In 2006, the teams from ‘The Waldegrave Arms’ in Chewton Mendip were playing their Thursday night darts in the Chew Valley league which had been running for an incredible 50 years and more. But in recent times, despite increasing coverage from Sky TV, darts was struggling and the wide rural area covered by the league meant teams were finding it hard to travel the long distances the fixtures threw up.
Allan Clarke, Jon Green, Lee Taylor and Geoff Sheppard of ‘The Waldegrave A’ team decided that running a more local league would be more advantageous for travelling and an opportunity to create a new format that would make it easier for teams to stay together and even give more chances for new or younger players to start playing. It was hoped that every player from top of the league to the bottom could get something out of playing in the league.
So in early 2006 they started to plan things. A format was devised that would allow for as few as five players in a team but also as many as twelve. This would allow flexibility for teams to give opportunities to new players or offer more games for fewer players. It was also important to try and keep league fees low and rules to a minimum. Sponsorship was sought and Courage were kind enough to pay for the league trophies and also put up a substantial figure for prize money. And so The Courage League was born!
The first season went down well and the league was lucky enough to have James Wade present the trophies at finals night. Although initially devised as just a summer league there was an immediate demand for a winter league so plans were quickly made to keep the league going all year round.
In 2008 it was decided that the ‘Radstock B’ Superleague team would become ‘The Courage Superleague’ team. The squad had mainly been made up from current Courage League players and the team name change and new venue at Peasedown CC reinvigorated the team. In the first year, captains Rick Hulme and Allan Clarke guided the team to promotion as champions of Division Two. In 2013, playing at Purnell Sports Club and captained by Mark Colbourne, the Courage team were crowned the champions of Somerset!
If you are interested in joining the league please contact us via the email address at the top of this page or via facebook and twitter.