Way back in the dim and distant – around 1984 – the sport of Field Target was in its infancy. Clubs around GB were beginning to form and the sport was beginning to grow. Targets tended to be home made and ranges were anything from 3 yards to 70 yards.
As the sport began to get more popular clubs began to hold Open events and the magazines also began to take an interest. It became clear that there had to be a ‘common’ set of rules needed to be defined so that shooters knew what to expect as they traveled around. So some enthusiastic shooters got together and form the British Field Target COUNCIL under the chairmanship of Mrs Chris Everett from Iceni.
This original Council had Members from Wales, Scotland and a couple of newly formed English Regions. It soon changed its name to Association as more English Regions formed.
After a couple of years it was thought that the Association was getting a little large and so it was decided that the English Regions would form the EFTA and give up their seats on the Management committee and let the EFTA represent them.
After a couple of more years (we are around 1990 now) the ‘English’ began to realise that although they were about 90% of all FT shooters they only had a one third vote on the Governing body and those ‘nasty’ (only joking folks) foreigners, the Scots & Welsh were constantly ganging up on them on the BFTA Management Committee and out-voting them!
By this time I had been BFTA Chairman for a couple of years and so the EFTA asked if they could revert back to the original position of each region having a seat at the BFTA. By this time there were now 7 English Regions and, (I shall never know why), the Welsh and the Scots agreed with the EFTA and voted to permit the Regions back, effectively handing over control of the BFTA back to the English. All the EFTA funds were ‘given’ to the BFTA and the EFTA effectively became defunct, its only interest being sorting out a team for the Home Internationals.
This situation lasted until the Scots and the Welsh decided they wished to enter their own National Teams in the World Championships, until then it had been a BFTA team but as the WFTF grew the Home countries decided to enter individual teams.
For this reason the ‘EFTA’ had a representative on the WFTF Committee – Barry Longbottom – who had to look after the interest of the EFTA.
After the last World Championships held in Poland mutterings began to be heard concerning the ‘turnout’ of the EFTA Team, especially when compared to the South Africans. For this reason the English Regions were asked to have a meeting at the 2006 Midland Game Fair to decide if the EFTA should re-form and I was asked to draft a Constitution and also asked if I would stand as Secretary, which I agreed to do for a year. Mick Woodhead was also elected as Chairman…….
Now we are at the present time.