2010 – Late June

New Season News

Well the long wait is finally over. As June 16th approached I was buzzing to get out on the rivers and start fishing again. Quite what made me so excited this year I haven’t a clue but I was straining at the leash as the big day approached.

My main desire was to dig out the old stick floats and see if I couldn’t catch a chub or three but for the first time in a donkey’s age I just felt I had to be out there at midnight on the 15th. It’s a crazy notion but there you are. So I drove down to the Trent and pitched up in readiness.

The river looked amazing. Sunday’s rain looked to have lifted it by a foot and it was pushing through at a fair old rate of knots but the clarity remained good. The only unsettling observation was that no fish were topping. Usually you can see or at least hear the slaps of barbel tails as the light fades.

Sound travels across water and I’d not even got my gear in the peg when I could hear someone on the far bank talking into his mobile phone, “Yeah, Bob Roberts has just turned up on the opposite bank!” And here’s me thinking that my Infinity Realtree gear is supposed to make me invisible…

By the time I’d set up the rods darkness was gathering so I took up Chris Smith’s offer of a cuppa and joined him in his swim. We put the world to rights over a coffee and a custard cream and then we heard the unmistakable ‘bosh, blippety, blip’ of someone casting in, rapidly followed by a second ‘bosh, blippety, blip’. It was all of 11.30pm!

We both sat it out for another half hour and then got down to business. I hadn’t even loaded the feeder on my second rod when the first one was away. Further up the bank I could hear splashing as Chris was clearly into one as well. It had been my intention to catch myself a barbel and then get my head down for a few hours but there was not a chance of that happening. I was simply buzzing and there was not a chance I’d nod off, so I fished on for a while to get it out of my system.

I was playing a barbel when the alarm went off on my phone, set to wake me at 3.30am. By now the last of the darkness was retreating beneath the hedgerows and I was treated to one of those special Trent dawns where wraiths of mist rise from the water. Once the sun had struggled above the far bank as a watery orange ball of fire it was obvious we were in for a hot one. This was set to be a clear blue sky day.

I called it quits after my eighth barbel. Chris had caught a similar number. It was time to prepare the stick float gear.

With everything set up and ready I began feeding maggots beyond the near shelf. I was in no rush and kept it up for half an hour or more until I felt in my mind that the fish would be lined up and gagging for it.

And they were.

I had around a dozen chub on the float with a few good lumps among them. It was good to note, too, that there were a few smaller chub around, weighing no more than a couple of pounds. Unfortunately it turned out there was a snag of some sorts in my swim. It might have been weed, I couldn’t tell but it cost me several fish. I also found myself well undergunned for the barbel that had a look in on me from time to time.

One stripped twenty, maybe 30 yards of line but there’s not a lot you can do except step up to a heavier rod and line but then you’re not chub fishing, are you? Fortunately if you give them enough stick the small hook will pull free and you can get back to what you’re supposed to be doing.

Greg Whitehead from AnglingTimes had called earlier in the week to ask if he might join me and maybe get a few pictures (see spread in Tuesday’s paper for some cracking action shots).

It was good to see him and he was fortunate to get some superb action shots including a series of me playing and landing a barbel. I shall be doing a lot more of the old float fishingwith a bit of luck this season.

The barbel was about six or 7lb which is quite a challenge on light tackle when the flow is ploughing through, as it does, on the tidal Trent. It fought like a demon and by the time I had it in the net it was exhausted so we just stood there, in the water admiring it and allowing it to recover. I’d say it was in the net a good five minutes before I even unhooked it because I could see it was expelling gas bubbles periodically from its gills.

Anyway we took a couple of pictures and then popped it back in the landing net. Across the far side I could hear someone moaning to his mate, “Are they still f***ing about with that fish?” As his mate slipped another barbel into his keepnet.

The answer is, and I do hope he’s reading this, is yes. If you count looking after the welfare of a tired fish as ‘f***ing about’.

Later on a dead barbel came floating past. It was a big ‘un, too. Greg and I ran down the bank to intercept it, just to see it it had been ottered but it clearly hadn’t. Probably a spawning casualty that had been dead for a while, the only visual damage being a trailing bit of intestine but that could have happened in all manner of ways as it undoubtedly had come over several weirs.

As I packed up I dropped in and said goodbye to Chris who was fishing a hundred yards above me.

“What do you make of that prat?” He asked.

“Dunno, which one?”

“Him over there. When that barbel came floating down he asked his mate if he thought it was the one you caught yet you were miles below it!”

I smiled. Some folk do like to moan, don’t they? Although this incident does highlight how some of the rather cynical rumours spread and not necessarily out of malice, just warped perspective and maybe ignorance.

Is It Time For Barbel Anglers To Unite?

