Anglers Paradise – Get Fishing Family Fun Day

            The Angling Trust are always at the forefront of events to promote angling ensuring its future for generations to come. Anglers Paradise was founded by Zyg Gregorek over forty years ago and has undoubtedly sowed the seeds for many anglers who have visited the venue with their families.  On Easter Sunday 2022 I attended a family fun fishing day at the day ticket Eldorado complex that was supported by Anglers Paradise, The Angling Trust, Shakespeare, Angling Direct, The Environment Agency, Dynamite Baits and Nash Tackle.

Dean Asplin from the Angling Trust with Zenia Drury Gregorek

            Zenia Drury Gregorek was undoubtedly the driving force behind the event that attracted over seventy eager participants. Coaches from the Angling Trust were joined by keen local anglers to introduce families to the joys of angling. All tackle and bait was provided at this free event with a wealth of expert advice on tap for both total beginners and the more experienced angler. All juniors who took part earned a Get Fishing Certificate Award and badge from the Angling Trust presented by Dean Asplin who is Angling Development Manager for the South of England and South West Angling Development Officer.

            I arrived at the venue shortly before the start and enjoyed chatting with  the coaches who had travelled from far and wide to assist and support on the day. Amongst the coaches were Roly, Tony King, John Thompson, Andy Payne, Joe Drury, Hassan Khan, Steve Manley, Dan Murrell, Joe Dietrich, Callum Regan and Mark Thorneycroft.

Roly
John Thompson
Mark Thorneycroft – Angling Trust Volunteer
Tony King
Joe Dietrich
Hassan Khan & Steve Manley

Andy Payne

It was to prove a busy day for the coaches with families descending on the venue from far and wide. The event was blessed with warm sunshine during the morning session with the sounds of children’s laughter and adults banter filling the spring air. A few swallows swooped over the water as the coaches explained the finer details of fishing. The majority of families gathered around a lake stocked with  a wide variety of smaller fish with whips used in conjunction with float tactics. The young anglers were fascinated by the brightly coloured wriggly maggots and soon focussed upon the brightly coloured floats that bobbed optimistically upon the water to disappear delightfully from time to time as a bejewelled fish from another dimension was lifted from the cloudy waters.

Tony King and Andy Payne with the Ezsias Family proudly displaying their certificates. ( many thanks to Tony King for the above image)

            Many caught their first fish and it was  great to see the joy and fascination upon so  many faces. The coaches gave guidance on how to unhook the fish carefully and return them to the water with minimal harm.

            On the lower Lake Hassan Khan of Nash Tackle was joined by Steve Manley and Dan Murrell of Catch to explain the complexities and technicalities of carp fishing. During the morning session the carp showed on the surface in abundance allowing Hassan and his friends to demonstrate the frustration of carp fishing as the carp ignored the carefully presented hook baits. They made up for this in the afternoon session helping a young angler to bank two fine double figure carp.

Leon Mortimer with a fine double figure carp
Leon Mortimer with his dad Floyd Mortimer with the biggest fish of the day.

The event proved a huge success with many families being introduced to angling for the first time. For some this could prove the gateway to a lifetime spent in the great outdoors gaining an in depth appreciation of nature. Angling is recognised as providing a great deal of well-being with significant benefits for mental health.

Joe Drury of Fat Mammoth with a family of happy anglers with a fine koi carp

            During the day I attempted to capture a few images of the fishing that will hopefully do more justice than words alone.

Hugo Clayton with a golden tench

Tony King and Oscar Ody

Dillion Bandy with fine perch ( Image – Kevon Jefferies)
Dillion Bandy with a golden tench ( Image – Devon Jefferies)

Zenia Drury Gregorek would like to say a special thank you to Get Fishing and the Angling Trust for helping and supporting this Event, also to Zyg and Rose Gregorek for letting us hold the wonderful event at Anglers Paradise’s Day Ticket venue Eldorado Big thank you to Shakespeare Fishing for sponsoring the Event with prizes for the kids. Dynamite Baits for providing all the bait, and to the Angling Times & Improve Your Coarse Fishing for providing copies of their awesome magazines to all that attend!! Not forgetting the volunteers to help on the day – Dean Asplin from the Angling Trust, the Angling Trust Coaches, Hassan Khan, Joe Drury, Tony King, Andy Payne, Steve Manley, Joe Dietrich & any that I have forgotten – THANK YOU!! It really was a wonderful event to see so many smiling, happy families & share the MAGIC OF…FISHING!
Anglers Paradisehttp://www.anglers-paradise.co.uk

Kracking Thirty

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Callum Regan banked  a 34lb 10oz Mirror from Nirvana’s day ticket Kracking Carp Lake.
Callum shared –
“After seing a fish show on the wind I quickly set a trap consisting of a multi hinge rig paired with a munch baits citrus pop up. Introduced a scattering of approximately 50 munch baits bio bottom baits generously dusted in bio liquid food and bloodworm complex with a dusting of bio stick mix”.

