Sunday, 18 February 2018

AGM 2018/19

I couldn't make it yesterday as this accursed Australian flu lines up for yet another week of torment! Club treasurer Elliot Fraser also failed to get through finding snow blocking the way at Talla.
As usual, the lads took a sensible course and the points to be implemented will be. One point we should consider is whether to allow the engines to be given out to members only if they have attended a work party. It is only correct that those who have carried out work for the club should be afforded some extras compared to those members who do nothing!

St Mary’s Angling Club
2. RICHARD Plisga
(1) The future use of the two clubs 4 stroke engines.
Happy with the current situation with the 2 off engines. Agreed that the fee of £5.00 for hire of these motors to members good idea. Would cover the cost of petrol and maintenance?
(2) The makeup of our fleet of boats.  Happy to keep current status quo with the amount and type of boats. 2 of Arrans and 2 of Lomond’s.  An extra boat would incur extra maintenance.
(3) Finances. Elliot made a valiant attempt to attend the meeting but would be unable to arrive at the on time. Discussed over the phone the balance and state of accounts with Elliot. This was passed on to members who attended the meeting. It was agreed that we could spend some monies on 2xxl life jackets(100kg). Have plenty of the smaller sizes but seem to short of the extra-large sizes. Also, could invest in new oars for boats where required.
(4) Our charity donation of £50.00. Agreed to keep paying the £50.00 donation to the St. Marys Hall fund as many members use the village hall car park when fishing Village Hall bay. Would not like to fall out with the community and be banned from parking in the car park.
(5) Our annual salmon fishing competition. Richard in communication with the Majors wife about the shambles with the salmon fishing prize. Depending on the result of these negotiations it was decided if negotiations favourable keep with the current situation and compensate previous winners and guest with days fishing on the upper pavilion beat as promised. If negotiations fail to offer a days fishing on tweed or Ettrick beats which the club could afford as compensation.
(6) Silverware. Agreed to keep the current competitions as is. More competitions would occur extra work for the committee. Heavy trout suggest prize to suit winner. If on the fly. Fly fishing equipment. If spinning, spinning equipment. Again, with the heavy pike fishing competition prize equipment to suit the type of fishing.
Discussed annual open trout competition. Decided to keep the current rules. May allow spinning if weather poor for fly fishing. Heavy winds. Some members not happy fly fishing in heavy winds. Would be agreed on the day. If the days fishing on upper pavilion was not a prize it was suggested that the attendance would drop and the club would make a loss on the competition at current arrangements with Tibbie and Café. Would have wait on the outcome with negations with Majors wife.
(7) Election of office bearers.  All existing office bearers were re-elected.
(8) AOCB
Some concern was raised about the security of the front doors to the boathouse as many members were storing fishing items in the boathouse AT THEIR OWN RISK. Would look at possibility of installing a cover over the padlock to make it harder to gain access to break
Also, if members are storing fishing items could they be stored out of sight as many thieves are opportunists. Could make an area to store items out of sight from outside thru windows.
When discussing damage to boats, the dredging of the boathouse bay was raised.  Left-hand side very shallow. Again, the committee could look at this option.
Frank Gillespie raised point that he has no internet. Had enjoyed working on work days and like to be contacted by text if any more work days were happening.

6 members paid their annual subscription.

Sunday, 11 February 2018

Back soon!

Unfortunately, due to illness (flu and complications), it has not been possible to publish a news page this week.Hopefully be back next week. Remember Club AGM next Saturday 12noon at the Tibbie Shiels Inn All renewals currently with me have been processed and are in the post.

Sunday, 4 February 2018

A quiet start!

Photo 01- Lovely fish, at 9lbs 3oz compare her with the photo below!

Photo 02 - Is she one and the same from yesterday?

A quiet start!

Winter for us is always a quiet time as the good weather anglers stay at home. The types of angler we see are the hardnosed Pike anglers oblivious to weather conditions. These anglers are keen committed anglers and hugely respectful of our rules and never give us cause for complaint! We have averaged the huge number of 6 anglers per week and whilst typical of the time of year is a very low number.

