Having fished for carp for over 30 years now mainly in the NorthWest and Midlands I have been lucky enough to fish some lovely venues and caught some nice old carp along the way.
Living in Stoke on Trent with my partner Lisa and daughter Freya most of my fishing is based within 50 or so miles from home. Whilst not the hot bed of big carp like some areas of the Country I have access to some beautiful venues that hold carp to 40lb, still a big fish for this part of the Country. It was 19 years ago that I made my first tentative steps to travel south in search of my first 30 lb carp as back then in 1999 local 30lb carp were still hard to come by. That first trip in late September I was lucky enough to catch not only a 30lber but it turned out to be the biggest in the lake at a few ounces under 37lb! Just like buses I was over the moon to land another 3 30’s over the next few weeks topped by a brace of 30lb fish 2 weeks before Xmas! That bug for travelling at the start of the millennium continued and I fished some great waters at the time including Horton, Elstow and Harefield and whilst a little out of my depth at the time I fished with some superb anglers and learned a few tricks and tips from them along the way. It was at this time I was lucky enough to be accepted into the B.C.S.G and shortly after was appointed the Staffs/Potteries Regional Organiser for the Carp Society, I got to attend some great events during this time helping out at shows and instructing at venues such as Horseshoe and Farriers for both juniors and adults. Its testimony to the Carp Society that now over 15 years later some of those young kids that I helped teach are still angling and keep in touch with me to this day.
Having worked in and around the angling Trade for over 15 years I have been lucky enough to visit some wonderful venues as well as meeting some great people, and working the ‘show scene’ or doing video work is something I love to do.
With a passion for writing I have had articles in most of the monthly magazines over the years including Carpworld, Big Carp, Crafty Carper, Carpology, Advanced Carp and Carp Talk. I also have a detailed guest chapter in Martin Clarke’s book ‘Heads Down Tails Up’
When it comes to bait I am lucky to have the support of Mainline Baits and use their boilies with utmost confidence. The Cell and Link are two of my current favourites.
Rig wise, a few years ago Martin Clarke showed me the Slip D rig and after making a few tweaks to suit my fishing the Mk 2 slip D was born, this rig has accounted for a number of 30lb fish as well as over 100 carp over 20lb in the last few seasons and when used in conjunction with a suitable curved type hook such as the RM Tec Curve Shank in size 4 or 6 is my favourite presentation.
My plans for the future include a few more trips to southern venues in search of a big mirror(45lb plus) and whilst I have had little experience of fishing abroad a trip to Belgium on the hunt for a big black mirror is something that I would love to do at some point.
These days its more about the individual fish that motivate me and catching old and character carp is what gives me the buzz. Luckily I have a few waters available that where stocked way back in the 60s and 70s and a few of these old and sort after fish are still alive today.