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Steve Prior was responsible for bringing Hapkido to the Wolverhampton area. Whilst training in Karate at Wombourne Leisure Centre, the club hosted a seminar with Hapkido instructor Mr. Sam Plumb from Worksop.  Sam came down with several of his senior grades and gave a very impressive demonstration and taster session in this all round Korean martial art.  Liking what he saw Steve began to travel to Whitwell and train on Sam's Saturday open classes in Kuk Sool Hapkido.
 
Whilst training with Sam, Steve had the chance to train under the legendary Dr. He Young Kim.  This gentleman is a living legend within the Korean martial arts and the author of some of the best Hapkido training manuals available.
 
Shaun Massey, a student of Sam, moved to the West Midlands for his work and began to train with Steve at his club.  On the back of this Steve managed to also get Robert Beeston to teach at the club.  Robert was a high Dan grade with Sam Plumb but moved to Dudley for a while to attend University at the Dudley campus. 

Master John Pellegrini

Hapkido Training at Trysull
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It was at this time Steve met both John Satterley and Terry Gill; both being senior grades under Sam Plumb.  However, they both eventually left Sam and joined John Pellegrini's International Combat Hapkido Federation.  John is a Master grade in both Hapkido and Taekwondo.  In 1990 he founded Chon Tu Kwan Hapkido or Combat Hapkido, as it would become better known.  Combat Hapkido is a no nonsense style of this time tested art which includes kicking, striking, throws, locks, pressure points, weaponry etc.
 
Steve joined the ICHF under John Satterley and travelled to Mansfield to train on John Pellegrini and Bram Frank's seminar and also Mansfield and Slough to train with John Satterley.  However within a very short time, John Satterley moved to Wolverhampton to work and Steve was able to train Hapkido on a weekly basis.  Steve and Penny would also travel to Huddersfield to help John teach Hapkido at Ian Atkinson's Tang So Do club.
Steve was instrumental in helping John set up a club at Wolverhampton Grammar School, but due to poor attendance the club folded and Steve had to train at John's home together with Penny and her brother Barney.  Combat Hapkido was recognised as a legitimate Kwan by Korea in 1999.  Although still not widely practised in the UK, Steve and his group of friends trained again under John Pellegrini when he last ran a UK seminar.  This further fuelled their thirst to learn this practical yet devastating art.
 
John eventually moved back to Mansfield and Terry Gill, who had been UK Director, retired from the martial arts.

Hapkido Training at Trysull
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John Satterley teaching in Swindon
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Steve and Penny have taught Hapkido to small groups and incorporate techniques into their seminars.  Last year (2009) they attempted to open a weekly class in Claverley, Shropshire but this was poorly attended and closed after a short time.
 
The group is currently looking for any individuals or groups looking to set up a regular training group or any Taekwondo classes looking to add Hapkido to their syllabus.  Please feel free to contact Steve for help or advice at any time.

 

 

Bridgnorth Journal

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Master John Pellegrini and Master Bram Frank seminar at Mansfield

 

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