Keith Armishaw fishing the Torridge

River Reads are a specialist angling book shop operating out of Torrington well worth a visit as they carry a vast range of angling books on all disciplines. Here is their latest Newsletter penned by owner Keith Armishaw.

Well, it’s been a while since we wrote the last newsletter, but as the weather is too windy for sea fishing and the local rivers are running like soup and fly only, it seemed the ideal time to sit down and pen a few things that have been happening of late.

I have been continuing to add photographs of books to the site as I think it will aid decision making to be able to see exactly what the book you are after looks like and in what condition it is in. I have just completed the fly tying, fly casting and tackle catalogues having done the fly fishing, coarse fishing (carp, pike etc as well) earlier in the year. I hope you find it of use, and if you have any other ideas that would help, please feel free to e mail us.

Whilst we are on the subject of books, Dominic Garnett who writes a weekly column for Angling Times called in for a chat. He is probably best known for his Fly Fishing for Coarse Fish book, but also promotes the fishing in Devon and Somerset. He dropped off some of his other books – Crooked Lines and Tangles with Pike – which he signed whilst we talked fishing, had a cuppa, and recorded him talking for the Angling Heritage archive which you can now hear on line. We had an interesting time which just flew by.

We have also recently acquired quite a lot of our “Vintage Tackle”. Whilst several cane Hardy rods and reels have been added, we have also now got a great selection of nearly new – in many cases unused – high quality modern tackle too including carbon rods from Sage, Orvis, Sharp, Hardy, Greys etc so if you aren’t an old timer stuck in the mud like me, now is the time to buy your fantastic new tackle at great prices. Also acquired with the rods are reels from Orvis, Bruce & Walker, Hardy, ABU, Snowbee and many more.

If you are looking for any new or antique items, now is the time to peruse the antique tackle section.

Finally, I’m looking forward to our shark fishing sessions in Looe next month followed by what we hope will be an annual trip to British Columbia to fish the Frazer, then on to Vancouver Island after salmon. I went with Hugh Miles last year and we loved every moment so have booked the same again this year. If you fancy an overseas trip with the comfort of home where you can stay in spa hotels for your family, this is THE place to go. You can keep up with all my escapades in the “Diary” section of the website, or get a brief overview on our Facebook page.

Autumn is nearly here and I think this is the best time of year to fish, so get out there and good luck.

River Reads – The Westcountry’s premier angling bookshop

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Back in the year 2000, a small bookshop in Torrington pannier market was closing and Sandy Armishaw bravely took it on. Her husband Keith was a keen angler and so the bookshop was sorted and the angling collection was introduced together with an array of vintage tackle.

Keith & Sandy in River Reads September 2006
Keith & Sandy in River Reads September 2006

For the next three years the shop grew in stature and moved to larger premises at 21 South Street in Torrington in 2005. In 2007, River Reads started publishing limited edition angling books of the highest quality using hand-tooled leather binding. Titles include books of their own production such as Charles Inniss’ “Torridge Refections” , the “Recollections” series for Angling Heritage, and also special limited editions of books for iconic anglers such as Chris Yates (the titles include “Out of the Blue”, “How to Fish” and “Nightwalk”) and Jeremy Wade’s famous “River Monsters”.

As the marketplace changed, so has River Reads and has created its own website with all their books listed in on-line catalogues. Most of the angling books now also have photographs attached to the listing (completion is imminent). Customers are now able put an individual book, of collection of books together and the website automatically works out the combined weight and postage to anywhere in the world, and you can order using all major credit cards. The website is www.riverreads.co.uk and is one of the most advanced in the marketplace.

River Reads are always on the look out for angling books and vintage tackle to purchase to supplement their range of stock.

Should you wish to visit the shop, you can contact them through the website or at the address below (Before visiting make sure you telephone first as they like to get out fishing too)

River Reads

Great Darracott



EX38 7HL

Tel 01805 625888

E mail SIARiverReads @aol.com