Chairman’s Cup – Sept. 6th

Don’t forget our Chairman’s Cup competition, taking place at our Runwell field on Sunday 6th September – contact Phil Lees (mobile 07597 095544 or philiplees(at) to book your place on the line!

Rounds to be shot: NATIONALS (with appropriate distances according to age, gender & abilities) – All to be shot under GNAS Rules of Shooting

PLEASE NOTE: If you happen to be the holder of any Shield or Trophy for this Shoot, please ensure that it is returned prior to or at the event – if you are unable to do so, please contact Phil.

IMPORTANT: To help ensure that everything runs as smoothly as possible, please contact Phil either by e-mail or text (contact details shown above) and let Phil know the round you wish to shoot. Juniors, please provide your D.O.B. – Phil can then work out the round best suited to you.


Please bring along your lunch and something extra as a contribution to our customary tea which will be held at the presentation of the prizes at the end of the Shoot.

Hope to see you there!

We are AWESOME – Noak Hill conquered!

The summer season is barely a couple of weeks old but Rayleigh Juniors (and Seniors, including our favourite judge, and not forgetting coaches and parents!) are making their mark on it with some style1

On Saturday 6th June, a rowdy band of Red Ants travelled west to Noak Hill for the annual Essex County Junior Championships, contesting the various Bristol rounds in both recurve and compound categories and practically filling the line with our new shirts!


The Red Ants put on their game faces…

Full results to follow soon, but as evidenced by the trophy in the photo, we brought home the bling! Everyone was impressed by our achievements, turnout and demeanour – well done to all the Juniors, parents and coaches for a great day of archery.

On Sunday 7th, the seniors pitched up to contest their own annual championships. Paul and Tim took to the line in the gent’s recurve York, Chris Clayton in compound York, Marie M in ladies bare bow Western (the only entrant!) and Carmella – our Visually Impaired (VI) champion – in the ladies recurve.

Again, full results will follow but as with the juniors the day before, we acquitted ourselves admirably: Paul hammered home Bronze medal in the Gent’s Recurve, Marie won her category and Carmella also medalled (* sorry, can’t recall the result but will fix when they are released!).

All in all a fantastic weekend of fair weather (if a little blowy up there on the hill) and wonderful results for the club!


Rayleigh Rock ‘The Worcester’

Braintree's New Gaff


On a cold, sleety February morning nothing warms the toes more than some serious competition amongst good friends – except maybe underfloor heating…!

So it was that a few of the RTAC massive ventured Braintree-ward to take part in their 2015 Worcester shoot.

As always, the Bowmen made everyone very welcome with warm smiles and limitless free tea and biscuits – their new ‘home’, the light, bright sports hall of a large school was fantastic: evenly lit and spacious, archers had plenty of room to spread out and relax.

Three sessions today: Tim shooting all three to be joined later by Phil R, Paul W, Lauren B and, on her debut appearance in club colours, Lilly in Session B and finally, in Session C by two more juniors Joshua and Mia, along with the Birdsall Boys: young Sam and dad Zep. Quite a team!

Tim shot well enough in the first session to claim 1st place – holding it together for a very welcome cup of tea and bourbon biscuit at the end. The session had passed quickly – plenty of time to relax before Session B: some good chat with super-organiser Paul Ramos and his working party while the next contingent of shooters slowly gathered.

Paul, Phil, Lauren and Lilly took up position as Session B began. Although Tim was tiring, Lilly soon got the hang of this most esoteric of indoor rounds – a couple of misses aside she shot very well indeed – and more importantly thoroughly enjoyed herself! Lauren was a little disappointed with her final score, but Paul was always going to hit his PB! and Phil also shot well after making serious changes to form. Our host Paul Ramos was trialling his brand new toy: a lovely silver Hoy Prodigy setup which, despite being only a couple of days old helped him secure 1st place for gents recurve in this session – well done lad!

Team RTAC also won medals in this session: Lauren taking gold for Ladies U16, Mia taking gold and Lilly, on her debut don’t forget, taking home a bronze medal! Wonderful stuff.

There was more to come in the last Session: Josh arrived with his dad, as did Sam who both shot superb scores (Josh, again, in his debut competition). Phil and Paul carried on along with Tim (very tired now!) and Zep who suffered a little but still enjoyed the day.

In the end, RTAC made a huge impression on the scoresheet: loads of golds for both session and overall, a clutch of silvers including Team Medal and a bunch of bronzes.

Well done to everyone for making the trip and performing so well. It was, as always, a fantastic event – brilliantly organised by Paul and his crew. I think we’re already looking forwards to next years!