In the UK we have three different barbel organisations operating on a National scale, the Barbel Society, the Barbel Catchers and the Barbel Specialists. If you were to combine the entire membership I doubt it would add up to a thousand souls in total. Indeed it might only be 500 or so.

Each has its own constitution, AGM, meetings, magazines or newsletters, seeks fair treatment for the species, wants to carry out research and conservation, has a limited degree of political will yet they seem to fall out with each other all the time like nine-year-olds. Surely it would be better if we had ONE group to represent the species ?

The underlying problem as I see it is that each group want to represent their members and preserve their power bases when the prime focus ought to be on the fish itself. I (with Stu Walker) delivered a presentation to the Conferences of all three groups last year and in all honesty the guys we met were absolutely spot on. Warm, friendly, generous and welcoming.

So how come they don’t rub along together in harmony when they share the same interests? Why are they multiplying administration costs? Why are they duplicating jobs? Why are they creating three pamphlets rather than one cracking magazine? Why can’t they have one press spokesman who could earn the respect of the various magazines and newspapers and be their sole point of contact?

I know that there are open sores between individuals, wounds that apparently won’t heal and folk who seem unable to bury the past and move on, but one of the fundamental principles of management is this:

If two people always agree then one of them is useless and you should get rid of him.

If two people always disagree then they’re both useless and you need to get rid of BOTH.

The barbel is under increasing pressure from predation, from abstraction, from habitat destruction and a whole host of other issues. Well meaning folk are running round in circles to achieve very little and they are not getting the public recognition they deserve. Meetings up and down the country are attracting abysmal turn-outs. Membership numbers are, shall we be kind and say, in a state of flux.

Get your acts together folks before it’s too late. It’s no good clinging on to the past, look to the future and unite – carpe diem!

Look Alikes?

I had an email recently from someone who was once well-connected within barbel’s inner sanctum before he retired, with a degree of grace it must be said, however he appears to have lost a bit of that grace…

The little tinca sent me a couple of images asking if I thought there was an uncanny similarity. “Don’t you dare put them on the site,” He added, “I shall deny everything!”

Yeah, right! Like he thought I wouldn’t 😉

Squeal all he likes but what cannot be denied is the striking similarity between the two pictures, don’t you agree…?

And the look-alikes don’t end there. I was up in the loft one day last week, clearing out some of the accumulated rubbish that we all collect, when I came across a few old cartoons I’d drawn while still at school. Though I say it myself they weren’t half bad for a nipper but one of them struck me as being familiar for some reason and then the penny dropped…

Here’s the sketch:

Now you tell me, does the chap on the left (below) look rather like Allan Parbery, boss of Mistral Baits? Don’t know who the chappie on the right looks like though…


There’s Nothing Quite Like Blowing Sunshine Up Your Own Orifice!

It’s been a year and more since I launched this web site after receiving about half an hour’s instruction and an article written on four sides of A4 paper explaining how to add images. Honestly I thought it would be a nightmare but it’s been anything but. As time has gone by I’ve grown to love having the freedom and opportunity to publish practically anything I want without editorial interference.

Editors come in many guises. Some you’d trust with your life, others give lots of encouragement and guidance. Others you wonder whether they could spell dimwit without an electronic spell checker! And sometimes you get one that actually alters what you’re saying because he thinks he knows better.

I had one of them once. Only once, mind. Despite going out and catching a 30-odd pound carp on float tactics for the images this bloke decided to re-write the entire article and published a ‘how to catch using a sunken float’ piece. I have never in my life used such a method and doubt I ever will. Needless to say I didn’t write anything else for that gentleman! 

In the harsh commercial world your articles are always at the mercy of the advertising team. If they can sell an extra quarter page then your article is at risk of being shortened by that amount. Advertisements pay for the editorial and therefore take priority.

In the real world adding extra pages to a magazine costs a lot of money and it doesn’t matter how fabulous your contribution to the editorial content is, or how good your pictures are, the publisher will never sanction extra pages unless they are paid for by even more advertising.

On the Internet you can pretty much create as much content as you like and no-one has to worry about budgets or profits and that’s a freedom which appeals to me. Unfortunately it’s addictive, as others have found out. Hours, even days can be lost when you get stuck into something you’re enjoying doing.

But I have to say there is a degree of vanity involved in being a blogger or in contributing to any web site – even if it’s just a few posts on a forum – and claims to the contrary are a load of bullshine. No one does it for the money because there isn’t any, so what other altruistic reason is there?

Stop fooling yourselves folks, it’s ego driven, be honest with yourselves for a change!

And why do folk puff out their chests and spout bile on forums (should that be fora?) when they could just as easily send a private email? It’s because they want to be noticed. They want to sound knowledgeable and important, to impress their peers. Usually they’re about 5 foot 7 with an inferiority complex but us six foot plussers have to live with that!

