freeline-28 - Page 142

Big Carp Now and Then
Now and Then
– Andy Little
It has been amazing to witness the
transformation of carp fishing during
my lifetime. My first carp was caught
back in the 1950s when the pursuit of
the species was considered somewhat an insane thing to do. Deemed
almost impossible to catch, it was
only lunatics that actually set their
stall out to try and catch one!
Today it is the UK’s favourite
species and fast becoming so through
most of Europe. The revolution was
spawned here in the UK with the late
seventies and early eighties firmly
being the era when carp fishing came
of age. There are undoubtedly more
anglers who fish for carp now than
any other species, and with that a
whole new industry has been born. I
have completely lost track of how
many specialist carp companies there
are who supply a never-ending thirst
for tackle, bait and information. Never
in my wildest dreams did I ever imagine that there would be fishing tackle
companies, bait firms, magazines and
even television programmes that
were solely dedicated to carp fishing... quite incredible!
I feel very privileged to watch this
growth and be in some small way part
of its evolution. Although I don’t
spend the hours carp fishing these
days, being the Deputy Chairman of
(Top) A margin caught Kent common
stalked beneath the rod tip.
(Right) Beautiful Suffolk mirror
caught on the surface.
(Below) Sussex river common stalked
on float gear in the margins.
Fox International means that I am
involved on a daily basis with all the
latest innovations, and I am surrounded by some of the biggest carp
nuts that it has been my privilege to
work with. The passion that drives
this industry on is quite remarkable,
and for an angler who fishes these
days for all sorts of species, both
home and abroad, I can tell you that
there is no other industry or species
other than carp that people are so
passionate about.
The thirst for knowledge of the
U K ’s f a v o u r i t e s p e c i e s i s q u i t e
remarkable. My own involvement
started off scribbling a few words for
the odd magazine and rotary letters.
This somehow or other developed

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