This page is dedicated to students that have shown unwavering loyalty to the Mendip Ving Tsun clan (Somerset Applied Wing Chun). To my understanding, being great at a martial artist does not make you a great person. That skill is far, far harder to achieve.
History is filled with individuals that are great, not because of who they are, or which name they have inherited, but because of what they did and how they did it.
These few people that I have listed below by their actions, perseverance and determination have achieved a level of understanding not just in Wing Chun the art, but also in what it means to be gracious, honorable and decent. A great martial artist without these qualities is no more than a highly trained thug. This in my view puts these guys in the minority. It is for people like these that I continue to give unconditionally within my kwoon (class) on a daily basis.
This list is presented in no particular order.
I have known Chris (Fei) since the late Nineties. We shared a common interest when I discovered that he has been studying Ancient Chinese history for the last fifteen years and his knowledge of the Three Kingdoms era is beyond exceptional.
He displays honour in his day-to-day life that is sorely missing here in the West. His passion for the people and culture of the East shows in everything he does. I've never met a more compassionate and giving human being.
Chris has been training Wing Chun with me since before I opened the doors to my school and indeed helped me actually open the school back in 2008.
I am proud to call him my brother, disciple and friend. Chris is an asset to my class as indeed he is to this country. Chris is the longest standing, original foundation members of Somerset Applied Wing Chun Kuen. He is not only a great student but I also consider him a very close friend of myself and an extension of my personal family.
Drew's brother initially introduced him to martial arts when he was very young, a form of White Crane Kung Fu, and Drew loved it.
The Kung Fu media boom of the 70's had already impacted heavily on Drew's imagination and this planted the seed for future fruition.
Drew tried Judo and Karate before he focused his energy on his other love, Rugby League. This coupled with daily gym sessions kept him busy untill he eventually enlisted as an armourer in the Royal Navy.
Forget extreme sports! Drew competed as a field gunner - this role is not for the fainthearted and even within the forces, its about as extreme as it gets.
After leaving the Navy, Drew decided to take up martial arts full time, and after much searching for the right class, Drew found us here at Somerset Applied Wing Chun.
I have got to know Drew outside of class and what a great guy he is, totally transparent, 'does what it says on the tin'. It gives me great pleasure to add him to this page, he is a disciple of our school and I am immensely proud to call him my brother.
Drew can drink like a fish, just thought I would put that in, for now anyways :)
Ok, hands up, I don't know much about her, except that Elmira is Russian and she is married to her husband, who is called Chris and he is a good man and an exceptional master builder. What I do know is that she is the only lady that has ever put up with me long enough to achieve the skills and knowledge in our Wing Chun that she has....I am so proud.
He is an ex marine and a fantastic guy...
He puts up with me too... Seriously though, he has become a student to the system (he gets my ramblings) and I am proud to call him a friend.
Send me another blog mate :)
ok hands up, you sent, I lost....
Until then, he is an ex Royal Marine, two terms in Iraq, nice guy, trains well and enjoys a laugh x
Found that Moon gate yet ?
Malcolm Dyke (Malchom) our man
Malc began his Martial Arts journey in 1998, beginning with Wado Ryu Karate which he studied for 3 years. After getting married and moving away, he took up the Korean Martial art of Hapkido, which he studied for many years achieving the status of 1st Dan Black Belt. Malc began training Wing Chun in November of 2013, the first new pupil at the newly opened Somerset Wing Chun Yeovil class, and he's been there ever since.
Malc is a great guy, a pleasure to train with and he is always one of the first to help new students within the class that may be struggling.
Other than schoolboy Judo, Andras came to the martial arts in the late 80's when he began training in Shotokan Karate, inspired by seeing Morio Higaonna on the BBC's "The Way of the Warrior" series and an interest in Zen. During this time he also studied Aikido for two and a half years and took up kickboxing. Even though he gained his first dan black belt in the art, Andras became dissatisfied with the increasing sports emphasis in karate and left after eight years of training to find a martial art closer to his heart.
After some further kickboxing training he studied the Kamon style of Wing Chun for 14 years, gaining his black sash in the system and founding a club of his own during this time. He is also a fully qualified FAST Defence instructor.
As Kamon moved away from Wing Chun, Andras was introduced to the Wong Shun Leung method of Ving Tsun and immediately knew that this was what he had always hoped Wing Chun would be. A mutual friend and coach introduced us to each other and Andras has been my student of the system since then.
Andras learns at an incredible rate and his thirst for the real deal is immense. I've always believed in Andras, as much as I know he believes In me, because of this, we have become great friends as well as training partners. I am happy to call him my brother and he is a welcome member of my personal family.
Together Andras and I have formed the "WSL VT South West Collective", an organisation free of politics and martial arts garbage, dedicated to the promotion of Wong Shun Leung Ving Tsun as laid out by David Peterson.
Andras has gone on to reach great levels with his knowledge and training and now he spearheads the Bristol ABMVT crew and deserves credit for this personal achievement.
Unfortunately Andras is no longer with us. He now sings at the table of Valhalla. I miss you mate, you've no idea how much