Welcome to Birmingham & Weoley Castle Shotokan Karate
Birmingham & Weoley Castle Shotokan Karate is one of the longest running karate clubs in the West Midlands. Originally founded in 1968 by the late Shihan Cummins 8th Dan as what became known as Birmingham & Halesowen Shotokan Karate Club with a dojo in Weoley Castle from the early days it grew from strength to strength producing many well regarded karate-ka and instructors as well as many National, European and World Champions. The clubs Alumni include Sensei Ronnie Christopher, 6th Dan and former double World Champion, Sensei Ronnie Canning, former World Champion, Sensei Slater Williams, 7th Dan, the late Sensei Franklyn Doras, 6th Dan.
In 2012 Shihan Cummins gave what was then the longest running dojo at Weoley Castle which had run at its current location for some 37 years to his student, BHSKC Club Secretary and Welfare Officer, Sensei Susan Hession who had taught by his side for many years to form Weoley Castle Shotokan Karate Club. This initially operated under the BHSKC group with Shihan Cummins as Chief instructor before becoming fully independent with Sensei Hession as Chief instructor but maintaining its link with BHSKC. Weoley Castle Shotokan Karate grew strongly under Sensei Hession producing a number of students who in turn had their own share of success at competition.
Shihan Cyril Cummins passed away in 2017 passing on the mantle of Chief Instructor of Birmingham & Halesowen Shotokan Karate Club to Sensei Hession. The two clubs operated in conjunction with each other under her stewardship maintaining their individual names but under a combined badge. as BHSKC & WCSKC for an extended period. However time waits for no man and during this time training locations changed with some long standing dojos like Bartley Green and Halesowen closing so to embody this new era and reflect changes in the geography of the club the club adopted a new name and badge, Birmingham & Weoley Castle Shotokan Karate (BWCSK).
Students from Birmingham & Halesowen and Weoley Castle have progressed well through the grades and have done very well in kata and kumite tournaments over the years producing many regional, European and World Champions. We have continued this long standing tradition as Birmingham & Weoley Castle Shotokan Karate with students competing successfully at a levels including world championship tournaments.
In May 2022 Sensei Hession took over the running of Kenshin Shotokan Karate Club, officially becoming the Chief Instructor in June of that year. Originally founded by another student of the late Shihan Cummins, the late Sensei Franklyn Doras 6th Dan it had continued to run after his death under the leadership of the Sensei Peter Shuter and his former wife Lorraine Doras until Sensei Pete decided to lay down the chief instructor mantle. With the retirement of Lorraine in October 2023 it has now become a fully integrated part of BWCSK where it had previously operated as a seperately registered entity but with Students grading together with the administration now been done as part of the general BWCSK admin and students automatically becoming members of the parent club. In memory of Franklyn we are maintaining the Kenshin name for the Stechford dojo.
Joining Birmingham & Weoley Castle Shotokan Karate Club opens up a variety of options with classes on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday with Sensei Sue and the BWCSK team spread across Longbridge, Weoley Castle and Stechford throughout the week.
Birmingham & Weoley Castle Shotokan Karate club is governed by NAKMAS an association for martial arts clubs. NAKMAS provides insurance for every student and instructor. All instructors and assistant instructors are enhanced DBS checked before being issued with a licence to teach. To learn more about NAKMAS please click on the NAKMAS image.
Shotokan Karate was originally developed by Sensei Gichin Funakoshi who used the pen name Shoto which means waving pines. Through the ages it has evolved as body shapes have changed and laws no longer allow us to settle our differences in combat. However our club and associated clubs belonging to NAKMAS pride ourselves in discipline and form. Our Chief Instructor Sensei Sue Hession, 5th Dan and Senior Instructor Richard Amuzu 5th Dan were senior students of the late Shihan Cyril Cummins, 8th Dan, founder and Chief Instructor of Birmingham and Halesowen Shotokan Karate club dojos. Having learnt from one of the best karateka of his generation they continue his legacy with a number of the club’s assistant instructors having trained and graded some to black belt level with Shihan Cummins.