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

                    

           

           

ANGLERS PARADISE _ Raises thousands more for good causes!

Anglers Paradise are delighted to share with you that from a year’s fundraising at Anglers Paradise with Raffles, Quizzes and Netting Events we have raised over £7000 and have given to the following Charities –

Over and Above – Cardiology supporting the Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust, Air Ambulance, Active Halwill, Emergency Volunteer Drs, Halwill Primary School and the Okehampton St.Boniface Church. We are very thankful to all our customers that helped us raise this and help so many worthy causes. We look forward to raising more in 2020!!

LOADSA MONEY TO GOOD CAUSES FROM PARADISE

Anglers Paradise are very proud and pleased to share with you that they have just given away £8500 to the following local charities :-

Devon Air Ambulance – £2500

Food Banks Okehampton and Holsworthy-£2000

Black Torrington Surgery Elevator – £1500

Exeter Hospiscare – £1000

Halwill Primary School – £1000

Halwill Parish Hall – £500

We’d like to thank all our customers for their generosity throughout the year. All year we continue to raise as much as we can at Anglers Paradise through doing Raffles, Quiz Nights, we also raise most of the money during our annual Netting week through events like Archery, Bingo Night, Race Night, Quiz Night, Treasure Hunt, Tombola, Pool and Darts competitions etc.

Pictured is Zyg and Rose Gregorek and Daughter Zenia, Brian Kneebone of Devon Air Ambulance, Sally Hill from Blake House Surgery, Head Teacher of Halwill Primary School Ruh Alford, Sarah Gainsbury and Roger Young of Holsworthy Food Bank, Reginald Harnel of Okehampton Food Bank and Jill and Paul Voaden of Hospiscare.

Anglers Paradise

Stafford Moor Charity Match – Fished beneath blue Skies

posted in: Match Fishing, Sidebar | 0

Thirty-Eight anglers raised £3156.75 for Appledore Life Boat and Devon Air Ambulance in a charity match at the prolific Stafford Moor Fishery.

The winning pair were Kevin Shears and Scott Bowden (Above) with a stunning combined weight of 198lb 10oz. In runner up spot were Simon McCarthy and Simon Clarke with 157lb third were Phil Jones and Martin Heard with 146lb 11oz. Individual winner on Tanners Lake was Simon McCarthy with 130lb and individual winner on Woodpecker was Paul Ware with102lb 12oz. Match organiser Neilsen Jeffery gave thanks to fishery owners Joanne and Paul Coombes who made all competitors very welcome. Special thanks was also extended to the events sponsors Summerland’s Tackle, Stafford Moor, Martin Cox Angling Supplies and Adrian Marshall who supplied a fantastic array of prizes.

Joanne Coombes
Dave Downton plays a carp that helped towards a net of 49lb 8oz.
Tom Downing landed 99lb 8oz
A pleasing ghost carp part of my 33lb 12oz net
A cracking carp for Keith Mountjoy
Simon McCarthy with part of his Individual winning bag.
Kevin Shears

The excitement of the weigh in.

Event organizer Neilsen Jeffery presents Simon McCarthy with a cheque for the Appledore LIfeboat totaling £802.12p
Winners -Kevin Shears and Scott Bowden

Upper Tamar Charity Pairs Match

posted in: Carp Fishing, Sidebar | 0

Below is a letter I received from Melissa Thomas North DEvon Angling News is always pleased to promote angling related good causes.

I am in the process of promoting Hft’s first charity Fishing Competition, taking place on the 12th- 13th August at Upper Tamar Lake near Launceston. I understand you probably receive a lot of requests for free publicity – and cannot support them all – nevertheless, if you are able to include the attached press release and/or a poster in one of your forthcoming issues/online we would be extremely appreciative.

Hft is a national charity supporting more than 2,500 adults with learning disabilities across England to live the best life possible. Our services range from supported living to residential care – from a few hours a week to 24 hours a day – and we support people with a range of needs, challenging behaviours and specific syndromes like autism spectrum disorders and down’s syndrome. Hft also helps people with learning disabilities to take part in daily activities, make friends and develop relationships, find work, and gain independence. You can find out more about our work on our website: <http://hft.org.uk/Stories/>

A lot of our core work is reliant on voluntary donations, so we organise a series of fundraising events across the year to help support this work. The Carp Open Pairs competition is just one of these events, and is raising money to support the services and facilities at Chy Keres short stay and respite centre in Tregadillet, Cornwall.

It would be hugely beneficial to have some advertising and/or coverage of our charity fishing competition – as it will enable us to: get more people registered to participate and, therein, to raise more money to support our key services at Chy Keres. In return we would be happy to mention you in any online publicity and, of course, would love to have you come along to the event itself. I would also be very happy to show you around Chy Keres if you would like to find out more about the support we provide, or would like to find out more about what we are fundraising for. Please let me know if you have any other ideas that you would like to explore.

Thanks so much for your time and please do let me know if you have any questions or would like more information.
I look forward to hearing from you.

Thanks and best wishes,

Melissa Thomas
Support Worker, Hft Chy Keres

Melissa Thomas
Support Worker

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