Kodokan Martial Arts

"Karate and Kobudo Under One Roof"

All Our Yesterdays

The small band of Karate-ka that formed Kazoku Karate back in 1992 came from the split of Sentenashi Karate Kosai. We were the majority of the Darlington group from this association that was headed by Sensei Keith Bell. When he left to follow other interests the groups around the north East began to split and go their own way. However, this post is to give you some history of Sensei Chris, Stuart and myself before this split.

Back in 1985 we decided to join a Karate group in Darlington, and found the Darlington group of Sentenashi, run by various Sensei, such as Dave Oliver, and Keith Bell. We used to train at first twice a week, but that went to 4 times a week when I enrolled on an MSc Degree course in Newcastle. Sensei Chris and Stuart trained twice at Darlington and we all trained twice at the Newton Aycliffe group run by Sensei Gary Howlet and, Dave Cowans. Once I'd finished my 3 year course we all went to 4 times a week. However, what was interesting was during the many tournaments we had, because Sensei Chris and Stuart represented Darlington, while I represented the Newton Aycliffe group. Sentenashi used to have a league going whereby all their groups used to competed against each other, groups from Darlington, Newton Aycliffe, Barnard Castle, Sedgefield, Hurworth and Catterick Garrison. In addition to this was their year open tournament whereby all would compete in Kumite and Kata.

Below I have added just some of the photos taken during this time during the Annual Tournament held at Sedgefield. Also a few from the Annual awards Dinner. Their quality is not very good because it was before the digital age of camera's. These photos were scanned in.




20 Years Anniversary


Some Recommended Books


  1. Some great photos – some of who I can recognise!

  2. Andy Dawson

    I remember those tournaments well, my first introduction into competition (and learning the hard way not to freeze in kata!)
    Really good to see these and pics of Dave Oliver and Peter Davidson!

  3. Nice to see some names from the past getting a mention. I used to train at the Aycliffe club between  82-84.

  4. Sensei Fred Bateman

    It’s funny you should say that because I was the same with Kata. I remeber doing Kushan Ku for the first time in these competitions and messing up by going into a Pinan Kata. With Kumite my nerves went as soon as I started fighting, but before shaking like a leaf!

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