Sad news – archery club loses wood

Sorry but this post isn’t going to be very upbeat. It’s with a very heavy heart I have to say my club, Briar Rose Field Archers has lost its wood. We’ve been told to vacate it by end of April.
You can guess how down everyone is feeling after all the hard work and effort. Especially when you realise we were in full flow for redesign of the current course.
It took us over 2 years to find the site initially and since then we’ve seen the club grow along with the course from 8 targets to 30 in the last 18 months. Membership has increased with lots of new archers joining following coaching courses. Now we are back to square one with no wood and having to start the search again.
From what I understood Birmingham City Council plan to close the entire site. With all the media articles and medical reports on how being active outdoors is good for your mental and physical health I find it very said and disappointing the decision has been made to close the site. I’m guessing they have their reasons and I feel sorry for those who actually work at the site as i don’t know if they will lose their jobs.
We are going to try and organise a NFAS club shoot for March 15th as a bit of a final farewell come thanks to those who have supported us.
Thanks for reading.

Safety after a storm

I know safety is not thought of as a very exciting topic for many but last weekend the country (UK)was battered by strong winds. This resulted in damage at our club woodland and has prompted this quick post.
With trees coming into leaf, thanks to a very pleasant spring I guess it was inevitable there would be some damage from the gusts.

Storm damage

This is one example of what we have seen and was directly above one shooting peg. Sadly it was not the only example with another tree falling within inches of one target peg.
We were very fortunate as we had closed the wood for shooting whilst running a work day in preparation for upcoming events.
It’s really important to check your woods for any widow makers, these being branches hung up in trees and likely to fall at any point.

More storm damage, yes the bow was fine.

Other hazards can be from branches that have already fallen and are blocking paths or targets. Look out for those trees just off pathways and routes that may have been damaged too. We have a lot of holly bushes in our wood and these tend to support falling or fallen wood. This effectively makes it’s an accident waiting to happen and we have spent a lot of time checking and clearing them.
So, can I suggest that everyone check and double check their woodland. If you find yourself in a wood during such weather take particular care and be aware of your surroundings. As I said earlier we were working in the woods setting up new targets and there were several times we heard the cracking of wood. For this reason we worked in pairs ensuring no one person was left alone and therefore vulnerable if they did fall foul of a broken branch.
We’ve conducted a brief survey on Sunday and will be checking the woodland in more depth this weekend.
Stay safe and thanks for reading