This number, however, does not cause us concern we are structured to cope with lightly fished winters and busier summers. Putting this in context however in the summer we rarely average more than 20 anglers per week so there is never a problem in seeking areas to fish in peace!  These quiet statistics give our fish stocks ample room to grow and develop unhindered by being repeatedly hooked and unhooked as happens in many "plastic" Pike ponds!

The wee fish in photo 01 is I am sure the same fish I caught around a month ago at the Bay of Plenty but she now weighs 9lbs 3oz as opposed to 8lbs 3oz four weeks ago on the same set of digital scales. If she is the same fish then she is obviously in the peak of health feeding well and further developing her cache of eggs.She pulled line like a good un and gave my reel a good workout! In a loch which is overfished this would not be the case, she would instead be more emaciated and less keen to feed! Being quiet on the fishing front is not a cause for concern, it is, in fact, a boon to our population of fish!

Photo 03 - Only a wee drop of snow yesterday!


Applications are trickling in which is good as processing will not start until Monday. Members should be aware that the current issue cards are valid until the end of February. So no need to panic there is plenty of time. As I have stated processing will begin on Monday so those with renewals in can expect their cards towards the end of the week.


I mentioned a few weeks ago that my group of disabled workers were looking for any old bikes or parts for our recycling project. Well, we have received 2 bikes (an 80s quality Falcon racer with a Mixte frame and a mountain bike) three wheels and a handlebar complete with gear changers and brake levers. The project is ongoing so if you come across any more give me a call on 07980350031.

From our recommended dealer!

This week Mike has some great offers including a Greys QRX fly reel starting at only £99.99 with  Airflo sightfree line and Airflo eco fly box click the link to see more

The wider world in my view!

A great policy!

The Labour party every now and then comes up with a fantastic policy and one such appeared this week. It is in response to the lack of ground available for house building at a reasonable price. Landowners who own suitable ground for house building will have that land purchased (compulsorily) by the government at the current rate for agricultural land as opposed the hugely inflated market price we see every day!   
So the landowner gets a reasonable price and that land may be used for housing. Home ownership has been on a rapid downward spiral since 2010 and this move will lessen the price of these houses. Couple this with the mass nationalisation of essential industry and utilities and we have a sound basis for the equitable society so many of us call for! Let's see more land being taken from those who "own" thousands of acres! Happy days are coming!

Massive beef about a ham!

Well as far as letdowns go the Chinese trade visit was a spectacular one! Theresa Mayhem heading off to China with a load of supposed businesses looking to further increase trade with the worlds second economy which by the end of the year will be in number one position. As usual, the Maybot was in a servile mode with the Chinese holding all the cards!

It turns out the delegation was comprised of university departments, public companies other non-descript groups and only 15% of the delegation was made up by private companies! If you remove the flannel we can see what actually transpired in terms of solid business generated! The Maybot couldn’t wait to spew the £9billion figure to anyone who would listen! 

Now, £9billion in trade with China is pretty much small beer, heck, even Lord Snooty came back with over £40billion worth of deals! The reality of the Maybot’s figure of £9billion has to be questioned as no details have been released! The jolly trip secured nothing more than cheap words, in fact, a wish list for the Maybot!

Great play was made out the possible acceptance of UK beef by China after it was banned following the BSE shambles! The actual deal is simply starting talks with China over the possibility of accepting British beef! The Chinese supremo was quick to add in that China is self-sufficient in agriculture, again a song and dance about nothing

As a trade mission, it was a disaster! You might have thought the ham that is the Maybot might have expressed some discontent about the amount of plastic polluting Chinese rivers as they are currently the most polluted in the world. This weak leader rather than directly taking them to task simply gave them a copy of “The Blue Planet! And said nothing!

Similarly with human rights which is currently not in the Chinese dictionary was never mentioned! Our business with China has been on the increase for years and whilst it is not possible to say that nothing was achieved we will also not see any massive rises in our exports to the country!

If this Brexit mess were not such a serious one for the country it could be turned into a fantastic tragic-comedy!  Anna Soubry, one of the few sensible Tories pleaded with the Maybot for a clue as to what her end goal was but was fobbed off with the usual robotic response that “we are leaving the EU and the Customs Union.” Soubry also apologised to the EU negotiating team for all the “nonsense” they have had to put up with!

