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Christmas Greetings from Bill

Christmas Greetings from Bill & Menhel, 2018

The card says it all but to all our guests, hard working mentors supporters and friends my best thoughts for the Xmas and may 2019 be one of your best years.

Our sincere thanks and best thoughts

Bill & Min

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A special day at Leckford Lakes

A very special day of fishing, organised by Neil Mundy and members of John Lewis Partnership Fly Fishing Club, supported on the catering by the keepers Andy, Rob and team. With the weather wet and very windy the guests were not going to be deterred in the least and a number of fair sized fish were caught and a number of larger fish managed to get away.

A special guest was Lcpl Kiran Gurung (10QOGLR) who was in a wheelchair due to injuries sustained in Afghan and he stunned everyone by mastering the art of casting under the guidance of Steve Robinson (JLP). Very quickly he was laying out a beautiful 20 yd line 4 times out of 5. I thought I had the biggest fish in the bag at 6.4lbs when he topped me by 2ozs and took the John Lewis Partnership Cup with the Biggest Bag. I promptly let his tyres down.

Biggest Fish was taken by WO2 Frost of Cadet Training Team and runner up was Ssgt Malla (10QOGLR). Smallest Fish was taken by Sqdn Ldr Hyndman, who said he could not be prouder of his tankard. The day was full of banter and camaraderie, and Neil Mundy and I were most pleasantly surprised when, having handed out nice prizes, we were presented with a plaque each from the Cadet Training Team. That brought a perfect end to a wet and windy day but their smiles say it all.

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Super Secret Salmon

Ladies & Gents,

A superb and, until recently, a close secret, section of the Tweed salmon fishing has been opened to the angling fraternity after having been privately owned for many years. The article linked below will explain all and the fishing has been generously offered through FFF at a more than reasonable rate with the distinct possibility of contacting a Leviathan. Apart from its stunning surroundings, rod numbers are high compared to many venues, so more than worth a serious endeavour.

More details re booking can be found on the Fairnilee web page or you can drop Charlie a line via the Contact Form on the website and he will advise.

Available dates are:

w/c 29th October – 6 rods Mon & Tues, 5 rods on Weds, 4 rods on Thurs, 3 rods on Fri and 2 rods on Saturday at £190 +VAT

w/c 5th Nov – 6 rods Mon-Sat at £140+VAT

w/c 12th Nov – 6 rods Mon-Sat at £120+VAT

w/c 19th Nov – 6 rods Mon-Sat at £100+VAT

w/c 26th Nov – 6 rods Mon-Fri at £75+VAT 

http://new.fishpal.com/Scotland/Tweed/Fairnilee/?dom=tweed

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14th July 2018 – A great day at Cast & Blast, Meon Springs

Thanks to the organisational skills of Neil Mundy, one of our co-directors, the FFF Cast & Blast this year was exceptional. With 45 competitors and numerous guests, among them several members of 10 QOGLR Gurhkas, Chris Tarrant (Captain Chaos) and his lady Jane the day was a very memorable one.

The day started with the competitors chomping at the bit up to the shooting stands, or off to a ‘fly in’ start on the lakes as soon as the whistle went. To the lovely sound of wind passing casting rods, previous discussions on what fly, method and other possibly nefarious techniques went in the bin as fish were soon bending rods.

The banter was superb with advice being passed across the water at Meon Spring with some rather ribald replies from both angling sexes, concerning parts of one’s anatomy, made you pleased there were no children present. It warmed up rapidly and fish got wiser by the hour so we had to start hunting for our quarry in the lakes or slow our adrenalin at the gun cages, chasing the clays.

Lunch was outstanding, supplied by the ladies at Meon, served by Greg, Tim & Co and was followed by Jane Bird (Chris’s lovely partner) calling the raffle, closely followed by Chris auctioneering many lots donated by supporters and friends of FFF. If Chris decides to give up his celeb status he would do splendidly as an auctioneer, as those who were slow to bid he shamed in to doing so, laced with waves of laughter. He raised a phenomenal sum and practically gave himself a coronary along the way. I was exhausted just watching him.

The staff at Meon did a superb job before, during and after the event ensuring nothing was too much trouble and I cannot thank them enough.

Special thanks must go to all the competitors and guests ,the Mundy family the JLP Partnership for sponsoring the day and Pauline Pendle for superb pictures and of course Chris & Jane for making it such a superb day and raising close to £8,640.00.

