Clout archery takes place in a flat field, similar to Target archery, but in this type of shooting the target is marked out horizontally on the grass. In a BLBS (British Long Bow Society) clout a series of 5 concentric circles are laid out around a central marker and the archer shoots from a distance of 180 yards for gentlemen and 120 yards for ladies. (less for juniors). Often these events are held in attractive settings around the country including stately homes and parks.
Alternatively, in a GNAS clout no circles are marked out and scoring is achieved by pivoting a rope or cord coloured for each scoring zone around the marker flag., with ladies shooting from 140 yards and gentlemen 180 yards. Juniors shoot a shorter distance, varied by age. In a Single Clout 6 ends of 6 arrows are shot, and a Double Clout consists of 12 ends of 6 arrows. Scores are 5 for the innermost circle, down to 1 for the outermost. A large field is needed for clout shooting - at least 250 yards to allow for overshoot. There are metric Clouts too, measured in metres rather than yards,
The word 'Clout' is an old name for cloth. Originally a piece of cloth would be set on a short pole as the central marker. Again, the origins lie in medieval archery practice - shooting at long range against a foe.
There are no Clout archery clubs as such. Several Target, Field and Longbow archery clubs may organise a clout shoot or two during the outdoor season. There are classes for longbow, recurve and compound bows, and Ladies, Gents and Juniors.
Tyndale Archers currently host the Gloucestershire County Society County Clout at the beginning of September each year. Find out more on the Tournaments page.