A familiar face is hanging up his fishing rod after teaching thousands the art of flyfishing at Bewl Water. Iain Thompson (72) has been the principal flyfishing instructor at Bewl for 21 years. Iain has taught more than 2,500 pupils how to cast lines and choose tackle for successful fishing.


During the Second World War Iain was evacuated to Scotland at the age of six. It was here amongst the lochs and rivers that he first found his passion for fishing.


Iain spent many years in Australia and Africa working and fishing. In 1981 he became the resident instructor for Southern Water, running group courses at Bewl Water.


Iain said: “Flyfishing has been documented since Greek times 3000 years ago, it is a wonderful sport with a real sense of freedom, you can travel over mountain and moorland to find your perfect fishing spot.”


“The biggest fish I’ve caught was last year in British Columbia, a 37 lb fresh run king salmon. It is beautiful to fish in the wilderness, and then return the fish to the rivers. I’m looking forward to more of this in my retirement.”


If you are interested in flyfishing, courses still continue at Bewl Reservoir. The lake is stocked with over 50,000 trout. The season runs from March to November and fishing can take place on several miles of bank or from a fleet of 54 boats. Permits, tackle, boat hire, courses and free introductory sessions for beginners are all available.