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For more than a decade, Somerset Ryu has aimed to teach high quality, authentic Shotokan Karate to people of all ages (4+) and abilities in the West Somerset area.


The club launched in the small village of Milverton in October 2013, and is now based entirely at our own bespoke dojo inside the historic Tonedale Mill in Wellington, with classes six days a week.


Our logo is based on the county flag of Somerset; the word Ryu in our name is Japanese, meaning dragon (竜).

Karate is an incredibly rewarding activity, with heavy emphasis on positive mental health and wellbeing, discipline, self defence and all-round fitness. There is huge potential for personal growth and achievement as our students work through their grades. We actively encourage participation in karate tournaments across the length and breadth of the UK for those who are interested.

Our club is affiliated to JKS England, and the Worldwide Headquarters of the Japan Karate Shoto Federation in Tokyo. This also provides membership with the English Karate Federation, the National Governing Body for UK Karate, and the World Karate Federation (WKF).


SRK Instructor Team


Peter Milne
4th Dan JKS

Chief Instructor

The owner and founder of Somerset Ryu; Peter has been practicing Shotokan Karate for more than 25 years, and teaches full-time from SRK's permanent dojo in Wellington. Since 2013, his club has gained almost 50 black belt passes ranging from 1st - 3rd Dan, and he has personally coached many students to competition success at a high level. In November 2021 Peter successfully graded to 4th Dan with the renowned Japan Karate Shoto Federation (JKS). He is always looking to the future and prides himself on the high standards set in class, with the ultimate aim to unlock each individual's maximum potential.


Thea Priest
3rd Dan JKS

Instructor / Squad Coach

Thea started her karate journey in 2011 (aged 10) as a student of Peter Sensei. It was soon after passing her black belt that she started to achieve remarkable success in competition, making the Karate Union of Great Britain England Squad in 2015 and earning selection to compete at the World and European Championships only a year later. Since then she has amassed an impressive collection of Domestic and International medals and titles; in 2023 she was crowned JKS England Grand Champion by winning both Kata and Kumite individual events at the National Championships. Thea hopes to inspire others for many years to come as a proud member of Somerset Ryu Karate.


Antony Thompson-Gardiner
1st Dan

Assistant Instructor

Tony's history in martial arts spans over forty years, beginning with Judo aged 8 before moving to Kyokushin karate at the age of 10. In his thirties, he studied this style for 6 years while living in Japan, before life forced him to take a break. In 2010, his daughter's desire to learn karate led him to join a local Shotokan club under the tutelage and guidance of Peter Sensei. He remains a student but also devoted to supporting others in their practice of this beautiful art.

All club instructors hold an Enhanced DBS Check.
A copy of our Child Protection Policy is available to members on request.

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