News

 

New Book by Mike Marshall

Posted by tracy On June 23rd, 2021

FLY-FISHING FOR BUSINESS WELLBEINGA story of keeping physically and mentally fit in work and beyond

Our very own Mike Marshall has written another book on fly fishing and casting, though this time he has focused on the benefits of fly fishing to your wellbeing considering all the potential stressors that you experience day to day. It’s a really interesting memoir of Mike’s life with an autobiographical approach; interlacing his many enjoyable fishing antics with descriptions of his working experiences over a long career in engineering. Even in his retirement, Mike fully supports the BFCC and has written about the Club exploits in Chapter 16.

“We all know that we should keep physically fit and mentally sharp throughout life and with the achievement of these objectives one ends up having an enjoyable and stress-free leisure. It is likely that this will all take place in a very pleasant natural outdoor environment. However, it is true to say that many people expend much time, effort and money seeking these desirable outcomes, often without sufficient information to know if their project is viable or not, given their personal circumstances. Sports, such as ball games, are unsuitable due to being stressfully competitive and require running which, with age, we find increasingly difficult. Games, such as chess, exercise the mind well but do not require fast reactions and are also competitive. Then there is the ‘gym’, which is usually indoors and requires boring, comparatively slow repetitions or running on a treadmill.
So, having taught countless people to cast a fly and had their feedback, Mike Marshall would like to pass on his accumulated knowledge, mostly gathered in parallel with the demands of a senior management career in engineering. This is not a ‘detailed, how to do it’ book, but more a light-hearted anecdotal account of the various key factors leading to successful exploits in a wide range of fly-fishing situations. In this way he hopes to convey the fact that fly fishing, probably unexpectedly, contains all the elements required to create personal physical and mental wellbeing, but is free of the unwanted aspects mentioned earlier.”

The book trailer is available on YouTube. The book can be purchased for only £9.99 paperback (or £11.99 hardback) on the publisher’s website or Waterstones or on Amazon (where you can purchase it as an e-book for only £3.50). ISBN: 9781398403499

The book has been recently promoted in the Daily Mail

UPDATE – 2021 Meeting

Posted by tracy On April 22nd, 2021

First meeting of 2021 organised for 30th May at Willesborough Cricket Club, Kent TN24 0NE

Pre-booking required

To attend please contact the BFCC via Facebook or this website (contact emails on the homepage) to book advising whether you are interested in tuition or the competition or both.

Social distancing rules and good hand hygiene practices to be followed during the Meeting.

Other 2021 BFCC Meetings will be organised dependent on Covid rules.

2021 Update

Posted by tracy On March 31st, 2021

As this News section has not been active for sometime, I thought I would write an update for the Club. We are hoping to arrange some Meetings starting from June 2021, when there has been more relaxation of the Covid rules. As we develop the calendar, I will update the News page and the Calendar page.

Tracy

Willesborough 2016

Posted by mikeh On May 30th, 2016

 

For those of you that wonder what a day at a BFCC event can do for you then I suggest you pop here  and have a read http://www.flyfishing.co.uk/casting/347130-bfcc-give-go.html . Many Thanks Ed, we really appreciate your comments.

Horrible day for competing but a great day for instructing. You can’t have everything, can you. After the rain on the previous day the air was heavy and nothing flew, even with the help of breeze that came and went and changed direction now and then.

We were pleased to have a visit from Mike Marshall, who immediately stepped into instructor mode and also went on to cast a new V70 record in the T38 of 151′ 8”, which just goes to show that it’s technique that counts, not brute force.

On the competition front there really isn’t  anything outstanding to comment on, James and Steve outshone on the day but were hotly pursued buy Mick Copeman in the #5 and Craig Brown in other events. Where are you serious distance guys? we need to add some spice to the comps.

Mike, Mark Surtees and I, with some help from Bob Goble, gave those that came for instruction some pretty intensive instruction on the day. As you read in Ed Turneys comments we do our best to help improve the casting of those that ask for help.

You may have read that The BFCC had several rods stolen a while ago and we are in the process of replacing them so we are very grateful for some outfits that have been donated. Charles Jardine has donated a #5 Sonic. Dan Shillabeer for 8′ 6′ #4 with reel and line, perfect for some of our younger members and students and, Steve Parkes for a 9′ 6” #7 Atom Six, for the big boys to play with. Many thanks guys, we really do appreciate it.

