The 9th Wandle Piscators annual dinner has been and gone, but certainly not forgotten. Memorable in that a very enjoyable evening was had by all, amid good company, good food, piscatorial banter, slide shows, and rounded off with our now much anticipated fiver-in-the-creel raffle.

Once more it was held at the William Morris, on the banks of the River Wandle.

This year saw us welcome our new president Peter Lapsley, whose presence made our evening all the more enjoyable, and Dr Bella Davies, Director of the Wandle Trust, without whom the occasion would not have been complete, as the Piscators work together so closely with the Trust.

After dinner we were entertained by a talk on ‘how to strip trout’ (a video documentary filmed at Sparsholt College) and a ‘season’s firsts’ competition, where members’ pictures were adjudged and prizes bestowed – the top spot going to Mr Pike’s notorious trout from under Manchester Airport’s runway. Thanks must go to John O’Brien for organizing these!

The Wands Cup – first Wandle trout of the season caught on the dry fly – went to Tony Hutchinson for the third year running, equally matched by Steve Dedman, who won the Species Cup – 14 different species last season! I think it’s high time we broke their stranglehold on these most treasured bits of silverware!

This year’s fiver-in-the-creel raffle was a great success, as the prizes were truly outstanding, ranging from rods, framed flies, hampers, special edition t-shirts and Jo’s sloe gin to a signed copy of Theo Pike’s very readable and informative book – Trout in Dirty Places.  I actually think most members went away with something!

Here’s to another year of Piscatorial success on the Wandle!


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