2014 Archive


The Final Fling saw some tough fishing but at least we enjoyed pleasant weather conditions. Although some people started off on No4, the West bank of No5 was the place to be, with Jim Dillon setting the pace early with a three pounder opposite the Island. Kevin Blackwell matched this with another three pounder, but Ashan Mohammed took the shield with a fish just half an ounce heavier. Well done! Report & Results>>

The Farmoor Fur & Feather also saw sunny conditions and light winds. Sport was affected by the cold water that had been recently pumped in to raise the levels, but there were still some decent fish to be had if you persevered, even though short takes and lost fish were common. Tony Fox made the most of a change in the wind to take three fish on floater and buzzers, while Kevin Blackwell had the best of the match, a nice four pounder, coming third with two fish, behind Frank Daley, who also had a brace.

Our traditional Fur & Feather competition enjoyed balmy sunshine and light winds after a hard frost which surprisingly saw the fish active in mid-water even while it was still cold. As expected, Boobies on the DI7 and DI5 took some early fish, but as often happens, the better fish came later in the day. Brian Stanton took the big hamper with a great bag, which included a couple of 3lbs+ fish, from the North West corner of No5, while Mike Heritage took the best fish, a 3-12-0 rainbow, from No.4 which, we were glad to see, had cleared up nicely. In the light winds buzzers on the floater also took fish, which was very pleasant in the sunshine. Most people caught their 4-fish limit, and we all had a good time in the Ferry Boat afterwards Results and more pics>>

The last match of our Autumn Series saw Jim Dillon take the overall title just one point ahead of John Ferguson, who pulled out all the stops in a search for that last-minute big fish which could have got him the ten points he needed Results>>

Our Grayling trip to R.Test at Wherwell enjoyed reasonable weather and good clear water conditions, even if fish were easy to spook in the low water. Jerry and Alistair also got access to the McMullens fishery, with Kristian and his mate taking over in the afternoon, to be rewarded with a spectacular specimen to Kristian

Michael Heritage continued his run of good form with a win in morning session of the recent South East FF Rivers Qualifier and overall first place. Harry Fox put in a great performance in the afternoon to win that session by a big margin for second overall, with Tony not far behind in 7th place Results>>

John Ferguson was Walthamstow’s representative in the recent Troutmasters Final at Grafham and didn’t let us down, coming a respectable 19th out of nearly 100 competitors, catching in both sessions, the trick to doing well in this match.

Our Wateraid Charity match attracted another good turnout and enjoyed good overcast conditions, with light winds. Vince King selected a good four fish bag out of a catch of seven from No5 to take the title, ahead of last year’s winner John Ferguson, who made the most of a hot spell in the SE Bay of No5, which fished generally better than No4, even though plenty of fish were seen moving in the boils. Full results and more pictures >>

Mike Heritage made up for narrowly missing being in the Autumn Loch-style team this year (he was 1st reserve) by making the 2015 team in style in the two-day National at Rutland. With his 7 fish bag putting him in a good position on the first day, he sealed the performance with an 8 fish limit on day two. Harry Fox also fished the National but wasn’t able to recover after a difficult first day.

Our recent club trip to Farmoor enjoyed excellent top of the water fishing in the overcast conditions. Successful tactics on Farmoor 1 included the washing-line and dries like Ginger or Orange Hoppers, while on Farmoor 2 Ray Taylor, John Ferguson, Kevin Blackwell and others also got big totals on surface tactics. Biggest fish of the day was an estimated 17-18lb pike to Jim Dillon on a Charley Farley from Farmoor 1.

See more pictures >>

Charlie Abrahams finishes 4th in the Lexus Individual Championship, fished over two days at Chew Valley Lakes. Charlie caught 12 fish to top the field behind Craig Barr, Aled Dixon and the 2014 Champion Russell Owen, to round off a successful season which also saw him finish 3rd in the Iain Barr Airflo Masters.

Mike Heritage is the new National Rivers Champion

He topped a high-quality field in the 2014 Rivers National on the River Dee, targeting mostly brownies on his first two sessions, and grayling on the second day of the competition. This makes up for him narrowly failing to make the Loch-style team this year, and is a worthy reward for all the hard work he’s put in. Tony Fox finished in a respectable 13th place, managing to bounce back after a disappointing 3rd session, to win his 4th with four fish.

