OK so Im Lucky!

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05/10/01 - 18/10/02
In Memoriam
Oct 5, 2001
Wednesday 4th September

And so the luck started!
I told Mark that I had to change all my plans due to the trip to the Sheffield hospital as we parted following Tuesdays match.

On my return home, I discovered Teepees fantastic post regarding the disabled Skylarks day and then, feeling guilty, had to phone Big Brian, (the leader of the Skylarks helpers team) and tell him that I was no longer able to help on Friday!

He was very understanding, and I made a commitment to help on Sunday, as Geoff would be there too.

If you havent read Teepees post, I urge you to do so as the pleasure he had shines through his writing!
My despondency at missing this lasted a very short time!

You have E-Mail said the computer in its sickly AOL voice.

Turning to the in box, I noticed it was from Mark.
Opening it I read it with growing excitement!

Trev it read, because youre tied up Friday, Saturday, Sunday, you mentioned you might be fishing over Wednesday night. Bob Roberts wants to come and fish 17. Can you let him out as I have a Radio club meeting?

Could I? Too right I could!

I immediately replied
Yes, Mark, of course I can, but I wont fish, Ill just watch Bob

Back came a reply

LOL, I already told him that and hes quite happy about it

AND SO, yes Alan, lucky me was to be found on Wednesday. Driving down the M1 at a slightly over the speed limit (only30miles ph or so!) pace, to arrive at 4.00 pm. To fish with the UK Masters Champion and current holder of the title of Best U.K.Angling correspondent a title awarded by his peers and the 2nd time he has won it in 3 years!

Mark was already there but no one else and I was selfishly relieved that I would have the opportunity to learn from a maestro, all by myself.

Where are you fishing asked Mark?

I thought I would try 2 I said. The peg that Mark and I now refer to as Martins, as twice we have tried to find him a Barbel there.
Only Darryl had caught one there, although he hooked 6 whilst sharing a day with Teepee and I

Rivers too low and clear for 2 Mark said Why not deeper at 6, or 7? Or have another go at 1?

Well, there is a channel on the inside I said and we know from Darryl and Martins one take that the fish are there

Mark was unconvinced, but said Its up to you

I hummed and hared for 20 minutes or so, as we sat and talked of other things, mainly Marks regret that he could not stay with us, but with time moving on I firmed my resolve and said Yep, Im going for 2 and Mark helped me move the kit the 20 yards to the peg.
Then he helped me set up and it really made an idyllic comfortable 2-rod swim.


Having set up, I fired into the swims a shared pint each of Hemp, American Buckwheat, Groats and just a few maggots and then laid out my stall as I prepared for the night session after Bob had gone.
I, on reading his E-Mail over methods, was determined to use a similar system on the nearside channel and had brought the Mistral Arctic/Anchovy Boilies, plus 4mm pellets for the feeder.
I was unfamiliar with his Thamesley Feeder, but had a range of open and blockends.

On the second rod, necessarily fished further out into a shallower, faster current, I was using lead only.

Why is Bob fishing 17? I asked.

He had a look at all the swims the other night replied Mark He believes the way that 18 and 17 shallow up from the deep at 20, over gravel, screams a Barbel swim and wants to try his theory

It transpired, that after all his years of fishing, such is Bobs enthusiasm, that he was leaving off work, driving down here from Doncaster, (Over an hour) fishing from arrival (hoped for at 4.00!) returning after midnight and then faced with a job at Wakefield at 7.00 am the next morning!

Yes, I was lucky to be part of this!

Mark was becoming concerned as Bob failed to show!

I expect its traffic I said, all too aware of my own experiences at peak times on the same though shorter route.

Well Mark decided, as 5.30 approached I must be off. Ill leave the gate and when he wants to go, just make sure its shut behind him.
If anyone asks, just tell them hes your Guest

I sat and thought on that as Mark departed. It had a lovely ring to it!
Bob Roberts, Top Angling Writer, Guest of Zippy [J]

They must have passed on the road!

