People will be saddened to learn of the death of one of our long-standing members, Albert Fenton, who died on 20th August, 2016 after a short illness.
What can I say, other than at the last shoot Albert attended, the Havering over 45s Shoot in July, he took home another gold medal to add to his collection.
Albert had been with us since around 1978 and I remember a bunch of us going to Tom Foy’s Archery Shop in Hawkhurst, Kent with Albie, his wife Joan and George and Edie Brown to get their first set of equipment after they joined us, Where does the time go?!
Over the years, Albert could always be relied on to support Ardleigh at League Matches (or anywhere else, come to that) , either by shooting with us or just to coming and have a look and a chat. He was “always there” and he will be much missed.
ArcheryGB held the European Championships and CQT at Nottingnham between the 21st and 29th May 2016 and Essex were well represented.
Daisy Clark was shooting in the Ladies Compound category and was part of the GBR team (with Andrea Gales and Naomi Jones) who made it through to the finals in the very centre of Nottingham coming fourth after a close match against the Netherlands in a fantastic venue.
Shooting had started earlier in the week at the Highfields Park ground where over 400 archers from 40 countries battled it out for places in the finals and also the CQT - Continental Qualifying Tournament where the top three won places for their county for the Rio Olympics.
This was very tense but Patrick Huston won a place for GBR Men which means we will have at least one athlete at the games - there are chances for a whole team at the Atalya competition which is in a couple of weeks time.
Essex were also well represented in the Judges and volunteers with Steve Johnson and Paul Clark taking charge of a number of team matches along with the Continental Judges and Richard Pilkington acting as Assistant DoS.
The event was one of the best people had ever seen - high praise indeed from officials who travel the world at such events and the question being asked is what can the team do next?
Whatever it is I hope I can be involved as it was great fun even if it was very hard work!
George Lewis, who will be well remembered by the ‘older’ personnel in Essex, passed away on Monday 4th April 2016.
He joined the archery fraternity in the mid 1960’s and was one of the Founder members of Damon Company of Archers. (The club lost its ground in 1982 and with some of the members moved to the Sports Ground of an Electricity Substation in Wickford. This became Southend Electricity Archery Club -SEAC).
He was a past County Senior Records Officer, Vice Chairman of the County 1972-73 and General Member 1981-1983.
An extremely dedicated archer, he reached Grand Master Bowman status and shot many times in the Essex County Team. Was regularly Essex Champion, East Anglian Champion, and won the majority of tournaments he entered. In the late 1970s, with a one-piece wooden Hoyt bow and aluminium arrows, he set the Albion record at 916 – a record which remained unbroken for many years.
When equipment improved with take-down bows and carbon arrows, George felt he may be able to shoot even higher scores and decided to sell the Hoyt. A club member bought the bow but the poundage was too heavy for him and, rather than let the bow go, stored it away. George’s scores did not improve with his new bow which caused him much frustration. The old Hoyt was returned to him and normal service was resumed.
George’s archery came to an end with severe Arthritis in his fingers. He moved to Kent with his wife Mary. Our deepest sympathy goes to her and his four children, Mandy, Tracey, David and Simon.
We received the sad news from Brian Wright that Felicity had passed away on the 9th March, 2016 whilst in the Critical Care Unit in Colchester General Hospital. Felicity was a National Coach and was very well known in the county, region and nationally through the many years she and Brian were involved in the Coaching side of archery at all levels.
Felicity was Secretary of the Essex Guild of Archery Coaches during the period 1982-1986, Vice President of the Essex County Archery Association for the term 1990-1991 and the first Lady President of the county for the term 1991-1994. In 1991 she was presented with the county’s prestigious “Red Tassel” award for her services to Essex. Felicity was also a qualified Sports Physiotherapist.
Felicity and Brian first met at a Southern Counties Coaching Conference at Bournemouth. Together they put in a great deal of time and effort into developing the Essex Guild of Archery Coaches by inviting qualified people to give talks on various subjects such as relaxation, visualisation, exercise, good diets and psychology of archery, to name but a few. There was always time for a forum session when attending Essex coaches could discuss any problems or difficulties they might be experiencing in their own clubs and gain helpful advice from the more experienced coaches among them. This was the main purpose of the Essex Guild and Felicity and Brian supported this one hundred percent. Together they organised many Essex squad training sessions, meeting beforehand with the coaches assisting to discuss how the sessions would be staffed.
Felicity and Brian attended the Wicken Bonhunt coaching weekends, which were always well attended by Essex archers and sometimes archers from Hertfordshire. Then there was the Essex Guild’s Annual Conference at Wicken Bonhunt which was just prior to the Southern Counties Conference. Both Felicity and Brian were very active in all those years, organising very successful meetings.
Felicity was a lovely lady with a friendly welcoming smile on her face and always listened with genuine interest to whoever was speaking to her. She had a very caring nature and gave up her time most generously to anyone who needed her help.
Felicity will be sadly missed by all who knew her and our deepest sympathy goes to Brian and their family at this very difficult time.
Mayflower Archers hosted the counties first World Record Status WA18 on Sunday 14th February.
Organiser Alex Purser decided it was high time the county hosted a World Record Status indoor event, and the planning began in earnest last autumn.
Key to the success of running head to head events is good organisation and a foolproof scoring programme. Alex managed both with great skill although his heart sunk when the only instructions he could find for the Italian designed software on You Tube were all delivered in Italian.
The shoot attracted a good numbers of archers from outside of the county and the day progressed with the seeding rounds, with a single detail session in the early morning and two double detail session to follow.
The head to head matches were entertaining to watch and ended in gold medal matches contested for the gents by Matt Webb and Michael Judd (Rec), both from Mayflower and Philip Glover and James Howell (Comp) also both from Mayflower. This was the first time that each of these archers had been paired off in a head to head shoot and despite the friendly banter, it was clear that no one was going to give in easily. The victors were Michael Judd by two sets and Philip Glover by just one point.
For the ladies, Anne Lilly of Braintree Bowmen won her match against Sharon Lawrence (Rec) of Pilgrim Archers and Bayley Sargeant (Comp) of Canterbury Archers won her match with Anna King of CADAC.
One new UK Record was claimed for the Ladies Compound 15 arrow match round by Bayley Sargeant and six World Archery Target Awards were applied for.
Thanks were given to the five judges in attendance a number of whom travelled a considerable distance to help make the shoot a success – Joanne Orbell, Robert Potts, Mike Pearce, Paul Clark and Steven Johnson. Thanks were also given to Clickers Archery who kindly sponsored the event.