The original foundation of Sherwood Archers was in 1832 when a group of ladies and gentlemen at a town meeting, decided to form an archery society in Nottinghamshire. Four meetings a year ware planned where archers could compete for prizes donated by the President of the club, the Patron and Lady Parmount. After each meeting there would be a dinner and a grand ball with a prize giving ceremony.
In the autumn of 1833, the Duke of Sussex ( Prince Augustus Frederick) visited the meeting and was so impressed, that he gave his patronage to the club. The club was then known as the Royal Sherwood Archers.
Within months of this happening the membership soared to well over 200 members, but on a shoot day there would only be enough archers to fill six targets! So it was clearly a strong draw from the social perspective, within the local landed gentry and upper classes.
Little else is known from those early days until the reformation of Sherwood Archers in 1961. Various grounds were used until 1974 when Sherwood archers returned to Southwell in Nottinghamshire.
By 1976, a permanent archery field was found and the club again prospered, under the strong leadership and guidance of Sydney Bond. He was a well respected National Judge and a leading figure within East Midlands Archery. So much so, that today there are tournaments and trophies in his honour.
In 1995 the land value was that high that the field was sold by our landlord to property developers. A new and better site was found, less than a mile from the original and has been our Archery Home ever since. It took a lot of hard work from dedicated club members to achieve a fantastic archery field, club house and equipment shed. Since the move the club has gone from strength to strength and in 2003 the club registered as a Sport Charity. In 2006 we also moved our indoor venue, during the winter months, from the Rodney School in Kirklington to Joseph Whitaker School, a Specialist Sports College and Foundation School in Rainworth. An excellent indoor alternative.
Within Sherwood Archers we are very lucky to have a number of Qualified Coaches including two County Coaches, as well as County Judge and a Regional Judge.
Throughout the year we host many competitions. These include;
- Friendly club shoots, such as our Frost Bite Shoots on the first Sunday of the Winter months, and our Indoor & Outdoor Club Champs.
- Open Competitions, such as Pie & Beans Western, BLBS Shoot, BareBow /Longbow 2-way Western, Nottinghamshire League Shoot, Regional Champs, Nottinghamshire Indoor Championships and Day of National Rounds.
- Our special “Speak Challenge” Albion, when each year we compete with The Wakefield Archers for the right to say whether Robin Hood was from Nottinghamshire or Yorkshire!
- Many UK & World Record status Competitions, including Nationals, FITA, 720, indoor Portsmouth & 18m FITA.
We are a very social club, and apart from hosting Competitions we also host many community ‘Have A Go’s’ and attend community events such as the Southwell Family Fun Day, to allow members of the public to try their hands at Robin Hood’s favourite past time, Archery. All of these events are well received and tremendous fun, raising the awareness of the sport of Archery and the profile of Sherwood Archers.