Win a Gardner Carp Duvet Plus Sleeping Bag £125.99

Competition closes Monday 21st August 2017

The RNLI has launched a campaign to help you stay safe if and when you fall into the water, below are some ways that will help you.


Respect the Water wherever you are!

What do you do if you see someone in trouble in the water?


All too often, people’s first instinct is to go into the water. As a result, too many people drown trying to save others or their pets.

If you see someone in danger of drowning at the coast, dial 999 or 112 and ask for the coastguard straight away. Look for something that floats or that they can hold on to and throw it out to them.


Helping you stay safe -



Go to a lifeguarded beach and swim between the red and yellow flags.

Before going into the sea, consider your ability and the conditions; swimming in the sea is very different to swimming in a pool.

When you enter the water, take time to acclimatise to the temperature.

Have someone watching you from the beach and make sure they are able to call for help.




When you are near open water, keep away from the edge, stick to designated paths and look out for safety signs.

Keep clear of uneven, unstable or slippery ground.

Avoid walking alone or at night, and always carry a means of calling for help.

If you are exploring the coastline, always get local advice on the tide to make sure you don’t get cut off.




Carry a means of calling for help in case you do end up in trouble.

Wear an appropriate flotation device, such as a lifejacket or buoyancy aid – it could save your life.

If you are going out alone, tell someone ashore your plans and what time you expect to be back.



How to float


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Ridge Monkey is delighted to announce that reigning Midlands and British Carp Cup Champions Callum Gutteridge and Karl Palmer have joined RidgeMonkey as part of our sponsored RidgeMonkey Pro team. The prolific pair are well respected on the carp match scene and have an enviable record in recent years, with outstanding results from all kinds of waters across the country.

About the appointment, Callum quoted “to be approached by a forward thinking company like RidgeMonkey is an absolute honour and they’re really looking forward to getting stuck in and working alongside the other RidgeMonkey Pros. they’ve seen first-hand that the company already has some very capable anglers on board so they’ll be doing our best to raise the bar even higher!!”

Karl added “I’ve used many RidgeMonkey items in recent years and they’ve all been top notch – I’ve recently spooled up with the RM-Tec Fluoro mainline and have been very impressed with its performance so far. Myself and Callum both just love getting out there and catching carp, regardless of size, and to receive the backing of a brand like RidgeMonkey is remarkable. They’ll be involved in the testing and development of the full RM-Tec range and have had a sneak preview of some of the items already, it’s fair to say we’re both very excited about what’s to come!!”

The DNA Baits backed pairing will be a big asset to the brand and will bring an intimate knowledge of big hit style carping to the ever expanding RM-Tec end tackle range. Welcome aboard fellas!!

RidgeMonkey are delighted to announce that long time carp angling pioneer Max Cottis has joined RidgeMonkey on a consultancy basis. Max first hit the headlines from the banks of Lac de St Cassien back in 1985 when he became the first English angler to land a 60lb+ carp and has been consistently catching huge fish both home and abroad ever since. Recently inducted into the Carp Talk Hall of Fame, he’s also been at the forefront of carp tackle development for over three decades and brings an enormous amount of experience in all aspects of the recreational angling industry.

Rainbow Common 72lb 08oz rm tc

About the appointment, Max quoted “During my 35 years in the fishing industry I’ve had the opportunity to join numerous teams and with the exception of Mainline I’ve always chosen to decline these offers. However, when the opportunity to join RidgeMonkey came along, I simply couldn’t turn it down. With my attention to detail and love of product design, the opportunity to work with the other talented RidgeMonkey Pro anglers with the development of their new terminal tackle was just too tempting! The future is very exciting and I’m very pleased to be part of it!”

Ever the gentleman, Max will be a huge asset to the brand as we expand our range in the future. His experience and knowledge of the equipment required by anglers of all abilities will be utilised to ensure that our forthcoming end tackle range is the very best that it can possibly be.

Darrell Peck gives a simple guide to on of the most effective yet underused tactics in carp fishing.


The Method feeder is one of those tactics that seems to have fallen out of fashion. There is no doubting how effective it can be, though. Not only that, it’s super easy to use.

The process is very simple and once you have your mix prepared, the fishing side of things can’t get much easier. If you struggle to tie solid bags then the Method is as close as you’ll get, and it’s not even the slightest bit fiddly. If you’re just looking for something quick, cheap and easy, or if introducing loads of attraction is your thing, then the Method will serve you well.

