Ernie A Foster
Our past President
One of the most influential people in the formation of the Bowmen of Malgrave was Ernie Foster.
Ernie had been with Basildon Archers for quite some years before the merger of that Club with Cranes Bowmen on 1983 to form the Bowmen of Malgrave. Ernie had been involved with Archery for some 30 years. A retired Deputy Headmaster, his introduction to the sport was as a caring parent overseeing his daughter, when she took up the sport as a teenager and joined Basildon Archers. However, it wasn’t long before he picked up a bow himself, and quickly became involved in the Club in a number of capacities. Soon afterwards his wife also joined the Club, and a s a couple took on a variety of posts within the Club.
Always friendly and reliable, Ernie was a leading light during the merger of the two Clubs to form the Bowmen of Malgrave in 1983, bringing to bear his experience and diplomatic skills. As “father” of the Club, he took the role of President from that date until his death.
His efforts in that role are innumerable; an instructor since before his days at Malgrave, Ernie has always been at the forefront of the Club, encouraging and coaching all archers but particularly juniors in the sport he loved so much. If there was ever any work to do, Ernie would be first to volunteer. His energy belied his years; many was the time he got involved alongside people half his age in the sometimes heavy tasks involved in a working party at the Club, so much so that one forgot that this man was in his seventies and eighties. He was always on hand to guide in the operation of the Club, and prompted development initiatives within. He acted as Public Relations Officer, Minutes Secretary, and Field Captain. He was probably best known to people outside the Club as the “front man” at the Moonlight shoot at Malgrave. Additionally he assisted every year without fail in the administration on the day of the Essex Field Archery Championships.
Always active, Ernie’s interests outside of Archery were many. A keen listener to music, he painted and swam regularly. Three or four active holidays each year, some of which spent with his grandchildren, kept both he and his wife in good shape. His most recent intellectual challenge was when he enrolled in a Computer course to develop skills he leapt upon with the enthusiasm he put into everything else he did.
Sadly, Ernie died suddenly on November 7th 2000. Ernie is sorely missed, not only for his enthusiasm, but also the companionship he brought to the Club. No more will he cajole members to do all the things we needed to do but had forgotten! No more the deep calming voice welcoming visitors to Malgrave at Moonlight and League match alike.