Archery day in memory of Spalding student Richard

MEMORIAL SHOOT: The 10th annual Richard Gherardi Memorial Shoot is taking place at Spalding academy
MEMORIAL SHOOT: The 10th annual Richard Gherardi Memorial Shoot is taking place at Spalding academy
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Members of a Spalding archery club will be on target next weekend at a memorial shoot named in honour of a student from the town.

The tenth Richard Gherardi Memorial Shoot takes place at Spalding Academy, formerly Sir John Gleed School, on Saturday, September 24, at 2pm.

Archers from the club will be competing for charity at the event, named after A-level student Richard Gherardi, who was 17 when he died in a road accident in May 2006.

Richard’s father, Renzo Gherardi of Spalding, said: “Richard started archery about six or seven years before he died and we used to go to events regularly in Lincolnshire.

“He was quite a good archer and was chosen to represent both the county’s junior team, from 2002 until 2005, and the East Midlands team which included two or three other counties.

“After Richard died, the secretary of Silver Spoon Bowmen suggested having a memorial shoot each year and they’ve always been well-supported by club members.”

After Richard died, the secretary of Silver Spoon Bowmen of Spalding suggested having a memorial shoot each year and they’ve always been well-supported by club members

Renzo and Jean Gherardi of Spalding

In most years, the event has raised money for Keep the Beat which helps families affected by congenital heart defects, including that of Richard’s sister Francesca whose daughter Sofia (six) spent three months in hospital after she was born with a rare heart condition.

Jean Gherardi, Richard and Francesca’s mum, said: “Donations are given to charity from the entry fees to the shoot which totals between £250 and £350 each year.

“But the shoot also helps us raise awareness of organ donations which we never thought of not doing after Richard died.”

As a student at The Deepings School, Richard’s passion for photography helped him get work experience at the Spalding Guardian and our sister newspaper, the Lincolnshire Free Press.

“Richard was full of fun and a big teaser, but just a regular lad who liked hanging around with his friends,” Jean said.

“But he was also very much of a family person.”