I guess when it comes to the real currency of c*ck measuring it’s the stats that count or to be precise Google Analytics. Some think that it’s about the number of messages left beneath each article but let’s get real here, it’s not a forum. Indeed  the disgraceful behaviour of a small number of bullies on the angling forums  all-but killed them off. Compared with the number of posts and hits of say 5 years ago the traffic today must be pretty disappointing to the owners.

So how is this site doing?

According to Google, since launching the site its popularity has grown steadily rather than dramatically. Like most site owners I check my Google Analytics religiously (they don’t contain the word anal by accident!) although the daily information means very little. Hits can suddenly double or suffer a big dip for no apparent reason. Beyond this, Saturdays are always a rubbish whereas Mondays tend to be good. However, this is how things stood just before the river season opened:

As you can see, there have been more than 70,000 visits to the site of which 36,000 or so are ‘absolute unique visitors’. Page hits are steadily approaching a quarter of a million, a figure that should be exceed sometime during July, all being well – that will be quite a milestone in my view. Thank you.

Of course if you don’t like that then you can always p*** off and read someone else’s blog! Only kidding. 😉

Well, that’s not strictly true. There are some who I would gladly deny access but it’s a small price to pay for the advertising they provide by constantly harping on about me. Quite why they keep coming back and then writing about what I write in their own blogs and on obscure forums is beyond me. Shows a lack of imagination if you ask me.

Just praying for a mention, I guess, so you can rest assured the last few paragraphs draw a mention or two!!!

Or, as Bob the Fish would put it:

And there’s one worm who’s guaranteed to bite…

So We Think We Have Problems With Syndicate Waters…

Or Day Tickets, Even…

I accepted a commission from Angling Times last week to feature a stretch of the Trent that offered a variety of species and was available on a day ticket. Good parking and night fishing would be deemed an even bigger bonus. Now I will take every oportunity I get to promote river fishing because if we ain’t careful there won’t be any river fishing except on poxy little up-their-own-backsides syndicates. Clubs are going skint and they simply cannot afford the rents any more. Even the Barbel Society has had to give up an excellent stretch of the River Severn.

No, it’s short sighted to pretend everything’s okay and selfish to want everything for yourself on your terms.

I originally plumped to cover Burton Joyce/ Shelford but it looks like no day tickets any more from Stoke Bardolph Weir to just above Gunthorpe on the old Notts Fed stretch as Ashfield Angling have taken it over.

I gather day tickets for the road length will be available for an inflation busting £7.50 Alas no-one was available for comment at Ashfield and with a pressing deadline I had to choose an alternative. A cheeky Fiskerton feature did spring to mind but I decided against that as day ticket and match anglers now have to fish in dead men’s shoes when the night shift goes home.

So I plumped for the A1 Pits length. Hmmm, that went down well then according to their forum

Apparently I’ve never fished there. Well, I joined the forum and put them straight on the facts as you can see.

And just for the record, this is me fishing the very stretch in 1984:

Note that there are no electrification overhead wires in those days. In fact I could have used a different picture with an old yellow Inter City 125 train going over the bridge.

And here’s me again 20 years later, note the electrics:

Funny how folks turn up and suddenly they think they own a place, isn’t it? Talk about Little Englanders!

Where Is Everyone?

I walked a short stretch of a local river last night. Normally I avoid fishing there because it is rammed out with the kind of anglers who give the sport a bad name – littering, lighting fires and other anti-social behaviour – but astonishingly there were only two guys fishing, almost identically it seemed, quiver tipping meat. One had caught three chub, the other a chub and a barbel, his boris weighing an ounce under 6lb which is a fine fish for such a small river.

I saw loads of small chub flitting around in the clear, shallow water and if it stays like that I might just sneak down for an hour next week when everyone’s at school or at work.

I’ve crossed the Don at Sprotborough Falls around half a dozen times since the season opened and there’s hardly been a car parked next to the river.

Same on the little river I spend the odd hour on. Dropped down for a couple of hours just to see if I could get in a decent swim and there was only one other car on the whole stretch. Normally I avoid this length because of the crowds.

Bloggers Corner

Fellow DVSG member, Martin Womble often fishes with Lee Swords and two more different characters you would struggle to imagine.

I actually think Lee, who’s put on a few pounds since I first met him, likes to fish with Martin because it makes him look slim and waif-like. You see, Martin is a big  bloke and you wouldn’t want to try and squeeze through the same turnstile with him at a football match!

Lee, as everyone knows, is occasionally outspoken and a bit of an extrovert while Martin is as quiet as the proverbial church mouse. Even their fishing styles differ radically but they seem to rub along together fine.

Anyway, Martin launched his own blog last year and he’s gradually getting into the swing of things. His aim was to restrict his blog purely to fishing matters, which is easy during the summer, but like everyone else he found the winter was tough going with not a lot to report on the fishing front so rather than compromise his ideals he launched a second blog containing various things that tickled him. Take a look, it contains some really funny stuff.

