Write on Target

Stourbridge Company of Archers' Newsletter April 2007

You may remember getting one of these Newsletters when you were much younger! We would like to point out that these are NOT regular publications (as if you hadn't noticed!). Some wag said it relied on four of us being awake all at the same time. However, the outdoor season is now upon us and we'd like to see you all, especially those who didn't manage to come to the Indoor during the winter.

Records Report

As we haven't had a Newsletter since December (!!) - here is an update.

New Records

Luke Pennell Portsmouth 436 U/14 Club Record
Luke Pennell Bray 1 184 U/14 Club Record

B.A. Postals - November

Compound Frostbite - we lost to White Rose 658 to our 630.
Compound Portsmouth - we lost to City of Cambridge 1107 to our 1105.
Recurve Frostbite - we beat Crawley Archery Club 1416 to 1262.
Recurve Portsmouth - we lost to LAOFAC 2618 to our 2508.

B.A. Postals - December

Compound Frostbite - we lost to Pendle 653 to our 635.
Compound Portsmouth - we beat Folkestone 1108 to their 1105.
Recurve Frostbite - we lost to Bayeaux 1454 to our 1395.
Recurve Portsmouth - we lost to High Weald 2508 to their 2598.

B.A. Winter Postals - January

Compound Portsmouth - we lost to Friars Gate by 15 points.
Recurve Frostbite - we lost to Rochdale Archers by 46 points.
Recurve Portsmouth - we lost to Oakfield Archers by 132 points.

West Midlands Winter Postal

After the first match we are 7th out of 10 - an improvement for us!

Worcester Trophy (Summer Postals)

We were fifth out of eight.

SCOA's Handicap Reduction Trophy

This year only four members actually reduced their handicaps, and also met the other criteria to be eligible for this trophy.

The winner was:
Martin Woodhouse, who reduced from 50 to 44. Congratulations Martin!

Brian Webster reduced by 2.
Peter Langmaid reduced by 1.
Bob Cole also reduced by 1.

Eight others stayed exactly the same, with everyone else not qualifying or going backwards.

Dates for your Diary

Worcester Cup:

Throughout the summer, clubs in the County of Worcester hold a number of tournaments open to all archers. Individual archers' scores count towards a team, and at the end of the season the Worcester cup is awarded.

Any club can enter with a minimum of three archers of any discipline. This is all handicap adjusted and so those with very little experience are extremely valuable.

We would like to be better represented this season, so if you feel you would like to join us in any of these events, or would like further details, please speak to Dave Johnson or Clive Freeman who will welcome you with open arms.

The first one is at Redhill Archers (Wythall) and is an American round, (60, 50 & 40 yds), held on May Day - (7 May).

Annual Work Party

Saturday 28 April, about 12 noon. All volunteers more than welcome. We are not planning to do a great deal this year, but we would like to put some shelving up for tackling up, to try and free our 'lounge' for sitting in. We would appreciate if when these facilities are available, members could leave the seating area free of tackle, to give us older people somewhere to sit!

Have a Go - Rubery Carnival

We have been invited to host a 'have a go' event at Rubery Carnival on 16 June, between 10.00 am and 5.00 pm. If you would like to lend a hand - we need a minimum of nine people to man this safely. Please let Bob Hanson know as soon as possible.

SCOA Annual Outdoor Fixtures:

Date Event Club/Open
13 May Hagley National Club
24 June Breakfast Shoot Club
1 July Club Championships Club
8 July Rat's Ashes Open
12 August Albion Open
2 September Sheriff's Western Open
9 September All Comers' Warwick Open

Shoot Reports

Wyre Forest Portsmouth - 11/02/07

The Portsmouth round that Wyre Forest host is the fifth round of the Garrington Cup and SCOA sent three archers to participate. We arrived, all full of hope, colds, tablets and a degree of trepidation (due to practice and confirm sight marks set the previous Friday). As you all know, the weather that night left a lot to be desired and I for one did not practice, as I didnít get home until 21:30.

Anyway we assembled our bows, supped life-giving caffeine, and chatted to other archers who had chosen the early session. The shoot started and I for one was pleasantly surprised with my first few ends, but it was not to last. I started to spray the arrows around and blamed everything except the real root cause (MYSELF).

Fortunately for SCOA our other two attendees shot to their standard and we look forward to the results.

Report by Clive Freeman

West Midlands Regional & Worcester County Indoor Championships - Record Status 18m FITA - 04/03/07

This was held at Evesham at the Prince Henry's Sports Centre (a hall to be envious of with its lighting, en-suite toilets, Bar and viewing area). The weather outside was dreadful but we were able to enjoy a pleasant comfortable environment, which did not necessarily mean wonderful results.

The dynamic duo participating from SCOA were able to say they shot not necessarily to the standard they would have liked, but did achieve a reasonable end result.

There were times (as the two of us were on adjoining targets) when one or other was heard to make suitable comments as to the quality of their equipment, as the cause of any failure was never the archer's!!