The situation is now critical with businesses looking for a clue as to where their future lies. The bottom line is that the Maybot hasn’t got a clue she makes it up as she goes along! The whole country is screaming out to know where we are headed and there is a different answer depending on who responds.

Tenacity is a virtue to be applauded when employed appropriately, the Maybot, however, doesn’t seem to know when to cease and desist! In normal times she would have been ousted long ago, but they know to topple her would likely lead to a general election which they would lose! So they allow her to stay and to hell with the ensuing consequences for the country!

In Scotland the Borg Queen Ruth Davidson is watching her army of spineless Tories crumble all around her as the latest You Gov poll shows them losing 7 seats to the SNP! The Scottish voters are finally coming to their senses and not before time! Of course, I can’t predict what will signify the end of the Maybot’s reign but for the sake of compassion and decency, it needs to happen quickly!

To allow the country to be mismanaged in the most incompetent and haphazard manner is nothing short of a crime! The woman has now become an international embarrassment, with the result that the world views the UK as an island of fools!  When “negotiating” with Angela Merkel she was asked 3 times what the UK wanted out of an EU deal, the Maybot replied, “make me an offer”! The Maybot seemed to have forgotten it is the UK that is leaving and looking for a deal!

Of course, the German press was in fits at the absurdity of the Maybot’s tactics and again the reputation of the Maybot and the country took a nosedive! The Tories need to realise that to limit damage she needs to go now. In this case, any means would be deemed fair so great is the potential for further damage!

This woman is a major disaster with no leadership skills, no vision for the future and no clue as to how to run a government! Get her out!

Sunday, 28 January 2018

Renewal of memberships 2018.

 Photo 01 - Barry with the 20.50lbs Pike (see below).

Renewal of memberships 2018.

Membership renewals for season 2018 are now open. We will begin processing renewals this week so all members wishing to renew their memberships are invited to do so. There is no need to fill out the form on our website if your contact details have not changed but if they have we would appreciate your updated details.

Memberships may also be renewed at the loch by giving your fee and relevant details to Jenny or Les or even me. The renewal period will be for the whole month of February plus the first week in March is provided as a grace period. We would expect however the majority to come in during February. The fee for renewals is again £35.00 which offers exceptional value for money given that you may hire a boat free of charge and make use of the clubs fish finders and the club boathouse.

Photo 02 - Looks cold, but that hot cuppa is inviting!

Those who wish to join the club should enquire at the end of February, first spaces will go to those currently on the waiting list and any remaining spaces to those who apply. If you are giving up your membership we would appreciate you returning your boathouse key which may be handed in on Saturday or given to Jenny anytime.

 You may also renew by post sending a cheque/Po made payable to St Mary’s Angling Club to Richard Plisga 28 Meigle Street Galashiels Selkirkshire TD1 1LL.

Photo 03 - Looking down the loch behind Barry's pod!

First, double from the loch!

Barry Leslie is a fairly recent member, but one that bangs in the sessions looking for that bigger fish. Up until now he has only managed sub-10lbs Pike but on Saturday in that appalling weather, he bagged what will be a fish of a lifetime. As you can see from Photo 01 he caught a beauty weighing in at 9.3kks which equates to 20.50lbs! at first, Barry was bemused as he took the scale reading to be 9lbs 3oz but looking at the scales later he noted the readings were set to kilograms.

It’s his second biggest but his best from the loch. She was quickly photographed and returned safely to the loch. This is hugely important as a fish this size will lay upwards of a quarter of a million eggs most of which will be lost to predation and disease, some, however, will make it through to adulthood and become our future sport. So well done Barry, that’s you in the lead for this year's heavy Pike competition!

Photo 04 - Like a Christmas card!

Club AGM 2018.

The club AGM for 2018 will be held on the 17th of February 2018. The likely venue will be the Tibbie Shiels Inn. It’s a Saturday and the meeting will commence at 12noon. As always any member is welcome to attend and any substantive issues should be sent to me no later than 5 days before the meeting date at the above address.

Littering update!

