A History of Woodford Archers

On 23rd of February 1951, an article appeared in the Guardian newspaper, in which Councilor E.H.Day of Wanstead suggested the formation of Wanstead and Woodford Archery Club. Following on from this, a meeting was held at St Paul’s Church Hall on 20th of March, at which provisional officers were appointed. In April of the same year, an archery demonstration was given by Mr B.T.Shortland to kick off the season, and Woodford Archers finally came into being. By mid 1951, the membership had risen to 34, and by 1952 a junior section (under 17) was established. We also adopted a set of club colours and a club badge.

In the early days of the club, a bow would set you back a mere £3.00, whereas today you would be lucky to get change from a £100 for even a beginners bow. Annual subscriptions were only 10 shillings (50 pence), and again today we pay over £100.

In 1962 scandal enveloped Woodford archers as one of our members, Mr P.Carty, was caught along with 3 other people poaching the Duke of Bedford’s deer at Woburn using a longbow. The four men were apprehended by the estate gamekeeper and forced to pay damages of £20.00. They also had their archery equipment confiscated, and consequently Mr P.Carty’s membership was cancelled. Further to this, hunting of game with a bow is currently illegal in all situations, not just poaching as in this case, a situation our club strongly endorses.

Originally located at St Barnabas School, it is only within the last four years that we have relocated to Whitbread sports field, our current home. We are affiliated to:
the Archery GB, Formerly theGrand National Archery Society (G.N.A.S.) and Essex County Archery, for whom we run the annual open Clout competition.