Category Archives: Club Newsletter

Contract between club and club members

I recently went and shot at another club. I paid for my shoot (not cheap) and then had the slowest session in the world while a group of beginners were coached. It wasn’t really the coaching that I minded (we’re all familiar with that and I can hear a lot of you thinking ‘oh my goodness, please say you’re providing member only sessions’) what bothered me was that the instructors weren’t giving the beginners any encouragement to speed up or get back over the shooting line. On their last end the beginners stood around on the range snapping photos of each other with the targets and their arrows which took at least 5+ minutes.


Be the Change


So, why am I writing a blog post about this? Well, it made me think that as we have a lot of beginners through the club we could do with laying out our position on how this ought to happen. A kind of contract between the club and the members if you like. So, here goes.


  • The usual / main indoor round shot is the Portsmouth (60 arrows at 20 yards on a 60cm target face). Club members should ALWAYS be able to shoot a Portsmouth with 6 sighters (72 arrows). We hugely encourage scoring and we keep a leader board of member shooting on the website here. We’d love to restart leagues or club competitions – if you’re interested in co-ordinating this please shout!
  • If possible a club member should be nominated to either score during a session or count their arrows (I have a knitting row counter that I use to count my practice arrows). It’s helpful to have an accurate idea of how many arrows are getting shot.. not just for an idea of what you get for your money for a shooting session but for your own practice records.
  • Club members should feedback to the office if less arrows are being shot than this – if numbers drop really low for whatever reason (saving act of God / Downside / Schools Plus!) we’ll refund the cost of the session.
  • Instructors should do as much as they possibly can on the safe side of the shooting line. We won’t tolerate instructors standing on the range pontificating at beginners while club members stand around.
  • The only really unavoidably slow bit will probably be teaching beginners how to pull arrows. Club members are always welcome to go and assist the instructor, help to supervise the arrow pulling and help beginners to collect their arrows.
  • If the instructor is encouraged to always think – how can I be faster and allow more shooting time? Then club members are encouraged to think – how could I help the instructor to make this faster?
  • If you are interested in learning about coaching please tell us! Pretty much every club except ours has volunteer coaches who assist beginner club members. I’m not sure why we don’t have this. We’d love for more of our members to go through Level 1 / 2 training and help other club members to develop their shooting. It wouldn’t be a paid position but learning how to coach can be enormously helpful for your own shooting. Everyone coaches each other when learning to coach so you’ll get a lot of free feedback (including from the senior coaches leading the course).
  • We all need to remember that we need beginners – they are the life blood of the club and the fact that we run lots of beginners courses is how many many of our club members got started in the first place. BUT, we need to be respectful to our club members and appreciate how much they are paying to shoot.

OK so that’s it. Please do remember to tell the office if things go awry at the club as we may not know. Multiple reporting is better than everyone thinking that someone else will do it.


We’ve got a whole load of wonderful members and our constant flow of beginners lands more on our doorstep every month. It’s up to us to lay out what we expect but I don’t think we tell you what we’ll deliver in return often enough. And really – do think about coaching! Here’s a link to the Archery GB Level 1 course page.


Club Newsletter about Move to Harris Academy

Dear 2020 Club Members, I hope all is well and the Summer is looking good for everyone.


We have exciting news! As of Monday 28th July and Wednesday 30th July – we’ve changed venue for Monday and Wednesday evening to Harris Academy which can be found at 55 Southwark Park Rd (SE16 3TZ).


The advantage for Monday night regulars is that it is a little closer to Bermondsey tube station and the advantage for Wednesday night regulars is that we’ll be able to fit 10 bosses and have bags more room on the line. There are also direct buses from Elephant & Castle (bus number 1 towards Canada Water) which is an advantage if its raining / you have heavy kit and don’t feel like a walk.


The main thing that all archers need to be aware of is that the entrance is in front of the shooting line. This doesn’t mean that you need to time your entrance to fall between arrows – or zigzag under a hail of arrows like the cornfield scene in Apocalypto.. what it does mean is that we’ll be closing and locking the door once we’ve set up. If everyone could keep an eye out for latecomers it would be appreciated but, for the most part, we need people to aim to arrive on time for setting up.


