When James Mason, a young archer from Kettering, first contacted The Travers Foundation in December 2016 about funding, his aim was clear – he wanted to be the best-ranked in Great Britain, but he needed the charity’s help to achieve this.
The volunteer-run charity, based in Gretton, was set up in 2012 to help young people aged between 13 and 30 years living in Northamptonshire, Leicestershire or Rutland improve their skills in sports, the creative arts and the performing arts, and achieve their full potential.
During James’ time working with The Travers Foundation he has not only achieved his ambition of being the best in Britain, he’s also won a hoard of gold medals at numerous national and international tournaments. In 2017 he won gold at the British Championships; in 2018 in the European Archery Championships; and in 2019 at the World Cup in Berlin.
But now, as James reaches his milestone 30th birthday, this sadly means that the charity can no longer offer him financial support as he’s passed the upper age-limit.
James explains his relationship with the charity and what it means to him: “Prior to receiving support from The Travers Foundation, I would struggle to find the funds required to attend national tournaments, and competing on the international stage was a distant dream.
“Receiving support from the charity has provided a huge relief, and allowed me to compete at more events both nationally and internationally. During my time with the Travers Foundation, I have grown in confidence and now feel comfortable on the international stage.”
James – who first picked up a bow at just four years old – has a Team Gold from the European Archery Championships in Legnica, Poland, a highly significant achievement as this was the first time ever GB had won a European compound bow men’s team gold, and also 50 years since Team GB come top at this championship.
Terry Forsey, Chairman of The Travers Foundation, said: “Words cannot express how immensely proud we are of James and what he has achieved over the time we’ve worked together. He’s been to tournaments in Las Vegas, Shanghai, Slovenia, Berlin, and Poland to name but a few – and just about everywhere he goes, he wins! He’s phenomenally talented, and we will really miss working with him.
“We had a small ‘leaving do’ for James, where some of the Travers’ team got a chance to say goodbye. But although we can sadly no longer offer him financial support, we will continue to follow his career and wish him all the best for the next stage in his journey.”
For more information about James Mason, or if you’d like to sponsor him, please visit his Facebook page ‘James Mason Archery’.
For further information on the work of the Travers Foundation please visit: www.travers-foundation.org.uk.