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Building Archery Communities - Robert's Report (February 2024)

29 Feb 2024

Check out this month's round up from Robert who has been busy delivering Soft Archery Leaders Award training courses in Kilmarnock, East Ayrshire & Rutherglen, South Lanarkshire.  He has also had the chance to visit a disability archery group in Haddington, East Lothian and has been supporting charity in Dennistoun, Glasgow to bring archery into their local community.

We are delighted to announce that we have been successful in accessing £5000 from the Royal Company of Archers Charitable Trust to develop the community programme using archery as a tool for social change. More information will follow on this.

Soft Archery Leaders Award Training Courses

Scottish Archery has been working in collaboration with South Lanarkshire Active Schools Coaches & Onthank Primary School in East Ayrshire teachers to promote Soft Archery in their community.

The purpose of the initiative is to train the leaders in soft archery to allow them to delivery this sport in their local primary schools and community. We have trained over 25 teachers and leaders this month off the back of the training they are starting an after-school club in Archery.

Couple bits of feedback included:

‘‘I enjoyed learning the different games that could be played with the soft archery set up’’

‘‘The coaches were great. They knew their stuff and were able to pass that on. They had lots of fun games that can be used for future sessions.’’

‘‘I enjoyed the course as it was a new activity that I have never done before’’

‘‘To be honest a huge surprise. The context, the way of the 2 tutors take the course was very professional and also it was fun! I recommend this course for any multi sports coaches.’’

‘‘It was a good balance of all the rules and the security measures with the fun part of the Archery.’’

We have our date for our Soft Archery National Championships 21st May, which involves primary schools across Scotland and are looking forward to working with the schools and local authorities. For more information on our community involvement please email

Bluevale Archery Project

Bluevale Community Club is a charity based in Dennistoun in the east-end of Glasgow.  Their ethos is to provide a club ran by the community for the community.  They look to improve social cohesion, community-based recovery, mental and physical health as well as break down territorial, race and religious barriers within the surrounding areas.

The club has witnessed a popular uptake of Soft Archery activity after their staff got trained  and have stated that there is a demand to look at setting up their full own archery club.  Also, a desire from the club to provide local and accessible opportunities for both children & young people and adults to participate in archery.  The benefits of Bluevale C.C leading a project like this is that they have a full understanding of and a positive relationship with the local community.  This is being supported in partnership with Glasgow Archers.

Lothian Disability Sport Archery Group

Mid-February we had the pleasure of visiting Lothian Disability Sport’s (LDS) Archery Group which takes place at Aubigny Sports Centre in Haddington, East Lothian.  The session is led by coach Nick Murrell and Instructors Kenny, Willy and Peter.  The are supported by Elizabeth-Anne Little who deals with admin and Ryan Johnston who is a coach and manages the website – truly a team effort! The of the session is to aim is to provide a fun and enjoyable experience of archery as well as supporting participants to develop their own archery skills and performance.  It was great to see how much the participants enjoyed the session and how interactive the sessions are, with the coaches being very hands on to support.  We even shooting tips which was a bonus!

Nick reflected on how the group formed originally and developed since it began:

‘‘Our LDS Archery group has been running now for just coming on 21 years. It was originally started by Richard Vallis and (the late) Jimmy Berry with me coming on board about 11 or 12 years past.  Since then we have recruited more volunteers to become AGB Instructors and Coaches.  What I enjoy most I seeing the satisfaction the participants get from hitting the target and achieving success.  Makes it all worth the time and effort as a coach and volunteer’’

Richard Vallis, one of the founders and part of the coaching team stated:

‘‘Some of the archers who've come to LDS archery have gone on to shoot at high level competitions, the Invictus Games and British Blind Sport national competition.  Other archers leave archery sessions with big smiles on their faces and say how much fun they're having.’’

Lothian Disability Sport is one of many branches part of Scottish Disability Sport (SDS) and was formed in back in 1962 as Lothian Sports Association for the Disabled.  Since then it has evolved over the decades, culminating in the creation of Lothian Disability Sport which is a registered Scottish charity.  They run a variety of sports sessions and provide services, click here for more information


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