I’m guessing it’s only a matter of time before we have Swordsey on the blogging scene. Now THAT will be interesting providing he doesn’t get locked up for some of his less rational outbursts!

Old Fred Bonney appears to be damned (well at least by some) whatever he does. Fred joined the legions of bloggers recently, a move that was greeted by a fair few sneering comments by his ‘friends’.

Take this retort on BFAMW by former ally, Mike ‘Whiskerton’ Joyce:

Yep, old Fat Fred has joined the land of the bloggers. If you want to know what he had for his tea last Tuesday, tune in. If it keeps him off other sites, it may not be a bad thing. Just think yourselve’s lucky that Frampoodle hasn’t ventured forth. We’d then have the father, son and holy ghost “blogging” us to within an inch of our lives.



Crikey, give the bloke a chance to get started  – and do remember, reading these blogs isn’t compulsory, Mike. On the other hand you could maybe write your own blog and then we can all read about the fascinating life you must lead.

Very early days for Fred’s blog so far but the acid test will come now the season is open. There is a positive note though. Now he’s severed his links with Gollum and Co he wont have to write:

‘Went to the secret place, cant tell you what I did or caught, saw a cuckoo, a wasp and a dwarf, came home, went to bed. Can’t wait for next time… PS: Sorry about there being no pictures.’

On the other hand he might stick to ‘what he had for tea last Tuesday’ and tell us nothing about his catches because it’s HIS blog. That’s how blog’s work. Bloggers write whatever they like about whatever takes their fancy and those who are interested can read it. Those who aren’t needn’t bother. In fact why are you reading it in the first place, Mike?

Smacks of jealousy to me.

Or window licking…

And we mustn’t forget Dave Burr who’s also branching out into the forbidden world. Dave, a former policeman and Barbel Society secretary retired to the wilds of the Welsh borders and seems to be at peace with the world again. Indeed I hope to be meeting up with him shortly to share a pint and a few tales.

Perhaps he’ll tell you what kind of ale it was in his blog!

An angling blog that makes me chuckle is indeed a rare beast but so far Monty Dalrymple (clearly a made-up name) is making a fair fist of it. He does swear occasionally so if your ten-year-old is reading this, ask them what the words mean.

And what is it about these folk in the Welsh borders suddenly all writing blogs? You could pretty much lump Steve Pope into that category, too.

Shouldn’t they be made available in Welsh language versions or will they be restricting their reports to matters pertaining to the English Ditch?

How Much Bait?

I’m hoping that customers who purchased Barbel Days and Ways Volumes 3 & 4 have had their eyes suitably opened regarding bait behaviour and barbel reactions to it but it won’t end the usual paranoia surrounding bait application. It’s usually around the third or fourth week of the season when those who have failed to set the world on fire start looking to blame others for their failures.

So does the amount of bait introduced by others have such a detrimental effect. Well, you may feel I had reasonable cause for concern when I spotted a forum post by someone who is intending to fish one of stretches I frequent on the tidal Trent. He wrote:

“Tidal swims cleared and baited, everything prep’d ready to go!

Another 100kg of particle to work through before kick off on Tuesday night and away we go.”

I can think of some who would have apoplexy about such a selfish act (in their view). My feelings were good luck to the bloke. If he catches a shedful of fish he’ll have earned and paid for them. But the chances are he’ll attract a load of bream and carp for his troubles.

On the positive side he’ll most likely have spread his bait all over the place and in doing so will have weaned the fish off naturals and on to anglers’ baits.

And it appeared to have no impact on anyone’s fishing where I was fishing on opening day. Makes you wonder what the fuss is all about, eh?

Duffers Fortnight

Sometimes I’m rather pleased that fishing gets a bit harder as the season progresses because the opening weeks tend to be a bit easy, don’t they? Fish everywhere, completely gullible and just waiting to take our baits. Won’t be long before they wise up though, will it?

I was out again during the first week and this time took in an intimate river rather than the wide expanses of the Trent. The first thing that struck me was what a complete and utter b****x we have with the closed season. The very first swim I looked at was heaving with chub – literally dozens and dozens of them, and still in spawning mood.

I fired out some bait and they were competing for it like there was no tomorrow. Interestingly the fish would confuse feeding with spawning and the next thing you’d have would be a bunch of writhing shapes trying to have sex.

I watched, took a few pictures and then moved on elsewhere. Catching would have been so easy as to be pointless. It would also have been ‘gloriously’ irresponsible.

It took me two casts in a different swim to catch a barbel. A couple more to hook a second. As I watched it battling in the crystal clear water a second fish chased up and swam alongside it. No prizes for guessing what that fish had in mind.

I then worked my way downstream. Floating weed was making presentation a bit tricky but the fish were definitely in a feeding mood. Shame about the weather though, overcast and showery. I had a ball in one particular swim where i was able to climb into a small tree and watch the fishes reactions to my bait.