The most important part is that you get your mix right – the consistency of the groundbait is key to ensuring that the bait grips the feeder. The bait needs to be sticky enough to grab the feeder, but light and fluffy at the same time, so that it breaks down quickly once the feeder reaches the bottom.

Killer Kit Of The Pros

These Bait-Up feeders are weighted on one fin to ensure they land the same way on every cast. This allows Darrell to position his hook bait in the mix so that it's always on the top when it all lands. Perfect! 


If the mix is a little too wet then it can become extremely tacky, almost like a paste, and this will grab the feeder well but won’t break down properly once it reaches the lake bed. If your mix is a little too dry, then although it might appear to grab the feeder well, it will either fall off during the cast or upon impact with the water.

I’m sure you’ll agree, an empty feeder kind of defeats the object of using them, and if you’re ever struggling with the consistency of your mix, I’d rather mine were too sticky and broke down really slowly than too dry and fall off on impact with the water.

A good sign that you have the mix right is that when you squeeze it in your hand it form a solid ball, but when you apply pressure with your thumb, the mix should crumble and fall away.

When choosing your ingredients, there are no hard and fast rules. I would simply advise that you use things that are highly attractive. I often use the High Impact groundbait and Essential Cell stick mix, which is a nice fruit and fish combo that always seems to work really well. On top of this I add lots of liquid attraction because when you’re aiming to flood the water column with attraction and flavours, there’s no better way to do it than with liquids. Due to the solubility of the Winterberry Goo and the Essential Cell syrup that I have combined recently, I am in no doubt that as soon as the Method feeder enters the water there will be huge amounts of attraction released. The more attraction that you can squeeze into the mix the better and this can include food items like broken boilies, pellets or sweetcorn.

PIC 2 darrell peck july 16
Crushed boilies and pellets can be added to the mix!

There are two ways in which you can fish the hook link. One is with it trailing the Method ball, and the other is to have the hook bait moulded onto the side of the ball of mix itself. It’s up to you how you decide to set the rig up, but as a general rule I would say that if the bottom is leafy or there’s weed about, I’d have the hook bait tuck into the bait, but if the ground is perfectly clean then I’d have it trailing.

On a recent trip for this feature, I was fishing towards an overhanging tree, which protruded from a large island in front of me. There was all sorts of leaf litter and chod about so I opted to play it safe and mask the hook with food, rather than leaves.

The Bait-Up Method feeders that I use have a very clever design in the way that they are weighted. When tucking your hook bait into the feeder, it is absolutely crucial that once the feeder lands, the hook bait is not trapped beneath and out of sight. These feeders have been designed so that they land the same way up every single time it is cast out. So no matter what happens, your hook bait will be in plain sight of the carp and should get snaffled up in no time.

Your hook bait can be whatever you like; all that I would say is that a bright one is definitely worth a try. If you use a hi-viz hook bait, it acts almost as a cherry on top of the cake. The Method ball will draw the fish in to feed and the hook bait is then spotted almost straightaway. Once they’ve laid eyes on it, it’s a matter of time before it’s all over and a carp makes its mistake.

When choosing a hook link, it is vital that if you’re going to be moulding the hook bait onto the feeder, the hook link must be supple and have no memory. A coated braid, for example, will become extremely kinked and messy within no time, whereas something like the Dark Matter braid that I’m using will always retain its soft and supple nature. You will be pushing the hook link inside the bait, scrunching the rig up and all sorts, so think carefully when choosing your braid. If on the other hand, you decide to leave the rig trailing from the base of the Method feeder, you have much more in the way of options when choosing your hook link. There’s no need for the rig to be scrunched up or moulded onto the feeder, so you can use a coated braid or even a monofilament hook link if you like.

Once I have my rig attached and the bait securely moulded around the feeder, I like to give it one last piece of attention, and that involves a little squirt of Goo. I use the thicker, Power Smoke Goos for this, rather than the thin Supremes that I use when creating the mix itself. The thicker Goos are designed to be squirted on just before the cast and the Tutti Frutti is a cracker. The more attraction there is, the quicker the carp will find it.

I’m fishing up to an island, so before I mould and bait around the feeder I am clipping the rod. I want to be relatively tight to the trees, so the line clip helps prevent a cast going up into the branches. Using a quick-change swivel at the base of the feeder I am also able to clip the rig off while clipping up. Clipping the rod up with the rig still attached will do your hook no favours at all.