Full results available here: Braintree Worcester 2015 Final Result

PS: we’ve got to start getting photos of the team at these events!


A Cool American…


A few RTAC archers enjoyed an ace afternoon at Raydon Hall’s Indoor American shoot, brilliantly organised by Richard Pilkington and his team at the Wix Equestrian Center.

Shooting at 60, 50 and 40yds on 122cm target faces, we had to be careful with sightmarks: not only was the ceiling a potential hazard for the lower poundages, behind the backstops nets were a couple of 8x4ft mirrors just waiting for errant arrows to miss the targets, get through the nets and a protective panel of wood. Indeed, one compounder managed to get the point of one of his arrows within a hairs breadth of them…!

The arena was COLD! It was truly warmer outside than in, and the small adjoining cafe a welcome respite with its lovely food and hot tea.

Chris Clayton and Tim were supposed to be shooting in the morning but car trouble prevented Tim from making the early start. Chris, however, managed to bag a third-place medal (despite shooting ‘too many sevens!’).

With fresh wheels, Tim was there for the afternoon, along with the Rowberry Boys Alex and Phil.

Alex was shooting above his age group at the 60yd max distance and ended with a total score of 583 with dad Phil battling a cold to score a great 649 (especially after making some major form changes only yesterday)!

Men’s recurve was won by (who other?) Michael Judd with an awesome 802 out of max 810! Congrats also to our pal Paul Ramos with his third place behind another AGB international Brad Denning.

All in all a great shoot: highly recommended for next year – although I might be wearing at least one extra layer!

RTAC at Braintree’s Portsmouth

Rayleigh Town fielded a small group of archers at the 2014 Braintree Bowmen Portsmouth, taking place on 2nd November: and everyone came away with a medal!

I was joined by Charlie D in the morning session, Charlie shooting for a new PB which he narrowly missed out on but finished with a decent 495 and a gold medal for his category! Well done sir! I shot my way to a session gold too, with a score of 583, but was booked for the entire day – two more sessions to go!

Rowberrys Phil and Alex arrived to shoot in Sessions B and C, with Alex quickly staking his claim on category gold – another well done to Alex who scored 554 in the second stint for a new PB. Phil was shooting with new form and suffered slightly in the first session but he quickly recovered in the final round with an excellent 526.

Finally, Alex, Phil and I were joined in the last session by the amazing newcomers Zep and son Sam. Zep shot a marvellous 541 to finish 17th overall while young Sam outdid not only those in his category (under 12 Barebow) but also most of the adults too, scoring an incredible 453 points to earn gold and claim a new County record! Brilliant stuff, Sam!

Here’s Sam getting in the zone:

There were other awards on offer, too: Alex and Phil claimed silver in the Family category while together Phil, Zep, Charlie and I were narrowly pipped to bronze in the team event by Braintree themselves – its only fair: they put on a great competition (well done you lot)!

Full results available here

Braintree are staging a Worcester competition in February 2014 at their new ‘indoor home’: not to be missed! More information on their website, or contact Phil R for more details.



Racketts 2014 Portsmouth

RTAC made an impressive turnout at last weekend’s Portsmouth competition hosted by Racketts Archery Club (the unofficial ‘official’ start to the Essex indoor calendar)

Over 20 of our archers took up position against big teams from around the county and beyond. A new hall, good lighting, actually WARM for once and a great atmosphere amongst all the clubs.

In the early session Mia C was shooting well on Target 1, next to me on T3 and Charlie D on T4, with Chris Clayton at the other side of the room alongside Paul West – making his competition comeback (so we can forgive his ‘walking off the line’ faux pas, even if Debbie won’t!). The opposition comprised almost entirely of Raydon Hall, Braintree Bowmen and West Essex: serious stuff.

The midday stint saw fantastic Carmel set up her shooting stand flanked by newcomers Zep and son Sam in their first competition. While Sam coolly assessed the field of play, Zep admitted to some anxiousness – not helped by my complete brain-freeze when asked to explain the line position markers: I still can’t work them out.

Further down the line we had Grace, Helena, Masters D and J Ashenden, Jason and Ali B, topped off by Lenni on T16. Not much room for anyone else, but the teams of Ardleigh, Darentford, Fox and Abbey, along with Noak Hill again fielded some strong shooters.

Finally in the afternoon session, Mr and Mrs Martin pitched in, backed up by father and son archery super team Phil and Alex R amid the throng from Pilgrim, the Suffolk contingent Blue Arrows and formidable Grays.

