For those of you who seem to spend time searching for arrows in the grass, perhaps you should have a go at Clout. Target archers do not normally understand the fun of Clout, many say that it is impossible for their bows to reach the distance required and many just do not understand the fun and camaraderie of competing in a Clout competition.
You would not normally dream of applauding an archer for getting six arrows on the target however if you have six scoring arrows for clout this is a good reason for applause.
Clout shooting is said to have started by bowmen carrying their longbows to Church on Sundays. After the service they were obliged by law to practice at the butts usually in a field near the Church. In order to amuse themselves on their way to Church, they would choose random targets to shoot at during the walk into the town or village. A bush, a clump of grass, a stick etc.
The word clout originated from the Viking word “clud”, or piece of cloth.
Originally the target was therefore represented by a stick in the ground with a piece of white cloth over it. Today we still use a stick but with a flag attached. This is the very centre of the target and is called the "Clout". The scoring is 5 for the clout, 4 for the first circle, then 3, 2, 1, for succeeding circles going outwards from the clout itself.
It's great fun, and something that we heartily recommend you try.
'Nowt but Clout' - club information
Clout Times magazine
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Clout Classification Scheme (PDF).
Tri-Clout - What is it ???
Well it's the only 3-day archery tournament that holds all 3 types of clout rounds, with each one having tassel and record status titles. It's held at Neston Company of Archers ground at Neston on the Wirral. It's a great chance for archers to try their skills at clout and also a good stepping stone towards their clout ranking (more details about the rankings for clout can be found on the Northern Counties Archery Society website).
Saturday features the 2 way double clout, Sunday is a one way double clout, which also hosts the Cheshire County and Open Championships, as well as the English Archery Federation clout championships.
Then on Monday it's the FITA and Metric clouts, so there's lots to aim for - 6 national records, 3 possible tassel badge claims and of course 2 separate 6 clout end badges.
If any juniors enter the JAWS award scheme, then there's a bag full of points to be gained as well.
Neston allows on-site camping and the night time entertainment is something to be remembered (if you can).
Medals and trophies are awarded throughout the event, with some very nice trophies up for grabs in the supreme archers’ award category. This award is available to any archer shooting all 3 days using the same bow type on all 3 days, be it recurve, barebow, longbow or compound. There are awards for both seniors and juniors.
So why not bring the family and have a great long weekend. There are lots of local places of interest to visit (and shopping) for those who do not shoot and if you are not into camping there are plenty of B&Bs nearby.
Further details and the entry forms are available on the Cheshire Archery Assocation website. For further details please contact the tournament organiser Peter Gregory on 07790 839834 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
I first came across these stag’s horns whilst walking in Lyme Park. They were just lying in the grass waiting for me to pick them up. I took them home and put them in a cupboard, there they stayed for around 6 years. Geoff Trimble from Wirral archers asked me at the Cheshire clout Champs in 2010 if there was any chance I could arrange a trophy for a longbow team – guess WHAT? Yes I can, I told him. So, over the winter time I set about a design and got on with it. Seven pieces of oak make up the stand which I shaped and grooved to take the shape of the horns, 6 coats of varnish and loads of name plates make this a trophy Worth shooting for. Because they are a pair I thought I’d use one for the Cheshire FITA clout in May and the other for the Cheshire Imperial clout in August which is part of the Tri-Clout weekend. Any Longbow team can enter and May 2011 winners went to Kettering archers, Dave Burnett and Russ Chicken Chops Duffin and they also won the other in August. Well done to them both for a great score, the trophies are up for grabs once again this year, but looking at the photos would you like to challenge them ? I am sure if your team shot well and beat them they would kindly hand them over, but don’t bet on it. They are fine Bowmen!!
If you fancy your chances and can put together a team then come along and have a great day, entry forms are on the Cheshire website.
Shoot Well and Enjoy the Sport.