ARRIVAL TIME FOR BOTH MONDAY AND WEDNESDAY is now 6.45pm to 7.15pm. We have the hall booked from 6.30pm if you do want to arrive early.. but we’re expecting people to arrive to help set up between 6.45pm and 7.15pm (the earlier the better). We should be all done and out of the hall by 9pm.


A quick reminder about archery etiquette – it should be fine to arrive late (as long as we spot you) or to leave a bit early – as long as you apologise to the other club members who have had to do all the setting up or packing away for you. We do not expect – or pay – instructors to do the set up and pack down on behalf of the club. In line with all clubs that have to set up and pack away everyone that is shooting should be helping at each end of the session. Everyone understands that occasionally something comes up which means an unavoidable late arrival or early departure – etiquette asks that you apologise to the people around you. You aren’t expected to apologise to the instructor as this perpuates the idea that it’s Diccon or Roger’s responsibility to set up or pack away and club members are just being nice and giving a helping hand. We can – and do – sanction club members who don’t help out.


Saying that, we know that we have had a problem with the weekend course sessions lasting for longer and we’re trying to sort it out. At the moment were trying to get better at informing the club when we’ll be having a 3 hr Sat / Sun session, ultimately I think we may be changing club or course times so everything is a bit clearer.


We’ve updated our Find Us on the web – if you want to have a direct click through here is Google’s route using Bus number 1 from Elephant & Castle.


Here is the walking route from Bermondsey tube.


We think this is a really positive move for the club and we hope that you will all like the new venue as much as we do.


Best wishes, 2020 Archery

May Member News from 2020 Archery

Hey everyone – two pieces of news for May 2014.

  • You can now book a place for our next Sunday Handicap Competition on Sunday 8th June
  • We’ve re-opened the Direct Debit system with new pricing options


Save the date for our next handicap competition – or better still click through and book!

Our upcoming competition will be on Sunday 8th June! And we’ll be having an Autumn one on Sunday 14th September. To improve the system we can now accept bookings for the handicap competition ahead of the normal website opening! To get things rolling in advance we’ve added competition places to our normal ‘vouchers’ page. If you click through here you’ll be able to buy yourself a place on either the 12 noon session or the 2pm session.


There will be a few improvements this time, primarily there will be categories to the competition so you can enter as a longbow archer, a sighted recurve, barebow recurve etc. We will need at least five people in a category to award a prize.


Re-opening Direct Debit Programme

The other great news is that all the pre-payment shenanigans have now died down – we even got some love from a few people for not having to remember to get cash out before the session. Phew. We’re glad that’s all taken care of.


We’ve also made huge inroads into getting the Direct Debit people to re-open places / alert us if for some reason they can’t attend and we seem to have successfully passed the message on that there is a limited number of missed sessions that we can cope with if you’re on programme.


So.. we’re re-opening the system. A little bit new and improved.


1 shoot per week : £25

This seems to be really popular and we don’t want to change a winning formula


Unlimited shooting each week : £65

As we’ve now got less sessions than before it seems fair to make the unlimited price a bit cheaper. It also makes sense to only differentiate between once a week people and, beyond this, to open it up and make it a bit more viable for any of you that want to come as many times as you can in a given week and practice.


T’s and C’s are the same as before.

To give a quick rundown – we can’t guarantee that sessions will go ahead – particularly where Acts of God are concerned (or ‘Acts of Downside’ as we refer to them).  At least once a year Downside forget to tell us about a closure (or have an explosion – I believe they melted part of the road on Druid St last time) and – not even joking – Southwark Academy changes parents evening to a Monday night with about 3 days notice at least on an annual basis. Last year they booked in a sports hall resurfacing which closed the venue for three weeks and only told us the week before. Still, it adds another frisson of excitement to London Life for all of us. We definitely know that we close for a little bit at Easter and over Christmas, and Bank Holidays are usually closed too. We can’t refund DD payments, carry over credits or anything similar, and we’ll (very nicely) ask you to go back to PAYG if you miss more than 3 sessions in 3 months which we didn’t have enough notice to get filled.


