On Saturday 27th June 2020, Fir Tree Fisheries in Wigan once again hosted the Annual East Lancashire Course fund raising course Fishing Match. Open to Freemasons and their guests £600.00 has been raised so far this year for the Masonic Fishing Charity (www.mtsfc.org.uk) from the anglers and a raffle on the day.
The Masonic Fishing Charity is a Masonic initiative which hosts interactive fishing events (both coarse and fly) at selected venues throughout England and Wales for anyone above the age of eleven with needs, including stroke victims and former members of the Armed Forces suffering from PTSD. Each event is meticulously planned and executed in accordance with current health and safety regulations and is totally free for all concerned. The Masonic Fishing Charity is run by volunteers: masons and non-masons, anglers and non-anglers (our number includes many lady anglers and administrators) and has been ‘catching the smile’ for people in need for nearly twenty years.
It was not a coincidence that the 2020 event was a battle between East Lancashire vs Yorkshire with Yorkshire looking for revenge from East Lancashire winning the inaugural fishing competition. You’ll be pleased to know that the anglers representing East Lancashire reigned supreme again!
The Top 4 nets on the day were:
1st Andrew Bishop – 141lbs – Midlands
2nd Stuart Holmes – 118lb – East Lancashire
3rd Les Thompson 93lbs – Midlands
4th Chris Davis 84lbs – East Lancashire
The top 4 East Lancashire nets totalled and incredible 350lbs
The Midland nets totalled 234lbs
The top four Yorkshire nets totalled 175lbs – school report…must try harder
A total weight of 1350lbs was caught by just 24 anglers
Next year both Yorkshire and the Midlands have promised to bring a stronger contingency. The top Masonic angler was the organiser of the event, WBro Ian Walvin of Milton Lodge with 67lbs (6th overall) – if Ian had caught this last year, he’d have won it!
The event next year will be back at Fir Tree Fisheries on Saturday 5th June 2021 where we hope the event will be a sell-out for the first time so we can raise even more funds for the Masonic Fishing Charity.
If you would like a presentation in your Lodge on how the Masonic Fishing Charity operates and where the money goes, please get in touch with WBro Alex Miller on 07799 115600.
If you or your Lodge would like to donate, please contact WBro Ian Walvin on 07966 903662
Report by Alex Miller
© 2020, all text and images contained in this post are the property of the author and photographer respectively.