Trophies were presented to:

Mick Heasman  TWFFS for SMALLEST FISH (Hah): 1lb 11oz

Bill Bishop  JLP Pshp for Heaviest Fish: 6lb 11oz         

Paul Robinson (Definite ringer) for Heaviest Bag: 12lb11oz         

Hank Di Mond (A wild card) Best Shot on clays: 19 out of 20 clays

No prizes given if you spot the picture of us looking at the floor and a hundred pieces of glass when I dropped Hank’s shooting trophy with a “I thought you had it and no I thought you had it”.

Please put Saturday July 13th 2019 in your diary for the next Cast & Blast.

My personal and most sincere thanks to all for such sterling support. 

Bill Howell FFF Founder.

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23rd June 2018 – Fidelity Fundraising Day: A huge success

Fidelity International annual fly fishing fundraiser a huge success

Fidelity International Annual Fly Fishing Fundraiser

On Saturday 23rd June, two intrepid teams from Fidelity International converged on Chalybeate Springs Trout Fishery to compete in a yearly fly fishing fundraiser organised and paid for by the corporate citizenship teams for Fishing for Forces.

An eagerly awaited yearly event, there was lots of friendly banter in the run-up. Would Fidelity’s Kent office retain the trophy this year? Or could the Kingswood team, with their strong angling experience take the trophy back home after the loss of last year?

After a hearty breakfast and welcome by the Tunbridge Wells Fly Fishing Society, the anglers eagerly moved on to their starting swim lanes with their mentors, to try and bring their respective teams to victory as well as the chance to get an individual award for the biggest fish, or biggest bag.

The more experienced anglers knew it would be hard going due to the hot weather and lack of cloud cover; however both teams still managed to catch fish before stopping for a barbecue lunch, with Kingswood trailing by 7 fish to 4.

By lunchtime, Stacey (the hustler) Belton had caught 3 of the 7 fish for the Kent office including an impressive 3lb catch!

Each fish caught in the afternoon was accompanied by shouts of ‘Who caught it?’, ‘Is it Kingswood or Kent?’ Cheers turned to groans from Kent anglers as one of the team caught a roach – a rival to a Kingswood anglers tiddler of last year, so this wasn’t counted. Lots of anglers lost fish from the hook as they were about to net them, and with tension mounting, both teams having lost count, it would all go down to the final weigh-in and announcement.

After a prolonged silence, Mick Heasman from Tunbridge Wells Fly Fishing Society and Bill Howell announced ……. BOTH teams bagged 10 fish each!! It all came down to weight!! Come on, come on! Don’t keep us in suspense……….. and the winning team, with a difference of 1.1lb – KENT!! The winners were presented with their trophies by Russell Bell, Chairman of Tunbridge Wells Fly Fishing Society and Bill Howell, Founder of Fishing For Forces.

Biggest Bag
Stacey Belton

Biggest Fish
Guy Jewsbury

Congratulations to everyone who took part and also to everyone who has donated so far. To date, Fidelity has raised a fantastic £1,976 which they hope to double with company grant matching!

All at FFF are extremely grateful for the Sterling support from Fidelity and TWFF and we look forward to next year.

Bill Howell
Founder

Check out the Gallery

 

 

 

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18th May 2018: Fishing Therapy at Corfe Lakes

What are you thinking about whilst you’re out fishing?  The obvious answer is the fishing, the fish, the fly and what is going on around you. How many of us think about the trouble and problems in our life?  Not many of us, I’m sure. That is the aim and mission of a great fishing charity that is taking wounded Service personnel and Veterans to the water for some Fishing Therapy.

Fishing For Forces (FFF) was launched in 2010 by Bill Howell, with the soul aim to take our wounded Service personnel and veterans fishing and to date have taken over two thousand to the waterside. On the 18th of May a group from Tedworth House recovery centre were our guests at the Services Dry Fly Fishing Association (SDFFA) water in Netheravon.

A casual start to the day was kicked off with some words from the Vice chairman of the Association Mark Hiskett followed up with a casting demonstration presented by the organiser of the day, Jon Crew.  And Bill Handed out nice  FFF T shirts and baseball caps as mementoes for each guest. Our eight guests were then paired up with mentors (SDFFA members) and we were let loose with instructions to be back by 1230hrs for lunch.

I was paired up with Dave Morris and we hit it off instantly. The banter was relentless.  Dave is an ex Royal Corps of Transport Soldier and me being a serving Chef in the Army meant we had a lot to say about each other’s trades, not all of it good!  We decided to start on one of the lakes and get the basics of casting a fly out of the way and to talk about anything and everything that came up. It wasn’t long before Dave started talking about his injuries and subsequent health issues. In his words and a huge smile on his face he said, “I’ve had the big three, broke my back, had a stroke and a heart attack”. I was amazed at how he was taking everything in his stride.  