Very quickly after Marks departure Bob arrived.
Coming down to my peg, his first comment dented my faith further!

Hi Trev he said Why are you fishing that peg
Weakly I reiterated my gut feeling, even less certain now of my decision!

Hmmm, he sounded non-committal, possibly, although I thought you might have fished 1
When I mentioned the Groats I had fed he visibly winced.
I know they are light coloured I said, But Im going to pick your brains and so I think theyll be OK after dark

He seemed mollified and accepted that a modicum of thought had gone into my choice and so then I started!

Bob, the Thamesley feeder I said Im not familiar with it, Why is it different? Where do I get it?

Patiently he pulled one out and showed me,
But its very much modified he explained.
Pointing out the removal of the front end, the addition of rig tube protection, the diversion of the loop, the addition of both a swivel and lead!

Will these do? I queried, displaying what I had.

Just a minute he replied and returning to his car, thrust upon me 2 standard Thamesley feeders!
Despite my protestations, he would take no reward or repayment for these and I felt both grateful and disconcerted at the mans generosity.

Anyway, Im late said Bob And Ive got a limited time, so Id better set up

Now I pride myself on being a quick learner, and I believed I had in my Tackle Tart kit all the materials necessary to emulate the conversion of the feeder, so I quickly resolved a plan.

OK I said, You go and set up, Ill just finish here and then Ill come and join you.
Bob left and I began to follow his instructions on one of the feeders.
I wanted to show him I had listened to his advice and could act upon it.

As I write the feeder, which I am proud to say was 100% faithfully converted (OK 95%, I used silicon float tube in the absence of rig tube!) sits proudly on my computer desk.
Use it? Not likely, when I have sourced and converted another half dozen, then I can use it! But the loss risk was too great that day!

Whilst waiting for Bob, I had quickly cast out my 2 rods and then set to preparing hair rigged Boilies ready for quick change during the night.
Another thing I later learned Bob brings ready prepared, which I shall emulate in future.
Almost as I completed the feeder conversion, the channel rod I had placed close to the bank whipped around, the alarm screamed and I was in to a Peg 2 Barbel!
The fight was the longest I have yet experienced!
Hit and hold was the motto! My hook length for expediency was a bought, size 10 barbless 15 hair rig to 8lb bottom.
How I prayed and also cursed my decision to sacrifice safety for speed with Bobs pending arrival.

The fish tried and tried to make the shelter of the underlying snags secreted by the tree.
The clutch gave 2 yards and I, sweating slowed the motion and regained them!
4,5 or 6 times this happened and on my gaining a yard, then she would hug the bottom again.
However slowly, but inexorably I brought her up the swim to a point where I dared risk releasing one hand and picking up the net.
Still a bit previous, the net brought the immediate plunging, heart stopping dive, but some 2 or 3 attempts later, I was able to slide the net under what must surely be my first double!


But No,
8lbs 3 ounces read the Replacement Scales.
In truth I am not too disappointed, that pleasure is waiting for me still
AND in front of Bob Roberts, I had vindicated my swim choice.
Furthermore, I could show my great friend Martin, that there are Barbel in Peg 2!

I carefully lowered the fish into the water, Head upstream and wedged my Specimen net in position.
Then, Getting into the car, I drove almost the length of the meadow to where Bob was reclining on a Carp type bivvy chair.
Hows it going? I asked
Just started he replied and then examining my proffered adapted feeder, pronounced it Spot-on to my great delight.

Ive just got to slip back for a moment I announced casually Got a Barbel resting and want to release it

What about a photo? asked Bob?

Well. I did a self-portrait shot I said.

Examining it in miniature on the digital screen, We can do better than that Bob said and winding in his rods, insisted on accompanying me back and kindly taking these shots!

When an expert offers to take your picture, you dont say NO!

Datafile.jpg Datafile.jpg Datafile.jpg

Then he quickly took the fish down to peg 3 and released her.

Carefully ensuring she did not turn belly up, which I am pleased to say she showed no signs of.

