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Club Badge and japanese building
Christopher Hopkinson, club founder
Christopher Hopkinson

George Launders club chairman
George Launders

About Us

Shiro-no Judokwai (the 'Club') ('Shiro-no' meaning 'White Field' in Japanese) and based in Whitefield. Greater Manchester, was originally founded in 1957 by Christopher Hopkinson (3rd Dan BJA). The Club subsequently relocated to the Mosses Centre, Bury and was renamed 'Bury Judokwai' and continued under Sensei Hopkinson's teachings for more than 40 years until, at the age of 72, he retired due to ill health.

In Sensei Hopkinso's honour, after his death in January 2004, the club was renamed 'Shiro-no-Zen Judokwai' by the Club's Committee, who changed the affiliation from the British Judo Association to the British Zen Judo Family Association. This major transition was due to the fact that the Committee felt that the teachings of Sensei Hopkinson were akin to the Zen tradition, thereby continuing his dedication to the technical judo which he so loved.

Sensei Hopkinson's legacy was passed to George Launders (6th Dan BZJFA & 3rd Dan BJA), his prodigy, and long term pupil. In February 2004, a ceremony named 'The Cutting of the Dojo' was performed at The Mosses Centre, which was to release the old Sensei's Spirit from the Dojo and clear the air to make way for the new Sensei, George Launders, to take over the running of the Club.

Cutting of the Dojo, resting Sensei Cutting of the Dojo, club members Cutting of the Dojo, cutting

The day was a huge success and was attended by many of Sensei Hopkinson's pupils (old and young), family and old friends. Although the day was tinged with sadness, everyone was happy in knowledge that the Club was now in the capable hands of Sensei Launders and that under his care and teachings, the Club would continue to flourish in memory on Sensei Hopkinson.

Since that day in February 2004 the club has endevoured to carry on the unique teachings of a great master following his style the club has moved from strength to strength.

In 2016 it was felt a change of venue for the club was appropriate and the Dojo moved to its curent location at the Baden Powell Hall, over on the other side of town.

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