IN a unique bid to raise money for cancer research, fly fishing mad angler, Philip Clarke of Brighton has set a new record by catching a trout in Northern Ireland, Scotland, England and Wales in 17 hours.
The record attempt comprised eight hours of fishing, seven hours on the bike and two hours on the ferry. The total round trip from his
West Sussex home was 1098 miles.

Philip landed his first trout at Straid Fishery in Northern Ireland just after 4am, then caught the ferry to Cairn Ryan catching his next trout in Scotland at Kirkchrist Fishings, then on to Wych Elm in Cumbria by 2.30pm where fishery owner Ken Gill welcomed him and lent Philip a replacement rod – he had broken his during a mishap with the bike in Scotland!

A range of gold heads, damsels and buzzers failed to induce the take Philip was after, so on the advice of local angler, Patrick Arnold, he switched to a Dunkeld on the dropper and a Diawl Bach on the point.

The splash of orange did the trick and Philip was soon into a fighting 2lb 8oz rainbow which was safely landed, photographed and returned to the water unharmed. After his success he set off to Llandegla in North Wales, where he landed his final trout. All this in 17 hours!
Two years ago Philip’s mother died of cancer – a long drawn-out affair which she faced with characteristic fortitude.

A countrywoman at heart, she spent her last few months in her garden.

Whilst gardening was her passion, in her fitter days she had also engaged in a spot of fishing, often accompanying Philip to the water’s edge to cast a fly or net a fish.

One of their last day’s out together was on a small lake in Hampshire where she sat in the shade of the old oak tree with her water colours, while Philip attempted to seduce a trout. Her final days were spent in St. Michael’s Hospice, near Hereford, where the quality of treatment and compassion of staff allowed her to die in relative comfort and dignity. Philip feels he owes them a huge debt of gratitude and decided to return some of that debt by embarking on this sponsored fish.
Philip’s target is to raise £5,000 to be split between two charities: St. Michael’s Hospice, Hereford and Cancer Research UK.

For donations, please make cheques payable to Fishing to Fight Cancer, c/o 2 South Avenue, Hurstpierpoint, West Sussex, BN6 9QB.

Alternatively, e-mail your pledge to: . So far Philip has raised £3,000 but needs all the help he can get to reach his target.


* Patrick Arnold