Here you may just be able to see her, recovering from her great exertions.
We returned to the pegs Bob was fishing.
I say pegs as he had one rod set up on 17 and one on the very adjacent 18.
Here he is baiting up on 18.


He gave me a box to sit on and for the next 4 and a half hours, he patiently answered my questions, expanded on his life and made one of the most enjoyable evenings for me that I can remember for very a long year.
In selling all my later life, from the age of 19, I always was taught, that being a good listener was the key to success.
So it is with Acting and even more so with Journalists.
After Bob had gone, I mentally chastised myself for talking so much about me!
His listening abilities and gentle prompts meant that we shared a great conversation!
If I could only learn to shut-up, I could have learned so much more!

Initially, I questioned him on fishing.
Our current quarry, the Barbel?
The rigs, set-ups, methods, feed, flavours, his association with Archie, other species, Big Perch, Big Chub, the moons influence etc.
How I made the man earn his exit

We moved on to his entry into Journalism, How he (despite looking much younger) is only 3 years away from me and therefore, upon taking his GCE's (real, not multiple choice Exams in our day!) was able, like me, to leave school at 15.

How his insatiable lust for fishing knowledge led him to contact Colin Dyson, then a Fishing Editor.
How eventually Colin persuaded him after more than a years trying, to produce a series of 3 articles and how, surprised and amazed at the positive reactions from the friends and colleagues that he had originally feared would mock, led to an escalation and Editorship of Advanced Carp Magazine.

Avidly I listened to his experiences abroad.

Catching Carp in America and producing a feature over there, that he was unaware until later, was syndicated and reached an audience of some 54 MILLION people!

Fascinated, I sat and reiterated some of my experiences.
Mentioned my admiration for Sir Bobby Robson.
Bob agreed, He has met him!
Other Sports stars, Lee Bowyer in particular and the trials and tribulations he has overcome until finally winning his England call up.

Bobs contemporaries,
Matt Hayes, Bob Nudd in the Fishing world.

Barrie Rickards, who won UK Angling writer of the year in between the 2 years that Bob has won it! In the world. Of Journalism. Bruno Broughton, Des Taylor, all the others and never a bad word to say for anyone.

Incidentally, the UK writers award is judged by other Journalists, and is thus extremely prestigious!
Founded by the Independents Keith Elliott, Bob thinks the Trophy is under his bed!

His sense of humour came through continuously.
Sharing a dislike for bad writing, grammar, punctuation and spelling, we both decried the abbreviated use of the English language.
Although the Sun get by with 400 words he grinned!

Sharing other moments by the waterside!

At dusk, as hopefully those at the Fish-in will see, a huge flight of Canada Geese, regularly honk their way to their night time location and treat us to a spectacular, noisy fly past in 2 or 3 skeins of V shaped bedlam!

We could be watching Coronation Street now I remarked, simply to break the awesome moment.

Bob nodded in agreement And they say fishing is boring

What does Bob do now?
Firstly a full time job with Jarvis, a Daiwa Consultancy (the new Barbel rod which Bob designed and was using should be available next season)
An Angling Times Feature Series, regular Green un (IE the Sheffield Star) reports.
Improve your Coarse Fishing (Hes on the cover of next months issue)
So as he said, Ive cut down now!

I could go on (I told Bob I have an almost eidetic short term memory, now perhaps hell believe me), but those of you wishing to learn his match achievements, I must disappoint.
Not following this branch of Angling, (he briefly mentioned his UK Masters win) and I, ignorant of the scene was ashamed to ask him to expand!

One thing I can vividly remember and which I was so pleased for is that Bob genuinely has eased up.

As a result, he feels he is enjoying his fishing in the UK so very much more.
I am so pleased for him, as I have discovered, to be content with your lot is a tremendous satisfaction.

A bit more energy and strength and I will be there with you Bob!

And Meanwhile?
Yes, he was still fishing.
Just before dusk, the buzzer on Peg 18 went!
Bob leapt to attend and very quickly landed this clean, unmarked, pristine chub.