PIC 4 darrell peck tc july 16

With the Method feeders cast into position, it’s time to sit back and await the action. One thing that you might notice is the amount of bleeps and knocks you’ll get. These are caused by fish bumping into the feeder as they sample the food. It won’t always be carp because all species will like to gorge themselves on the Method mix, but the carp will cause plenty of disturbance once they arrive. I often think that once you have started getting the bleeps and twitches, if they stop all of a sudden then there’s a good chance that the food attached to the feeder has been eaten, and in this instance, I would wait 10 minutes or so and then recast.

The new Method feeders, and the tactics I’ve discussed work an absolute treat more often than not. As well as being really easy to use, the Method is a lot of fun, especially on well-stocked waters where you can get the carp competing with one another for the food items. Be warned though, because double takes can be a regular occurrence, so only fish as many rods as you can handle!

PIC 5 darrell peck tc july 16
More proof that the Method works!


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Damsel has come back into form here at Manor Farm but the denizens of Carp Lake were playing hard to get this weekend. 2 anglers broke their PB on Winters this week and both went on to break it again on the same session. Please remember that the best tactic, particularly on Carp Lake and Winters, is a chod with a scattering of boilies or a solid bag. Spodding in loads of bait is often counter-productive and in the summer months can quickly sour the water. Less is more! Please take all excess bait home or chuck it in the bins provided, not in the lakes. Please be aware that we are now asking all anglers to dip their nets, slings and mats in the tanks outside the shop prior to fishing.

Damsel: First time on the bank in 25 years for Darren Purdham saw him catch one at 17-05 and one at 17-02. Lee Whitby having done his homework on this lake put in another good performance with 12 carp to 17lb and 5 bream to 8lb. Also having a good weekend were Matthew Lucas, his dad and his friend Ben. Dad had 7 to 17-08, Ben 4 to around 15lbs and Matthew banked a low double and a twenty, and there were 8 good sized bream between them. Most fish came to a handful of corn sprinkled along the margin and a hookbait fished over it. Paul Scott had a good session with 6 to 18lb and Roger Scott had 2 to 16lb. Luke Reedman banked a 17-02.

Anglers on Carp Lake were struggling this weekend due, I suspect, to the carp being pre-occupied with eating their own fry. Amongst those who managed a fish were Stuart with 3 mid doubles, Lee Morgan with 4 to 16-08 and Brian Morgan with some pasties and a welcome 14-08. Malcolm Campbell was relieved to avoid a blank with a 14-08. Gary Denham caught a 19-08 fully scaled and a 16lb. At the beginning of the week, Jonny Roberts caught 3 to 16-05 on pop-ups.

On Becks, Josh caught his first tench at 5lb and 3 bream. Rob Lamont fishing the car park end bagged a 15-08 common. Stuart banked a 16lb common and Duane 2 mid doubles. while Scott Lawson bagged 9 bream and a tench.

On his first time on Winters Glenn Barrable was 'blown away' he broke his PB with a 25-12 common and went on to break it again by snaring Scar at 30-05. He also had a 17-12 common. All fish falling to a solid bag. Rade Maksimovic banked The Big Fully on Saturday at 26-04. Dave McKay fished a 48-hour session in the week. He banked 9 fish 14lb to 28lb. He broke his PB twice, his new PB now 28-02. Worth getting a bit damp for, he said.

Stuart Minney was back on Booneys and banked 4 fish including 2 twenties, one of which a stunning fully scaled. On his first time on Booneys Reece Jackson banked a 12lb common.

On Blunham Stuart Raby banked 3 bream to 6lb and an 11lb carp, all on the pellet. Neil French banked 5 to 11lb, Ryan and Gary Gardner 8 carp to 15lb and 3 bream. Dennis Holliday was preparing for Wednesday's match and finished up with 82 roach on the pole fishing caster and maggot. Steve Berrington fished Blunham on Wednesday and caught 9 carp in a 4-hour session between 9lb and 15-05, all to floating baits.

Saturday saw a match on Match Canal with Isabella Mioch on peg 5 just beating John Patmore into 2nd place. Izzy had a good bag of bream to 33-12. John on peg 19 weighed in at 32-12. 3rd place went to Paul Nicholson with 19lb.