We moved off the lake and had a walk along the river.  We found a nice spot that was free from overhanging trees and other hazards and started to fish.  Our attempts were futile.  “Let’s regroup after lunch” I said to Dave.  We were first in the queue for a superb buffet lunch provided by the association and took the opportunity to talk about who had caught, where and with what fly.

With lunch out of the way we only had a short few hours to catch a fish and save the blank!  Mayfly were starting to come off but nothing looking up and down stream were rising for them.  I put on a #14 Mayfly nymph and then it happened.  We started to find the fish.  Dave was on fire and I was busy with the net. The fish were coming up from being hard on the bottom and hitting the nymph as it was twitched and manipulated to the surface.  We lost five fish in quick succession and another five to the net.  It wasn’t long until the whistle went to indicate the end of the day’s fishing.  

We all gathered around for the weigh in and prize giving. The day wasn’t about prizes but two were on offer from FFF for Biggest fish and biggest bag.  Luke Du Laic won biggest fish with a great trout and Dave Morris won biggest bag. I can’t honestly remember seeing someone as happy as Dave and whatever their burden the whole group were smiling. They were presented with glass engraved tankard’s that I’m sure will see some use in the near future.

The day was amazing and made more special by sharing it with truly inspiring people who are working hard to recover from their injuries incurred whilst serving our country.  

A plea to you all, if you can donate in any way or spend a day as a mentor with this charity helping the guests take their mind off the trouble and trauma in their lives then you will have genuinely assisted in their recovery and enhanced your lives as well.

I asked Bill at the end of the day if he had anything that he would like to say. His response was short and sweet but hits the nail on the head, “we have the formula and it works”.

Information about the charity can be found at www.fishingforforces.org and if you wish to find out if there is an event near you check the website events page or you can contact Bill at [email protected]

Author: Adam Sinclair

Below: Some pictures from the day. Click on the thumbnails to see a larger version.

A list of the catches by weight

 

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17th May 2018: A great day out at Manningford Fishery

The season got off to a great start with members of the Salisbury and District Angling Club under the leadership of Andy Stafford hosting a group of veterans from the recovery unit at Tedworth House.

The team enjoying the day at Manningford Fishery

The team enjoying the day at Manningford Fishery

The day started well with rolls and coffee and mentors discussing tactics and flies with the guests prior to fishing. Many of the guests had never fished before but with engraved glass trophies on offer for Biggest Fish and Biggest Bag the competiveness came to the fore pretty quickly and it was “game on”.

A number of fish were caught in the first hour or so but then the fish got canny and the weather changed so a change of tactics were required and it was a case of searching for fishy signs around the lake involving a lot of changes places.

Lunch was a very laid back affair laid on by SADAC and the fishery and it was heartening to hear that the guests had taken to the fishing by the number of questions being asked of the mentors. The mentors did a sterling job throughout the day explaining what flies to use and why and several more were caught as we came to weigh in at 14.00hrs

Some admirable weights were marked up 12.1 lb by Kevin Hunter who took the Biggest Bag trophy and Chris Wood with a 7.8lbs fish to take the Biggest Fish trophy.

Slideshow gallery

  
Another successful day in the annals of SADAC whose support for FFF and the members of HMAF at Tedworth House is invaluable and always much appreciated.

I think the pictures say it all with smiles all round and requests by the guest as to when the next event will be held.

My thanks to all

Bill Howell
FFF Founder

 

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The Last Post

British Army remembers the fallen with poignant video featuring the Last Post

THE BRITISH Army has released a video ahead of Remembrance Day entitled The Last Post, featuring a bugler playing the emotive tune of the same name, which commemorates those who made the ultimate sacrifice in war.

Poignantly the video opens to the sound of waves crashing at the foot of the White Cliffs of Dover, with the bugler looking out to sea. As the moving music continues, the camera starts to circle the Bugler and as it does the location changes – transporting us to a sunrise over Stonehenge.

With the Bugler at the heart of the video, the location becomes a powerful supporting artist as we are magically transported around the country taking in a number of recognisable landmarks including the Angel of the North, Tower Bridge and Edinburgh Castle before ending, fittingly, at the National Memorial Arboretum.

The Bugler is Lance Corporal Sebastian Yaseen (24) who is an Assault Pioneer within the Bugle Platoon of 5th Battalion the Rifles. He was selected to be featured in the Army’s Remembrance Video out of 80 Buglers within the regiment and says it is one of the great achievements of his career so far.

“This has been a great year for me,” said LCpl Yaseen. “I placed second in the regimental competition and became the Colonel Commandant’s Bugler.”