A Kracking Forty

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Congratulations to George West from Plymouth who caught a new UK  personal best 41lb 5oz Mirror Carp from Nirvana’s Kracking Carp Lake.
George used crushed boilies, sweetcorn and 2mm Manilla pellets to entice the Specimen from Swim 4 with the help from his baiting pole.
Anglers Paradise

Carp from Paradise

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Massive congratulations to Joe Dietrich who battled the wind and rain on Sunday  and it paid off by catching his personal best!!!
Joe caught this beautiful 25lb 9oz Common from the Bottom Cat and Carp Lake 2 at Anglers Eldorado he also had a 16lb 8oz Common all in a day’s session!
Anglers Paradise

Trout in Paradise

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Anglers Paradise is well known for its Coarse Fishing but it also has a trout lake offering Fly-Fishing and lure fishing  for a range of species. The option of lure fishing for trout might be advantageous for those who have not mastered the art of Fly- Fishing. In my limited experience in most lakes the fly will out fish the lure most days.
The fishing is catch and release with barbless hooks only.
Trout Lake (Fly fishing or Lure fishing) for various species of Trout and our predator Lake Valhalla (Lure fishing only)for some fun Pike action.
Zenia Gregory and her family enjoyed a couple of hours family time on their trout lake and caught Tiger, Rainbow, Blue and a Brownie Trout.  Joe caught a Pike yesterday from Valhalla Lake on a lure.
Day Tickets are £20

To book your session, please call 📞 01409221559 strictly between 9am to 4.30pm.

Anglers Paradise

TEAM WORK AT ANGLER’S PARADISE

Anglers Paradise near Halwill Junction is a well known complex of fishing lakes and holiday lodges founded in 1981 by the ever colourful character Zyg Gregorek. Boasting over thirty lakes there are a wide range of options for anglers with tiddlers to specimens of many species. The core value of the venue is family oriented with many families returning year after year to enjoy the friendly atmosphere and excellent fishing.

A fishery like Anglers Paradise requires careful management of stocks and maintenance to each lake. A popular event in the Paradise calendar is the annual netting event that takes place in early November. Each year regular guests, members of the 5 C’s

(Crazy Crafty Cunning Carp Catchers) and staff embark upon the netting of a nominated lake.

I was pleased to attend this years netting and record the event for North Devon Angling News. Each year a different lake is netted the fish removed and kept in stock ponds whilst the lake is de-silted. The fish are sorted and distributed across the venue ensuring that the diverse nature of the fishery is maintained.

This year’s nominated lake was Octopussy last netted over ten years ago. The stock consisted of specimen carp, catfish and numerous silver fish.

I arrived shortly after 9.00am and followed Zenia and her son Zee Jay to find a busy team already at work lakeside hauling nets and floundering about in glorious oodles of thick cold slimy mud. Dark clouds loomed on the horizon as heavy squalls passed frequently to be punctuated by sunny spells that created spectacular rainbows. The leaves glowed in full autumn glory as laughter and banter filled the air.

I was immediately impressed at the smoothness of the operation.  The net was drawn in by those on the ropes. The catchers catching the fish and placing them in soft sacks and slings. These were then elevated to the top of the bank by a human conveyor belt and then placed in tanks of water. When the tanks were full of precious cargo they were taken to a series of stock ponds ready for sorting and restocking over the coming weeks.

As I walked from Octopussy to the stock ponds I was thrilled to catch sight of a kingfisher, its vivid electric blue colours a magnificent sight in the autumn sunshine. The complex is undoubtedly an oasis for wildlife within the rolling Devon hills.

It was fascinating to witness the range of fish present in this moderately sized lake. Specimen carp to over twenty pounds, catfish nudging forty pounds and plenty of doubles. There were also huge numbers of golden flanked rudd, the occasional golden tench, tiny fry  a few good sized eels and several grass carp.

Zenia chatted enthusiastically about Anglers Paradise, her work with the Angling Trust and her role with tackle giants Shakespeare promoting fishing for families and children. The COVID pandemic has had a positive impact on many aspects of angling with many people discovering the pastime and others rediscovering its joys. The contact with nature and the outdoors is acknowledged as having huge benefits for mental health.