Pewsey Vale children make a splash at Marlborough with Fishing 4 Schools

Pupils from Pewsey Vale School in Wiltshire have been learning to fly fish at Marlborough College’s fantastic angling facilities on the River Kennet this term, thanks to a collaboration between the two schools and the National Fishing 4 Schools (F4S) project.

Six key stage three pupils – Callum Dawson, Zak Awoodun, George Prout, Kahlan and Raye Colgate and Joe Long – visited the prestigious private school each Tuesday to take part in the six-week course, with professional angler and F4S founder, Charles Jardine, Colin Smith and Sean Dempster from the college and F4S instructors Lee Hooper, Rob Doyle and Julie Wicks.

The short course taught them about the anatomy of the fish; they surveyed the river’s aquatic insect life, using microscopes to inspect what they found and learnt to tie flies and cast.

Pewsey Vale 21

Marlborough College teacher Sean Dempster had the idea after meeting Charles Jardine at a country show. He said: “It can be difficult to gain access to fly fishing and it can be prohibitively expensive for children to take part, but it offers some very valuable skills. This F4S course is an opportunity to get children out in the great outdoors and offers a combination of maths, biology and ecology – all without them knowing they are doing it!”

Pewsey Vale student George Prout said; “The course was lots of fun. I caught one trout which was a big achievement!”

And a spokesman for Pewsey Vale School added: “Thank you to Marlborough College and Fishing 4 Schools for the fantastic opportunity our students were able to experience. We look forward to working with them all again in the future.”

Pewsey Vale 1

F4S is a charitable project administered by The Countryside Alliance Foundation that offers short fishing courses that fit into the school curriculum offering an alternative way of learning for children who struggle in a classroom environment.


On Carp Lake Martin Bochenek landed his PB at 25-08. Lee Piper bagged a common at 29lb, had 3 other 20’s to 22-10 and 6 others between 15-08 and 18-09, all to float fished luncheon meat over halibut pellets. Lee says it was the best days fishing he’s ever had. The Ferguson family had a great day; Steve catching a 17-06 mirror, Lucy a 20lb PB and Meggan, aged 14, a 29-08 PB all on Essentila Cell wafter. Aaron Jones landed 2 to 24-08. Liam Nash 3 to 19-13, Richard Saunders a 15-02 common to a white Manilla pop up. Francis Jervis an 18lb common to a chod rig, Carl Clark enjoyed another successful weekend bagging 12 to 25-06 using Hydrabits on a Ronnie Rig. Tommy Atkins netted 3 to 23-08

Over on Becks Lake Steve Ibbot caught 3 carp to 19-06, 4 bream to 8-08 and a tench. Tony Wilson had a 13lb common and a 6lb tench. Charlie Tokeley 2 commons at 14lb and 16lb. Kain landed one at just under 21lb. Brian Morgan netted 2 to 18-08 and 2 bream around 6lb.

On Booneys Ben Stockwell took a 19lb and a 20-08 common to a pink pop up. Paul Weston an 11-0 and a 16-08. Leigh Amer a chunky 13lb common. Dan Tuck 20-09 mirror, and Graham Simmonds an 18-12 common. Andy Stapleton bagged up with 3 to 28lbs

Earlier in the week on Winters Andy Baker had a good session taking a 28-08 common, a 29-05 common and a 30-08 scaley. Adam Calvert landed a 29-12 common to 2 grains of maize flicked to nearby marginal reeds. Lewis Waldren banked a 2 commons at 32-08 and 29lb to Spicy Crab pop up on a chod PVA mesh bag with 5 Manilla boilies.

Blunham held the 4th Open Match, coming 1st was Dennis Page on peg 1 with 44-08, 2nd was Darren Tait on peg 23 with 18-08, 3rd Paul Boltryk on peg 15 with 17-08, 4th Dave Carter on peg 11 with 16-08.

Solar Tackle Team member Jake Anderson has landed three near 40lb UK carp in one weekend from a Mid Kent Fisheries water, landing both of his target fish, and all while out testing some new bait samples for the first time.

Jake explains: “I arrived at the lake after work on Thursday afternoon for a 48-hour session. After choosing to fish a new swim, not the one I had been baited for the weekend, I baited with around 3Ž4 kilo of boilies over the two rods, the first time I’d been out with some new Quench bait samples that we’re working on at Solar Tackle. One rod was baited with an Aniseed & Bunspice pop up and the other a matching bottom bait tipped half a Quench Corker.

