or should this read 36 hours of madness!!
This past weekend saw SVYF host their Autumn shoot and it would prove to be one of the most challenging events for many. The shoot would be on Sunday and we had arranged to meet everyone early Saturday to start the long process of putting out 3D targets, safety nets etc. Here we encountered our first problem with the police closing the road leading from our house to the woods following a serious car accident, resulting in a detour down country lanes to find a way round. Once at the wood it was all hands on deck to get targets out which was mostly done by 4.
Sadly there was to be another problem that day. Two of the nicest archers in the nfas Chris and Keith Harley had their car broken into, with the rear passenger window smashed. They had booked in a local Holiday Inn so could be on site first thing on Sunday but had their overnight bags stolen. So they had to journey home and sort the insurance and replacement window.
So Sunday dawned and in the dark we headed off to the woods. The weather overnight had been heavy rain with strong gusts and we all feared it would be like that on the day of the shoot, but we were shocked and pleasantly surprised. Through the day we heard 2 loud thunder claps and had a brief heavy downpour that lasted only a few minutes.
Arriving shortly after 7:30 we found everyone busy, which was expected. What wasn’t was the 60 foot tree that had come down in the night. The root-ball of which had twisted twenty foot of the bridge by 45 degrees and lifted the bridge four feet in the air.
A team of the strongest guys went to work with chainsaw, hammers and sheer brute strength. The one bit of luck was the original builder of the bridge Nigel was there and he had built this bridge in sections. Thirty minutes later we had a working bridge again. Though I think we will need to change its name from longbow bridge to horse bow I think as it’s no longer as straight as it was.
That wasn’t the only thing that happened. One of our safety officers was stung by a wasp and had to be rushed to hospital following an allergic reaction. He is okay but spent most of the day hooked up to a drip and having antihistamines pumped into him. He was discharged in the afternoon and is now at home recovering.
Admin had their work cut out for them too as 21 archers requested to change groups on the day to shoot with friends. All this delayed the start of the shoot.
Our new power generator stopped working plunging the kitchen into darkness just as the initial announcement started at 10:20. This would be an on going issue through the day resulting in us having to swap to the older smaller generator.
Problem with this is the club replaced it because it vibrates so energetically that it shakes the connecting cable out of its socket. This resulted in a periodic loss of power in the hut as someone would run round the back and reconnect the cables.
The clubs wood is surrounded by farm land but on the other side of the field there is a shooting club and as luck would have it they decided to re-enact a scene from the d-day landings or at least that what it sounded like, or as one archer stated sounded like the battle of El Alamein. This continued throughout the day.
Ironically the brollies people brought for the rain were used as sun and wind shelters as we had a few exposed shots vulnerable to strong gusts.
The wind and occasional rain brought down branches and trees throughout the day so we were kept busy, clearing bridges and targets.
The course would be a 36 shot round with a mix of paper, 3D and Hessian targets, with over 160 archers attending the shoot.
The 3D tiger proved a great hit among the attendees and a challenge from the red peg.
In all the feedback received so far has been largely positive with only a couple of comments on things that could be improved in the future.
Thanks for reading.