The shoot concluded and we repaired to the bar to await the results and the raffle. Well the raffle was a complete failure, as neither of us were anywhere near a win. When it came to the presentation of the Trophies & Medals, then yours truly was very surprised. I gained a West Midlands & a Worcester County Classification and the Veterans Trophy. NO UNNECESSARY COMMENTS PLEASE.

Report by Clive Freeman.

Charlecote Park Roving Mark - 18/02/07

For once the Met. Office had got it exactly right! A dry day, clear in the morning, becoming overcast in the afternoon. The trouble was that for the previous two weeks it had been raining, so the going was decidedly soft.

The S.C.O.A. contingent of five good men and true, were all in the car park of Charlecote Park at the appointed time of 10:15. Well, actually, four of them were in the car park inside the grounds whilst I was in the one on the main road, where I had been told we would be meeting. Luckily Bob came looking for any strays and led me to where the others were waiting for the off. There were about 100 archers assembled, ranging in ages from 8 to over 80, all in a jovial mood and chomping at the bit.

As this was my first roving mark I was not too sure what to expect. I had been told by various club members what it would be like, but none of it prepared me for the real thing. Tales of targets of 200+ yards, over trees and hidden targets had left me with more than a few worries, all of which disappeared when I saw the first mark: a cardboard mock-up of a castle, 40 yards away, with various strange objects attached to it. No-one seemed to know which of the objects was the target, but this didnít seem to matter, as 300 arrows porcupined the castle and the surrounding area within a few short minutes. It didnít really matter which were the targets as I missed all of them anyway. It seems that actually embedding an arrow in the castle wall did not count.

On to the next mark: and my worries returned with a vengeance: the mark, completely invisible, was the other side of three or four, 100 foot high trees (well they seemed that tall to me). I had visions of me climbing to the topmost branches to retrieve my arrows. But, I thought, nothing ventured. I drew my bow as far as I could (without giving myself a hernia), copied the angle of everyone else's bows and let rip. What a buzz that was! I quickly shot the next two arrows without any regard for direction - just height and distance and the sheer fun of it.

At the next mark, a mere 100 yards and over a few small trees (but the river was perilously close), I even managed a score - only a 3 but it was my first and also it was the first one from our group - chuffed or what?

And so it went on for another seven marks, with a lot of muddy walking in between, but it all added to the fun.

About one oíclock we broke for lunch and then back out for another ten marks.

The first of these was particularly politically incorrect (given the recent troubles in the East) as it involved shooting at four Saracensí heads on poles - but no-one seemed to object.

Towards the end of the day we were introduced to Mr. Robert Hardy, who I thought was a TV vet and occasional Winston Churchill impersonator, but it seems that he is also a revered expert on all things to do with the longbow. After a few brief words from him we all took part in an Agincourt Volley - another highly enjoyable first for me.

All too soon we were at the last mark: a 150 yard dog-leg with the river running down the left-hand side. Needless to say I made sure that I kept all of my arrows well over to the right!

So, with the light diminishing at around four oíclock, the day came to an end. I finished up with, what I thought was a very respectable score of 10, and with all of the arrows that I had started with still in my quiver - and all in one piece. This, I was told, was a definite plus.

All in all, a brilliant day, tremendous fun, and a great group of people. It didnít seem to matter whether you were a first-timer or a veteran of a multitude of campaigns - everyone was out simply to enjoy themselves, and any score was just a bonus. Itís keeping a 600-year old tradition alive - and I cannot wait until the next one.

Report by Steve Knight

Dave's Quiz

Answers to Dave's Quiz No. 41 (The Financial Quiz)

Question Answer Pounds Shillings


A Stone 14lbs in weight 14    
A Bicycle Penny Farthing     1 ľ
A Singer A Tenor 10    
Part of a Gorilla's leg

Ape's knee

Man's name Bob   1  
A kind of pig Guinea 1 1  
The sun, moon and stars Three far things     ĺ
A leather worker Tanner     6
50% of a pair of pants Half a knicker   10  
A royal headdress Crown   5  
Hit repeatedly Smacker 1    
An unwell sea creature Sick squid 6    
Total 32 17

Apologies to those too young to understand pre-decimal currency

Dave's Quiz No. 42 - Name the Confectionary:

  1. Wobbly Infants
  2. Happiness in Instanbul
  3. Group of Stars
  4. Twice as good in France
  5. Place for upper class
  6. Bovine peepers
  7. Edible fasteners
  8. Saturday and Sunday
  10. Historic city in England
  11. 100% precious metal
  12. Favourite expression of Scrooge
  13. Sport of princes
  14. Public conveyance
  15. Carrier of dairy produce
  16. They grow on you
  17. Pirates' loot
  18. Antarctic bird
  19. Mothers' local
  20. Practice of African witch doctor

Thoughts from the Shooting Line

An archer's brain is a wondrous thing; it works perfectly until the body stands on the shooting line, then it goes into freefall.