The Bancroft Martial Arts Club opened its’ doors for the first time on February 10, 1983.

Founding members were Al Murack, Brian Schutt, Rick Grant and Doug Calder. All four had been training in Kempo-Karate at Benny’s House of Karate in Peterborough and felt it was time to open a dojo in Bancroft. The first night saw 25 interested parties show up for the initial class. 

The club continued to be a hub of martial arts activity until the summer of 1988. At that point, with three of its instructors moving from the community, the club disbanded.

However, in the fall of 1988, the dojo re-opened under the leadership of Vaughn Lloyd, a student of the former club. The new dojo was now affiliated with the Snow Tigers organization based in Madoc and Trenton.

With its affiliation also including the Kai-Shin Karate Association and the Canadian Jiu-Jitsu Council, the local club now offered training in Chito-ryu karate and Jiu-Jitsu.


In 2004, Vaughn Lloyd retired from active teaching and Dave Dalley took over the position of lead instructor. Dave still serves in that capacity at present.


To date, the local club has graduated 13 black belts, six of whom still teach locally.


Classes are held in Bancroft on Thursday nights above the arena from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Classes are also held at the club’s associate dojo in Combermere on Tuesday nights.


Costs are reasonable and interested individuals are eligible to one free introductory lesson. Contact persons in Bancroft and Combermere are Dave Dalley @ 613-332-0431 or Tom Conyers @ 6132-338-3300. The Bancroft  club’s website is

thanks to Sensei Rick Dodd for this article

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