Our Club History and Ethics

How Toad Hollow Started

The Toad Hollow Medal Logo

Toad Hollow Archers was formed in 2006 as a not for profit sports club for field archery affiliated to the National Field Archery Society (NFAS) by 5 very competent field archers, who decided to form their own club

The name “Toad Hollow” was chosen as we did not want to be limited by a geographical area, after that the origin on the name has links both to Toad spawn we discovered at our first woodland home, and also to our Junior members who were nicknamed “the little toads” and the name sort of stuck

The Founder members had a vast experience in Field Archery and in course setting, and were extremely competent in coaching others

3 of the founder members had achieved numerous National Field Archery Society Championship Titles and Golds and many more of our members have achieved great results, medals and Trophies at National Field Archery  Competitions

Where "The Toads" live

Since our formation we have been known around the field archery community simply as “The Toads”

Over the years we have used a few locations for our archery home, and we thank all of those that have given us the use of their woodlands especially our friend Jane Ross of Whiddon Down

But it seems that now we have stopped hopping around and have settled at Deer Park thanks to the generosity and support of John Mildmay White and all of the Mildmay White Family of The Flete Estate, without whose kindness we wouldn’t have our wonderful new woodlands

Toad Hollow is proud that over the past few years that they have been instrumental in hosting 3 National Championship events, which were all great successes

The view from the top of our woods to Flete House

Toad Hollow is All inclusive

It was decided at the formation of the club that The Toads would operate as a very inclusive club

It is usual that archery clubs are totally funded by expensive subscriptions and membership fees

Most clubs are solely operated with a committee, in some cases these were the only people in that particular club that did any work, the rest of the membership very happy to let them carry out the work,  and then moan when something wasn’t done

In others the committee seemed to be elected by the old pals method and some were so much of a clicky membership that new members found it hard to integrate into the club

What the founding members wanted to achieve was an all inclusive club where every member contributed to the club, no one was excluded from providing input and ideas, and every member was of equal value

Responsibilities and voting

We decided that Toad Hollow Archers would operate in a different way,  we would be 100% inclusive and members would become a real part of the running of their club

We by necessity have dedicated positions in the club, such as Chairman,  Treasurer,  Deputy Treasurer,  Club Coach, and archery course officer (known as The Field Captain) , the members holding those positions are responsible for their part of Toad Hollow that is necessary for the successful running of the club

On any decision in the club, every full member of Toad Hollow gets a vote, a simple majority win process on any discussion is needed to pass or fail any proposal

The Chair is the only member without a normal vote, but they do carry a casting vote, and the power of veto but only in the case of safety,  affordability,  or legality

Every member agrees that they will go with the majority,  and if they lose,  not to throw their rattle from their pram, but to accept that democracy does work with civility and humility

everyone in the club is encouraged to put their ideas forward

We work together for our club and our sport

Our Club Members surveying part of our woodlands prior to setting out new targets

We have always had the ethos that joining “The Toads” would mean “really being part of the whole club” 

So that membership would be equal and affordable for everyone,  the fees to our members is minimal, but as with any club to maintain quality and sustainability we do need an income

So at Toad Hollow we hold Open Shoots throughout the year, every member works at hosting these events, whether it be planning and setting the course,  lifting and carrying targets onto the course,  marshalling, catering and even car parking all need members to give their time and effort

To our club members this ethos is far more important than having to be able to afford expensive fees, it bonds the club together in a friendly, efficient and equal way

Maintaining the club equipment and managing the woodlands we occupy is a large part of being a member of Toad Hollow,  we are lucky that we have some specialists in the club, builder, carpenter, engineer, caterer and medic,  when someone needs assistance, you can always rely on the other “Toads” to jump in and assist

Competitions and how other archers see "The Toads"

Our Open Shoots are always oversubscribed early with waiting lists, this is the best confirmation we could have that “The Toads” open shoots have “done it again” and once again “The Toads” put on a really great competition, which is fun, challenging and rewarding to our competitors

Another measure of how good our competitions are is how far archers are willing to travel to take part,  as well as local archers we regularly get archers from as far afield as Scotland, Wales, The Midlands, Holland, Germany, and even Canada

The total income goes to Club Funds less any expenses such as cost of supplying food and an amount that goes to a charitable cause, in the past we have supported Devon Air Ambulance and Alzheimer Society

Members of Toad Hollow also travel to attend competitions at other field archery clubs and twice a year a healthy contingent of “Toads” travel to our National Championships

Archers walking to their course start positions