Hi my name is Oli Cooper I fish at manor farm fishery in Biggleswade a lot and there has been a charity match on damsel and carp lake recently. As my dad is a former Royal marine I thought it would be nice to help out at the Carping4Heroes charity match and all the money raised went to Help For Heroes. I message Sue at manor farm and she asked Simon at Carping4Heroes if they needed any help. Simon answered “yes please! We have had a few marshals cancel on us late so any help would be appreciated!” So on Saturday the 23rd I headed up to manor farm, they draw was done and he anglers started fishing!
After a quick 11 mins someone had caught the first carp a low double 3 minutes later another was caught on Damsel but by a different person and they got quicker and quicker up until about 1ish where I think the fish started to realise that they were being fished for and almost every swim was taken on both lakes. Still a few fish being caught and us marshals were running around a lot.
Time passed quickly, it was 4 o’clock and the anglers reeled in. Ian Chillcot and another angler arrived for a Q&A session all the anglers wrote in and the questions were answered. One of the questions was ‘is it essential to drop leads’ Ian Chillcot went on to say no he rarely drops his leads unless the lake is extremely snaggy or weedy!
After the Q&A it was the raffle and there was some really big prizes! Trips to Spain, scope brollies, delkims, tackle!!!! Loads of goodies to get! After quiet a few tickets being taken out mine was finally called I had won some leads which I was happy with.
After that the anglers started fishing again at around 8 o’clock and the fish had reacted to the rods being out of the water positively and the fish were coming thick and fast. As marshals were running around like headless chickens! It got dark and after a long day the other marshals Carrot and Steph told me that they would do the night and I can sleep in my bivvy so that’s what happened. But in the morning a 20.7 lbs came out of damsel which ended up being the biggest fish out which I thought was small, even though the match was only a night normally a 20+ comes out of carp per night.
The match ended at 11 with a winning weight from damsel of 117lbs in 24 hours! Each of the tri services plus Royal Marines and civilian teams were represented by 6/7 pairs each and those pairs weights were added together to find the winner of the whole match and the winner was Royal Navy & Marines Carp Team with 177lbs and 8oz! Then they took home the Darren Martin Memorial Trophy! In total the event raised £14,479 which will be given to Help For Heroes! A fantastic cause!
Thanks for reading