Hi to everyone, I write regarding recent derogatory remarks made of myself, and pictures shared around. Thanks to so many of you for your support and for getting in touch! Yes there are two sides to every story and this one more than ever!
I had rescheduled a day`s fishing on the Wye from Tuesday to Thursday last week because of the heat. I had been following closely the forecast drop in temps and the water release levels reaching the lower river, and the difference this would make, I took water temp readings on the Wed and Thursday and indeed there was a drop of nearly 2 degrees. The water was open on our side of the river, so I knew the perfect spot for these conditions where the water is well oxygenated and weir like. The gentlemen with me would all fish the same area rotating turns and having a much needed family day.
Further more the calamities photographed were solely due to my having to cross the river to hear someone telling me off! One of the gentlemen was into his biggest ever barbel and his father (at 70+) rushed to try and net the fish…. because – as some of you maybe saw in the photo – I was still returning across the river! He would not have been falling otherwise!!
We had already caught several fish, most returned without leaving the water, those that did leave the water left for seconds before safe return! The gentleman’s story and pictures shared are just that, “his”. My client’s had a fantastic and memorable day with the only dark cloud being the half hour they met the gentleman filming them on the opposite side of the river.
In fact the elderly gentleman (David) said to me that I had made his “dreams come true” by helping to get him his first ever barbel! This is why I do the day`s I do… He had a few more too!
The fish were feeding not “dying”…
Even though I should not have to explain myself, I feel duty bound to.
I would like to say a massive and emotional “thank you” to all those who stood up to defend me without knowing any of this already and having faith in my judgement.
The chap that made the initial comments on his FB page ( now deleted) is no doubt considered the most detested person by local Anglers.
Just remembering the long term local fishing Clubs who lost their waters. And who was responsible. If you want a villan, he is your man.
I was one of the three fisherman that day…
I’d contacted Shaun several months previously as I’d read lots of very good reviews and thought him perfect for my father-in-laws long awaited first Barbel… Our trip was originally booked in for the 19th June (which happened to be the hottest day of year) and about a week before, Shaun contacted me to say that our day couldn’t happen as the river was closed due to excessive heat and whilst disappointed, we totally understood this and we agreed to monitor the weather over the coming week – at the time we were holidaying in North Devon, so were ‘relatively’ local…
Over the course of that week, it was noted that temps were dropping – certainly where we were, Ilfracombe was a good ten-degrees-lower than London and the Thursday was suggested – though this was still touch and go, however, we were told that the river was open and that water temps etc would be checked over the coming days and we would confirm the night before.
All being good, we set off bright and early and met up with Shaun late morning on the Thursday – it was essentially a nice summers days, not too hot nor cold, it was a good temp. Shuan let us know that he’d been down to the river and that the water temp was good and that he’d picked a good spot of for the three of us to fish – operating two rods, with one taking a break throughout the day. The spot could not have been any better – free flowing fast water, a perfect spot for Barbel, and Chub!
Long story short, we had a brilliant day – we all caught several fish with most being released via the landing net, with those fish not even being lifted from the water. A couple of the larger Barbel were brought ashore, weighed and a snap was taken – they were then released back in to the river, it was a lovely moment seeing said fish(es) disappearing from sight.
At no time was any fish in any form of distress or out of the water for anytime longer than to weigh and photo.
During the course of our session, we spotted someone on the opposite bank shouting and gesticulating at us. Not quite sure what was going on, or whether this individual was in trouble (or needed assistance) Shuan waded across to speak with this individual – as this was happening, one of our party hooked in to a large Barbel and unfortunately, my FIL lost his balance due to the uneven ground and fell forward in to the river – thankfully no harm was done and we were able to bring him back to his feet.
Weirdly, the shouty person was then hiding in some bushes opposite us and was taking photos and I’m guessing video, it was all a bit strange to be honest and we didn’t really pay too much attention and carried on with our day – by all accounts, this chap owns a fishing shop in Ross and belongs to a different fishing club.
Shaun could not have been a better person to be with – he gave good advice to the three of us, pointing out many things about the river, about fishing in general – having done previous guided trips, you could see that Shaun cared greatly for his chosen sport and bar the misunderstanding as to whether we could / could not fish (not us, the other person), Shaun was the consummate professional.
I’ve since seen several pictures of our day online and not really too sure what to make of it to be honest – it was unwarranted and in our minds, made the individual look a little petty.
The FIL had a wonderful day, he caught his long-awaited Barbel which made his day/week/year – thanks again Shaun, we’ll be back in touch soon to book another trip.
The Bishopswood stretch of the Wye was and is open for fishing, no laws or club rules were broken at any time, temp was good, as was the oxygen levels, they were checked frequently using an EA supplied equipment.
It’s a very sad state of affairs when a fishing shop owner personally attacks a fellow angler and a club with over 500 members, it should also be advised there has only been one complaint received from our members that the club had not closed its waters. Shaun is respected Angler and works with several bodies studying fish science, he is in a far better position to judge the fish health than many that would judge him.
Well done to all involved. Like you said shaun you shouldn’t have to explain yourself. I’ve had several people message me after I commented also saying what a horrible guy he is. So many so called experts on social media which is half the problem these days. He’s blocked me off the page so I left him a one star review on Google, whoops.