New shields provide a medieval touch for Ballyvally Archery Club

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Over the winter a dozen Ballyvally Archery Club members, both junior and senior, got down to work designing and painting medieval shields with coats of arms.

The wooden templates were all cut out by club projects manager Mr Sam Jackson.

When completed the 18 shields will be hung out on trees in the club’s wooded field archery courses.

About half the shields have been completed including the coats of arms of the present owner of the estate Dr. Jean Whyte.

The Whyte family received their coat of arms in the 15th century during the War of the Roses. They fought on what eventually became the winning side, the Lancastrians, so their design is three red roses.

The club has many archers shooting at International level and this is largely due to the support and encouragement of Dr Whyte who has made the club very welcome and allowed the members to practise on well organised courses in her wooded demesne

Meanwhile, it has just been announced that Ballyvally Archery Club will have the honour of hosting the British Open in June 2016.

This gives the club exactly a year to prepare two complete courses of 48 targets, which will have to be set out along with the usual problems of sorting accommodation etc for archers from all over the UK as well as the Republic of Ireland.

As this will be the 5th time the club has organised this event, the club is in no doubt they have the personnel to do the job well.

In fact, there is only one other club in the UK which has put on the “Open” more than Ballyvally and that is Pentref Bowmen who are based in the Rhondda Valley in South Wales

Ballyvally operate a series of archery sessions for beginners on Thursday nights from about 6.30pm.

These sessions are outdoors and the next one will be on Thursday night 2nd July and details can be obtained from Club Coach Frank Mulligan on 028 406 23748 or you can email frank_mulligan@hotmail.com