In the end I fished with the rod tip on the riverbed to miss the debris, rod butt balanced on a bait bucket and the drag slackened while I sat in the tree and watched the fish take my hook bait.

It’s fascinating to see a barbel make a mistake. The shake of the head tells you it’s hooked and strangely they don’t run all that far when there’s not a lot of pressure on them. Only when you pick up the rod and give them a bit of stick does the fighting actually start.

I could have continued and caught some more but five barbel and a few chub in four hours was more than enough to satiate me for one day.

Somehow me thinks it’ll get a lot harder in the coming weeks.

Cor – What A Picture!

Old Stu Walker, my partner in crime on the DVDs showed he’s lost none of his enthusiasm or his undoubted ability on opening day.

He fished the Dove, which traditionally is a bit of a slow starter, and popped out this scraper double as dawn was breaking. It was one of three good fish he had and it simply captures the magic of why we go fishing.

And if you want to know how we do it, just buy the DVDs. On the other hand you might enjoy blanking. Each to their own!

Away We Go

The Championship football fixtures were released last week and it comes as no surprise that Donny are away on the opening day of the season, on Boxing Day and on the final day, too. That makes it three years in row that it’s happened. Why should it matter, you ask, everyone has to play 23 home and 23 away games.

Well it just happens that crowd-wise those are three bumper attendance days and we could certainly do with an extra few bob in the coffers as we compete against ‘rivals’ who have a track record of throwing money around they haven’t got while we have to stick within strict budgets.

Tell you what though, the old fixtures don’t half look tasty this coming season. There are no easy games in the Championship. The away games are predictably tough and our opening home fixtures will be pretty challenging as we take on Bristol City, Hull, Norwich, Leeds, Forest, Derby, and Sheff Utd in that order.

Do you know, I’ve looked but I can’t find our fixtures against Sheffield Wednesday anywhere. Is there some kind of mistake? Without those six points I can see us struggling to stay up this season…

Vuvuzelas, Erratic Balls, Shrek And The Italian Job

I’m dreading next season. Bad enough that we already have one idiot who thinks he improves the atmosphere at our Catherdal Of Hope with his incesant drumming (Cathedral? Well, we seem to pray for a regular miracle there). Next season we shall see those with limited brain cells trying to deafen everyone near them with their ten bob eBay vuvazelas. Not only are they an infernal distraction I’m sure they’re bad for both our hearing and the players concentration. I can also see them leading to flared tempers and possibly violence.

Imagine taking up that seat you have purchased for the whole season only to find a six-year-old with his shaven headed, tattooed dad sat behind you, brandishing his treasured vuvuzela and blowing it your ear for the next 90 minutes. 

Then remember he’s going to do that for the whole of the season…


When I heard a comment about erratic balls at the world cup I actually thought they were talking about John Terry because his erratic balls have cost us at least one good footballer (who must now be thinking Terry did him a favour) from the world cup squad…


But what of the other Wayne, isn’t he having a stinker? Old ‘R-o-o-n-e-e-y’ not only needs a shave but he also needs to put in a decent shift sometime soon or he’ll be on the next flight home and it won’t be to a heroes reception.

Sadly he’s not alone. Algeria were widely regarded as the weakest team in the entire competition yet they made us look inept. First to every ball, played the better football and were never put under any kind of sustained pressure in the whole 90 minutes. You’d have to say our man of the match was David James and that is embarassing. Oh, and Heskey was our star defender/ sweeper.

Bet old Theo Walcott is thanking his lucky stars he didn’t make the squad either.

But what about that big blunder which allowed one England fan to bypass all the security arrangements and get into the team dressing room where he remonstrated with the team over their inept performance. Are we really supposed to feel upset about this?

Right on, I say. As spokesman for us all I hope he gave them both barrels. One thing’s certain, he was the only one in there who was showing any kind of passion. England were gutless, spinless and completely incompetent. So far they’ve played for about 128 minutes (counting time added on) against mediocre opposition scoring just one goal and that was over two hours ago.

So does the team have any grounds for complaint? One fan expressed his frustration verbally. He didn’t steal anything, he didn’t physically attack anyone, he just told them how we all feel and in doing so showed that the team’s security was as poor as the football.

Minutes earlier we’d seen Wayne Rooney complaining on our television screens, “Nice to see your home fans booing ya.”

Lest he should forget, many of the thirty thousand or so fans in the stadium had made real sacrifices to be there and probably spent their entire life savings and he’d just played sh*te – again. If we’re being totally honest it was nice to see them booing because Rooney and the rest of the team deserved it. For a working class kid this overpaid prima donna has rapidly lost touch with his roots.