The role of social media was also discussed with both positive and negative aspects considered. An integral part of the modern world it can at times distract from the core aspects of fishing feeding egos with some fishing for likes instead of fish!

Ashley Bunning has been a part of the venue’s fishery team for several years and his passion about the fishing and the future of Anglers Paradise was apparent as we chatted. Ashley is like myself a keen all rounder casting his lines in both fresh and salt-waters across the UK.

As the mornings work drew to a close I asked Ashley if he could gather the forty plus team together for a team photo. Fortunately, the sun broke through as the muddy masses posed together as one big happy team celebrating a job well done.

Minutes later the rain belted down in epic proportions as I walked back to my van to climb out of my waders and waterproofs. I called into the Safari Bar for a chat with Zyg who greeted me warmly before proceeding with recollections of his years at Anglers Paradise and beyond. The walls of the bar are a fascinating testament to a lifetime of fishing and adventure enjoyed by a larger than life character. Photos of famous anglers, celebrity’s, a fine collection of taxidermy and casts of the many fish caught by Zyg along with other treasures collected on his travels around the globe. Anglers Paradise shows what can be achieved with determination, hard work and perhaps a touch of mischief along the way.

The 2021 Netting week raised an impressive £2,763.35 for local charities. The week culminating with a firework display on bonfire night. Chatting with the guests I know that many will be back next year to once again frolic in the mud and wrestle with the fish.

Zenia’s summary of the week below

NETTING WEEK FUNDRAISING SUCCESS 🥳🎉🥳

Well, what can we say – what a fantastic week it has been!!

We are truly blown away with everyone’s generosity and are overwhelmed with how much we raised in a week!! Here is a rundown of what ‘we all’ raised…

Burgers and hotdogs (kindly donated by Warrens’s Butchers in Launceston) – £138

Bingo – Mick & Dawn Whitfield – £405

Nail painting – Cristal – £45

Curry Night – Zyg & Rose/Anglers Paradise  – £199

Badges – Di Mepham – £74

Race Night – Paul Beamont, Tackleshop Goblin aka Richard Flynn – £100

Fishing Match – Jordan Whitfield – £60

Quiz – Paul Tegg – £74

Fart fund, Yellow dress party & Ghost 👻 Hunt – Wendi Postma & Friends – £251.85

Charity Wine – Zyg & Rose/ Anglers Paradise – £380

Darts and Pool Competition – Johnathon Arnold & Nicky Lock – £90

Raffle – EVERYONE 💖 – £947

MAKING IT AN AMAZING TOTAL OF –

£2,763.35 🥳🥳🥳🥳🥳🥳

Just WOW!! We want to take this opportunity to THANK EACH & EVERYONE OF YOU & FOR EVERYONE’S GENEROSITY.

To have raised this amount in just a week is pretty awesome & we couldn’t have done it without all of your kindness!!

We will be donating the monies to various Charities & will announce the chosen ones soon, so watch this space!

  

Anglers Paradise

                    

           

           

FORTY SIX POUNDS TWELVES OUNCES FROM PARADISE

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KRACKING PB SMASHES PREVIOUS PB BY 23LBS!!
Massive Congratulations to Sam Whapshot who caught a personal best 46lb 12oz Mirror known as Parrot beating his previous PB by 23lbs!!!
With little previous experience in carp angling Sam didn’t expect too much action on the notoriously difficult Kracking Carp Lake on the Complex, but he had brother in law Tommy Flower there to guide him.
Sam and Tommy delicately placed their solid bags with minimal disturbance which where filled with K.S.C Pellet with a Banoffee Wafter hookbait.
Well as they say the rest was history….Sam went and totally obliterated his PB of 23lb with this monstrous mirror at 46lb 12oz!
Anglers Paradise

Fifty Three Pound Carp

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Matt Jacques has smashed his PB by a massive 16lb. Matt banked the lakes biggest resident at a weight of 53lb!
Matt returned to Anglers Paradises Kracking Carp Lake with Joe Drury for their second social of the year.
Joe was rudely awoken by a head torch at 2am with Matt trying to get the message across that he had a fish in the net! On inspection they realised Matt had only gone and landed ‘Silverback’, the lakes largest resident. It’s only the second time it’s been caught this year, and both times falling to the mighty Monster Tiger Nut range by Dynamite Baits!!
Anglers Paradise