I went round to see Alastair at the Tibbie yesterday and we talked on a variety of subjects. He showed me a photo of a mess left by a couple of anglers at the secret swim and I headed there a little later. What I found was shocking, a Celtic top, two empty Buckfast bottles, an empty vodka bottle, four full bottles of Irn Bru, two empty bottles of Irn Bru, a wire shopping basket (likely stolen), a couple of broken lures complete with hooks and a saw used for illegal tree cutting.

Now, there is only a limited amount of things we can do to prevent this, calling the police is not an option as it is considered by them trivia and something we should deal with ourselves. We do have the names and addresses they supplied as well as their car registration numbers but again there is not much we can do. If they are recognised on return they, of course, will be sent packing!

We could erect notices everywhere but respecting the countryside should be an inherent quality! We are putting up a number of notices on the bank but the types that carry out these acts tend not to pay any attention to notices. Naturally, any member witnessing such littering should let us know immediately. Looks like it’s a problem that is ever present!

Ps Alastair let slip that he and Elanor are now engaged, due to marry in September, the club sends it's congratulations and hope you both have a long and happy life together.

The wider world in my view!

Six is a magic number!

Six is going to be a very important number for the population of Britain over the coming weeks. This is the number of Tory MPs that is required to mount a challenge to the Maybot truly terrible reign in office. Yes, at the moment 42 MPs have sent in letters expressing no confidence in our timid and wholly inept leader!

This absolutely appalling woman who if she were a candidate on “Mastermind” would have the art of bungling as her specialist subject! The Tory party has become increasingly disjointed and distant when we really need a united and cohesive government! The Tories desperately want to avoid a leadership challenge as the likelihood is that it will herald the end of this directionless government!

You would have to be pretty dense not to have twigged that arch buffoon Boris Johnston made his play for the party leadership this week by publicly announcing that he wants a further £5billion for the cash-starved NHS. Of course, the Tories will cave in and substantial amounts of new funding will appear on their money tree!

At least in that respect, Boris has done a good thing, it is, however, important to bear in mind that in a leadership contest everyone has a chance! It’s difficult to imagine anyone worse than the Maybot but Boris Johnston might be wearing that tag!  It’s almost beyond belief but he could be the next Prime Minister!

What the country needs is for the Maybot to be ousted and a general election called. Labour even in the shambolic state it is in would win, Brexit would be cancelled and some order restored! The dismantling of rampant capitalism could begin along with rebuilding our public services. 

For the first time in history, real and significant steps could be taken to rid ourselves of the huge inequalities in our misguided way of life!
Don’t, however, think it will be the land of milk and honey for it will be a hard and tortuous road! But weighed up against the current chaos it will indeed seem like a holiday! The Maybot will possibly hang on for the next few weeks but the predicted car crash that will be the local elections in May will bring her tenure to an end!

I can’t remember a time when chaos abounds like it does today. The country narrowly voted for Brexit based on a bed of lies and now a large opinion poll carried out by the Manchester Guardian shows that 47% of people want a second referendum whilst only 32% want to carry on! Whatever government we have to endure they will have to take this into account! The view of the people has changed!

According to the Manchester Guardian today one further Tory has formally expressed no confidence in the Maybot!

Sunday, 21 January 2018

Such generosity!

Photo 01- stunning fly reel, one of the prizes donated.

Such generosity!

One of our members has graciously decided to make a donation to the club in respect of our yearly competitions for the heaviest Pike in the season and the heaviest Brown Trout. The prizes on offer are of the highest quality and will meet the needs of the winners for many years to come!

Photo 02 - The whole kit!

The prizes are a fixed spool, big capacity, bait runner reel in the big pit style which is a solid piece of kit. It is a precision built reel, silky smooth and features high line speed on the retrieve and disengaging the bait runner is a seamless affair. The reel comes with a spare alloy spool and a spare graphite one.  It is very well built and in the hand and on the rod, it will serve you well.

Photo 03 - Big pit reel!

The second part of the gift to the club is the fantastic fly reel which comes with three spare spools of lightweight alloy. Encompassing all in a soft fabric bag you will know where that fast sinking line is at all times. The working of the reel is an absolute pleasure each click being positive indicative of precision build quality.

Photo 04 - The other view of the big pit reel.

