The twelfth Chris Humphry Memorial Barbel Fish-in was held at the usual venue. Once again Lynnette Humphry was there to welcome everyone to Chris’s local and favourite stretch of the Rother at Coultershaw. For once, conditions seemed quite favourable, but unfortunately the river level was still very low.
By midday twelve anglers had gathered in the car park for a group photograph and the usual banter while the draw was being made. First to draw was Colin Bridger who pulled out of the hat the slip marked Chris’s Swim, which has recently once again proved to be a banker (if that can ever really be said of a swim at Coultershaw). Years ago it had been Chris’s favourite and mine too; would it prove favourable for Colin?
The draw continued and people walked off to choose their swim. As has become her custom, Lynnette set off as well to walk the bank and say hello to everyone individually. Eventually she reached the final participant who, much to her astonishment, actually had a bend in his rod. Could it be that Mick Mills (for it was he) actually had a barbel on? At first he thought not, but events soon proved otherwise. Fortunately for him this was no carp as he had first thought but a very determined barbel which did its best to evade capture. After a tense and protracted battle watched by an excited and anxious Lynnette, Mick got the better of the fish. Shaking with delight and relief, Mick shared the news while the fish rested in the net. Shortly afterwards, the fish was weighed at 7lb 14oz, witnessed by three other anglers one of whom, Dave Chambers, took photographs of the happy captor and a delighted Lynnette who was witnessing a barbel capture for the very first time.
Although we all fished on until dusk, none of us was able to replicate or better Mick’s achievement. So, at the end of the day, we met up as usual for welcome refreshments and a chat. Lynnette was very pleased to present the trophy to Mick who was equally pleased, if not more so, to receive it, having attended so many fish-ins without catching. Once again participants had been generous in their support with £330 being raised for this year’s charity the British Heart Foundation. So thanks to everyone that fished and made a donation. Thanks once again to Lynnette for continuing to support this event in memory of her late husband, Chris Humphry.
Participants: L-R Mark Adams, Dave Chambers, Dave Kinchett, Nelson Keet, Mick Mills, Peter Foster, Dan (Gordon) Bolton, Peter Marsh, Colin Bridger, Graham Fearns, Chris Exall and Martin Cornish with Lynnette Humphry.