Results – Bentley, Essex. 01/10/23

Posted by tracy On December 11th, 2023

The last BFCC competition of the year was held in balmy warm conditions for the start of October with a light, but as always slightly inconsistent, south-westerly breeze. Many thanks to all the competitors, especially those who had travelled from the Netherlands to take part and to Jose in Spain for his virtual entry. As per the usual agenda the accuracy event was cast first followed by the ‘heavy’ gear – the S55, T38 and T120. After a short lunch break the #5, #7 and ST27 were cast. As always the following results are in feet and inches:

#5 Trout Distance: Bart De Zwaan 131.00; Nick Moore 130.10; James Evans 128.00; Mike Heritage 119.02; Tracy Thomas 118.10; Callum Bright 117.11; Howard Bishop 113.01; Arie Ruitenburg 112.01; John Reynolds 111.11; Richard Zijdeman 106.04.

Virtual entry: Jose Nieto 125.00

#7 Trout Distance: Bart De Zwaan 144.09; James Evans 137.02; Nick Moore 135.05; Mike Heritage 126.05; John Reynolds 126.04; Howard Bishop 124.02; Callum Bright 119.02; Arie Ruitenburg 118.00; Tracy Thomas 117.07; Richard Zijdeman 114.02.

Virtual entry: Jose Nieto 130.11

ST27: John Reynolds 162.09*; James Evans 162.03; Arie Ruitenburg 142.06; Bart De Zwaan 141.02; Tracy Thomas 139.10; Mike Heritage 135.03; Howard Bishop 133.09; Nick Moore 131.05; Richard Zijdeman 127.00; Callum Bright 126.00.

Virtual entry: Jose Nieto 132.6

S55: James Evans 206.10; Arie Ruitenburg 179.00; Tracy Thomas 177.11; Bart De Zwaan 177.08; John Reynolds 177.02; Nick Moore 175.06; Mike Heritage 171.02; Howard Bishop 170.05; Callum Bright 163.05.

T38: John Reynolds 186.09*; James Evans 164.03; Bart De Zwaan 159.10; Mike Heritage 146.01; Tracy Thomas 138.00; Nick Moore 137.07; Arie Ruitenburg 137.01; Howard Bishop 132.10; Callum Bright 132.00.

T120: James Evans 221.04; Mike Heritage 187.03*; Bart De Zwaan 172.06; Howard Bishop 168.09; John Reynolds 157.24; Tracy Thomas 154.02; Arie Ruitenburg 149.00; Nick Moore 145.03.

Accuracy (points): Bart De Zwaan 53; Nick Moore 47; Mike Heritage 42; James Evans 42; Arie Ruitenburg 41; John Reynolds 38; Tracy Thomas 29 ; Callum Bright 26; Howard Bishop 22; Richard Zijdeman 14.

Overall event (points): 1st James Evans 15; 2nd Bart de Zwaan 17; 3rd Mike Heritage 30.

Records*: Having just had a big birthday, John Reynolds beat the V70 ST27 and T38 records. Mike Heritage also beat the T120 record in the same age category. Well done both.

BFCC Somerset Meeting 2021

Posted by tracy On July 7th, 2021

A short film from one of our members that shows the essence of a BFCC Meeting – taken at the recent BFCC Meeting in Mells, Somerset on 4th July 2021 (Thanks Larysa)

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.


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 . 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.


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…


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.