Bowmen of Darenteford Archery Club Move

by Leanne Kite in Gravesend, Kent, United Kingdom

We did it
On 19th September 2023 we successfully raised £4,390 with 50 supporters in 28 days

To install storage, toilets and improve parking and other facilities at our new off-grid field, following an unexpected club move.

by Leanne Kite in Gravesend, Kent, United Kingdom

 New stretch target

We estimate that the final cost of this project will be in excess of £8000, so every penny over and above our original target will be used to secure our club's future and will go towards maintaining the facilities we have built as well as upgrading or enhancing our club equipment, for the benefit of members, visitors and the wider community.

Who are we?

Bowmen of Darenteford is a 46 year old Archery Club with over 70 members, aged 8 to over 80. We provide coaching, competition and a welcoming home for all of our members and visitors, of all abilities, backgrounds and ages. We organise and hold many club events for all to take part in, including festive shoots, club summer competitions, halloween fun shoots and novelty shoots with foam targets of all shapes and sizes. We also compete in multiple leagues all year long, welcoming other clubs to our ground and visiting other clubs for away matches. We are proud of our family atmosphere, the bonds we have created as a club, as well as the achievements of our members on all levels, from a junior archer getting all arrows on the target for the first time to two of our members who are current county champions. 



Why are we crowdfunding?

Our club has been happily resident at our current field for around 7 years but due to the upcoming development of a 3G football pitch we have found ourselves having to find a new home. This is no easy feat with Archery, the requirements of our insurance mean the space we need is extremely difficult to find and with the cost of living and energy crisis the price of outside space for sports clubs has rocketed. After an exhaustive (and exhausting!) search, we are so incredibly lucky and delighted to have secured a new home at Bluebell Barn Farm in Cobham, Kent. 

Due to the rural and off grid nature of the new location we are unable to bring our current storage, a shipping container, and will need to start from scratch, installing appropriate, high quality and inclusive facilities for our volunteers, members and visitors. 

To achieve this and to ensure we are sympathetic to the environment we need to install:

  • Storage - a new timber storage shed
  • Toilet - an accessible composting toilet
  • Parking - improve on the parking available to ensure that people are safe, able to access the field and don't get stuck. 
  • Archery Range - we will install small, inconspicuous markers to mark our distances. 
  • Additional Storage - smaller storage areas at other areas of the farm. 
  • Temporary Facilities - Possible rental of a portable toilet while fundraising and works are carried out. 
  • Any further works that are required to ensure a quality archery facility

We estimate the full cost of the entire project to be over £8000. Although we have reserves, they are stretched to capacity.  The impact of Covid-19 and the following cost of living and energy crisis is still being felt, we lost crucial income - including a full year of beginners courses, taster sessions and events. In addition we reduced or delayed club fees to keep ourselves ticking along without impacting our already stretched members. We are recovering, but this sudden and unexpected move has been a real curve ball for us. We are very keen to make this new site a long term home, so it is imperative that we can spend enough money to make it a good, solid facility that will last for years to come. Our ability to be resilient and come together to face adversity is something that we are particularly proud of, the Covid-19 pandemic showed the commitment of members in sticking with the club and the willingness of our volunteers to do whatever it takes to help the club survive

Our aim with this project is to provide only what we need, while ensuring we don't damage or detract from the beautiful surroundings that we are so lucky to have been given the chance to shoot in. 



(Don't worry, the sheep have another great field to chomp on while we borrow this one!) 

As this was a rather unexpected move we are having to start preliminary work already but are planning to continue to fundraise as much as possible to develop our facilities sensibly and with proper thought and planning, to do this we need to ensure we can provide for the needs of the club in the meantime. 

We hope to use the facilities we create for many years to come to provide fantastic archery training, taster sessions, beginners courses and competitions for our members, visitors and the wider community. 

Without this opportunity our amazing club would have been without a home and very well could have closed. We welcome and relish the chance to build something amazing for our future

How we’ll spend the money raised

Funds raised will be used to create a fantastic and inclusive facility that blends into it's surroundings as seamlessly as possible. 

We will endeavour to install all robust timber/sustainable buildings, use sustainable or recycled materials to reinforce parking and use the byproducts of the composting toilet as it should be. 

Community impact

Our club offers beginners courses every summer for anywhere from 20 to 40 new archers, taster sessions for our own waiting list of archers as well as outside organisations such as army cadets, corporate groups and family groups. Our current site has a charitable open day in aid of their school Community Farm which we have taken part in and we intend to continue these activities at the new site, which our hosts are delighted with. We have also taken part in sport relief activities in partnership with the school during our indoor season and intend to continue to make ourselves available for any events of this nature. We are ready to ensure we are providing a great facility for the local community in this new area and bring archery to anyone who wishes to take part. 


How you can play your part

There are four simple ways to help us reach our target, and make this project a reality.

1. Make a pledge. Don’t delay if you’re going to support us because momentum is key to our success!

2. Spread the word. Share our project on your social media pages and tell the world to get behind us! The more people we reach, the more support we will get.

3. Offer rewards. Get involved if you are a local business by donating things we can offer to our supporters. We will give you a shout out!