Quench Boilies TC Catch Report
Quench Boilies

“By Friday evening the rods had remained motionless, but I sat on my hands avoiding a recast. 4am on Saturday morning soon came and I was up drinking a cuppa and listening for any signs of carp out in the darkness, desperate to get on the fish if they gave themselves up. Just 30 minutes later my right-hand E.C.U alarm let out a series of bleeps followed by the rod hooping over. I lifted into what was obviously a heavy fish, it held deep and put up a good fight for around 15 minutes before finally hitting the net.

“I knew it was a good fish, but when I gazed into the mesh I saw the Upfront Fully sulking in the folds of the net. I couldn’t believe it, one of my main target fish for the year was mine. After help from Stuart Gray on the weighing, the needle settled on 39lb 7oz! What a result. With the photos done I cut my session short and packed up straight away so that after being away for 24hrs I could return earlier the next session and follow up on this result. The venue has a strict 48-hour rule.

The Upfront Fully TC Catch Report 3
The Upfront Fully

“Returning Sunday at around 11am I had a good look around and after an hour I pushed the barrow back to the swim where I had luck the previous trip. Twenty minutes after standing in the swim a fish crashed just half a rod length out in the margin to my right over some deep silt. I walked up the bank and under-arm flicked a bait into the rings left on the surface followed by 6 or 7 freebies, again using the Quench samples.

“Line sunk and alarm on, I readied the other rod and cast it back into position on the same spot that I landed the Upfront Fully from. Less than half hour after the margin rod was placed the alarm screamed and I learnt into a hard fighting carp. The fight was hectic and lasted a good 20 minutes before a fish I recognised broke the surface. It was one called ‘The One Pelvic Common’. The fish weighed in at 36lb 8oz and I couldn’t believe my luck. The rod was put back on the spot and I sat back waiting. 

One Pelvic Common TC Catch Report1
The One Pelvic Common

“Five hours past and my right-hand rod was away this time. A more dogged fight ensued and my heart was in my mouth as I saw another fully scaled twisting just under the surface. I started to shake as I knew what this one could be. I managed to net the fish and there lay The Big fully, my main target for 2017. A truly beautiful carp a little down in weight at 39lb 4oz, not that it mattered, I was ecstatic.”

Carp Lake has come into early form here at Manor Farm. Dell Ryder banked 5 fish to 21-8 on Manilla pop up and fake corn with a solid bag of Manilla pellets. Marek fished the weekend and bagged 9 fish to 24-8 and his friend Gary had 5 to 22-8. Mark and Wayne Johnson landed a 19lb and 18lb respectively. Jamie Bowness caught 2 commons to 18lb and his pal Joe Doherty caught a 15lb common. Jamie and Matthew had a 17-10 and 19-8. Neil Conway banked 3 to 17-3 and his stepson, Stefan a 16-9. Phil Grimshaw had 2 at 17-8 and 18-8. Kirk bagged 4 to 22-8 using Essential Cell 10mm pop-ups. Albie had a 14lb mirror and 2 commons at 16lb and 18lb. Damsel Lake has also fished well, Paul Parish taking 6 fish to mid double, Luke and Chris had a low double each and Chris had one that was pushing 20lb. Ian Bagged a 19-7 again on Manilla. Stuart and Richard Saunders bagged a 12-8, 12-4 and 14-2 between them, all commons. Luke Robbins caught a bream and 2 low double carp and Ben Unwin 2 bream around 4lb each. Lee Bunyan caught 4 fish to 16-4 using zigs. On Blunham Dean and Oli enjoyed good sport catching low double carp. On Winters Ashton Stanbridge (pictured) bagged a 22-8 and Logan Newman a 21-2 mirror and a 30-4 common. Over on Booneys Morgan Bacon banked one of the lakes mirrors at 23-4 to Manilla and a solid bag with Manilla Active Mix, Jamie had a good fish, unweighed but around 20lb. During the week Darren and Ashley fished Booneys and enjoyed a haul of 14 fish between them, including 5 20’s and a 30lb. Saturday’s match on The Canal saw Del Waite come in first with 66-12, Darren Tait second with 42-0, Dave Carter third with 29-12 and Gary Dunning fourth with 27-0.

Ashton Stanbridge 22 8 Winters 12 March1
Ashton Stanbridge 22lb 8oz


Morgan Bacon 23 4 Booneys 11 March
Morgan Bacon 23lb 4oz



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