These prizes will be in addition to the ones we already offer. We are extremely grateful to the member donating these items it was an act of kindness we did not expect! Nevertheless members this year have an extra incentive when fishing for the big one! Tight lines!
Photo 05 - One of Davy's Pike from yesterday.

The minority!

Speaking with our loch keeper last week she expressed her concern at the numbers of living trees which had been subjected to butchery.  By that I mean branches being hacked off presumably for burning. The majority of anglers know how to behave in the countryside but for the minority who do not take note – No cutting of trees is permitted!

Photo 06 - Thick snow yesterday.


I didn’t chance it yesterday deferring to the BBC’s weather reports. One member who braved the conditions was Davy Forsyth and you know what, he caught a couple of fish. Trudging through three-foot-deep snow you might say he got his just rewards! The following photos show just what Davy encountered!

Photo 07 - A last look!

The wider world in my view!

The most inept!

Never in all my years on earth have I come across a bunch of idiots like the current crop that have the temerity to call themselves a government! On accepting her crown the Maybot promised much along the lines of “strong and stable” and the rhetoric convinced quite a few let’s say unthinking types! The reality, however, has been a complete and utter shambles at a time we need resolute certainty!

Lord Snooty aside, we have here the most inept politician ever. Butcher Thatcher famously said, “the lady is not for turning”! The Maybot does nothing else! The Maybot and her flock of sheep are successfully building a new reputation for the country but unfortunately, that reputation is a negative one, we are already the laughing stock of Europe!

We are evermore seen as a haphazard, bungling and clueless nation! Now you might think I am being unnecessarily hard on who I am sure is a delightful woman, but the bottom line is that this woman and her flock of utterly talentless so-called politicians are ruining your lives!

The Brexit dilettante who only hears the words with which she has programmed with ignores the society which crumbles all around her! All our public institutions are in terminal decline as they relentlessly cut their funding to the bone! It seems apparent the Maybot is only interested in cutting tax for the rich to the exclusion of all else!

Now the above must surely damn the Maybot but unfortunately, that is not the end of her destructive spree! It is now clear to all that public opinion has now shifted away from the Brexit that was founded on a plethora of deceit and downright lies!. Most thinking politicians at this point would come to their senses and be honest with the public and say that another referendum is needed as it is clear public opinion has changed!

Behaving like a programmable robot (hence the Maybot tag) she ploughs on pulling us deeper into a void that will set this country back tens of years! Opinion from all the leading authorities is warning against her irresponsible course, business body’s, trades unions, economists, in fact, the only voices for Brexit are clowns like Boris Johnston and Michael Gove!

With these diddy’s at the helm, it’s going to be a choppy journey, we should prepare to tighten our belts and brace ourselves for another year of blundering on the world's stage! People all over the country are completely bewildered by the actions of this government. Who would have thought the Scottish voters in the 13 constituencies who blundered by electing a Scottish Tory could have caused so much carnage! They voted in haste, we now repent at leisure!

Sunday, 14 January 2018

New visitors to the loch!

Photo 01-  Looking from the Village hall as the light goes!

New visitors to the loch!

We have always had a good relationship with the Pike Anglers Club of Great Britain and we were delighted when Region 31 got in touch asking to come and fish in April later this year. We always look forward to meeting anglers such as this group as we invariably find them to be aware of good angling practice, be aware of the countryside code and jolly good people to boot!

We have not yet received the specific numbers coming but it will be between twelve and twenty anglers staying for a period of two days. They will be fishing on the 14th and 15th of April and will be based at the graveyard swim. To accommodate the anglers all our boats on St Mary’s have been reserved for them so no boats will be available for hire on St Mary’s on these days.

We are currently in preliminary discussions with a Scottish coarse angling group who would like to hold a lure fishing competition for Pike over both the lochs in May. They estimate between 40 and 60 anglers will be taking part in the one-day event. We will keep you posted.

Photo 02 - Club fish finder donated by Davie Wilson.

Topper bloke!

You will have seen his name here from time to time catching some nice Pike and Brown Trout. However, that's not the reason he is appearing today. Davie bought one of these for himself and decided to buy one for use by club members, what a noble thought! Well along with the one gifted by Mike Christie we now have two so just ask Jenny and get out with a fish finder. Many thanks, Davie!