In the five years that he has been playing the bugle, Sebastian has played at Horse Guards, the Royal Albert Hall and at a number of International Rugby matches, and has spent a number of days over the last two months filming all over the UK for this video.

When asked what his highlight was, he said; “Filming all over the UK has been a great experience and sounding the Last Post is huge honour. I always feel an overwhelming sense of pride.”

After a month of careful planning, the team of four Army photographers started filming in September. Warrant Officer Class 2 Daniel Harmer, Sergeant Jonathan Van Zyl, Corporal Tim Jones and Corporal Pete Brown brought the video to life but it is LCpl Yaseen who was the star at each location.

“The public reaction was great,” he said. “I had a lot of interest at all locations. Many people wanted photographs and asked me questions about the regiment, the bugle itself, and what we were filming for. I didn’t go into detail as we didn’t want to spoil the surprise!”

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1st July 2017 – Memorial for Richard Twite at Robinswood

On July the 1st there is a competition being held at Robinswood Trout Fishery by Jillian the lovely wife of Richard Twite a very well known and respected angler and renowned fishery owner. The entry fee proceeds are to be split between three charities at present unnamed but I have no doubt will definitely be most worthy and there are 1st,2nd& 3rd prizes as well. Come along and support such a worthy event and get a glass of Red FOC as well. For details please contact Jenny at [email protected] and get in quick as I am up for it, alongside quite a few already. Details below.

My best,

Bill


Robinswood was Richard’s favourite place in the world. He also supported some charities that were very close to his heart.

Richard’s wife Jillian would like to invite you to join her on Saturday 1st July 2017 at Robinswood to celebrate Richard’s life in the most appropriate way, a fishing competition along with a glass of red!

Whilst at it, we will be raising funds for three charities by donating all entry fees in memory of Richard.

The fishing competition will be for best fish with trophies being given for 1st, 2nd and 3rd places.

If you would like to attend, please let me know as soon as possible so we have an idea of numbers.

I hope you can join us.

SATURDAY 1ST JULY 2017
MEMORIAL FOR RICHARD TWITE
AT ROBINSWOOD

Best Fish Competition

Entry £30 per person to include a 2-fish ticket for the day with food and drink.
Non-fishing guests £5 per person

9am – Fishing starts
1pm – Lunch
3pm – Weigh in and trophy presentation

Usual Fishery rules apply. Trophies for Winner, 2nd and 3rd Places A small tipple will be provided to toast The Guv’nor

If you would like to attend, please telephone 01252 794321 or email: Jillian – [email protected] or Jenny [email protected]

Download Flyer

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30th July 2017: Prudential RideLondon 100 mile bike ride in aid of FFF

We are very fortunate to have a great bank of supporters, one of whom – Stephen Cooper – will be raising money for Fishing for Forces by taking on the Prudential Ride London 100 mile bike ride on 30th July 2017.

Steve is a very keen angler who recently started to volunteer with Fishing for Forces and is now taking on this amazing challenge to raise money.

You can sponsor Steve through VirginMoneyGiving and donations will be quickly processed and passed to the charity. VirginMoneyGiving is a not for profit organisation and will claim gift aid on a charity’s behalf where the donor is eligible for this. 

You can find Steve’s sponsorship page here: http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fundraiser-web/fundraiser/showFundraiserProfilePage.action?userUrl=StephenCooper12 

We really appreciate Steve’s support and hope that some of you will be able to sponsor him in his endeavour.

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15th May 2017- Manningford – Tremendous day of fishing

A tremendous day kindly for a great crowd from Army Trg Br with everyone catching fish. Biggest bag to Lt Col MacMulen of 15.8lbs and biggest fish, a stonking 5.8lbs rainbow to Lt Col Martin.

The mentors surpassed themselves again with Mike Edwards doing photography and Mick Pegg (Mr Scales) on weigh in. The mentors have to be congratulated for catching the group up in a competitive manner and there was a lot of banter even during the rain.

Well done all and thank you Imtech Technical Svs for sterling support.

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25th April 2017 – A great day at Manningford

Again a successful day for FFF as the smiles say it all. A great group from HQLF with lovely old friends appearing much to my delight. Biggest bag went to Matt Patterson and biggest fish to Mike O’neill a nice 4lb 8oz fish that put up a helluva fight.

Manningford fishery chef Gaydon did them proud and they all finished the day with fish and slightly bloated from food. Mentors did them proud and everyone took at least one fish home so mission accomplished, once more thanks to them.

