bury the hatchet

As a post-work stress re­liever, not many ac­tiv­i­ties can be more cathar­tic than throw­ing an axe at a wall. Florence Der­rick headed to Vaux­hall for some ex­treme tar­get prac­tice

The Wharf - - Focus -

Com­mit to the lunge,” said Jack Far­rar, as the axe I’d just flung ric­o­cheted off the back wall, miss­ing the wooden tar­get by cen­time­tres. Axe-throw­ing is hard. Much harder than you’d ex­pect.

Even my lum­ber­jack-dressed in­struc­tor strug­gled to get a bull’s eye (sorry Jack) as he demon­strated the tech­nique at the be­gin­ning of my ses­sion at Whis­tle Punks, an ur­ban axe-throw­ing ven­ture un­der an arch­way in Vaux­hall – 30 min­utes on the Tube from Ca­nary Wharf. The first cen­tre of its kind in Eu­rope, let alone Lon­don, prides it­self on of­fer­ing “the most sat­is­fy­ing and so­cial day or night you’ll ever have” – a bold claim. But there was some­thing un­de­ni­ably sat­is­fy­ing about the prim­i­tive thud of metal on wood when, on my third go, I got it right – hold­ing the axe high above and be­hind my head, lean­ing for­ward into the throw and watch­ing the sharp blade thwack right on tar­get.

It’s not the first nov­elty ac­tiv­ity to en­cour­age stressed city work­ers to de­com­press.

Shored­itch is sat­u­rated with ping pong bars, crazy golf and even shuf­fle­board.

But the sim­plic­ity of axe-lob­bing, scor­ing more points the closer you get to the cen­tre of the tar­get, cuts through the su­per­fi­cial na­ture of some of its com­peti­tors.

It’s a more vi­o­lent, less bor­ing ver­sion of darts.

Plus, it’s a wel­come al­ter­na­tive to post-work booz­ing, see­ing as – for ob­vi­ous safety rea­sons – al­co­hol is for­bid­den un­til you’ve com­pleted your hour-and-a-half’s worth of weapon wield­ing.

Thank­fully there’s a snack bar for fu­elling up as I be­gan to flag mid-tour­na­ment. Not so for my part­ner, who flung his blades to glory, win­ning a plas­tic-sil­ver tro­phy at the end of the ses­sion.

The price is a bit steep. But for un­earthing your in­ner lum­ber­jack, un­wind­ing and hav­ing a laugh while you’re at it, there’s no bet­ter place to don a che­quered shirt and get stuck in. Go to whistlepunks.com for fes­tive spe­cial of­fers, from £18.75 per per­son (usu­ally £22).

There is a cer­tain tech­nique to mak­ing the per­fect axe throw, and once you get it right there is no bet­ter sat­is­fac­tion than hit­ting a bull’s eye, as demon­strated by Whis­tle Punks in­struc­tor Jack Far­rar

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.