For the record, I’d like to see him lose a stone in weight, have a shave, sing his heart out to the national anthem and put in a decent shift which includes running after the ball and passing it to players in a better position than himself rather than punting it in the general direction of the nets. Otherwise, f**k off and let someone with true passion have that shirt!


When Fabio Capello was appointed England Coach we were told it was a new start. Discipline and structure would be applied to the talents of our world class players. Players who played against the world’s best week-in, week-out, in the world’s best league, the Premiership.

For this we agreed to take £4m away from grass roots football and give it to this one man, for he was a footballing God and would be worth every penny. He would deliver us success on a plate, at a price.

Oh well. It’s not just old age pensioners who get mugged on their doorsteps by con men, is it?

If this Italian had really wanted to help the Italian team progress through the later stages of the world cup then maybe the best thing he could do, in the circumstances, was to make sure England couldn’t impede their progress.

So, did we get value for money?

Answers on a post card to the FA.

My feelings go out to the ‘expert’ panels who have been turned into a new gospel band, Adrian Chiles and the Apologists – ‘Err, that was truly awful but let’s not get carried away, it’s not over yet, we can still qualify…’

Qualify? We were told we might actually win it, not scrape through with scrappy draws agains USA and Algeria topped off with a desperate performance against Slovenia. Isn’t it time we replaced the likes of Gareth Southgate and Andy bl**dy Townsend with Simon Cowell, Piers Morgan and Sharon Osbourne?

At least we’d get some straight talking honesty.

Sharon Osbourne: “That was f*****g awful! My Ozzie would get in that team.”

Piers Morgan: “That’s the worst performance I’ve seen in my entire life. Total rubbish. What’s Capello got to do now to change things Simon?”

Simon Cowell: “It’s obvious Piers, even to someone like me. He’s got to resign.”


One final word. We’ll no doubt claw our way out of this group on Wednesday by some fluke or miracle. But what on earth will we do if we come up against a Germany, a Spain, an Argentine or Brazil? Can we raise our game or would they simply embarass us? Even France would pose a big threat and they were diabolical the other night.

Capello Out! – You heard it here first.

And Mentioning Outing…

You’ll find more stuff like this on Martin’s alter ego site.

Okay That’s Your Lot

It’s been a marathon but I hope you feel it was worth it.

Right, you can all p*** off and go fishing now – that’s an order! The weather’s perfect, the river levels are fine, the fish are feeding and you won’t catch anything sat there with a mouse in your hand…

31 thoughts on “2010 – Late June

  1. Bob

    I see your making friends over on the a1 pits forum!Don’t go alienating potential customers now.

    I notice your dead against syndicated river stretches,a bit of jealousy?

    But your quite happy to use one on your “Wye breaks”.How hypocritical.Well i suppose you can forgo your principles when there’s a few quid to be made.

    As for me writing a blog,nah.I’ve got a fishing diary for me.And your right.i can’t imagine anybody being interested in my exciting life.

    bye for now


  2. Blimey that took some reading again Bob. Good stuff.
    Thanks for the plug.
    I shall be reporting on my angling experiences, whatever they may be, as well as my life in general.
    My wings are spreading following my divorce, free at last…free at last!

  3. Regarding your comments on Notts fed and Burton Joyce. I joined the Fed this year not realising that they have given up virtually all this stretch (they now have 33 pegs left out of 340-odd!). Had I known this I would not have joined; the first I knew was a new sign at the gate into the Ferry Field. Gutted, as I love the ‘convenience’ of the road stretch. Notts Fed did the same with Fiskerton – although some years previously. This has really upset me, as I understand the importance of supporting the larger associations – but also appreciate that it is cheap fishing while they survive…sad.

  4. Welcome back Mike.

    Can’t keep away, can you?

    One point I must agree with you about. No-one is interested in you!


    In recent days you’ve attacked Fred, Steve and now me, and that’s probably just the tip of the iceberg. Nice piece of work, aren’t you?

    This is a free site. No-one has to join to read it, no-one is forced to read it, least of all you if it upsets you so much. You came on here a while back being rude, abusive and generally making a fool of yourself. Can’t see why you bother really.

    Unless your ‘mates’ put you up to it.

    You’ve had your say now. I’ve published it without a single edit; now do everyone a favour and crawl back under your stone, eh?


  5. Bob

    I have never been abusive to you. Previously I tried to reply (10 times) to a couple of personal attacks you made on here and you skilfully edited anything i wrote to make me look foolish.

    If your going to use quotes from me from other websites expect me to reply.

    Funny how Bonney seems to be your new mate. Wasn’t so long ago that you were at each others throats, and now Fred’s all pally. Did he grow up or something?


    You seem to have avoided your

  6. Don’t some ol’boy’s dwell on the past Bob!

    Some of us rise above the schoolboy pettiness of gangs, others just can’t function without them to back them up.

