As we enter September, the end of the season that “did not happen” is upon us.  I hope that most of you lovely Nottinghamshire archers managed to get some shooting in, somehow, somewhere.

To my knowledge most of the county clubs have introduced some form of restricted shooting, except sadly, the closed school and university clubs. The fear I have now is that the indoor season will also be a late or even a non-starter.

With very few clubs able to open their indoor facilities, I feel it is going to be an exceptionally long outdoor season for most of us. Therefore, can I ask any club that will be opening indoors to let me know so I can keep a record please? (email the NAS secretary who will compile the results on behalf of the county. Email address )

Our NAS committee chose not to hold meetings in April or July; there was no business and, given government restrictions, it was wrong to do so. We are planning on an October remote zoom committee meeting; with the aim of running an equally remote zoom AGM in November.  We have to start re-establishing some form of ‘normality’; whatever that means, during 2021.

My own club, Greasley Castle Archers are holding a WA720 tournament on the 5th and 6th September.  It was recently advertised and completely booked within the week of advertising.  Competitors include an Olympic archer, GB development squad archers, competitors from EMAS, Yorkshire, Essex, and even North London.  As well as our own NAS archers.  This shoot will be run to the current AGB “return to tournament guidelines”.  It is a test competition to see if we can start next years outdoor season with some experience and understanding of the safety standards demanded of us all.  Life is not really going to change until we have a vaccine.

If nothing changes, then a major problem for all regions, counties and tournament organisers will be how to get (about) 120 archers, safely and fairly, shooting at the same time on the same day and in the same place.  And hopefully in the same direction.  (This of course includes the Oregon challenge and we will beat the Americans next year…)

AGB field archery and 3D tournaments appear to be up and running again. It seems easier to social distance hidden (or lost) in 30 acres of woodland!

Last week we had the news that the BA Portsmouth and Frostbite postal leagues will sadly not be running this year. I suspect that most of the county clubs will be shooting out in the cold this winter.  The NAS executive committee have agreed to let myself and Liz Eyres (Vice chair of NAS, Beeston Rylands Archers) to organise a monthly Frostbite League. It is in the planning stage at the moment and it will be rolled out to start on the 1st October. It is completely individual, and scores will be submitted online and will be launched on the county website and Facebook page.  This is to encourage our own archers to shoot over the winter for competition and fun as well. Please do keep your eyes open for the announcement.

Lastly. No county club has had any income from tournaments, coaching beginners or HAGs this year.  And all clubs probably still had outgoings to pay, possibly even in full (rents etc). Can I ask all archers to support your own club and get your membership renewal in. I do not want to see any club go under ever, least of all because of some (admittedly very deadly) virus.  I would like to thank all our clubs for their hard and extra work that has had to be undertaken so our people could eventually shoot in some way this season.

AGB have agreed, for renewing members, not to increase membership this year.  In addition, EMAS and NAS have waved affiliation fees (again for existing members) for 2020/21. Without you, your club members, your club, our county, the region and even AGB cannot exist. I now misquote the old saying, “ask not what your club can do for you, but what you can do for your club”. The point still stands.

Good shooting everyone, it cannot last forever. Keep smiling.

Bernie Dicks Chairman, NAS.

N.B.  As a subtle reminder, please continue supporting our archery suppliers, especially locally within our own county.  You will miss them if they were not there.


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