Happy Shooting! Heidi and the 2020 Archery Team

2020 Archery First Handicap Competition of 2014!


Competition Date: Sunday 9th March, 2014

Start time – session 1: 12 noon in the Sports Hall, Downside Centre

Start time – session 2: 2pm in the Sports Hall, Downside Centre


These are competition only slots. Everyone shooting will be required to join in the competition shoot (even if you don’t have a handicap you can still join in and record your first competition score).


The broad premise is that everyone who wants to take part will shoot a Portsmouth round – all starting at the same time with 6 sighters.


If you take part your score on the day will be added to the allowance for your current registered handicap (as listed on the 2020 Archery website:


The final rankings will then be decided by the highest total.


What is the handicap system in archery?

It’s basically a way of tracking your progress over a period of time. Handicaps in archery are recorded between June of one year and June of the next, and as handicaps can only get better not worse in any one year, your handicap should be gradually getting lower (1 is the perfect handicap). Handicaps ‘reset’ in June of each year so if you’ve, for example, sustained an injury and your scores have been getting lower and lower your ‘good’ pre-injury handicap will last until June. Once June has passed the next 3 scores you put in will form your starting handicap for the next year.


In golf you can define a handicap as “a measure of the performer’s current ability over an entire round of golf, signified by a number. The lower the number, the better the golfer is.” In archery we use a similar system – at our club we usually only shoot one or two rounds but many archery clubs will shoot many different rounds over the course of a year (up to 100 yards outdoors). You can click here for a pdf of common rounds shot in the UK. The handicap (1 to 100) is generated by averaging the highest three scores achieved on any given round in a given year, and then checking this against the Archery GB handicap tables. An average score of 500 on a Portsmouth round will give a handicap of 50 – mid way through the table.


A nice nuance of the system also allows for 2 or more ‘players’ to compete against each other despite a difference in current scoring performance. This is done by providing an extra ‘allowance’ for your handicap when shooting a given round.


Example as follows:


The Average of Johnny’s top three scores are 526 and he has a handicap of 43.

If you have a handicap of 43 you will get 922 points added to your score.

Johnny shoots a Portsmouth score of 523, giving him a total of 1445.


The Average of Cathy’s top three scores are 429 and she therefore has a handicap of 60.

If you have a handicap of 60 you will get 1024 points added to your score.

She shoots a Portsmouth score of 435, giving her a total score of 1459.


The Average of Trev’s top three scores are 553 and he has a handicap of 31.

If you have a handicap of 31 you will get 881 points added to your score.

Trev shoots a Portsmouth score of 540, giving him a total score of 1421.


Final rankings:

1st) Cathy – 1459

2nd) Johnny – 1445

3rd) Trev – 1421


So, what this basically means is that if you’ve had a splendid day and increased your personal best by 30 points.. no matter whether you’re usually shooting 560, 490 or 380.. if you’ve done really well you get credit. If we don’t use the handicap system then the top people on the leaderboard will win every time even if they have a horrible shoot (compared to their usual performance) on the day.


Phew. Lots of info!


So, I love handicap comps! We’re trying to implement at least 4 each year – Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter. This one will be the inaugural Spring handicap shoot.


It’s mainly for fun but there will be some prizes!


Please come and support us!


£10 each to enter or use a pre-paid shoot if you’re on programme.




1st) 2020 Archery club hoodie + month of free shooting

2nd) 2020 Archery t-shirt + 3 free shoots

3rd) 2020 Archery water bottle + 1 free shoot


Best of luck!


2020 Archery Team


Consultation Results and NEW overflow shooting possibility


Thanks so much to everyone that responded. There are a few things that arose from the consultation that we think it’s worth sending a group answer out for. Apologies that this is a long post but we want to address as many things as possible. We’ve given different sections headings so you can skip through as fast as you wish.


