: The Merrie Men versus the QuiverBoys
12th January 2022
thought I might be late. Our annual
challenge event was due to convene at the
Holmescales Activity Centre but I was still
at the farm where we were to have lunch.
As I had tried to leave the farmyard,
I discovered the lane was blocked by a bevy
of large vehicles filling holes in the road
with steaming tarmac. Finished in
five, they said. Did I believe them?
they weren’t much longer and then the drivers
displayed a remarkable ability to negotiate
the big machines in reverse through a rather
narrow gateway without mishap. I was
and Stan had joined the queue and by the
time we reached the Outdoor Activity centre
most of the participating BOOTboys
had arrived. Coffee was on tap coupled
with an absolutely delicious chocolate fudge
were drawn and we divided into two teams.
his name, Robin obviously had to be the
captain of his Merrie Men, Tony, John H,
Chris and Stephen.
other earned his role in a rather sillier
manner. When I sent out the joining
instructions, he responded that he was “All
of a quiver”. Consequently I dubbed
him Oliver Quiver, leader of the QuiverBoys.
That’s how Martin got the job to inspire
Terry, Stuart, Mike and me.
was appointed official scorer as he didn’t
want to shoot. We also had a guest
appearance from John PL who unfortunately
wasn’t able to take part in the full competition
due to other commitments.
instructor, Ryan, explained the technique.
One thing surprised me. When
I were a lad, we made bows and arrows from
canes and string. For a right handed
person, the arrow was fired from the right
hand side of the bow. These modern
bows have the arrow on the left hand side
of the bow. I think that explains
my poor scores. I wasn’t used to that
arrangement. We didn’t do that at
a couple of practice rounds, the competition
started. The five Merrie Men stood
at the allotted positions and each fired
four arrows at the target. Some of
them actually hit it. In fact Robin,
Tony and Chris did remarkably well, outclassing
the best of the QuiverBoys (Mike) who subsequently
took the stand.
77 : QB 59.
two reversed the fortunes with stunning
performances by Terry, Martin, Stuart and
have to admit that my efforts were not so
notable apart from one remarkable shot which
actually hit an inner ring, rebounded, hit
the ground and somehow bounced back into
an outer ring. Quite how that happened
I have no idea. I thought I deserved
bonus points for the trick shot but Ryan
insisted that only the lower score could
count. Tony was the only Merrie Man
to offer stiff competition in the round.
61 : QB 93
three also went the way of the QuiverBoys,
again with excellent performances by Stuart
and Terry, and despite a huge score of 29
65 : QB 81
into the fourth round (if Stan’s maths were
right) the Quiver Boys were leading by 30.
Could the Merrie Men reduce the gap?
No. In fact it was a tie with
no outstanding performances on either side.
54; QB 54
the final round with the Merrie Men needing
to overcome their 30 point deficit to remain
Merrie. In fact they did win the round,
thanks to good scores from both Chris and
Robin. Only Terry starred for the
68 : QB 65
the gain was insufficient to wipe out the
deficit and the QuiverBoys won by 352 to
the top, the personal scores were very close
and strangely three of the best scores were
from the losing side (Robin, Tony and Chris)
whilst Mike was the only QuiverBoy in the
and Tony had tied for first place so had
a single arrow shoot-off for the Champion
fired first and posted a high score. Could
Robin better it? Sadly for him, his
consistency let him down at the crucial
moment and his arrow shot wide. Tony
was the Victor Ludorum.
event now completed, we headed
over to the farm for a hearty
meal of bangers and mash followed
by sticky toffee pudding. Lovely.
was less enthusiasm for the
Strongbow cider but what else
could one expect to drink on
such a splendid day?
event concluded with the presentations,
culminating with the prize for
the best archer, Tony. What
was it? Well, what did
you expect? A bottle of
Archers of course.
Wednesday 12th January 2022
Mike and Tony for their photos