I estimated it high, but Bob slipped it back, claiming that it was probably only a pound and a half

On expressing disappointment at the lack of photo, Bob promised to ensure I captured The next one
Sure enough, when the other rod went, some hour and a half later, a beautiful 3 pounder gave me this photo to treasure!


Then the mans sense of fun really came through!

What well do now is a John Wilson, he grinned.
Seeing my blank expression, he smiled and said Havent you seen the way John invariably portrays his fish?
Then stripping off his fleece, he made ready for the photo.


When everything was set up, he turned and gave a big grin and said Ready

So here it is!

Bob Roberts doing a John Wilson

That however was the end of the fish and the end of my magical time in some absolutely fascinating company!
Just turned midnight, I followed Bob to the gate, unlocked and got ready to say farewell.

We shook hands and with my wishing him a safe journey, he admonishing me to Take Care, we parted.
He didnt succeed in catching that Barbel, in very low water conditions, but I am positive he is right and have promised to try for him, fish those pegs in better conditions and report back.

I returned to peg 2 and somehow, the night fishing seemed so much emptier than normal, now that I had lost this engrossing Companion.

A busy man, I feel very privileged to have enjoyed his company for so long and hope that a future opportunity may arise.

Thanks Bob, I really appreciated it.
You stated during our conversation that your biggest satisfaction, almost mission, was inspiring and teaching people and bringing more into Angling.
Be assured that I will pass on all I have learned from you and hopefully assist in some small way.

Yes Alan, I give in; I was truly lucky there!

To wrap it up!

I returned to Peg 2 and at 1.30, a surging take on rod 2!
The quick slack on the line lead me to discovering a lost hook!
Yes, that one was a self-tied size 6 Continental Boilie hook, but it may have been a Pike!

A long wait 4.45 am and then rod 1 went wild!
Same set up as I landed the 1st fish on, but this one immediately made the snags!
Locking solid, I waited for a while and then pulled for the break.
I recovered all the tackle, but the hook length was nearly straightened from the branch the wily old Barbel had hung me upon!

So, as I drove up the M1 after a superb evening and a frustrating day, I mused how quickly things can change.
No wonder I lost those two fish as Zippy the incompetent!
For a while there I had been thinking I was Bob Roberts



PS lads, Ive left loads of things out, I know, Boilie stops, hooks, sizes strengths etc., If you need to know anything more, E-Mail me


Ziptrev paw_prints_e0.gif Enough! I'm off!


the bouncer
Staff member
Site Supporter
Aug 11, 2001


Just for the record mate, in the last pic taken by Bob were you trying to kiss the barbus or eat it??


I'll have a fiver on the black un


Regular member
Jul 25, 2002
Nice report Trev, I had a e-mail from Bob and he's got a sore throat now lol. I'm really pleased that you managed to get one out of "Martin's" peg (sorry again Martin lol). If my memory serves me right, I did agree with you on the inside line of peg 2 but I must be honest and say that I thought you would get Chub from it. I stand by my theory that you would have caught more on peg 6 or 7 because as you know, these are my "banker" pegs, but that pleasing look on your face,tells me that you enjoyed making the right choice lol. "Well Done Mate." thumbsup.gif Cya in 2 weeks

Tight Lines


Edited by - angler-mark on 06 September 2002 07:55:47 AM


12/04/02 - 10/01/19
In Memoriam
Apr 12, 2002
Trev, first of all thanks for reference to the Skylarks post,

what can i say about the report with Bob, only that i'm pleased you enjoyed the experience, and hope you get the chance of a repeat performance! and all this talk of luck, did that reflect in your choice of swim (I think not), Mark was you right about pegs 6 & 7 i guess we'll never know, but i'll take your advice when i visit, then i'll ask Trev {LOL}.
looking forward to the trent fish-in, dib dib dib dob dob dob!

