Some sad news – passing of Roy Bickerstaffe

This week I received some sad news from my old clubs (Black Arrow) chairman Kevin Bunting, concerning the passing of a well know archer and fellow club member Roy Bickerstaffe.

Kevin has put these words together and asked I share them with the wider archery community.

Roy Bickerstaffe - perfect style

Roy Bickerstaffe – perfect style

It is my sad duty to advise you of the death of Roy Bickerstaffe after a short period of rapidly declining health. Roy started the ‘Derby Carriage and Wagon Welfare Archery Section’ in March 1965 (was this the longest archery club name ever?)

Roy shot both target and field in those days and was very proficient in both, swapping with apparent ease between the classic target ‘Freestyle’ and ‘Heavy Tackle’ as Hunting Tackle was originally known.

Roy involved himself in all aspects of the sport: administration, coaching and, of course, shooting.
In 1970 the BFAA merged with the EFAA and soon Field Archery as we had known it was changing and not for the best.  Roy with a few others decided that enough was enough and with the hindsight afforded by their experience of the BFAA and the benefits of a clean sheet of paper, founded the NFAS in 1973. This gave field archers the wonderful opportunity to again engage with the sport as they wanted.  True, the NFAS migrated down a path they may have strayed somewhat from Roy’s vision but there is not a single true field archer that does not owe Roy and his band of merry men and women a debt of gratitude for what we all enjoy today.
Roy could talk for hours on a wide range of subjects and frequently did and there are many who have missed appointments, meals, loved ones and sleep as they tried without success to prompt an end to the dialogue or rather, monologue.  But one thing is for sure….that all who benefited from time with Roy was the richer for it.
I’d like to pass on my condolences to all the Bickerstaffe family. Though I only met Roy a couple of times when I first started shooting as Kevin says he had a wealth of experience that he was always willing to share.
Thank you, Roy  for all the work and effort you  made to a hobby I have the privilege to enjoy.
Thank you for reading.

Shoot report – Hanson March 2014

Hanson shooting group Steve, Sharon and Barry

Hanson shooting group Steve, Sharon and Barry

Last Sunday saw the Hanson club outside Derby organise a shoot which we attended.
With the clocks changing this past weekend to BST (British summer time) we decided to not have the even earlier start on Sunday morning and went up Saturday and stayed over in Derby.
The nice thing with staying over in Derby was it gave us the opportunity to call in at one of our old clubs Black Arrow, allowing us to catch up with friends we hadn’t seen for a while and shooting round the course.
Kevin at black arrow

Shooting with Kevin at Black arrow on the Saturday

As always with Hanson the food was great and reasonably priced. We were also very fortunate with the weather, with it being a bright early spring day.
Sharon preparing to shoot

Sharon preparing to shoot

The challenging course was a mix of 3Ds and Paper Faces made up of 38 targets not the normal 36/40.
There were some well set shots including this 3D beaver.
3D beaver set in wood pile.

3D beaver set in wood pile.

My one criticism of the course which I didn’t have chance to mention to the organisers was with their target placement on a few shots. A number of 3d targets had either no boss behind to catch stray arrows or small ones that would not catch many. Maybe I’m sensitive to this as on one target which lacked a boss I snapped an arrow in the tree directly behind the target. There is ample space on there ground to avoid this.
3D bird though not sure what bird?

3D bird though not sure what bird?

I think it would be fare to say I didn’t meet the needs of the course. I came away very disappointed with both my score and performance. Didn’t feel right or comfortable all day. Shoulder and back aching almost from the start, just hoping it’s not my re-occurring shoulder problem.

Thanks for reading.