Archery club’s legacy boost

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ARCHERY club members are celebrating after they won a £50,000 grant to extend their Ribble Valley headquarters.

The Bowmen of Pendle and Samlesbury are among 46 sports groups in the North West sharing in £2.3 million of National Lottery funding from Sport England under the Olympic legacy programme.

The money will enable them to add a 20-metre extension to their clubhouse at Nabs Head Lane, Samlesbury, and create their first indoor range.

“We have an outdoor range on a six-acre plot, but for indoor shooting we’ve have had to hire a hall, and we can only afford to shoot indoors once a week,” said club chairman Norman Suchorzewski.

“The money will help us to extend our existing clubhouse so members can shoot any time they want, as often as they like, and they won’t be affected by the dark or by bad weather.”

The club will also install ceiling cameras on the new range so members can see themselves on playback and assess how to improve their technique.

The club’s plans are for an extension in insulated steel sheet to match the existing building.

Ribble Valley Council has approved the plans, and the grant covers most of the cost, but the club needs to raise more money before work can start.

Mr Suchorzewski added: “We are hoping to start work in summer 2014, but if things work out we may be able to start earlier.”

The club’s history goes back more than 110 years, to when The Pendle Archers were formed in 1902 by enthusiasts in the Clitheroe, Downham, Chatburn and Waddington areas.

Samlesbury Bowmen were formed in 1926 and amalgamated with Pendle Archers in 1932.

They moved a short distance from the grounds of Samlesbury Hall to their current base in 2004, and now have 120 shooting members, along with social members.

Members compete at county and national level, with junior members meeting every Saturday morning for coaching.

The club runs beginners’ courses throughout the year to introduce people to the sport, and ‘Try Archery’ events at Samlesbury for parties from various organisations and also at village fetes, carnivals and for local schools.

For more details of the club: www.bowmen.co.uk