4. Fundraise for us. If you want to run your own fundraiser – maybe a sponsored activity or similar – use the 'contact project' button at the top of our page to let us know. Setting up your own page only takes a few minutes and you won’t need any bank details. Just a fun idea!


This project offers rewards in return for your donation. Please select a reward below.

£150 or more

1 of 1 claimed

Voucher, Meet the Pack Experience-Watermill Wolves

A 1.5 hour Meet the Pack Experience for 4* at the incredible Watermill Wolves. Feed, fuss and play with the pack, ending with a serene woodland walk. RRP £190. *minimum age (approximately 8) may apply, see website for details. Date and time to be agreed.

£5 or more

8 of 10 claimed

Set of 3 Handmade Birthday Cards

A set of 3 Handmade cards, designed and made by one of our talented members!

£5 or more

0 of 1 claimed

Gents haircut at Headline Hair & Beauty Salon

Gents hair cut at Headline Hair and Beauty Salon in Gravesend. RRP £10

£15 or more

0 of 1 claimed

£20 gift voucher for The Ivy Tree, Rochester

£20 to spend at The Ivy Tree gift shop in Rochester.

£15 or more

0 of 1 claimed

Family day pass at Cyclopark

A Family Day pass for a family up to 5 people (2 adults and up to three children). The Family Day Pass lets families use the following: Road Circuit, Mountain bike trails, skate park, play park, Multi use sports area. Some areas are age and track availability may be restricted. RRP £28

£20 or more

7 of 20 claimed

Your name on the toilet door

Have your name written on the inside of the composting toilet door, in typical "Robin Hood woz ere" fashion!

£25 or more

4 of 5 claimed

£25 One-to-one Taster Session

A 1.5 hour, one to one taster session supervised by one of our coaches. Date and time to be agreed.

£40 or more

0 of 1 claimed

£50 towards any project - Big J's Refurbishment

A £50 voucher towards any painting & decorating project with Big J's Refurbishments.

£60 or more

0 of 4 claimed

One place on a group beginners course in 2024

One place on a registered Archery GB group beginners course in 2024, at the 2023 price. Upon completion, if passed, you will be invited to join the club (for an additional fee) or you may apply join any Archery GB affiliated club. Dates to be agreed.

£85 or more

0 of 2 claimed

One-to-one Beginners Course

A registered Archery GB beginners course with a club coach. Upon completion, if passed, you will be invited to join the club (for an additional fee) or you may apply join any Archery GB affiliated club. This is not our usual group beginners course, you get a very bespoke and tailored experience and get to shoot alongside the club to get a true feel for club life.

£110 or more

0 of 1 claimed

A4 Landscape painting from Urban Colours

A4 Landscape painting from Urban Colours, location of choice to be arranged with the artist. RRP £150+

£8 or more

3 of 3 claimed

Two Jars of local honey

Two jars of local honey, courtesy of F G Pierce & Sons Ltd, RRP £5 per jar.

£15 or more

1 of 1 claimed

Ladies Hair Cut at Headline Hair & Beauty Salon

Ladies Cut and blow dry at Headline Hair and Beauty Salon in Gravesend. RRP £20-£35

£15 or more

1 of 1 claimed

A full set of gel polish nails by Elizabeth Ivy

A full set of gel polish nails by local nail artist Elizabeth Ivy. RRP £20.

£20 or more

4 of 4 claimed

Bottle Feed a Lamb Experience for 4

Bottle Feed a Lamb Experience at Bluebell Barn Farm in April 2024. Reward is for a family of 4 to visit the farm, meet all the brand new lambs and bottle feed them. Date & time to be arranged.

£20 or more

1 of 1 claimed

£25 voucher for Kohinoor Restaurant

A £25 voucher for the fantastic Kohinoor Indian Restaurant in Istead Rise.

£20 or more

1 of 1 claimed

£25 Voucher for Istead Rise Butchers worth £25

A £25 voucher for the fantastic local Istead Rise Butchers.

£30 or more

1 of 1 claimed

Voucher for 1h Sports Massage/Osteopath treatment

One hour Sports Massage or Osteopath Treatment with The Kent Osteopath Clinic (RRP £48)

£40 or more

1 of 1 claimed

£50 voucher for The Ash Tree Inn Pub & Restaurant

A £50 voucher for beautiful country pub and restaurant The Ash Tree Inn, Ashburnham Nr. Battle, East Sussex.

£50 or more

1 of 1 claimed

2 course meal for 2 at Minel Meze & Grill

Two course meal for two with drink at the fantastic local restaurant Minel Meze & Grill in Meopham. RRP approx. £65

£75 or more

1 of 1 claimed

£100 to spend at Bartellas Restaurant, Meopham

£100 voucher to spend at the fabulous Bartellas Restaurant & Bar in Meopham.

£100 or more

1 of 1 claimed

Legal advice and/or 50% off a simple Will

30 minutes free advice, then either a free Codicil or 50% off a simple Will with local family law firm Complete Family Law Ltd. This would usually cost up to £125.

£250 or more

1 of 1 claimed

Sponsor a Toilet!

For £250 you can sponsor our composting toilet for 12 months from the completion of the build, your business' details will be displayed in a frame, in pride of place, inside the composting toilet building for all of our 70+ members, as well as our many visitors, to see! (date to be decided)

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