Pic 4 Paul Dalgleish a staunch supporter and mentor complaining of the size of the one he lost and my face obviously expresses sadness whilst thinking “do I really give a xxx” having lost a good one whilst he bent my ear.

A great day for all.

Bill Howell (Founder)

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20th April 2017 – Chalybeate

Once again Tunbridge Wells Flyfishers Association hosted a group from HCMR and QOGLR for a superb day of fishing at this pristine fishery. A great day had by all with copious food for brekkie, lunch and tea and cake to finish.

Biggest bag won by Jamie Bradbury (HCMR and biggest fish by Adam Cooper (HCMR) so the Ghurkas have some catching up at the next event. The banter was superb and very few did not catch apart from the flak from confederates on the way home, but I am sure all departed very happy.

A superb job by the club who mentored as well and Jim the fishery owner for the stock and quality of fish. A privilege to be part of these events.

Bill Howell (Founder)

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The London Fly Fishing Fair 2017 March 10th/11th

Come and see us, Fishing For Forces, at the best fishing show to hit London. The London Fly Fishing Fair, 2017!

To be held 10/11 March 2017
BUSINESS DESIGN CENTRE
ISLINGTON LONDON

There will be a full casting pool, fly tying area and many activities for everyone to get involved in our wonderful sport.

logo

“We are pleased to present the first edition of The London Fly Fishing Fair located in the heart of central London at the Business Design Centre, Islington on the 10/11 of March 2017. The fair will include all aspects of the fly fishing world as well as lifestyle aspects for the family.

If you are interested in fly fishing and want to know how to get involved in the sport, please come along to find out more.

From a beginner to an expert this is the place to find out more about fly fishing and how to improve your techniques, arrange trips and get the gear you need to get you on those fish.”

 

More details and tickets from the London Fly Fishing Fair website, thelondonflyfishingfair.co.uk

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Cast and Blast Saturday 15th July 2017

CAST AND BLAST SATURDAY 15th JULY 2017

AT MEON SPRINGS FISHERY (www.meonsprings.com) IN HAMPSHIRE IN AID OF FISHING FOR FORCES (FFF) registered charity 1141744 event sponsored by the John Lewis Partnership FFC

Fishing For Forces aims to provide a day’s fishing for all those who have been on Operational Duties. We believe they would benefit from the healing and therapeutic effects a day by the waterside has to offer. We also feel that this provides in a modest way, a means for those of the angling fraternity (and the public at large) who are not in the services, to show our appreciation of what they do for us.

FISHING COMPETITION

(LARGEST FISH AND HEAVIEST BAG) STARTS AT 09.30am WITH WEIGH IN AT 4.00PM. LARGE BLUE AND GOLDEN TROUT WILL ALSO BE PRESENT IN THE WATER. PRIZES WILL ALSO BE AWARDED IF THESE DIFFICULT FISH ARE CAUGHT. 20 CLAY SHOOT COMPETITION IN THE AFTERNOON. BREAKFAST/BBQ LUNCH AND AFTERNOON TEA AND CAKE INCLUDED IN THE PRICE. LUNCH TIME RAFFLE AND AUCTION TO RAISE MUCH NEEDED FUNDS FOR FFF.

TO ENTER – PLEASE FILL IN THIS FORM (Word doc) AND SEND A CHEQUE FOR £90 TO NEIL MUNDY – PINE VIEW, FOREST ROAD, DENMEAD, HAMPSHIRE PO7 6UA (TEL – 02392 254 886 OR MOB – 07964 379 988). CLOSING DATE FOR ENTRIES WILL BE SATURDAY 1st  JULY.

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Fishing For Forces Annual Lunch 2016 – Tuesday Nov 29th

Tuesday November 29th  2016 at 12 Noon: The House of Lords

Dear FFF Supporter

For our annual lunch this year, FFF have managed to reserve the Cholmondeley Room & Terrace at the HOUSE of LORDS courtesy of our patron Lord Dear Kt.QPM.DL.

We have managed to keep single seat prices to £120.00 pp and a table of ten to £1000.00. A table of ten will consist of nine civilian guests and a member of HMAF as an FFF ambassador.

Lunch will be an excellent three course meal with a raffle of numerous superb items to suits all tastes so please bring a £20 note with your name written clearly on it. This will be followed by a small auction of very desirable items.

As you know this is a very popular venue and tables are booked quickly so to allow for invitation posting please RSVP by Friday Nov 19th. Your support is invaluable and it would be a genuine pleasure to have your company.

Due to high security a photo ID (passport / drivers licence) will be required with your personal invitation so please arrive promptly to avoid delayed entry.

