with a one-way system back through the storeroom. We have to pay for the hall, of course, so have had to make a tight compromise between allowing enough time to shoot whilst keeping the session fees as low as we can with a much reduced number of archers.
The whole thing will be more disciplined than normal, but archery is an exercise in self-discipline, anyway!
The hall committee at Leedstown have decided to keep the hall closed for the time being. We respect that decision and look forward to shooting there again when conditions allow.
For the moment, then, we will only be shooting at Ludgvan, and have two sessions there on a Sunday afternoon and two on a Monday evening. It will have to be open to AotW members only to start with. After a few weeks if we find there are regular places available then we will consider opening to visitors.
Edit: added a photo of our shooting line complete with pull-up screens
ArcheryGB recently issued guidelines for returning to outdoor shooting that comply with the current government advice. It involves wider spacing of targets, designated people to put up and take down targets, a Field Captain who doesn’t shoot who will take the register and enforce the social distancing, a booking system on this website, several new lengths of rope marked out with the required distancing and more besides.
We had a trial run yesterday (Tuesday 9th) which was successful, apart from the fact we are all now a long way from being archery-fit and the new bosses are really hard!
The guidelines have been sent to all club members by email. If you are a member and haven’t seen the email then let me or Fi know and we can go through it. Booking in advance is essential.
Sorry, but we can’t accommodate visitors from other clubs at the moment, nor can we run beginners’ courses. We will, of course, be keeping an eye on the guidelines as they change over time and will adapt what we do accordingly. We look forward to welcoming some new archers as soon as we are able to.
For now, though, it is great to be back out shooting!
It will come as no surprise to anyone that archery activities have been suspended for a while. We normally start the outdoor season at the start of April, and whilst it would be easier to keep a distance from each other outdoors than indoors, the current government order is not go out unless necessary. Much as we love our archery, nobody would argue that it is necessary. We will be monitoring and following government advice and will not restart until the restrictions are relaxed. Even then it may be necessary to observe social distancing rules for a time. This makes it impossible to run any beginners’ courses as we have to get close to people to do any instruction.
We’ll be back when we can. Until then, please respect the advice to stay at home as much as possible, and feel free to get in touch if you are interested in joining us when the time comes.
This year’s Valentine Tournament will be held at Pool Academy Sports Hall on Sunday 16th February. We will be shooting a Vegas round in the morning and a Worcester in the afternoon. A Vegas is 5 dozen arrows shot at a special target face with three spots, the idea being that you shoot one arrow into each. Please be aware that your arrows need to be numbered. The targets are numbered 1, 2 and 3, and the rule is that you put numbered arrows in ascending order into each target. So targets 1, 2 and 3 have arrows 1, 2 and 3, or arrows 2, 4 and 8, whatever, as long as they are in ascending order so that everyone can be sure you haven’t missed the target you are aiming at and accidentally scored in another one. Arrows should be marked permanently on the shaft, not the fletching. You can buy decals or wraps from archery suppliers, or a silver pen generally works quite well.
The Worcester is a black target with a white centre that scores 1 to 5. You shoot five arrows each end rather than the usual three.
We learned today that the annual chicken show at Ludgvan Community Centre will be held next Saturday, 16th November. Clearly it is not ideal for arrows and chickens to be occupying the space at the same time, so we will give it a miss that day.
Dare I suggest, use the time wisely – do some exercise at home, use a stretch band to work on shoulder position or something….
Our annual Handicap Portsmouth will be held as usual at Pool Academy sports hall, slightly later this year on 1st December.
Handicap shoots add an allowance onto your score depending how well you normally shoot. Top archers have low handicaps and low allowances and novices have big handicaps and allowances. The idea is that if everyone shoots exactly to their normal standard the everyone ends up with the same score. The winners are those who manage to do better than normal on the day, rather than those with the highest score. Handicaps are usually worked out through the season by your club’s records officer, so you go into a shoot knowing what your handicap is.
That’s a problem if you haven’t got one or don’t know, so we do ours a bit differently. We shoot half a Portsmouth (2 1/2 dozen arrows) in the morning, then we work out handicaps from that score. We then shoot a whole Portsmouth after lunch and we apply the allowances from the morning to that score. The trophy then goes to the person who improves the most on the morning score. There are awards for total scores as well.
Download an entry form here.
Booking is now live for our next beginners’ course. Dates are Monday evenings 2nd, 9th, 16th and 23rd September. Each session starts at 6:00pm and will last for about two hours, subject to weather and daylight. We provide all the kit you need and will show the basics of shooting safely and with a good chance of hitting the target. We will also show you some of the different kinds of bows we shoot with. You can read more about it here, and there is also a link at the bottom of that page to book your place.
Teri Hughes was given the opportunity recently to try archery through the Navy as part of a programme to encourage injured service people to try out for the Invictus Games. She tried archery, liked it, found Archers of the West and joined us only a few weeks ago. Now she is in Sheffield ready (at least, we hope she is ready) to compete in the UK Invictus Trials tomorrow in the Novice Archery category.
The photo shows her looking cool in the official kit.
Teri has also made into the promotional video. She makes a brief appearance with her bow a few seconds from the end.
Good luck, Teri!
Update: Teri narrowly missed out on a bronze, coming 4th overall. We think that’s a fantastic achievement. That’s especially considering she was competing against people who have been shooting a lot longer (even in the Novice category). See our Facebook page for more details.