Over 30 attendees from across the retail sector and including Fish and Fly, took part in the 29th Charity Fly Fishing Day organised by Craig Vidler BEM* and his wife Marjie, adding some £14,650 to the incredible total of £500,000 raised to date to help support the retailTrust’s vital services to those working in retail and related service industries.
The retailTrust, whose Patron is Her Majesty the Queen, “aims to improve wellbeing by offering help and support financially, emotionally and vocationally to all and delivering a helping hand and support in times of need and crisis.” They support former, current and future retail workers nationally with several dedicated programmes.
The charity fishing day was held at Dever Springs trout fishery in Hampshire with their two crystal clear spring-fed lakes totalling six acres plus a beautiful half-mile stretch of the River Dever.
Noted as a big fish water, the largest trout was caught by Kevin Morton with a rainbow at just under 13lb and the largest bag with just 3 fish to 25lb went to Tim Miller.
Although not the biggest fish caught, perhaps the most spectacular was the tiger trout caught by James Doyle (see main image.) James who is the Field Sports Manager at Orvis UK, cast his fly to a group of fish in the middle of Spring Lake and after the slightest of takes and a hard battle netted one of 11lbs 4oz. Larger tiger trout up to around 18lbs are being stocked. (A tiger trout is a sterile hybrid, the result of crossing a female brown trout with a male brook trout.)
Apart from main sponsors Peel Holdings and Ted Baker, there was further support given by Orvis, Retail Success Today, Prima Principia and Kinsford Champagne, and fundraising came from a lively auction conducted by Richard Birtchnell (The London Toastmaster). Items auctioned included, a bespoke suit from Gieves and Hawkes, private boat charter on the Thames, Chelsea shirt and tickets, cosmetics, superb vintage wines and spirits plus of course fishing books and tackle.
*Craig Vidler was recently honoured with the British Empire Medal for his services to charities.