65Objects

We are delighted to bring you a history of the Worshipful Company of Fletchers in 65 objects. (It's actually our 650th anniversary but that would have been a very large number of objects!) Each object reflects special moments in our history, from the fourteenth century to the present. We hope too that it gives you a flavour of the diverse and fascinating activities of Company and also of The Fletchers Trust. Join with us in celebrating our significant anniversary.

Our thanks to Liveryman Josie Gowler for coordinating and preparing these 65Objects with the assistance of our learned Clerk, Kate Pink.

Archers continued to be a vital part of the army in the 16th Century. Over 3,500 arrows were recovered from the wreck of the Mary Rose, Henry VIII’s flagship which sunk in the Solent on 19 July 1545. The top image shows the arrows recovered from the wreck – although both the arrow heads and the feathers have deteriorated away,…
At a meeting on 29 November 1945, the Court discussed the question of admitting distinguished persons to the Freedom and Livery of the Company by Gift. The Court unanimously decided to offer Field Marshal Bernard Law Montgomery (1st Viscount Montgomery of Alamein, KG, GCB, DSO, PC, DL) the Freedom and Livery of the Worshipful Company of Fletchers ‘as a token…
The Fletchers have been closely associated with 1921 (Lewisham) Squadron of the Air Training Corps since early 2008. Liverymen regularly attend many of the squadron’s events and, since 2014, the Master Fletcher has made an award of a silver prize arrow to the cadet who has best displayed the virtues of the Fletchers’ motto “True and Sure” throughout the year.…
The proposal that incoming Masters of the Worshipful Company of Fletchers should sign a declaration was made in 1938. Masters only began doing this from 1945, after a book was presented by Mr Vining on 11 May 1943. The declaration states that the Master will execute the office justly, faithfully, and diligently. The first such declaration was signed by Frederick…
Fletchers often wear a lapel pin in the shape of the Fletchers’ shield to show that they are members of the livery, or they give them to their partners as a gift. Some of the Fletchers have even made them into cuff links to wear at events, as well.
This charming image of English archers being taught to shoot at a target is at the foot of one of the pages of the Luttrell Psalter and dates to 1320-1330. An order issued by King Edward III in 1363 required every man between 15 and 60 years old, on feast-days and in leisure time, to practice archery or risk imprisonment…
From 1767 to 1808 the quarterly Court meetings of the Worshipful Company of Fletchers were held at the George and Vulture Tavern, tucked away in Castle Court just off Cornhill in the City of London. The Fletchers’ own Hall at St. Mary Axe in the City was let out from 1747, eventually being sold in 1933. Since 1987 the Fletchers…
The Fletchers have been meeting for archery days at Noak Hill in Essex twice a year since 2008. After few practice rounds, a fun competition is held. This starts with target shooting followed by field archery in the afternoon, pitting the archers against strategically placed animal targets which makes for a very interesting afternoon in Noak Hill Archers’ extensive woodlands.…
The Worshipful Company of Fletchers rented a Hall in St Mary Axe from Holy Trinity Priory from at least the beginning of the sixteenth century. Following the Priory’s dissolution in 1531, the Company appears to have purchased the freehold of the Hall from the Crown’s successor in title Sir William Pykerynge sometime prior to 1547/47. The Hall was leased out…
Those wanting to become a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Fletchers must first apply for and be admitted to the Freedom of the City of London. The Declaration of a Freeman is as follows: “I {names in full} do solemnly declare that I will be good and true to our Sovereign Lady Queen Elizabeth the Second; that I will…