Harry and Tony Fox both competed in the first ever Five Nations event based in Stirling, Scotland, between teams from France, Ireland, England, Scotland and Belgium/Luxembourg. With two sessions on the boat - Lake of Menteith and Loch Carron - and two sessions on the rivers - Carron and the Devon - versatility was key. Both Harry (England B) and Tony (England A) won their sessions on Loch Carron, helping their teams to 1st and 2nd place overall. See the AT TEFF website for a report>>

By popular request, the last of our of our Wednesday Evening Series saw the format change to catch & release dry fly only competition. With Jim Dillon having already secured the Ken Gunn shield in impressive style, a friendly £2 sweep seemed a nice way to end the series Reports >>

An extra Greys Bank heat at Farmoor 1 saw Baz Reece take the top individual spot with 5 fish on nymphs, ahead of Jim Dillon and Harry Fox, both on 4 fish. Unlike the Iain Barr heats, where any later fish are used to decide between anglers with equal points, in the Greys it’s whoever gets the earliest fish, so with Jim catching 2 fish in the first session, Jim was placed above Harry. In the team event, Team Fox narrowly beat the London Irish by 14pts to 11.

Full results here >>

Harry Fox and Mike Heritage both got through the South East FFF qualifiers for the Loch-style National at Rutland. Harry came 9th & 14th, to end up 9th overall, with Mike 15th & 9th to finish 10th. Well done to both. 

The East Warwick season was again extended by an extra month, thanks to a special concession by ranger Myland Monery. Although weather was not a factor this year, it was felt that with fish still moving, and the original Site Management Statement not having the authority it used to have, we could have an extra month.

We will be discussing this in our next meeting with Myland and manager Will Barnard, and also as part of the Walthamstow Wetlands scheme.

Catfish to Frank Daley taken on dries on No 4. You have

to see it to believe it, but apparently this actually happened, and is not a Photoshop mock-up.

The South East heat of the AWA/Airflo competition at Bewl saw Harry Fox of Meridian FF take the top spot with dad Tony get the biggest fish prize with a 4lbs fish on dries. Meridian FF and Chingley Chompers were the two two teams to go through, with Meridian FF also featuring club members Mike Heritage and Andrew Smith.

Round One of the South East FF Loch-style Qualifiers at Bewl saw the overcast skies we’d had in practice replaced by much brighter conditions which made it harder for everyone. Even so, Harry Fox managed 4 fish, which puts him 9th out of 28, while Mike Heritage is 15th

Report & Full Results here>> 

Andy Hathaway reports that the Start Fly Fishing courses are continuing to be popular. Here’s a picture from the well-attended day in April. Don’t forget, one day’s qualified instruction costs just £40, and entitles you to a half price season ticket for Nos4 & 5 for just £165. More information >>

The much anticipated club trip to Farmoor experienced strong winds but, even so, we saw some good nymph fishing along the West bank of No1 in the morning, with Ray Taylor getting seven on buzzers. Sport slowed after that, but a switch to the Charley Farley Cat’s Whisker Tadpole on a Fast Intermediate saw more fish landed, including some real lumps of around 4-5lbs. Our thanks to Jim Dillon who, as well as getting a dozen out on a four-weight, also drove the minibus, and to John Ferguson for transporting our gear. We are looking to hold another heat of the Greys Bank Competition on Farmoor 1 on Sunday July 20th, and are looking forward to more good fishing. You can get your Entry Forms here>>

The Greys Bank heat saw No4 refilled and much clearer than previously, with No5 looking on the brownish side. Although anglers not in the competition were doing well on buzzers on the floater from certain banks on No4, the mobile format of this heat meant that Boobies on the DI7 worked more consistently. Both Vince King and Mike Heritage showed the rest of us how it should be done with five fish each on Two-tone Blob Boobies and the DI7, ahead of Kevin Blackwell with four fish. Their catches made it a convincing victory for the Walthamstow Wanderers in the team competition, ahead of the London Irish and Team Fox.

Full Results>>

UPDATE ON THE CONSTRUCTION WORK ON NOS 4 & 5: You’ll see that following the resurfacing work done on No4, the levels are now back up to normal, and with the excellent clarity, the reservoir looks very good and is producing some great fishing to buzzers. We have also been told that No5 should start to be refilled in a couple of weeks or so, since the work is near completion, which is good news for the start of our Wednesday Evening Series.

