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   Old Thread  #719 5 Oct 2010 at 10.32am Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #717
Life was so much fun when when i was a lad the world was our oyster no computers all we had were our bikes if you were lucky . fishing tackle was a bonus an air rifle you were in heaven but one thing you did have was freedom you could go out in the morning and not return home till evening but your parents would know you were safe. off you would go with a bottle of pop and maybe a few sandwiches we would Travis the woods and the fields lie down in the long grass and listen Th the call of the curlew the peewit or the sky lark they were wonderful days carefree you would collect the birds eggs get a thorn from a tree or a pin out of mums sowing box and make a hole in the both ends and blow out the yolk it would be then added to your collection. So much to do never a boring moment you would build your camp down in the woods by the running stream collect the moorhens eggs a boil them in an old tin on the fire nick the potatoes out of the fields and bake them on the open camp, fire we were never bored always so much to do.

We would fish for the old brown trout with rods made of bamboo thick silk line and little red worms collected from the farmers muck Heep and we caught we learned quickly we watched and caught the rabbits which inhabited every field and ditch we had cricket football really to much to mention we swam in the river not a care in the world we would fight and box but still remain friends. we would buy a sweets gob stoppers were a penny each great big things that made your cheeks bulge aniseed balls by the quarter. we would watch the shire horses pulling the binder which cut the corn and the farmer shooting the rabbits as the bolted to get out of the way of the impending danger i was only a lad of eight or nine but they were the days of my youth. School i did not like and at every opportunity i would play truant i would rather spend my days in the woods or fishing for the willy trout and that is what i did until i got caught and had the stick an old bamboo thing that was split at one end i had three on each hand, it would pinch as it came down on your hand

We would collect the eggs from arround the farm yard and take them home to mother. Take a few potatoes from the farmers fields collect the mushrooms and the blackberries the hazel nuts as well there was always so much to do . more latter
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   Old Thread  #718 4 Oct 2010 at 3.12pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #717
great reading pete. from a man with wealth of knowladge. {spelling}
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   Old Thread  #717 4 Oct 2010 at 2.43pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #716
Looking back over the years i have been very lucky to have met so many friends some have have now passed on others like myself are still here and it is always nice to meet up with them and have a good chin wag about things that have happened now and in the past. last night i watched a program about Gypsy weddings great program and it really made me smile i seriously have known a few gypsies through my life time some real old characters the Shropshire clans the locks, the stevens, the prices the smiths, i could go on and on but one thing that unites them all was there love of the open air and the country side and its wild life. when i was a young lad they would come around selling there lace and pegs and even carpets some were mysterious in there ways and would frighten us youngsters, but most where very clean and honest and had a great knowledge about nature.


One gypsy i had know for years taught me how to tickle the brown trout he would get into the brook up to his knees slide his hand under the roots or stones under the river side and with one quick movement the fish would be on the bank he would also bake the old hedge hog in clay. The first time i ate that i was nearly sick he told me it was chicken it was not till after i had eaten it did he tell me it was hedge hog he had so much knowledge about horses in fact he was an horse whisperer he could talk to those horses in there language and calm them down how i don't know but he could he could also heal he was a marvelous man but alas now long gone and has took his knowledge with him these were the true romany gypsys that have roamed this county for generations i like to think there ghosts still exsist but alas they are no more

Old Mrs lock used to make me smile she lived by my old mother in law and would walk past the house with a line of dogs and cats following her she always had a clay pipe in her mouth she lived to way over a hundred i can just remember her husband his name was fiddler lock and he would tour the pubs especially at Christmas and play his fiddle but he failed to return home one night and they found him dead in the snow on the longmynd some weeks latter. i always remember the funeral of mrs lock it was spectecular they came from all over britain to honour one of the last true gypsys of shropshire there were caravans and horses made of flowers on her grave. She was buried with old fiddler it happened, and i was there watching from afar hundreds attended that funeral. the days of living in a caravan have now gone and most of the older generation have passed on. The younger ones now live in houses And Only a few carry on the tradition it will be a sad day when it ends Well a bit more latter
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   Old Thread  #716 3 Oct 2010 at 2.50pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #715
When i first fished lordys pool for carp it was well before the hair rig had been invented. It was chocked full off weed he said fish it when you want but how i had no idea how to start it was about five acres eight feet at its deepest and held some fantastic fish that had lived in this old estate lake for generations. so myself and a friend made up a rake an d literally dragged the weed out it was very hard work and we would go, home totally exhausted.