A hearty feed!

Yesterday just before getting out of the car at the village hall I noticed what looked like a load of Blackbirds feeding on a Hawthorn bush. I had a look through binoculars and the majority of the birds were Fieldfares and they were getting stuck into the berries. One fieldfare devoured 11 haws, an amount I never thought they could cope with. The berries, however, are turning and the rosehips are already gone so it looks like lean times ahead! Great to see nature in action!

New contour map see below.

A new view!

Over the years we have had much help from our members and many visitors in helping us to propel the club ever forward. Recently one of our keen visitors Anthony Keenan, a committed fly fisherman who spends his time off wisely seeking out wild Brown Trout and now Pike got in touch. He is also a very keen hill-walker and as such is heavily reliant on the excellent Ordnance Survey maps.

Through his hill trekking, he came across the depth map for the lochs and mailed them on to is. This map is easily expandable allowing anglers to home in on the area of their interest. This will surely be of help to many anglers, many thanks, Anthony.

The wider world in my view!

Despair all around!

Almost everyone I meet is filled with incredulity at the daily shambles that is Brexit! It is probably the topic of a century unless Donald Chump starts World War 3! The Maybot,s legendary bungling is now set in stone for all time! But this week another hobby horse rose to prominence and that is our National Health Service. Yes, the system that has helped many of us is in crisis yet again!

There is no doubting that winter brings increased pressure as it has always done, but what is different now is that the service is unable to cope with that extra demand! You would have thought that the government would have in place a plan to deal with this recurring problem and it seems they have!

It's not a thought out tailored plan, rather a sledgehammer to crack a nut type plan! It consists of cancelling all waiting list operations for a month or so and see how that goes!  I have never heard of such a cack-handed plan! All this plan achieves is furthering the suffering of the patient on that waiting list!

One health minister said there was no need for patients to wait in corridors there were plenty of chairs on which they could sit! You really have to wonder what goes through the mind of these Tories, it's patently obvious they have not got a clue! Our health service in Scotland is in a much better condition than that of England and Wales!

However, that is not to say it is in great shape! Listening to Fuhrer Davidson criticising the Scottish Government on their record on health care made my blood boil. This jumped up loudmouth journalist is mostly the reason our health system is below par! The party which she would like to lead is responsible for chronically underfunding our health service for the last eight years! They would rather give tax cuts to the rich when they should be taxing them more to pay for an improved health service!

It is clear that on every front this government is useless! They are presiding over a moment in our history where the decline is resolute, steady and steep! If we are unfortunate enough to have to endure a full term under these fools then our country will bear no resemblance to that of eight years ago! This government has been tried on all political facets and has been found wanting on every single one! Too many people blundered in voting for this crass administration let’s hope they have learned a lesson!

And so it continues!

You would hardly believe it but the so-called reshuffle (a bloody shambles) of the Maybot’s team has actually managed to make things worse!  The only minister in her cabinet with an ounce of savvy Justine Greening was sacked and the job she turned down was given to the failed TV presenter, the evil witch, Esther McVile!

Perhaps an earlier description paints the picture better; she was described as “a stain on humanity “with many calling to “lynch the bitch”! Undisputedly the most reviled politician since Butcher Thatcher! In her previous ministerial role, she managed to inflict untold damage on the most compromised in our society, the disabled!
Disabled people all over the country will be shaking with fear knowing they are in line for a massive hit! Now the Maybot would likely have appointed her because there was no one else in her talent free ranks. It is, however, another spectacular own goal as the country’s most hated politician again comes to the forefront.

Interestingly McVile was a director in the family demolition firm and it turns out that this company was twice served with a prohibition of work notice with the second one closing the firm for good!  Yes, the McViles allowed their workers to use scaffolding without any safety rails putting those workers at great risk. Not really a suitable background for a cabinet minister! It’s just another massive blunder that characterises the reign of the Maybot!

Sunday, 7 January 2018

Membership 2018!

Photo 01 - My first of 2018 weighing in at 8lbs 3oz!

Membership 2018!