Walthamstow No5 features in this month’s Trout Fisherman magazine, with Hanningfield’s Tim Joyce catching on floating line and buzzers, and also on the Intermediate and a Black & Green goldhead. Ray Taylor and Thames Waters’ Will Barnard also offer advice.

The Troutmasters fish-off was unlucky to get the worse day of the entire Easter break, with rain setting in around mid-day and never easing up (see right). With No4 still coloured, most of us focused on the Causeway and the East bank of No5. There were a couple of early fish from the Causeway which encouraged some to move here, including John Ferguson who got stuck into a run of fish on DI7 and Black & Green Booby. Despite being challenged by Mohammed Ashan and Andrew Green (both with 4 fish), John’s 5 fish made it with six ounces to spare, and will see him fish the Troutmasters final at Grafham on September 15th Results>>

Troutmasters: Ranger Myland has confirmed that Thames have paid their fee, and that Walthamstow is now a Troutmasters water for 2014,

so you can start sending in those entry forms and, with luck, qualify for next year’s fish-off.

The qualifiers from the Iain Barr Airflo Masters heat at Farmoor fished the final at Elinor. Although the venue had fished well the previous week, bright conditions and a strong wind made it tough for the 98 finalists. Charlie Abrahams, who qualified from Rib Valley, did very well to finish 3rd with 10 fish behind winner Pete Appleby who had 14. Andrew Green finished somewhere in the low 20s with 5 fish, while John Ferguson and Kevin Blackwell both suffered a blank. 

Farmoor 1 was a little disappointing for this year’s heat of the Iain Barr Bank Masters which half a dozen of us fished recently. Despite some promising practice sessions, with fish taking buzzers, a cold week appeared to have put the fish off the feed. The Welsh winner (who had already qualified for the final) had 3 fish, with Kevin Blackwell and Andrew Green getting one each, fishing mostly at distance. The third place for the final, which was drawn out of the hat, went to Vince King, who will join the others at the final at Elinor in a couple of weeks‘ time. 

The latest Fly-tying Evening saw a good turnout in great facilities of the Angling Academy building. Not only were there tying demonstrations of a range of patterns, including Jungle Diawl Bachs, Olive Buzzers and Klinkhamers, there was also a good amount of participation with Minkies and Buzzers being tied up by members. Our thanks to Myland for making this building available to us. We may look at having another evening if there is the demand for it.

Our 2014 AGM/Auction took place in a new venue, the bar at Walthamstow Cricket Club which, as well as being great for our purposes, also has a good-sized car park. Chairman Dave Jarvis was able to report on a recent meeting with Thames Water manager Will Barnard and ranger Myland Monery. We were also to confirm that events like the Start Fly-fishing courses and the Wednesday Evening Series would be back in their normal slots, along with our other events. After the AGM, auctioneer Kevin Blackwell did an able job of disposing of around 100 lots, assisted by John Ferguson and Ray Taylor. We managed to raise a tidy sum, which included a £100 donation to Haven House Childrens Hospice.

Despite the recent slow fishing, our Final Fling saw a great turnout of 16 make the best of it. Action was first seen in the NW corner of No5 and down the West bank, with Harry Fox, Dave Jarvis and Barry Shedden all getting early fish. When this slowed, some of us moved onto the much improved No4, where Barry got into a succession of fish on the Causeway. But it was Jim Dillon who took the shield with a 3-13-0 fish taken off the top on his last cast with a DI7 on the West bank of No5. Billy Bridgeworth was 2nd with a 3-9-8 fish, not far from Jim, with Kevin Blackwell getting a 3-2-8 specimen. As has been the pattern recently, black flies seemed to be working best.

The most recent Start Fly Fishing Course overcame adverse weather and coloured water to give the 8 attendees a useful introduction to the sport, even if the only fish hooked came off! Thanks to Andy Hathaway for organising, and Dave Jarvis and Ray Taylor for helping out. Andy has a new set of dates planned. You’ll find more information here>>

The latest Fly-tying Evening was able to use the well appointed Angling Academy building by the entrance, thanks to Will Barnard and Myland Monery, who also kept the fishery car park open for us. Fresh from a successful trip to Grafham, Kevin tied up a realistic Killer Shrimp pattern, complete with eyes, while Andrew produced a couple of black patterns, a Zonker and a Booby, which have been working in the present coloured water conditions. Note that the Ferry Boat Inn is currently closed for refurbishment, but we believe this should be completed by Friday 24th January, in time for our Final Fling the following day.

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