i would go up in the evenings and clear another swim i think in all it took us about a month to clear four swims to fish we had seen some real nice mirrors and a few commons on most visits it also held some enormous chub and a few tench but the latter seemed on the small side. this all happened about a month before the season started which was june the 16th the one thing i could not do was night fish this pretty lake as it was heavily keeper and lordy did not want anyone on the estate after dark he had in the past had problems with poachers not me i must say. we started a baiting policy with bread crumbs layers mash mixed in with maggots by the gallon. I had the carp rods dick had given me and coupled with Mitchell 300 and twelve pounds line i felt i could cope with anything the lake threw at me i suppose the year was about 1973 or there abouts. so full of excitement we started our first session red worm on one rod and paste on the other both rods placed on the old heron alarms i was trembling with anticipation. And before i knew it i had my first take a wonderful marked mirror of 19 pounds i was over the moon it did weed me once but i managed to force it out into the open water. The next fish broke me no way could i move him from his sanctuary under that weed which he had forced himself into So i put the rod down hoping he would move no way so i had to pull for a break, you could not wade as it was dangerous and the bottom was very silty in places. my mate caught another fish of thirteen pounds and caught two chub one six and one seven plus big fish for that time in angling history. we did not want publicity we kept it very quite we did not want to lose this great water lordy had let us fish as yet we had it all to our selves but it was not to last. more latter
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   Old Thread  #715 3 Oct 2010 at 1.27pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #714
Its monsoon time here its bucketed down for nearly two days the river will run brown and wash the soil; from the river banks i was fishing the other day and watched a pair of mink going back and forward to a hole in an old wall the other side the river which i suppose they will abandon as it will be flooded out. one positive thing i saw was a pair of water voles it as nice watching these shy creatures which were quite common when i was a youngster but alas are now in decline due to the mink and habitat. The wild life is certainly not in an abundance like it was when i was a youngster on a summers day i could go out and catch slow worms, grass snakes even adders not that i condone any one catching the latter. The old hedge hog around here seems to have gone into decline why i don't know i used to see them most days and evenings around my garden but in the last few months they have vanished a few years ago we had a couple of albinos pure white lovely looking animals. i have still got the badger visiting digging holes here and there looking for the worms the vixen has long gone and took her cubs down the fields maybe to the woods she will be back at some stage I was very pleased to see a wood pecker feeding on the nuts i had hung in the garden, i am also being visited by a big flock of long tailed tits which is a lot earlier than normal so i do hope that is not an indication of severe weather in the future as there should still be lots of natural food still about for them to eat.


Friends of mine where called to a farm the other day the farmer was having real problems with foxes and he had lost a number geese and hens to this crafty marauding animal although i love him and he is close to my heart you have to have some sort of control so they surrounded the maze field next to the farm and with a number of beaters they pushed it though they shot six foxes from that field and the next field produced a further four no wander the farmer was having trouble although i did not see the foxes i suspect it may have been two litters from this years breeding its a shame they do so much damage i would not like to see them all killed as the country side would be in a sad state without them. i love to see this old fellow of the woods on a winters day in all his rustic colour his been here for generations and has more right to be there than most of us and its only natural for him to take a chicken or two but on occasions they can and will desimate a farm and thats when you need control well a bit more latter
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   Old Thread  #714 2 Oct 2010 at 11.35am Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #713
Not far from my home was a patch of trees which was called the withy bed it had a small stream running through the middle it used to be absolutely full of water cress and wild duck it was part of a big estate and belonged to a mr mc cartney well i used to go and pick that water cress we loved the stuff the only problem was the owners used to pick it and sell it to the local markets. i would creep down there just on dark get into the water and wade in that little stream i would only take what we needed but it was most welcome by our family i also collected one or two ducks eggs mallards they used to nest in the tops of the withy trees these trees were really looked after by the estate and were never allowed to grow out of control they would cop-pis them on a regular basis.

