Chip nets a large fish

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A fishing trip, but with a difference, as a group of friends hold there own fishing competition between themselves each year, visiting different fishing lakes in the UK and France. The annual competition started back in 2002 at Abbey Lakes in France and is now in its 13th year. Previous trips included Maison du Lac Bleu – which regularly features on a TV programme called ‘Thinking Tackle’ – Crystal Waters, Moorland Fisheries and Bills Lake (which was described as probably one of the the worst trips).

the big one
The boys celebrating the catch

This year the group, called “The Big One”, travelled to France’s champagne region to Etang le Fays, for big boys camping, as they like to call it. The winner is the competitor who catches the biggest fish possible.

The winner of this years competition was Chip Winton who caught a fish that he describes as “the fish of a lifetime” weighing in at a hefty 61lb 12oz. Chip says he has been waiting for over 30 years for a catch of this size. He won a trophy called The Big One and £400 for the biggest fish.

The group are already in the process of arranging next year’s trip to Cherpont Lake in France where the average weight of fish is 34lbs and there are around 20 fish over 50lbs, so there is a good chance of achieving another personal best.

Photos by Keith Twine

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