For your personal invitation and to secure your seat, please contact Bill Howell on 07850 373760 or [email protected]

We also would appreciate being informed of any special dietary requirements.

Looking forward to the pleasure of your company.

Bill Howell.

FFF Founder

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A chilly day at Chalybeate Springs

A very chilly day for April at Chalybeate Springs fishery, but our guests from HCMR (Blues & Royals) – hosted by Tunbridge Wells Fly Fishing Society (TWFFS) and Jim Streeter, the owner – being soldiers, weathered it well once the chefs of TWFFS had filled them with hot tea and coffee, with sausage and bacon sarnies to match. Fishing for Forces t-shirts and TWFFS baseball caps were distributed and the caps were worn and t-shirts put on over fleeces (brave souls).

The fish were showing and several came to the net quickly and it was game on for the prized FFF tankards for biggest fish and biggest bag. Lunch, as usual, was a splendid fare of burgers, bacon, and sausage rolls, with lots of cake as dessert. Then, it was back to the water in earnest and everyone caught fish. At the weigh in, there were lots of comments and laughter despite bitter cold, and the biggest bag of 9.2 lbs of 3 fish was taken a young Ghurka Cpl Yubaraj Gurung of 10 QOGLR. The biggest fish of 3.2lbs was captured Tpr Moules.

HCMR guests casting at Chalybeate Springs

Picture 1 of 6

Russell Bell Chair of TWFFS kindly presented the tankards and Major Douglas then presented Russell and TWFFS with a HCMR plaque as a superb token of thanks. Everyone caught fish and judging by the handshakes, snide comments and smiles, a good day was had by all guests and mentors. TWFFS and the fishery did them proud and I, representing FFF, am very privileged to work with them and have their sterling support.

Bill Howell, Founder

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Wild Trout Trust Three Fly Challenge on 18th June 2016

Wild Trout TrustThe 2016 Wild Trout Trust Three Fly Challenge is on Saturday 18th June 2016 at Meon Springs Fishery in Petersfield, Hampshire. 

It is a fishing tournament that will test your skills, while raising money for the Wild Trout Trust, a worthwhile charity dedicated to preserving river habitats throughout the country.

The rules are simple.  You can use only three flies and points are awarded based on which fish are caught on which flies; a fish caught on a dry fly gets you  the most points, a nymph bags you the least.

It’s a sociable day and a favourite for many people in the angling calendar. In recent years around £13,000 has been raised for the charity.

Tickets cost £95.00, including breakfast, lunch, a 4-fish ticket and flies.

Book your ticket here

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Fidelity International Worldwide Fly Fishing Competition on 2nd July

Fidelity International Worldwide, under the guidance of Vicky Haxton and Mick Heasman, are for the second year running holding an inter office fly fishing competition to raise funds for FFF at Chalybeate Springs fishery.

Last year was a tremendous success with loads of ribald competitive banter and abuse and several attempted sword fights with 10ft fly rods. I had to referee with the aid of the Tunbridge Wells Fly fishers which is not easy when you are rolling around laughing at the antics of normally polite personnel from the financial industry, who were aiming flies into the blue and still catching fish. As I explained to one young lady that she would not beat her opponent in to submission with a light carbon fly rod, and this baseball bat would do the job, she promptly whacked me with it for suggesting she hurt her friend. Work that one out? It was a great day, made so by the participants for their fervour to win the glass tankards so coveted by all, and raising lots of money to boot.

Fidelity in their generosity will once more match every £ raised so please help us by donating on http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/team/FidelityF4F you will be enhancing the days at the waterside for our lads and lasses from HMAF.

My sincere thanks

Bill Howell (Founder)

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4th July 2016: Petersfield to the Somme 2016: In aid of FFF

The Petersfield to the Somme team

The team: Roger, Dom, Tom, Mark, Luke, Mike and Clive

This year, we are very fortunate to have a dedicated team of supporters who will be raising money for Fishing for Forces by taking on an incredible challenge. Roger, Dom, Tom, Mark, Luke, Mike and Clive will be cycling from Petersfield to the Somme and back again, a round trip of 350 miles! They will leave on the 4th July and return on the 9th.

A quote from their Virgin Money Giving page:

“We are aiming to raise money for ‘Fishing For Forces’ which is a charity that we have all experienced their work first hand. The aim of the charity is to provide a days 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. This charity is open to all servicemen and women from the Navy, Army and Air Force who have been affected both physically and mentally from conflict and individuals from WWII are still receiving the full support of the charity.”

