As we find ourselves nearing the end of the year, it's as good a time as any to send out the December Summary and reflect on 2023 as a whole.
Typically a quieter month.
The club held the second Winter Field League [WFL] shoot of the season, a 3D round in the cold and wet, brrrrgh!
A couple of notable rounds from Angus Falcon Relf and Ed Pockett in their categories, well done gents, and lots of cold wet fingers and archers in general, but hopefully all enjoyed themselves ...
The WFL continues in January with another 12 target Field shoot, then a 12 target 3D shoot in February, finishing in March with a double shoot of 12 Field targets and 12 3D targets.
December also saw AGB (Archery Great Britain) release the UK Field and 3D rankings. Overton Black Arrows had several members appear in the top of the rankings for the categories they shoot in, congratulations to all of you, apologies for those missed; Rob Aldridge, Steve Allam, Richard Buckner, Angus Falcon Relf, David Mahers.
There was an open committee meeting and Christmas Quiz at Lady Rose Hall (above the clubhouse at Laverstoke), where some members sat in on the committee meeting to see what they do, and needless to say as it was nearing Christmas there were some festive jumpers and plenty of mice pies!
We had some fun at the last indoor shoot at Testbourne, balloons being shot to win some prizes, Rob Aldridge taught us how to play noughts and crosses archery style and there was some trepidation as we took on the "Slight Worry Of Foam" where, following a shoot off, Richard Buckner won the winners cap!
Thank You Members
Both new members and renewing members. Without your membership, the club would not be the friendly enjoyable and well maintained place that it is.
We continue to grow in number and it's always nice to see beginners continue their membership and bring new ideas and new personalities to our long running club.
Thank You Chairman
Maybe more accurately, Thank You Steve Allam, our previous Chairman and Toirnament Organiser, who did a lot for the club during his tenure. Steve has stepped away from his Chairman role and is now able to focus more on being our Tournament Organiser.
The Chairman role, for the time being at least, is being carried out by Paul Williams.
Thank You Committee
There are several members who are in charge of running the club for all of us, their time given to carrying out their roles is very much appreciated, Thank You All.
Rob Aldridge (Secretary),
Steve Allam (Tournament Organiser),
Steve Baker (Treasurer),
Richard Buckner (Competitions & Records),
Hannah Callier (Membership Secretary),
Eric Dunlop (Equipment & Safeguarding),
Peter Turner (President & Coaching),
Paul Williams (Chairman).
The committee have been helped by several other club members who have been, or still are, Associate Committee Members. They provide valuable input from a member perspective and have given additional help at events and committee meetings, they are;
Gemma Briant (Safeguarding),
Tricia Crawley (Catering),
Thank You Mowing Team
There is a small group of members who give their time to help keep the range at Laverstoke mown and the grass cut throughout the year, a task that can take 3 or even 4 hours for the actual mowing alone, let alone cleaning the mower afterwards and getting the mower out and put back into the club house each time.
There have been a couple of maintenance days at Laverstoke to keep the foam in the targets nicely packed, the distance lines marked, hedges trimmed, sides around the hedged area strimmed, clubhouse tided, etc.
We all benefit from the help given by members to keep the range looking nice, the targets kept shootable and the clubhouse tidy, we are always grateful for the help given by members, and for new members and those who haven't volunteered before, it's a good way to meet other members too.
This year the WC has had a little make over, the toilet has been re-fixed to the floor, had a new seat fitted and the walls have been re-painted. The WC floor will hopefully be re-painted in 2024.
There have been some shelves put in the back store room for hire equipment to be kept tidy and easily accessible.
If you have any suggestions for improvements you think could be made, please send an email to the Chairman (email@example.com) or you can anonymously put a note with your suggestion in the postbox just inside the clubhouse behind the door with the push button combination lock.
Thank you to everyone who has helped out on a maintenance day, or even seen something that needed doing and has done it there and then.
It's great to see our members taking part in competitions, whether it's the WFL, the Portsmouth or Frostbite Challenges run by the club, or competitions put on by other clubs.
It won’t be long before Paul Williams has to return the Portsmouth Challenge Trophy and David Mahers has to return the Frostbite Challenge Trophy, the winners of the 2022-2023 challenges, unless either can retain them for a second year running.
These club challenges are a fun way to see how your own archery ability is fairing as it's about how you improve through the indoor season when we shoot at Testbourne, so September/October through to the end of March, albeit Frostbite rounds have to be shot outside. Essentially you get points for improving your own score, so it's about who improves most, making it much harder (if not impossible) for the established higher scoring archers at the club. Hence why for the last two years runninh the Portsmouth challenge has been won by members who had only started archery within the last two years.
A number of members often shoot in competitions held by other archery clubs and groups, which is also good to see, and with the friendly good nature of archers across the country it's always an enjoyable experience to shoot in a competition, even for the first time, I can vouch for that from personal experience. The worry you may have will soon evapourate when you and inevitably a fellow OvBA member, or two, arrive and you meet the other archers at the event.
Steve Allam was selected for and shot as part of the Archery England 3D Team at the All British 3D Championship, congratulations Steve.
Well done to everyone else who has taken part in competitions outside of OvBA events, these members include, but may not be limited to; Rob Aldridge, Steve Allam, Steve Baker, Richard Buckner, Eric Dunlop, Terry Edwards, Angus Falcon Relf, David Mahers, Ed Pockett, Paul Williams and probably others I have forgotten about, have all taken part in various events run by other clubs, many winning medals at many of the events they enter, so a big well done to you all.
Looking Forward - 2024
Overton Black Arrows is pleased to have been asked to host the All British Field Championship in May 2024 which will be held at our Field Target Facility at White Hill, just 1mile south of Kingsclere on the B3051.
The event will take place on the 25th and 26th of May 2024.
This will mean the club needs to ensure all target bosses at The Warren are in good order for such a prestigious event, so there may well be events put up and notified to members asking for volunteers to help with various tasks at The Warren.
We would be most grateful for any help our members are able to provide and I'm reminded of a phrase/principle called Givers Gain, whereby those who give will actually end up gaining from doing so. It might be by helping you meet members you've not met and find some new friends, or you may simply find you get a sense of satistaction by helping others.
Enjoy the rest of the Festive Season and seeing in the New Year and I look forward to seeing, and meeting more, members in 2024.