  7. Well, I must say I’ve heard it all now…

    “I have never been abusive to you.”

    Okay, if that’s what you believe.

    You’ll want me to go on the Jeremy Kyle show with you next.

    Look here Whiskerton, just remember who got you into that syndicate! What was it I posted, oh that’s right, “Why don’t you crawl back under your stone at Hazelford…”

    To which you denied fishing there.

    Look Mike, I’ve said it till I’m blue in the face, you and your ilk are not welcome here. You’re an attention seeking trouble maker in whom I have no interest whatsoever.

    If at some point you should ever grow up then feel free to come back but in the meantime both I, and I suspect the readers of this blog, are heartily sick and tired of hearing from you.

    BFAMW is your playground. That’s where grown men are allowed to behave like pubescent teenagers full of angst and bitterness. This is a fishing web site.

    Go figure.

  8. Bob,

    Yep there are a few expletives so anyone who follows the link, please try and not be offended.

    The photo on the cover page is not really me, but a mate who lives down that way. I would never wear a Deer Stalker, unless I’m after Wabbitts in the winter.

    Monty D

  9. MJ…..do I see a bit of jealousy as people are getting on and you aren’t included as you haven’t any mates??

    Like Bob says, first Steve, then Bob and now Fred. You even sent me a very “rosey” pm via the BS site.

    I have an idea for you… give RW a shout and you can form your own fan club. 🙂

    Great blog again Bob… but doesn’t it draw the nutters out of the asylum!!

    Take care..


  10. Frampoodle

    I’ve got plenty of mates,thanks.

    I doubt i’m the first person to dislike Bob,steve and Fred.

    Just like you to be snapping at someone’s heels.

    All the best


  11. Michael,

    Just so there is no confusion here, I hardly know you at all but what I have seen and experienced means that I actually dislike you, you do not endear yourself to others.

    I don’t say that for effect, in truth there are very few people I actually dislike and considering the vast amount I have come into contact with in my life I don’t consider it a bad return.

    You always show the nasty side of your personality on the Internet, a bit of advice that will probably fall on deaf ears, just try and be nice for once, it isn’t that hard to do.

    You just might find the response you then get will be a little different.

  12. Thanks for being so honest regarding Bob,Steve and Fred.
    Begs the question why you are posting on their blogs at all in that case.
    I refer you to my last sentence in my last post,number 10.

  13. Hi Bob,

    Top notch once again, your blog leads the way as far as I’m concerned and I just do my best to try and keep up although I readily accept I’m a fair few paces behind!

    Your comments on ego echo mine completely. I always have a wry smile when regular Internet users talk of having no ego………………….please!

    It’s all about keeping it in check, I’m happy to accept I have a big ego, I’m quite happy being me! I have no complex about being the wrong side of six foot either but I do wish I could lose the excess weight!

    But arrogant I am not and am always courteous to others until I get shafted which has happened once or twice!

    Anyway, off fishing later on for some very elusive barbel that have laid down their challenge to Rich and myself and I’ll be very pleased when we eventually crack it.

    All the best.

  14. Steve

    Your a pompous,arrogant little twit.Who cares if you like me?As though it’s some sort of ringing endorsement.Typical of your sense of bloated self importance.


  15. Just listenning to the budget report and flicked onto here to see the above post.
    Chalk and cheese…….desperately important and abosolute bollocks.(sorry for the basic wording Bob but MJ is simply pathetic).

    Back to the budget!!

  16. Once again Bob you have excelled in your ability to produce the goods… time and time again you can produce stuff entertain and inform anyone who visits this site, nice to see other bloggers admitting that your blog is what they have to aspire to.

    I have no comments on the particular argument going on at present surrounding the usual suspects…only to say that I am saddened that one protagonist seems unable to present his argument without the use of profanities. His argument is lost at the outset and has not merit by use of such words. He also seems to have forgotten that youngsters read this blog!

    Well done Bob I am in awe of your ability as a wordsmith.
    Kind regards

  17. Thanks for the kind words folks. I’ve just returned from a rather hectic session float fishing for old Bertie.

    No less than 14 bronzed warriors graced my net today plus ten chub for good measure which ain’t a bad return for a session lasting a little over 6 hours in scorching conditions. Pulled off a few, too, but what do you expect on size 16 hooks!

    I’m worried I’ll not be able to lift my right arm tomorrow.

    I feel another blog coming on!



  18. Bring it on Bob, float fishing for barbel is a much neglected art in catching our wiskered friend.

    Awesome result nice going mesun 😉

    Kind regards

  19. Calling the kettle black Ray??
    I suggest that folk look at your comments on Fred’s blog to see who causes and starts the hassle!!

    Anyway..great fishing Bob! 🙂

  20. Is that it Rich you can only point to Fred’s blog? I took Bob’s advice and took it to Fred direct not via the suggested e-mail route but via his blog. He posted on it that he was still waiting for me to ask my questions (fact is I had asked them time and time again) at least he let my comments stand.

