Work Party Members

Dave

Avon Chub

As I write this I have but eighty days remaining until my retirement. Forty years in a government agency researching the diseases of farmed livestock is an age in anyone’s life but my fishing career is a trifle longer, indeed I can pinpoint with some accuracy when I first started. I have on my bookshelf the Observers’ Book of Freshwater Fishes and it bears my parents’ script dated 1957. I can still recall catching my first fish but it was not until I cajoled my mother to buy the book that I discovered that fish to be a roach. I was hooked and the rest as they say is history. Perhaps, due to my solitary past - learning from Mr Crabtree and reading avidly the great sixties magazines such as Angling, Fishing and Creel (I still have them all) - it is why I am still very much a lonesome fisherman.

A renaissance happened when, quite by chance, I stumbled across a review of the first issue of the angling magazine Waterlog  in The Times. It was a revelation – here was a cadre of anglers who, by and large, thought and fished much as my own fishing life had been conducted: traditional but by no means staid; contemplative but not competitive. Even better I met, through the magazine’s Forum, some good fishing companions.

Swim

I am neither a follower of fashion nor a slave to cane and centre-pins thus my modest collection of rods and reels comprising the Allcock Match Aerial I bought with my first ever pay packet through cane MK IVs made from JB Walker kits, glass tench rods from Olivers’ teamed with Mitchell 300s to modern (sometimes flashy) Shimano reels and Maver rods. My first love is river fishing (Wey and Thames) for roach, chub and bream and close behind is early summer tenching using flake under a red-tipped quill. I occasionally dabble with a fly and do a bit of mullet chasing once a year in Bembridge harbour. I’ve never caught a monster of any species but my list of reasonably sized fish is not too bad.

When I’m not on the bank I’m reading, listening to Beethoven, Bach and Handel or just tinkering around with bits of cork, balsa, quill and cane. Holidays are strictly (well almost) non-fishing and usually to distant exotic lands.

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