Willesborough Cricket Club once again proved superb hosts and a big thank you to Bobby Ades and others who provided the refreshment.

I am sure I speak for everyone when I send our best wishes to Wendy Bath who is fighting a serious illness. Go Girl.

Mike H

Cullumpton 2016

Posted by mikeh On May 23rd, 2016

It was great to get the BFCC roadshow up and running with the first event of the year at the Cullompton cricket club ground in Devon.  There was a good turn-out of fly-fishers from the local area and from much further afield, thankfully the motorways were clear!

On arrival everybody was refreshed with tea and coffee and the introductory briefing was provided by Mark Surtees and myself.  We then commenced the fly-casting with a demo from Trevor Hayman AAPGAI on single handed Spey casting.  Several people commented that Trevor made these casts look so effortless.

Casters were then split into groups for tuition, led by Mark Surtees MCI, Sekhar Bahadur MCI, Mike Heritage MCI and Trevor AAPGAI.  These instructors ensured that everyone attending the event got the best instruction possible, and they are all very much thanked for their efforts.  Those participating included four young lads, who are very keen anglers, taking advantage of the BFCCs new policy of free membership and tuition for juniors.  Andy Parker, Rob Doyle and John Clark are also thanked for providing extra tuition when needed.

As far as the competition went, Steve Parkes’ practice has paid off with him taking top spot in the #5 event with a stunning cast of over 126ft (the first time he’s gone over 40 yards in a 5 weight comp) as well as winning the ST27 event.   John Clark won the B100 in his first ever BFCC competition, closely followed by John Dawson.  The #7, T38 and T120 events were mopped up by James Evans.   I managed to extend my women’s records with the #5 and T120 outfits, which I was particularly pleased about – hopefully there’s more distance to come as I work on some specific details.  At this point I should also mention young James Mockridge, he did a fantastic job of judging one of the casting lanes and then went on to cast 65ft himself once the competition was completed.  Many thanks James, next time I think you’ll give your dad a run for his money!

Finally a big ‘Thank You’ to John Dawson for his sterling effort to promote the event which resulted in such a good turn-out and to Richard and his wife from the Cricket Club who hosted the event and provided a constant supply of drinks. Thank you also to Rob and Tony for the lunch-time sandwich run, and to everyone else who helped out during the day, we couldn’t have done it without you.

The next BFCC event is the Sportfish show in Theale on the 7/8th of May.  We will be providing instruction and advice, so please pop over and say hello if you’re attending.  The next competition day is on the 22nd of May in Ashford, Kent.

Tracy

Shenfield Report 2015

Posted by mikeh On October 17th, 2015

The Shenfield event marked the last BFCC casting competition of the year and was the venue for the AGM.  At the meeting there were a number of changes to the club agreed, one of which was that the authorship of these reports would be rotated – so here goes for my first one!

 The day started with a masterclass on T38 casting given by John Reynolds, supplemented by advice from Mike Heritage.  John went on to win the T38 event in tough conditions to underline his ‘master’ status.

The attendees requiring tuition then split into groups led by Mark Surtees, Sekhar Bahadur, Mike Marshall and Trevor Hayman ably assisted by Keith Jones.  Many thanks to all for your efforts on the day and for supporting the BFCC throughout the year (along with our other instructors) – there’s a lot of people who are casting better, and hopefully enjoying their fly-fishing more, as a result of your instruction.

The competition events were hard fought and of a high standard, demonstrated by no fewer than seven casters in the #7 exceeding 40 yards!  One of those going over the 40 yard mark was Meinrad Rohrs, a visiting CI from Germany – great to meet you.  Competition highlights included Kei Okamoto taking his first ever event win with the T120 outfit (the first time he had cast it!).  Kei also went on to win the #5 event, really well done.  John added wins in the #7 and accuracy events to his T38 first, and would have won the overall event if it wasn’t for his #5 result.  As it was James Evans won the overall title through consistency, with John second and Steve Parkes in third.

Mick Copeman took his last B110 win with some great casting in the full line events, including extending his V70 record in the #5 (he also extended his record in the ST27).  Mick has now become the first member to start in the B100 class and be promoted through to the open category, showing what can be achieved with regular instruction and practice.  Well done Mick – I’m sure you’ll be slaying the bonefish in a few weeks time.  Dan Shillabeer also deserves a mention for his continued progress, the 40 yard mark is getting ever closer.