Already a few membership renewals have come in but will not be processed until February. We decided last year to have the season roughly concurrent with the start of the Brown Trout season. The starting date for membership will be the first of March 2018 01/03/2018! Therefore we have allowed the month of February and the first week of March to be the period for renewals.

So existing members should renew their memberships during this period if for any reason doing this is a problem please contact us and we will do all we can to accommodate you. Those who are seeking to join the club should mail us and as existing members drop out we will accommodate you.

Members who are not renewing their memberships should return their keys to the club so they may be given to others. We have not yet nailed down a definite date for our AGM but we should be able to clarify this soon.


Photo 02 - Yoshikawa ?? initial impressions GOOD!

Yes, he visits every year and occasionally leaves us something really quite useful. Amazon vouchers are one such gift, you are getting the variety of a city centre whilst lying on your favourite couch. I got some and I decided to get a couple of new reels. My requirements were line capacity of over 200 metres 20lbs mono. Also required were the bait runner facility and good build quality. As I have previously stated the number of bearings is of no interest to me, some of the best reels I ever owned run on plain bearings!

The reels I got were Yoshikawa size 6 reels and I am pleased with the performance so far. Landing my first Pike of the year (fat as a pig) the reel was resolute and the clutch smooth. The bait runner trips with a muffled but precise click. It’s not a comprehensive review but the reel is off to a good start. The proof of the pudding, however, is how it performs after the ritual abuse to which I subject my tackle. I will update the review later in the season.

The wider world in my view!

We have just taken our first breaths in the New Year and already the Maybot has started this year’s programme of bungling and U-turns! Yes, we are only days into the New Year and it’s all going belly up again! The NHS is not in crisis the Maybot announced, yet clearly from staff, patients, visitors and commentators from every sphere it clearly is in crisis!

Patients spending 12 hours in a corridor because no beds are available are an absolute outrage! It seems that everyone in the country recognises the NHS is in crisis except the Maybot and the buffoons she calls her government! She said the NHS was better prepared than ever before for the impending winter onslaught, clearly, it is not! Only today I was conversing with a member who has suffered ill health and has found the service to be below par! Remember in Scotland the SNP have mitigated the cuts to health boards the situation in England is the worst it has ever been, shame on the Maybot!

She must think we are all a bunch of Muppets! When you starve a service of funds it requires year after year for many years, delivering that service becomes more difficult with the passing of each year. That is what has happened; you do not need a PhD in economics to fathom that one out!

That is bad enough but what is happening to the NHS is happening in social care, council services and public services! I cannot remember a time when bungling on an industrial scale was so common. There is not a week gone by where one catastrophe or disaster has not taken place. Every public service that we have has been decimated by the Maybot!

So here we are facing the most crucial moment in peacetime history and we have a band of lightweights leading us to god only knows what! All of us at some time or another have set ourselves a task but have had to move in another direction because that task was unattainable, or because we found the end result unsatisfactory!

And so we plough on with this Brexit nonsense, whilst it is clear to most thinking people the outcome will be catastrophic! Jobs are disappearing overseas, experts predict a period of desperate growth for many years yet they still persist! The fools at the helm need to be stopped before it is too late! There is no research-based evidence, no thought out policy just glib phrases like “a deep and special relationship” which means nothing!

A credible cross-party opposition needs to be formed with the sole aim of giving the British people a vote on the final referendum deal. The terms of the vote should be either
 (1) Accept the deal and make the best of a likely poor situation.
 (2) Forget the Brexit nonsense and go back to EU membership!
The salient point being is that our future is too important to be left to the duffers in government to decide! 2018 will be a momentous year but it could also be the most catastrophic in our history! The people of this country deserve a future, what we are currently facing is an absolute disaster waiting to happen!

Fox hunting!

The Maybot today reiterated that there will not be a vote on the subject in this parliament, yet another massive U-turn! What great news! To see a bunch of alcohol-sodden Hooray Henry's chasing and subjecting a wild animal to extreme torture is a sight that needs to be consigned to history! If a fox is causing damage it could be humanely shot! The Maybot hasn’t got much right in her premiership and even this was forced upon her, some good news in what is normally a deluge of nonsense emanating from Theresa Mayhem!