Hull and East Riding Wildfowlers’ Association (HERWA), was founded in 1953 by Mr Arthur Leek and other like minded wildfowlers in response to growing concerns about wildfowling on the Humber. Problems with foreshore access and unfounded criticisms concerning pressures from wildfowling on the resident and visiting wildfowl populations on the Humber prompted Arthur Leek to form an association of wildfowlers. Urged on by Stanley Duncan, (founder member of the Wildfowlers’ Association of Great Britain and Ireland, WAGBI), Arthur Leek set the wheels in motion. A number of willing volunteers soon produced the first officers of the new association. With Mr Trevor Field as the first President, Mr Frank Mason as Secretary , Dr Vincent Walsh as Chairman and Arthur Leek himself as Treasurer, the Hull and East Riding Wildfowlers’ Association came into being. From the first meeting in the Young Peoples Institute (YPI) in George Street in Hull in January 1953, the Club has gone from strength to strength.
The Association celebrated it’s 60th anniversary in 2013. There have been many achievements and high points in the Association’s 60 year history, not least the Association hosting the WAGBI diamond jubilee dinner in 1968. This was held at the Guildhall, Kingston upon Hull with HRH The Duke of Edinburgh in attendance. In 1983 the Association aided the British Association for Shooting and Conservation, (formally WAGBI), to set-up an exhibition in the Town Docks Museum in Hull to celebrate ’75 years of wildfowling’ – a tribute to the late Stanley Duncan.
Other famous wildfowling names had close associations with the club including Peter Scott and ‘Kenzie Thorpe.
At a general meeting of the Association in 1953, Stanley Duncan, the founder member of WAGBI (1908), which later became the BASC, was made an honorary life member of the HERWA, the first in its history. This was shortly before Stanley Duncan died in 1954.
When WAGBI became the BASC in 1981, HERWA was granted the prestigious honour of carrying on the WAGBI badge so recognisable by the ‘golden goose’.
Today, the Association has around 120 members covering a wide cross-section of people. Membership of HERWA includes subscription to the BASC to which the Association has club affiliation. This ensures that all HERWA members are adequately insured. Membership is predominantly confined to those residing within the boundaries of the East Riding of Yorkshire. However, within recent years the Association has opened up it’s membership to a limited number from outside of the area. This quota was quickly filled and there is currently a waiting list for non East Riding members. There is currently no limit to East Riding membership.