It was also great to see some juniors entering the competition, with Nicholas Surtees and Hannah Okamoto taking part.  Hannah was awarded the B100 medal to go along with her gymnastics trophies, hopefully it will be the first of many.  This is probably a good place to note that the committee agreed to make junior membership of the BFCC absolutely free, so hopefully we’ll see more juniors in the future.

 Many thanks to Steve Roach and his team at Shenfield Cricket Club for supplying a continuous supply of drinks and sandwiches during the day and for hosting the meeting.

 A number of changes to the club were agreed which will be communicated in due course, so please keep an eye on our Facebook page and here for details.

 So that’s it for the 2015 competitions.  The BFCC will, however, have a presence at the iFish show on the 22nd November in Ardingly so if you’re planning on attending please pop by and say hello.  Here’s to 2016…

Tracy

Oswestry June 2015

Posted by mikeh On June 21st, 2015

The weather Gods smiled on us, I drove through downpours on the way up and on the way home, Several times we were told it was raining just a few miles away but all we had as a nuisance shower as we did the accuracy and while packing the gear away. The breeze was pretty well non existent apart from the odd gentle puff now and then. The air was a bit heavy so we were never going to cast any records, except one of us did, more on that later.

I think Oswestry is one of my favourite events of the year. It always pulls in a good attendance and we are always well looked after by the Rugby club. Naomi even made some early bacon sarnies for those of us who needed a breakfast. What a nice woman.

We seem to have settled on a formula that appears to work well. We do the tournament heavy stuff first thing which gives anyone who wants some instruction time to get some in before we tackle the full line events in the afternoon and they then feel more comfortable joining in.

The majority of the instruction fell to Mark Surtees, Sekhar Bahadur and Paul Brown, who were all kept busy most of the day. Many thanks guys, you do a brilliant job that adds so much to the enjoyment of the people who turn up.

The results are up so I won’t bother repeating them except to say that in the conditions there were some commendable distances. Anything over 100′ in the five weight or 110′ in the seven weight  was bloody good going so Lisa Isles 112′ 7” in the #7 was an outstanding cast and well deserving of her new womens record. In better conditions and with some distance coaching I wouldn’t be surprised to see her take it beyond 120′. Well done Lisa.

The conditions were good enough to have an accuracy competition to finish the day off. Mark had to be dragged to the okey kicking and screaming and then proceeded to win the event.

The distance badges are often a testament to the instruction those who are awarded them have received during the day so well done Leighton McDonnell, Malcolm Milner, Matt Pearson and Sekhar.

As I mentioned before we were well looked after by the rugby club throughout the day so a big thank you to them. Thanks to everyone who helped with the running of the completion and a big thank you to everyone who turned up to make the day so enjoyable.

See you next year

Mike H

Ashford, May 2015

Posted by mikeh On June 10th, 2015

Just before the meeting we had the news that Mike Marshall had suffered a heart attack. As I write this a couple of weeks later I can tell you that Mike is home and recovering well. I am sure we all wish him well.

This was possibly the best meeting we have had in Ashford, It’s not an area known as a fly fishing hot spot. The weather was pretty good, the wind as fickle as ever. It was James and my turn to see the stiffish breeze seem to disappear whenever it was our turn to cast. There is no point me repeating the results, they are there in black and white on the results page. James 204′ with the T120 deserves a mention, he seems to have hit a purple patch with that outfit. Mick Copeman is like a good wine and gets better with age because he increased his S70 records in the five weight and ST27 (but I still want to see his birth certificate!)

Congratulations to Dan Shillabeer and David Fisher for qualifying for their 35yd and 40 badges respectively.

We didn’t have too many for the instructors to cope with so we were able to give everyone some quality time, which is nice. Not that all our instruction isn’t quality all the time, but not feeling the need to rush around trying to fit everybody in makes for a relaxed atmosphere and a pleasurable day for all.

One slightly unusual event happened, which, I think, sums up the BFCC. Mark Weatherley had heard about the event and came along to ‘just see what’s going on’. I suggested he watched the competition and, if he felt like it, he could help out with timing and marking. After lunch he asked if he could have some tuition. Tracy took a few bob off him and off we went. He kindly wrote a comment to the club afterwards and I have taken the liberty of publishing it here.

”What a very enjoyable day I had . Everybody was so friendly , even though it is a competition day. I was made very welcome to the point where I was even asked to do the timekeeping for the morning session . Having a casting lesson from one of the regular competitors was such a good idea and it is something I would suggest all novice anglers do , as it helps to show where you can improve and polish your technique, ( I will hopefully be able to cast as far if not further with better presentation all day without feeling exhausted) .I shall make a point of telling all new anglers that I meet on my fishing days out to visit one of the BFCC shows”.

