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Chaos on a Tench Trip to Kent - 16/06/15

My friend Mick Cutler and I had been talking for a few months about having a day or two fishing together for tench. The fish in Devon are relatively small compared to Kent where Mick lives. My best is only just over 5lb and Mick said he would guarantee a bigger one than that as they average about 7lb on his syndicate lake.


So then started the saga on fishing at the start of the season.


On the Friday before I travelled up, my Audi broke down.  It is the first time it has ever let me down and it has done 270,000 miles. The belt was stuck and the power steering failed. The RAC came along and took my car to the local garage in Torrington – (New Road Garage – worth a pug as they provide superb service) and told them he thought the hydraulic pump has ceased. They wouldn’t be able to get the parts at short notice for that so it looked as though my trip was off.


I then hired a car from Enterprise to collect the following morning and whilst this would delay me by half a day, I wouldn’t lose any fishing time, but had to cancel the trip to see Fred Buller on the way which was really disappointing.


The next morning, I received a call from Enterprise telling that although I had book a car on line, they hadn’t got one available. I said it wasn’t essential that I had that car and what had they got…. To which they replied….. NOTHING  (So much for the much vaunted American service crap). My daughter said she would travel down from Bristol that night so that I could have her car for a few days, but it was looking like I was going to miss out.


Then to my delight, I received a call from New Road Garage to say my car was fixed at lunchtime. They had ordered a new tensioning pulley which is normally the cause of this problem just in case on the previous evening, fitted it in the morning which cured the problem, so I was able to get the car, load up and head for Kent after all. All was well with the world. I drove up, got stuck on the M20 and finally arrived at about 8pm.


The storm forecast had passed over and as I set up and Mick made a brew, frogs appeared from everywhere ranging in size from a few millimetres to a few inches. They got into Mick’s bivvy, and carrier bags making an unholy din at night. Mick isn’t keen on frogs so I caught them all, released them and we zipped up the bottom few inches to keep them out.


I was not so well equipped so slept on a bed chair under an umbrella, winding in my tackle as silver paper bite alarms are inaudible over my snoring.


Here we were all set – fishing for 2 days without even a bite as they had only spawned a couple of weeks earlier. So not the best trip for fishing, but I had a good tim with Mick who is good company. I also met several of his compatriots who all took the mickey out of his clothing as he is a comfortable fisherman rather than an advertising area.




I was also delighted to meet John Carver and record him talking about the day he landed the Bishop for Chris Yates at Redmire. We talked about carp fishing and John showed me some of his vintage tackle which was absolutely immaculate, and old bite alarms he had managed to get rewired to work with a remote in the modern style.



A fascinating couple of days fishing in a style and venue I had never done before, which I find stimulating. So thanks Mick for the introduction and we have agreed to repeat it next year. Let’s just hope that it goes more to plan.