Lasswade Archery Club History
There has been Archery at Lasswade since the first Sports Centre opened in 1977. Our club was founded in 1979, the first general meeting being held in October that year. Of the original founder members only one remains. Like many clubs, members come and go, if only we could retain more of them. We do however have a very active club with senior and junior members who shoot compound, recurve and barebow. Over the years our members have competed in numerous events for all disciplines. Some of our members are active in the tournament circuit both here in Scotland and throughout the UK.
Some of our membership also participate in field archery, however, as we do not have a field course it is necessary for them to be members of a Field Archery Club. This has promoted a degree of friendly rivalry, which over the years has benefited our club.
During the indoor season we try to run as varied a program as time permits, we have 2 sessions per week when we can shoot: Wednesday evenings and Saturday afternoons. We run two dedicated coaching sessions per month, throughout the indoor season. These are on the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays of the month from November to March. We are fortunate in having a number of qualified coaches in addition to many experienced archers in our club, so we can offer a broad base of knowledge to help club members at all levels of experience. Beginners classes are held during the Indoor season only. Generally we have two of these per year.
We are fortunate to have close links with other clubs in our area, and some of their members regularly shoot with us. It also helps the club funds to meet the cost of our rental for the Sports hall and our outdoor range.
Over the years we have organised, both indoor and outdoor open competitions. The most well known of these is our Portsmouth, held annually on Remembrance Sunday in November. This is a UK record Status event and a number of both Scottish and British records have been established here. Perhaps the most notable was in 1996 when the Gents Scottish record of 594 was set by Simon Needham. This event is now well established in the Scottish fixture list and is becoming better known throughout the UK. We also organise a Combined 25M/18M in October and a WA 18M in March, both of these events have World Record Status. Unfortunately we no longer organise open outdoor competitions, however, we can still organise our annual Club Championships and have run an inter-club competition between ourselves and Penicuik since coming to our new outdoor venue.
To mark the new Millennium we set up the European Millennium Postal League in October 1999. This proved to be quite successful, with a number of European Countries taking part. This was continued into the outdoor season for a time.
In 2004 we celebrated our 25th anniversary and to mark the occasion had a small gathering of members and visitors from other clubs. We also had the pleasure of welcoming some of the original members to join the celebrations. Our close friends from Penicuik Archers presented us with a ceramic plaque of our original club badge to mark the occasion. We also received a surprise visit from Rhona Brankin MSP Minister for Culture and Sport in the Scottish Government.
The original Lasswade High School sports Centre closed in June 2013 after 36 years in operation and in September 2013 we moved to the new Lasswade Centre which offers the very latest in modern facilities. Due to the changes made to the layout of the new playing fields we have not been able to make use of these for shooting outdoors. We have however found an alternative venue suitable for our needs that provides us with a dedicated shooting facility. No more having to layout the range each session or watching for “persons” encroaching the range area. It is still in the general Bonnyrigg/Lasswade area so there will not be a lot of additional travel getting there.
What of the future? We have an active club, membership is currently very strong and the existing membership continue to support our activities and our presence on the Tournament Calendar continues at a high level. Perhaps we will still be here for our 50th anniversary?