    So I have to give Fred credit for that. Fred is like Bob he leaves the comments as long as they don’t step outside of the law unlike another blogger I could name who deletes everything that does not pander to his ego.

    But alas I learnt that Fred is more entrenched in his views than I, shame really as I am sure if he looked for answers he might just see where I am coming from.

    Anyway as I stated your argument was lost and had no merit the minute you resorted to blasphemy. Blame me as much as you like it really does not bother me as you have no knowledge of anything that took place over a period of time… when if I am not mistaken you had given up fishing (for 15 years I believe) or was it longer?

    You carry on with your misplaced support…but dwell on this others have gone before you and all got bitten on their rear ends once they had served their purpose!

    This will be my last comment brand me a trouble maker if it suits your agenda no problem for me.

    Have a nice season Rich I bear no grudge but I maintain my right to search for the truth (for me it’s a calling or should that be crusade?)

    I several things on my agenda in my pursuit of the truth…I will get there unless of course I die first…I suspect one may just be hoping that comes first!!

    Happy fishing.

  21. Okay, no more tit-for-tatting on the past. Read my comments near the top of the page, ‘Is It Time For Barbel Anglers To Unite’.

    Raking over the past, he-said-she-said style, from 15 years ago is not going to help anyone. Read Steve Partner’s article in the Angling Times this week – who are we going to blame. It’s what we all do in the future that counts because petty arguments only amount to fiddling while ome burns.

    Rich may have given up fishing for some period in his life and that’s his choice to do so. Being an angler isn’t about how frequently you fish, how long you’ve fished for, continuity, ‘what’s thee biggest(?)’ or whether someone takes time out to persue other avenues.

    No-one can re-write the past. Sectarianism serves no real purpose. Agree to disagree folks, move on and then enjoy a happier life.

    Why not harness all this anger and bitterness then channel it into doing something constructive rather than destructive?

  22. Sometimes things happen that mean something has to give…

    For me my time restraints meant that my favourite pastime had to take a back seat (for 12 years). Maybe I have missed the golden days of Barbel fishing. Maybe, and for me I hope so, they are to come!!

    One of the reasons that I am trying to do my bit with the Barbel Society is to, in my mind at least, play catch up to those lost years. I would rather channel my energy positively but at the same time I won’t see my mates being insulted verbally on a forum. Why should I??

    Anyway, going fishing is what we are all about or should be.

    Nicely worded post Bob.

    Right…I’ve got some work to polish off before kick off!!

    Let’s hope that the chartered flight can be postponed!!


  23. Hi all,

    Great blog Bob.

    I agree with your comments on the leading babel groups joining and letting the past go. The bickering in the above post is part of the reason why I have never joined the BS.

    The internal fighting is not what I want to be part of, and I get the feeling that many barbel anglers my age feel the same.

    That is a bad way for our branch of the sport to be.

    On another I have just got round to watching barbel days & ways volume 2. Another great DVD and really enjoyed the segment on the Kennet.

    Again great blog Bob roll on the next.

    Rich (Parsons)

  24. Hi bob cracking article once again and i always enjoy reading them.

    I dont usually comment but as i have been reading the blogs i wanted to pick on one subject not that i want to get it all fired up again.

    Im 16 and from the skipton area in yorkshire. Theres not much barbel fishing around here and so me, my dad and a friend make the journey to the river trent to fish every year even though we fish other places for barbel. the trent is an amazing river but as most will know it was polluted towards the end of 2009.

    I personnally think as has been said that all barbel anglers should unite together to stop disasters like this happening instead of argueing between are selves about who’s the better angler or why we dont like each other. If someone does something wrong with the fishing or handling of fish. tell them, show them. no point in getting aggressive or defensive.

    Lets all have respect for each other and most of all, river angling, because from where im standing its in decline anyway.

    A budding angler.


  25. A voice of common sense there from a young angler.

    Regarding the Trent pollution, Sam, only a small area of the upper reaches was affected and the vast majoprity of the river’s barbel fishing was completely unaffected so don’t be put off by the headlines.

    That’s not to say it wasn’t important though.



  26. Nice post Sam..The Barbel Society has stretches at Sutton on the Trent and Topcliffe on the Swale.
    It might be worth checking out the fisheries section on the website to see if they are close enough or suitable for your needs.
    In the meantime,good luck with your fishing.


  27. Bob…I hope the above is not too much off the beaten track or over the top as a plug.I thought that the info my be of use to him.

  28. cheers bob and rich. will take this all into account and thanks for the info about the trent. happy fishing and tight lines.

    hope to see you on the bank somewhere 🙂

  29. No probs Sam.
    It would be worth going to a fish-in for a “look see!!”.
    Keep you eyes peeled!!