January blues


January is busy! January is always busy as lots of people decide to return to archery / shoot more in the New Year. In hindsight it wasn’t the best time to have reduced sessions but before Christmas we had a few weeks where we literally had 3 people in the 3pm Saturday session so something had to be done. The shooting line always calms down after the January rush subsides.


Pin on calendar pointing new year resolutions


Overflow shooting


We’re happy to organise an overflow list so if you do wish to shoot on a Saturday or Sunday and there isn’t space please email into the office saying “Saturday overflow shoot DATE” or something of that nature in the subject line (if there are 2 of you please write “Sunday overflow shoot 9th Feb – 2 people”). If we get enough people who want to shoot we can schedule an extra session – we will need around 15 people for us to book an extra session at Downside. This weekend there is no possibility for a Saturday overflow but we have good availability for a Sunday overflow. Please email in if you’d like to put your name down.


Sunday should be easy to put on an overflow shoot on the roof pitch at the same time as regular shooting (or 12-2pm). The easiest slot that we’ll usually be able to find on a Saturday will be 10 to 12. Please specify if there are times you can’t do if you want an overflow spot. The more flexible you are the better the chance that we’ll be able to put on an extra shoot. This will also work for MONDAY shooting as we can book Downside – but not Wednesday.


24 hr notice period for cancellation


We expect 24 hrs notice if you can’t attend. For now we’re going to chase people for payment if they come up on our no-show list. If you’re on Direct Debit we also expect you to give 24hrs notice of cancellation. If you book and don’t attend while on the Direct Debit programme we will remove you from the scheme – we offer DD at a discount but this is on the basis that suitable notice for cancellation is given.


Informing new members about cancellation etc


We’ve realised that not enough people are aware of our cancellation policy, probably because everything is a bit overwhelming at first. Our cancellation period is set out in the new member welcome emails. As very few people seemed clear on the system we’re going to send out a follow-up email to the welcome one a month after people join the club.


Junior club / set up for 12pm Saturday shooting


Every session listed includes set up and take down time. Most shooting sessions will allow for around 1 to 1.5hrs of shooting time. This is the same as every other archery club that I know of with the exception of the very rare shops etc that have fixed ranges. The session times indicate when we have rented the space for the shoot i.e. we enter at that time and we leave at that time. We are better off than most clubs as we can often leave things set up from an earlier session. I’m afraid that we can’t guarantee that you’ll be able to shoot a full Portsmouth every time.. if you arrive and shoot 6 sighter arrows and then shoot 3 arrows every end you should be able to manage it.. but we can’t guarantee this. We have actively made some changes to try and get junior club out of the hall while members set up.. although a 20 minute set up time is actually pretty good. The more people that arrive early i.e. 12 o’clock the faster shooting will start. We know it can be slow on week 1 of a beginners course.. or if there’s a weekend course in but we do our best to keep the club moving. Again, the amount of weekend courses will calm right down later in the year – you can check starting weeks / whether a weekend course is scheduled etc on the website.


Spike and katie instagram



Late arrivals / staying on for 2nd Saturday Session


If you arrive more than 20 minutes late you may not be able to shoot. There is obviously VERY limited availability on a Saturday now so :


  • If you are booked in for session 2 STAY OUT OF THE HALL until 2pm


  • If you are booked in for the first session and wish to stay for the second session please inform Diccon during session 1 and VACATE THE HALL at 2pm until all of the session 2 people have arrived. If there are still gaps at 2.20pm these can be filled by anyone that has stayed on.


  • If you arrive for session 2 later than 2.20pm and your spot has gone you need to leave again! Please don’t embarrass people by demanding ‘your’ spot, it is now ‘their’ spot.


One or two people said in their response emails “Archers need to have more respect for other archers”. I think this is something that we all need to pay heed to at the moment.


The result of the consultation


The final results of the consultation were very evenly divided between chasing no-shows and implementing a pre-pay system. As the club seems to be split so evenly we’ve chosen to start moving towards a pre-pay system as this seems to have the easiest admin for the office. Systems with more admin effectively cost more as we need to pay office staff to do the chasing.




