On the weekend of 11/12 January 2014 Senseis Frank Burlingham, Simon Thackeray and William Timms supervised a Pre Dan Grading Course at the Tatsumaki Dojo in Slough for four Shodan and two Nidan candidates. In addition a number of other Institute Dan grades kindly came along to act as Ukes and a very interesting time was had by all. A considerable amount of "fine tuning" was undertaken, both in weapons and open hand, all of which should stand the candidates in good stead for their future Aikido careers.
On Friday 3rd August, former Principal of the Institute of Aikido, Haydn W. Foster, was awarded a posthumous 7th dan by a senior representative of the Aikido headquarters in Japan, T.K. Chiba Shihan. This award was given in recognition of Haydn Foster’s significant contribution to Aikido for over 50 years. During this time he was a major pioneer of the art and helped to spread it throughout the UK. After a short ceremony, the certificate was presented to his widow, Alice and to his grandson, Paul Foster-Dent.
Amongst his many achievements were that during the 1960s, his 1st and 2nd dan certificates were two of the very few in the UK which were signed by the founder of Aikido. He also played a leading role in the first major martial arts demonstration which was held at the Royal Albert Hall in the mid 60s. In 1973, he set up the Institute of Aikido, which was a founder member of the British Aikido Board, the governing body for Aikido in the UK. He was also the senior instructor at the Hut Dojo in West London, the birthplace of Aikido in the UK, where he continued to teach until his untimely death in 2011 at the age of 83. His grandson, Paul, continues to teach at the Hut Dojo.
Congratulation go to the following IOA members:
Dr Ali Khan - The Hut - 3rd dan
Rose Tzanaki - White Oak - 3rd dan
Steve Viliunas - White Oak - 1st dan
The members of the IOA Governing Board, Sensei Lawson Moore, Sensei Frank Burlingham, Sensei Simon Thackeray and Sensei William Timms were all promoted to 6th dan by the IOA membership.
Some 30 Aikidoka - mostly Dan Grades - paid tribute to Sensei Foster’s memory with an hour-long intensive training session at The Hut Dojo on the evening of Friday, 11 May. This was a preliminary to the weekend Memorial Course which was held at the Wycombe Judo Centre on Sat 12 and Sun 13 May.
Over 50 Aikidoka from a number of different associations came to take part in the Sensei Foster Memorial Course and experience the teaching of a panel of Sensei who had enjoyed a connection with Mr Foster over the years.
These comprised: (in alpha order)
Sensei Frank Burlingham - IOA
Sensei Paul Foster-Dent - IOA
Sensei Wasyl Kolesnikov - Universal Aikido
Sensei Paul McGlone - Takemusu Iwama Europe
Sensei Lawson Moore - IOA
Sensei Barbara Moss - Yama Arashi
Sensei Paul Robinson - Birankai
Sensei Phil Smith - UKA
Sensei Simon Thackeray - IOA
Sensei William Timms - IOA
Sensei Les White - Kurai
The Sensei provided a feast of interesting Aikido, both open hand and weapons, which illustrated the many different paths which Aikidoka have taken in their search for Truth. The Sensei also entertained the participants by recounting some of their memories of Mr Foster and paid tribute to the part he had played in their own Aikido careers.
A number of Dan Grade Certificates were presented during the afternoon. Spirit Fredericks received his 2nd Dan Certificate which he had gained at the Institute of Aikido Summer School in 2011, whilst a number of other long serving 3rd Dan Aikidoka were promoted to 4th Dan. These were Tommy Tonner and Tom Why from The Hut Dojo, Uxbridge; Trevor Edgson and John Kingsbury from Slough Central Aikido Club and Lindsey Park, Linn Robertson and Derek Killah from the Livingston Club.
On the Saturday evening a Memorial Dinner was held in the nearby Holiday Inn Hotel which was attended by many members of Sensei Foster’s family, including his wife Alice. During the evening the diners enjoyed a powerpoint presentation displaying photos from Sensei Foster’s life, and verbal tributes were paid by the following Sensei - Paul McGlone, Phil Smith, William Timms, Simon Thackeray and Paul Foster-Dent. A book was passed around in which guests could write their thoughts about Sensei Foster and their relationship with him which would be presented to the Foster family.
The Course continued on the Sunday and concluded around 4 o’clock. Our thanks go to the organisers, Paul Foster-Dent, William and Sharon Timms and last but not least, Janet Pain.
It is intended that a DVD will be made in due course of the teaching sessions for which a nominal charge will be made to cover costs. If you would like a copy please indicate your interest by sending an email to: email@example.com.
Click here for photos of the Sensei Foster Memorial Course.
There is now a new Yahoo Group for members to post messages, upload photos and view I.O.A. documents. View it from the button on the home page or click on this link.
Well done to Marek and Jarek of Slough Centre Aikido for passing their Shodan gradings on the 11th of Feb. Congratulations!