Just the words 'William Tell' or 'Robin Hood' will remind you that archery is a sport deeply rooted in history. Indeed, competition archery dates right back to the use of the longbow as a hunting tool and a weapon of war in ancient times.
As a competitive sport, it first entered the Olympic programme at Paris in 1900, returning after a break of more than 50 years in 1972. Olympic archers shoot at a 122cm-diameter target from a distance of 70m. To achieve maximum marks they must hit the gold centre ring – the bulls-eye – measuring just 12cm.
The Shropshire Hills provide great opportunities both to try your hand at the sport for the first time and for accomplished archers to practice at Olympic-size indoor and outdoor facilities.
Try archery in the Shropshire Hills & Church Stretton
A complex of luxury self-catering holiday properties may not seem the most obvious destination for those intrigued by one of the oldest of all sports.
However, Eaton Manor, a few miles from Church Stretton, comprises a collection of four and five-star self-catering accommodation and boasts top-class archery ranges among its guest facilities. These are available to guests and are also bookable by non-guests by prior arrangement.
Eaton Manor’s 70-metre Olympic-sized indoor range, and a 20-metre indoor range have been used by both the GB Olympic and the Commonwealth Squads for training.
The excellent indoor archery range features a heated shooting line, which is ideal for “have-a-go” archery sessions for a minimum of eight people.
The range is available to guests staying at Eaton Manor, which offers archery sessions with a professional coach, including use of all the equipment you’ll need. It’s a great family activity.
Who knows? Perhaps one day you’ll find yourself back at Eaton Manor with the Olympic team!
Other locations in Shropshire Hills where you can try out archery are listed below.