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Getting started

Stafford Archers will provide a safe, accessible, and a fun place to get into archery.

Image by Adam McCoid


To help you know what to expect, let's cover a few things first.

When you're coming to shoot with us:

  • Please wear suitable closed toe shoes (i.e. not sandals/crocs); ideally water resistant when outdoors as to avoid soggy socks.

  • It is worth avoiding overly baggy clothing, as it may get in the way of the bowstring, but there is otherwise no need for specific sportswear; wear whatever you're comfortable in.

  • Long hair should be tied back.

  • Any piercings that may get snagged by the bowstring (such as nose piercings) should be covered or taken out.

  • If you are feeling unwell or have injuries that would prevent you from shooting safely (for both yourself and others), please contact us to reschedule.

Our beginners courses are held at our indoor range at Gainsborough works. 


Do I need my own bow to get started?

No, At Stafford Archers we have a whole variety of club equipment to get you started with. You can use these whilst learning to shoot, and when you decide you would like your own bow, our coaches will guide you through the bow buying process to make sure you end up with something that will make shooting a joy.


Have a go events

Our club attends a number of events over the course of the year, where we offer 'have a go' shoots. These are short sessions where you will be taken through the basics of archery and then shoot a few arrows!

Since we use a different range of bows at these events the age range here also includes younger children (we offer 'sucker cup' bows for children who can't yet draw the more powerful bows). 

The prices for these have a go events are £3 for 6 arrows.

If you want to know where we will be attending, please look at our events page.

What's the difference between a 'have a go' and a 'taster session'?

Have a go's are a great way to try archery when you're at an event, and are suitable for a wider age range. Our taster sessions are the next step up; we will coach you in more detail and you'll be shooting with our more advanced club bows! It's a great way to get a better feel for what shooting at a club feels like, and at a more relaxed pace.


Taster sessions

In a taster session you will first be given some initial technique pointers and safety instructions by our coaches. With that all sorted, you'll then get an opportunity to shoot arrows with our club bows, being coached as you go.

The minimum age for taster sessions is 9 years, juniors under 18 years need to have a parent/guardian in attendance for the duration.


Our taster sessions are £20 per person for the session; payable in advance when you reserve your place via our events page.


Will I be pressured to join the club?

Not at all! We will naturally be happy to chat about the sport we love, and the club, but whether you shoot with us for a day or a decade, we'll be happy to have you along with us.

Image by Laura Crowe

Beginners' courses

As archery requires concentration and a little strength, we will take juniors from the age of 12 years, anyone aged 9-12 years will need to meet with one of our coaches before being booked onto a course  to see if they are suitable for a full beginners course.


Courses run over several sessions:

  • Three sessions (3 hours each) with our coaches.

  • Two sessions (3 hours each, as well) at any of our regular club shoots.


During the initial three sessions we will cover safety, useful drills and skills, and work towards you gaining confidence with a recurve bow. Then, in the final two, you will shoot alongside the club to get to know the other members more, and get acquainted with a 'normal' club session. There will still be coaches on hand to help you in those sessions, though. 

Once you've completed a beginner's course, you will be able to apply for membership to join Stafford Archers.


The course fee for 2024 is £80; currently payable via bank transfer in advance. 

To reserve your place onto go to our events page


Do I need to be getting high scores to join?

Our club focus is not singularly on elite competition; whilst we certainly have some excellent archers who have been to international tournaments, we are varied in how we engage in archery.


Some of us love to turn up, chat, and tune bows. Some recreationally shoot arrows in a lovely zen state of mind. Some seem to collect every single variant of bow! And, yes, some of us do indeed strive to keep beating our personal best with the aim of competing at a high level!


However, there is no 'entrance exam' or minimum score to join our club; if you're excited about archery and joining us, we'll be happy to see you do so! 


Joining the club

Once you've completed your beginners' course you'll hopefully be in love with archery, and itching to get back to the range. We also hope that you'll have had a great time with us at the club, and that you would like to continue your archery journey with us!

If you would indeed like to join the club, please contact our membership secretary at, and they will let you know the fees for the year for your particular circumstances. 

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