“We are aiming to raise at least £2,500 for this amazing charity and we feel that it ties in well with the 100th anniversary of The Battle of the Somme, where we will be laying a wreath at a memorial service half way through our expedition, to pay our respects. ”

“Please help us support this amazing charity and any donations will be an amazing help and will be gratefully received. “

We feel very lucky to have such wonderful supporters, and we’d be thrilled if you would visit their page at http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/team/cycletothesomme and give what you can to help them reach their target.

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Meon Springs Cast & Blast Fundraising Day on 16th July 2016

Meon SpringsMeon Springs’ Fishery in Petersfield, Hampshire, is holding its annual Cast & Blast Fundraising Day – combining fly fishing and clay shooting – on Saturday 16th July 2016 with the aim of raising money for Fishing for Forces.

The competition starts at 0930, with a weigh-in and prize giving at 4pm. There will be a 25 bird clay shoot competition in the afternoon.

As with the Three Fly Challenge, breakfast, BBQ lunch, and tea and cake are included in the price. There will also be a lunchtime raffle with some excellent prizes to help raise much needed funds.

Read the full article on the Meon Springs website

Thanks to all at Meon Springs for their support and we hope to see you there!

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The Wright Stuff promotes FFF

As you may know from our previous posts, we’re lucky to count Matthew Wright of the The Wright Stuff among our Fishing for Forces supporters. On Wednesday 30th September, he was kind enough to mention FFF on his show during an interview with Chris Tarrant (also an FFF supporter).

If you’d like to see Matthew and Chris Tarrant, you can watch the episode here at 5 on Demand: http://www.channel5.com/shows/the-wright-stuff/episodes/episode-193-58

The episode will be available until 6th October 2015.

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Matthew Wright Joins Fishing for Forces

On Thursday 28th May 2015, we were delighted to welcome Matthew Wright to one of our Fishing for Forces days. The host of The Wright Stuff joined us for a day’s fishing and a brilliant time was had all round.

Watch the show over at Demand5: http://www.channel5.com/shows/the-wright-stuff/episodes/episode-104-78

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Fishing Charity Angling To Help Injured Veterans

On 16th April, Fishing for Forces welcomed Laura Hawkins and BFBS Forces TV to Leckford Lakes in Hampshire for the day, to find out more about what we do.

A special thanks to Laura and Chris behind the camera, and to all the mentors and guests on the day.

Click the link below to visit forces.tv and watch the feature:

http://bcove.me/4e2or4bm

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Cheltenham College at Manningford Fishery

On Tuesday 10th March 2015, 15 young guests from Cheltenham College were invited for a day’s fishing at Manningford Fishery in Pewsey, Wiltshire, courtesy of Fishing for Forces. Housemaster Richard Penny wrote an account of their day for the college website, which you can read in full here: http://www.cheltenhamcollege.org/Fly-fishing-at-Manningford-Lake

The Cheltenham College team were treated to three hours of one to one instruction, a fly tying demonstration and 31 trout which were returned to the boarding houses and prepared for a BBQ later in the year. Everyone successfully hooked into at least one fish, but particular mention must go to Willie Weston (BH U6) for the biggest catch of the day and to Beth Adams for the largest bag. Their prizes were awarded by fly fishing guru Charles Jardine, who supports the Countryside Alliance’s Fishing For Schools campaign.

Huge thanks must go to Lt-Col Richard Thorpe, Chairman Army Angling and father of Alex Thorpe (BH, 5th), for organising the day and for enthusing (hooking?) the next generation of anglers, and to Bill Howells, Charles Jardine and all of the instructors who gave so willingly of their time, patience and humour

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July 2015 – Cast & Blast: Meon Springs, Hampshire

Date: Saturday 11th July 2015
Location: Meon Springs Fishery, East Meon, Hampshire

Details: A special Fishing for Forces fundraising day and competition are being held at Meon Springs in Hampshire. All are welcome.

Print off our FFF Cast & Blast 2015 entry form and send with your entry fee cheque, made payable to Fishing for Forces, to:

NEIL MUNDY – PINE VIEW, FOREST ROAD, DENMEAD, HAMPSHIRE PO7 6UA

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2014 Christmas Message from Bill Howell, Founder

To all friends of FFF, mentors, donators, helpers and guests,

May I take this opportunity to wish you, your families and all friends the very best of the festive season and a cracking 2015.

Thank you for all your sterling support throughout 2014 helping to bring 500 plus members of HMAF to the waterside and  I assure you without exception everyone had a great day (I am consistently told even when the guest did not catch).

With your support we will make 2015 a memorable year so please remember at all times this is your charity and it is your support that keeps it alive.

