In November 2009 Lt Will Davies wrote “A Letter From Helmand” to Trout & Salmon magazine, wonderfully articulating that thoughts of days on the river bank were a great mental restorer in the somewhat fraught circumstances he was dealing with.
Christopher Robinson replied to the Editor that Will’s letter struck many a chord. He had a wonderful 11 years soldiering, always taking his fishing rod to the far flung places. His son, Edward, was Afghanistan-bound soon and is also a passionate fisherman. Time spent on a riverbank is indeed a huge healer. He ended by saying that he had asked Will to fish with him next summer and maybe other readers might ask returning personnel to join them for a days fishing.
As a result of these letters in Trout & Salmon, it quickly became clear that there was a great deal of support for the concept of offering some restorative time on the riverbank to Service personnel returning from Operational Duty. Bill Howell wrote to Christopher Robinson and Andrew Flitcroft, the Editor of Trout and Salmon, suggesting the concept of Fishing for Forces.
Our aim is to provide a day’s fishing for those returning from Operational Duty, whether it’s part of a group day out at a local fishery or a day out with a local fisherman, easing their path back into a normal life, with lifetime support should they take up the sport.
Who is eligible?
All service men and women from the Navy, Army or Air Force who have been affected by any conflict, wherever and whenever are eligible, all wars/operations included, all the way back to WWII.
What fishing are we looking for?
We will be grateful for any offers to provide fishing for service men and women, whether it’s a day for ten at your fishery’s trout lake or a day for one at your local river. If you think you can donate in any way, please get in touch.
How do we allocate the fishing?
One of our aims is to make the distribution of the fishing available nationwide as easy as possible by supplying tackle as well as venues where possible.
We are working with the three Services’ Personnel Branches and other charities to ensure that units returning from present and previous Operational Deployment are informed of Fishing for Forces offers within their area.