Trev, and how you made Bob work for his exit,{LOL}, you should of tied him up and locked him in the loo until the fish-in,

Great report catchya later. thumbsup.gif



Regular member
Aug 11, 2001
Great read about a great evening i'm almost dribbling now waiting for the fish-in.

Fish with Friends @ MaggotDrowning.com


05/10/01 - 18/10/02
In Memoriam
Oct 5, 2001
Regarding the picture, Bob searched your posts to see how to take a proper picture, but couldnt find one of you holding a Barbel!
So, I take it you are ready to swap!

Good! look forward to being 16 stone again

BTW, You've got a Gastroscopy and a CT scan in next few weeks LOL

Tony, no sweat, great day (BUT no pics LOL)
Have a great holiday Mark and MALC, I'm just praying for the weather AS Barbel fishing IMPROVES in the Autumn !!!!!



Ziptrev paw_prints_e0.gif Enough! I'm off!


Account Locked
Jan 24, 2002
hi trev
youre making me sick twice ive sat on that peg but no joy at least you didnt get MY double thats waitng for the end of the month LOL
great to share your experiance though
(sammy read your email but was in a lot of pain she said shell get one to you at W/E)

tight lines.
talk fishing flip football


Staff member
Site Supporter
Sep 18, 2001
As always a totally engrossing read.
Just had an evil thought,Should Bob use one of the photo's of you in an article............well you aren't wearing your cap.......so wont qualify for a fleece

Still a small sacrifice for the amount of info that you gathered

Peter. jumpfish_e0.gif
Make Friends,Go Maggotdrowning.


05/10/01 - 18/10/02
In Memoriam
Oct 5, 2001
Great minds!
I Have already E-Mailed Bob, suggesting the self-portrait LOL



Ziptrev paw_prints_e0.gif Enough! I'm off!


Dec 4, 2001
trev you leave breathless following your tales there great &i read everyone that you post keep up the good work

Cheer's Larry


05/10/01 - 18/10/02
In Memoriam
Oct 5, 2001
Help lads!
Bob's on the cover of IYCF Mag next issue.
Anyone an idea of when it comes out?



Ziptrev paw_prints_e0.gif Enough! I'm off!


05/10/01 - 18/10/02
In Memoriam
Oct 5, 2001
Thanks Andy,
But that must be in the "Frozen" North

Walked into my local garage tonight (cum mini-market) and found Improve Your Coarse Fishing on the shelf.

Sure enough Bob is on the front cover and he has an article on page 50 regarding Stick float Fishing!!!
So, for all the guys who have asked the questions about the Trent Fish In and how to use a Stick!
Well, don't miss it.Here he suggests lines, tells you how to plumb, shotting etc.(for our Barbel, I suggest 6 and 4 BS though (LOL!)

The water he's fishing is the Derwent, just before it joins the Trent!

Incidentally, the peg he used and has marked, is on the Pride of Derby waters of the Derwent, just 4 or 5 miles away from where we'll all be fishing at Barrow on Trent.

Darryl and I have this book too, so I guess we'll be there soon!

The Pride of Derby waters and site are here.



Ziptrev paw_prints_e0.gif Enough! I'm off!

Edited by - Ziptrev on 11 September 2002 11:21:49 PM


05/10/01 - 18/10/02
In Memoriam
Oct 5, 2001

I saw Darryl yesterday and evidently you are right!
The OCTOBER Magazine comes out on the 16th September!(Dont ask me why!)

Bob's Stick float article is in this month's (September) edition, which came out on 16th August,so if you want a copy, look for it now.



Ziptrev paw_prints_e0.gif Enough! I'm off!


'the maggot'
Jan 28, 2002
hay trev
some good reports youve put on over the last few weeks.
i've enjoyed reading them all while i've been in here hoping to be at the trent fish-in week end.
the same goes for all other posting reports well done 2 u all



05/10/01 - 18/10/02
In Memoriam
Oct 5, 2001
Thanks Sammy,

We all look forward to you being there with us love!



Ziptrev paw_prints_e0.gif Enough! I'm off!
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