With the results now published, its clear that we had some awesome performances across all three stints: multiple gold and silver session medals along with overall silver for club team and at least 3 PBs…Ian and Carol narrowly missed out on 3rd place for married couple, too!

Special mentions to the Birdsalls and Mia C for their first competition and some great scores – well done!





2014 Albion League RTAC vs West Essex

The senior team assembled on home turf for the final match of this year’s Albion League. After last month’s loss to Colchester, hopes of regaining winning form were no doubt high – and perhaps optimistic in light of the worsening, challenging weather conditions AND the arrival of a very strong team from West Essex.

Tim, Andy and Geri were again absent but lining up were our awesome matrimonial partnership of Grant and Jackie H, captain Ian B, Phil Rowberry, team stalwarts Grant and Jim, Iain Martin and Brian.

In cold, blustery winds and intermittent showers, RTAC battled valiantly against solid shooting from Richard Hammond, Peter Dent and Paralympic Squad member Simon Powell – in the end we lost out by a fairly narrow margin of 158 points with 3715 against WE’s 3823.

Well done West Essex, and to the RTAC team for a fabulous season which put us in 3rd overall in Division 1.

Scores for the day:

Grant H: 787

Ian B: 772

Phil R: 746

Grant B: 718

Jackie: 692

Iain M: 690 (backup)

Jim B: 551 (backup)

Brian H: 536 (backup)

2014 Albion League RTAC vs Colchester

For the penultimate match of this year’s Albion League our senior team travelled north-east to Colchester’s lovely field. We’ve had good results there in the past – would we fare as well today?

As it transpired, we sadly lost out with a total of 3703 against Colchester’s 4099: ending our undefeated run so far.

Top-scoring team member Phil Rowberry shot a fantastic PB of 795 – ‘mixed emotions from the archery field today: was pleased to walk away with a new PB and highest score for RTAC but disappointed to have lost the match – watch out Colchester…we’ll be back and next time you won’t be so lucky…!’

Reports are that the infamous Colchester breeze may have played a part in our opponents victory…

Scores for the day:

Phil Rowberry: 795 (PB)

Ian Bushell: 784

Iain Martin: 727

Andy Reeves: 702

Grant Beswick: 695

Jim: 618 – backup

Brian: 576 – backup

Well done team! One more match to finish the season: next time we’ve got home advantage!




Shooting in the moonlight

A fantastic finish to the summer season for a small band of RTAC archers attending the Moonlight shoot hosted by the great team at Malgrave: a warm, rain-free September evening, friendly shooting line and both lamb AND beef burgers on the barbecue…with some excellent results to report.

Representing the club were Geri and Andy Reeves, Brian H, Phil Lees (with bow in hand tonight!), Marie M on barebow, mum and son team Jackie and Ryan H, Alex R on a solo mission, annual archer Bill Wilson, James H, Charlie D, Carmel and myself. Large teams from around the county filled out the 106 archers on the line: the atmosphere was great.

As always, we were shooting 36 arrows at 80cm targets 30m away, under spot lamps in the darkness of Basildon Rugby Club, and below the iconic ‘onion’ New Holland water tower. After a brief assembly and instruction from judge Paul Body we were off.

Unusually this year, I didn’t hear of any ‘mishaps’ or destroyed spot lamps – traditionally announced by an uproarious cheer: perhaps fewer longbow archers this time ;-)

Shooting proceeded at a measured pace fuelled by regular tea and soup deliveries and trips to the barbecue. Total absence of wind and the warmth of the evening helped keep the scoring high: could Rayleigh win the coveted team trophy this year?

At the finish we had some superb results:

Marie M: 4th in ladies barebow

Lenni: 2nd in Junior Girls Compound

Alex: 1st in Junior Boys Compound

James H: 11th in Gents Compound

Charlie D: 5th in Junior Boys Recurve

Ryan H: 7th in Junior Boys Recurve

Jackie H: 1st Ladies Recurve

Geri: 2nd Ladies Recurve

Carmel: 14th Ladies Recurve

Brian: 24th Men’s Recurve

Bill: 25th Men’s Recurve

Andy: 29th Men’s Recurve

Phil: 32nd Men’s Recurve

Geri and Andy placed second in the Married Couple (pipped by Ian and Helen Harris), but the recurve team missed out on the trophy to West Essex by 51 points: well done WE!

The Moonlight is a wonderful shoot – novel, challenging and a brilliant end to the outdoor season. Thanks to everyone at Malgrave, the other club teams and to fellow Rayleigh archers for a great night.