A number of people have noticed that if we charged more we’d be able to have quieter sessions. We wholeheartedly agree. For now we’re starting with trying to collect all the money from bookings made but basically at £10 per person we need pretty full sessions to make it worth us doing. Remember that as a small business we lose 20% of all session fees in VAT.. we need to pay for target faces, maintain the bosses (each target costs about £300 and they need regular replacement) and to pay instructors to open and close up. I expect that we will gradually increase prices on an annual basis – our session fee has stayed the same for the 6 years that 2020 Archery has existed. We’re not implementing this anytime soon… but if we charged £15 per person we could give over half the shooting line to ‘gaps’. Our intuition is that more people would prefer less space and lower costs… but just to put it out there, there’s a direct relationship between the two.


We are in a very unique position – which is that we have a brilliantly convenient central London location… because of this our club is busy.. and our costs are high… this mean we need to take in a lot of beginners to help pay the high rental fees.. and we are one of the only clubs that doesn’t expect any volunteer assistance from our members. We know that we’re trying to do something a bit different but we also believe that we have something great. It just needs fine tuning occasionally.


Huge thanks to those club members that wrote supportive emails. We really appreciate it.


We’ll keep everyone updated as change slowly starts to happen – please do get those ‘overflow shoot’ emails in as this will ease a lot of the pressure on the shooting line.


Best wishes,


Heidi and the 2020 Archery Team

February Newsletter for members – important consultation on changes to target booking system


Hi everyone, we are going to send a more fun email newsletter soon with details of our inaugural handicap competition / shoot during March – we haven’t forgotten.


We want to ask YOU as a club member to try and help us work out the current problems with the target booking system.


We are getting a huge amount of no-shows. The record for no-shows on a Wednesday evening is 7 (out of a usual 16 spaces available) so almost half the pre-booked people didn’t turn up one week. Last Saturday we had a fully booked target list for both sessions but 10 people didn’t turn up. This is a quarter of all the spaces available! This has 2x negative impacts.


1)   the club is affected financially – the less viable each session is the less able we are to offer extra sessions.. if we fill the sessions that we offer we have more cash to spend on rent for opening extra sessions.


2)   we’ve got loads of people hoping to shoot who are not coming because they think the session is full.


Basically what we think is happening is that people are pre-booking all the sessions they think they may want to come to in order to hold a space for themselves. If they can’t make it on the day they just don’t turn up. We need to address the problem and we think there are 3x ways forward.


Possible Solutions


1)   Make the booking system pre-pay so in order to get your name into a square you’ll need to go through some sort of pay-wall. Hopefully we could set this up so that you shouldn’t have to repeat all the details every time.. but I’ll need to look into technical aspects of this. This system is the best one for us being able to open up an ‘overspill’ shoot which is definitely usually possible on a Sunday and quite often possible on a Saturday. Overspill shoots will be on the roof pitch.. once the existing sessions are fully paid for we can open an overspill list – if we get 12 people signed up we’ll book an overspill shoot.


2)   ask everyone that wants to shoot to sign up to Direct Debit. We don’t really want to do this as we know that some members can only come sporadically and it will effectively make us quite a ‘closed club’. Lots of similar London activities do work on this basis – some yoga clubs, martial arts clubs etc. It’s a possibility but isn’t one that I favour personally.


3)   Ask no-shows to pay the missed session fee unless they have a really good reason.. if they don’t / won’t pay the missed session fee then we’ll remove them from the pre-book system so they’ll only be able to attend if they pre-pay or turn up on the day with cash without pre-booking.


We really do need to sort this out soon given the reduced number of sessions. We want to see full sessions (in reality down at the club not a virtual ‘booked out’ target list), once we get this we can book more sessions for the club to shoot.


We really value everyone’s input – please do let us know if you feel strongly about one option over another. My feeling is that a pre-payment system would work best for us in the office… but might be unpopular and unduly punitive for the majority of conscientious club members that very rarely ‘no-show’.. but if we go down the route of paying for a missed-session this might not actually change people’s attitude towards booking and not coming which won’t open many more spots…


Either of these options should work so it will pretty much come down to a vote.