The need for a therapeutic day at the waterside is growing rapidly especially for our wounded but with many more of our service personnel being made redundant with little training on how to revert back to civilian life after serving our country our meagre efforts we hope will make an impact on their future which I feel is imperative.

My sincere thanks once again and I hope to have the pleasure of your company soon.

My best thoughts

Bill Howell
Founder

Sexy Reindeer

Real Fishermen

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Running the Berlin Marathon for Fishing for Forces

Mike Trundley in his FFF running gear

Mike Trundley in his FFF running gear

On 28th September, Mike Trundley will be running the Berlin Marathon to raise money for Fishing for Forces.

I am a 55 year old teacher with some 33 years school experience. I have spent the majority of my professional life working in Special Schools and am now Head of School at Northgate School Arts College, Northampton.

I first ran a marathon in 1984 and after completing my second event in London in 1985 I ‘retired’ from the sport. I was persuaded to restart my running career in 2009 as a 50 year old. Since then I have completed New York (2009), Venice (2010), Edinburgh (2011), Paris (2012), Barcelona (2013) and Loch Ness (2013). I have managed to finish all the runs in under 4 hours and am currently on the threshold to qualify to run in Boston as an ‘elite’ runner in my age group. For this I need to be under 3 hours 40 minutes – in Loch Ness I ran 3 hours 40 minutes 12 seconds! This is my running target for 2014. My longer term target is to complete all 6 major city runs. Assuming I do Berlin in September I need to qualify for Boston and then get into Chicago and Tokyo.

In addition to this I play a bit of golf, enjoy hill walking and have a season ticket at West Ham!

It’s people like Mike who make Fishing for Forces what it is and we’re extremely grateful to him for his efforts. If you’re able to sponsor Mike, please do so by visiting his Virgin Money Giving page at: http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/fundraiser-web/fundraiser/showFundraiserProfilePage.action?userUrl=MikeTrundley

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Survey project at Angling Projects Wraysbury

Date: 30th-31st August 2014

I was privileged to be asked to take part in a survey project investigating the therapeutic effect angling has on those who have suffered wounds and trauma in conflict.

The project involved 14 ex military personnel and was coordinated by Mark Wheeler and Dr Nick Cooper from Essex University Dept of Psychology and Prof Jamie Hughes from Vets Inst at Anglia Ruskin. The venue was Angling Projects Lake at Wraysbury run by Les Webber MBE. The guests came from all over the UK via Colchester PRU and spent the week end (Sat/Sun) in Bivvies fishing for Carp and other coarse fish. Les supplied all the tackle (rods etc) and Nash Tackle supplied the beds and Bivvies (tents) thanks to Nick Watkins. Fishing for Forces supplied T-shirts and baseball caps and I generally made a nuisance of myself wherever possible!

It was amazing to see 14 people who did not know each other suddenly spring into action as a team when told they were erecting the Bivvies (they were going to be sleeping in them) and assisting each other all the way round the lake transporting the gear in wheelbarrows with a small race to get the best spots! The event was boosted when on Saturday lunchtime Captain Chaos (aka Chris Tarrant) and his Lady arrived and spent a long time chatting with each guest and giving advice on carp fishing and weed clearing. They (CT and Lady Jane) returned again on Sunday so that he could sign T shirts and caps and discuss with the guests how they felt the weekend went. Chris spoke at length with the University team who stayed overnight with the guests and the general consensus from the guests – to a man and lady – was that they had a great time and the transformation was visibly heart warming.

Quite a number of the weekend’s guests will be joining us at the RMAS day for a bit of trout fishing and there is serious discussion about starting a club so FFF may have more work to do. As anglers know (because they are anglers) the therapeutic relief we get from a stress-ridden week at work, we now have to share it as much as possible with those who suffer and have suffered in defence of our much-envied way of life. It is easier than you think to share this knowledge and your contribution is invaluable.

Bill Howell

Judging by recent articles and comments from members of the group and their relatives after this event it appears “Mission Accomplished”

Bill Howell

Therapeutic Survey Write Up Therapeutic Survey 2125

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The Houses of Parliament Fundraising Lunch

Date: Thursday 20th November 2014
Location: The Houses of Parliament, London

Description:

Due to great response and the courtesy of Lord Dear, Fishing for Forces will be having another fundraising lunch at the Houses of Parliament.

This has proven such a popular event and requests were so numerous that Lord Dear has generously agreed to host another lunch in aid of Fishing For Forces. Six of the twelve tables have already been booked and with a three course superb meal and an auction with items for everyone in such a prestigious setting it is no wonder it has proven very popular.

To book your seat or a table pleas email [email protected]. First come, first served.

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