This is by no means the first thank you the club has received but it does highlight the quality of work people like Mark Surtees, Trevor Hayman, RogerMiles, John Reynolds and others do to help improve peoples standards of fly casting.

Many thanks To Willesborough CC who hosted us and provided the refreshments again this year. And, finally, a big thank you to everyone who turned up and helped out and created such a good event.

MikeH

Newark 2015

Posted by mikeh On May 31st, 2015

This report is going to be slightly different from the usual ‘what a great day we had’, even though we did. We had the usual mix of great competition and tireless and excellent tuition. For me the stand out feature of the event was how having the  event in a central area drew people from wide and far. People were prepared to travel from as far as Cumbria and Kent and Wales and the East Coast. For various reasons this particular event location may not have been ideal but it certainly highlights the fact that the BFCC should be looking for somewhere in the region so I would ask that if anyone who knows the area has any idea of a suitable location to contact Mike Marshall so that he can look into it.

Back to the event. Apart from seeing people from such a wide area turn up it was great to see Alan Bath is making a good recovery and was able to help out with the competition and Wendy back sorting out the admin. The nature of the gusting wind caused a few problems in the tournament events  where line management became a critical issue. Andrew Bagshaw is to be complimented on his outstanding ability to unravel the most horrendous mess of mono with superlative patience while dismissing my suggestion we get the scissors out. His reward was to win the B110. The outstanding cast of the day was John Reynolds 177′ 5” in the T27,  a new club record. That is an outstanding cast in any conditions.

As I was mainly dealing with the competition I can only comment that the instruction team of Mark and Sekhar were very busy doing their instructional magic all day. I know from experience just how tiring instructing all day is. John and I managed to chip in occasionally but it was Mark and Shaker who did the hard miles and deserve the compliments that we have received from some very satisfied people they instructed. Well done guys and many thanks.

If I have missed anyone out please accept my apologies and accept my thanks .

 

Mike

SPORTFISH 9/10 JUNE 2105

Posted by mike On May 22nd, 2015

The Sportfish fund raising weekend was very successful for the BFCC and great fun, so many thanks to all those who supported us: Ally Bremner, Mark Surtees, Nicholas Surtees, Trevor Hayman, Brian Szukala, Sekhar Bahadur, Roger Miles, Paul Brown, Andy Parker, Gilly Bate and Alex Titov. Plus thanks to the Sportfish team, particularly Tom Festing and Jono Tomlinson. We appreciate how hard everyone worked to make it a success, not least Mark for donating two BFCC signs which greatly improved the look of the stand.

Special thanks go to Ally who braved the cold and strong winds who, with James, helped to adjudicate the spey casting competition run by Sportfish on Saturday. She provided advice and tuition to competitors in the event, which was won by James that day. Brian was amazing on the Sunday when he borrowed a kayak from an exhibitor to measure distances on the water, whilst Jono judged safely on dry land. New member Andy Parker was great as he supported me on the stand and also helped with running the competition.

All of us had a great time chatting with old friends, making new ones, promoting the club and providing tuition – Paul, Trevor and Sekhar were enjoying themselves so much on the Saturday on the tuition field, they forgot to take a break – when even the lure of the cakes I bought didn’t encourage them to stop for a while! However, young Nicholas more than made up for their absence! Paul and Trev supported both days, providing lots of tuition and advice. Mark, as always, was brilliant in offering tuition not just to the ‘punters’ but to the other instructors as well – sadly we didn’t have any veg for him to demonstate with. Everyone who took tuition came back with a big grin and an improved cast! Paul was impressed with one of the many young lads that came for tuition who, on his first lesson, was managing great looking loops and aerial mends around cones! With the usual BFCC team splitting resources to cover two events on the same weekend (a first for the club I think), it was lovely to have Roger back supporting the BFCC – he worked hard both days to make sure everyone had a good time and enjoyed themselves. I couldn’t have done without him and I hope to see at more of the Club’s events.

 

Thanks also to Charles Jardine who kindly lent us some hoops for target practise and to the Wild Trout Trust, who didn’t seem to mind when I used their trout cushions that were hanging from the roof of the marquee, as targets too! It was fun to watch the demos and Trev managed to get us a mention in one of them.

Tracy (& James)