Please please let us know – cast your vote on how you want the club to develop!!


Best wishes,




Target Booking Screen

Great weekend of shooting and what’s happening on the blog!

Thanks to everyone who came along early on Sunday to stage some nice club photos for future advertising and website use. I think we all had fun posing for the shots (I ducked the camera!) and the time passed really quickly. I’ll add a couple of photos on here once we’ve got them uploaded.

Lots of good stuff happening on the blog in the near future. We’ve got a series of posts from Bryn talking about clickers – when, why and what. That’s going to start today Monday.. and continue each Monday. We’ve got another great piece from Josie lined up about attention in archery, this is something I always struggled with. Every Portsmouth I’d have a big dip around the 2.5 dozen mark which could be directly correlated with ‘I’m feeling a bit hungry what am I going to do for lunch / dinner / did I remember to buy cheese..etc etc?!’ Then scores would rise again after I’d realised what had happened, dealt with my frustration and finally got it together again to put in a decent last dozen! Any and all help for staying focused is great! I’ll be putting up Josie’s post on Friday.

Finally we have another club member on board – Mark Bowler who is writing about his experiences of finally getting over the fear of shooting competitively. The take home message is Just Do It! I’ll try and stick Mark’s post up in the not too distant future. The general idea is that we’ll try and update the blog each Monday and Friday to try and keep enough momentum but without asking too much of our fabulous contributors! If you’d like to submit something here we’d love to have you on board – just give me a shout in the office via

Hope everyone had a good shoot at the weekend. We had some lovely feedback from the Have a Go’s and I finally got to experience the sports hall heaters in action – lovely!

Josie : Shooting at 2020.. Do’s and Don’ts

While we’re here we might as well cover all the bases. This is by no means a definitive list but covers many things I’ve come across in my time at 2020. There are no doubt things I’ve missed, and perhaps some should be expanded upon, but for what it’s worth this is my 2020 “Do’s and Don’ts” Guideline List…

>>—->  2020 uses whistle codes on the shooting line. Please listen out for them! The safer we stay, the more shooting we can pack in.

>>—-> The shooting line can get very busy: be aware of where the ends of your limbs and arrows are at all times.

>>—-> Don’t run with arrows. The quicker we clear the butts and get safely back behind the line the more ends we can fit in, but never compromise safety for speed!

>>—-> The butt you are shooting on is your responsibility. Ensure the legs are always in the correct position.

>>—-> Be respectful of other archers and their kit – this includes club equipment too!

>>—-> Never distract an archer once they’ve started drawing.

>>—-> Never nock your arrow off the shooting line.

… and some positives:

>>—-> Have fun! If you’re not shooting well and getting frustrated your form will deteriorate. Take a break and clear your mind.

>>—-> On the other end of the scale, if you’re shooting well don’t let it go to your head – over-confidence will mess up concentration in exactly the same way as frustration.

>>—-> Not sure about something? Ask! There are plenty of coaches and club members milling around, don’t be afraid to ask questions (even if the question may seem silly – we were all beginners once).

>>—-> If you’re looking to purchase a new bow why not ask some of the club members if you can try theirs? Be prepared that they may not all say yes but it’s worth asking.

>>—-> When you’re struggling with technique (as we all do at times) ask someone on the line to watch you shoot and offer comments. Better still, if they can video you on their phone that will give you plenty of information to work with. If you’re anything like me you’ll hate seeing yourself on film, but it really works.

Anyone else? The floor is open to bidders…

January News from 2020 Archery Mail Out

We just sent out our newsletter to club members on January 17th. Here’s the link to the archived copy if you haven’t read it or it didn’t get to your mailbox.

Main points are that

  • we’re looking into installing heaters onto the roof pitch but it’s tricky
  • we’ve launched a new blog (but you knew that right?)
  • we’re re-launching our scoring records and handicap lists
  • alerting people that you can often book a space on the shooting line on the day of the shoot

Hope you enjoy it. Comments welcome!