In the winter i soon found i could shoot a few ducks i would hide in that little withy wood and wait for the ducks to come in at night not very sporting but i would shoot them on the water with my pellet gun the old keeper would come down and feed the duck with sacks of barley so there was always plenty there for the estate to shoot including me i would never over do it only take what i needed but this one night the keepers arrived and it was not to feed the duck it was to catch me there was three of them i was absolutely petrified at the thought of being caught. i suppose i must of left a few tell tale signs a few feathers here and a few feathers there well the chase was on i was not going to leave my ducks or the pellet gun i was in the water and away down through that little wood i went, bag on back and water up to my chest in places. i was frozen i could hear the shouting far behind and the sound of dogs i really thought i had my lot i managed to get to the road bridge over the river onny and hid under that old bridge all off a sudden one of the dogs a springer spaniel came under the bridge and licked my face i kid you not i though my end had come but that was that they called the dog and away he went, i waited a good hour and waded across the onny and away home my parents were none to pleased i was so wet but soon forgave me when they saw the ducks. funny thing it was in the local paper about the keepers chasing some one poaching i kept away from there for some time and let the dust settle but it was not the last time i poached that little withy bed as times were hard and we needed the food so it was a nessesity . more a bit latter
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   Old Thread  #713 1 Oct 2010 at 3.45pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #711
After having a great days fishing on Tuesday with my good mate graham i have ended up in bed and have really suffered sickness and aching all over but whether its a virus or the morphine i have been put on for my arthritis i don't know but its really knocked me back and i certainly wont be taking any more full stop well that's enough of my health.. for now.

one positive thing that, has happened in the last week i have been offered a part in a book that is bieng written by a gentleman on this forum he has already written two books and i am quite looking forward to its launch at the end of next year it wont be the first time i have appeared in a book the last time was about catching big bream by dennis kelly in the mid seventies. i am having quite a lot of help from xpat in poland and our ken townley who has kindly offered to put my stories into chapters when he is back from his holls which he and his wife justly deserve after all they have been through there are a good many on here that have shown there support so you know who you are and thank you.

well graham and myself managed a few barbel when out the other day mostly caught on small halibut pellet 8mill and 10mil if you use anything bigger you don't seem to be able to buy a bite funny really as i used to murder them on the big chokers but not any more we lost a couple to the line breaking and with the help of a good friend who is a bailiff started to discuss line and between the three of us did some tests on the line we had in our bags i was a bit surprised branded line which we use for hook length i wont mention names which stated a breaking strain of ten pounds broke at five pound so we tried some more branded names and they to broke under the recommended breaking strain this has really got us thinking about what we buy and use and i certainly will think seriously about what i use in the future . the biggest barbel was a tad over six pounds we also had a few chub between four and five pounds but as yet no biggies have graced our nets but with a bit of luck it will happen in the future well thats all for now more latter pete
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   Old Thread  #712 1 Oct 2010 at 3.45pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #711
After having a great days fishing on Tuesday with my good mate graham i have ended up in bed and have really suffered sickness and aching all over but whether its a virus or the morphine i have been put on for my arthritis i don't know but its really knocked me back and i certainly wont be taking any more full stop well that's enough of my health.. for now.

one positive thing that, has happened in the last week i have been offered a part in a book that is bieng written by a gentleman on this forum he has already written two books and i am quite looking forward to its launch at the end of next year it wont be the first time i have appeared in a book the last time was about catching big bream by dennis kelly in the mid seventies. i am having quite a lot of help from xpat in poland and our ken townley who has kindly offered to put my stories into chapters when he is back from his holls which he and his wife justly deserve after all they have been through there are a good many on here that have shown there support so you know who you are and thank you.

well graham and myself managed a few barbel when out the other day mostly caught on small halibut pellet 8mill and 10mil if you use anything bigger you don't seem to be able to buy a bite funny really as i used to murder them on the big chokers but not any more we lost a couple to the line breaking and with the help of a good friend who is a bailiff started to discuss line and between the three of us did some tests on the line we had in our bags i was a bit surprised branded line which we use for hook length i wont mention names which stated a breaking strain of ten pounds broke at five pound so we tried some more branded names and they to broke under the recommended breaking strain this has really got us thinking about what we buy and use and i certainly will think seriously about what i use in the future . the biggest barbel was a tad over six pounds we also had a few chub between four and five pounds but as yet no biggies have graced our nets but with a bit of luck it will happen in the future well thats all for now more latter pete
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   Old Thread  #711 27 Sept 2010 at 12.24pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #710
My tackle was a bit crude i had the tank aerials and i used the old wooden reels i think they were called star backs and were used for float fishing not really for carp fishing the only ledger es that you could get were the round or flat coffin leads but i managed and would coil the line behind me on the grass then give it the big chuck some times it would fly out other times it got snagged in the grass but we got by we had no bank sticks so we cut forked sticks out of the hedge row mostly hazel they did the job and got us by we had no landing nets so we got into the water and lifted the fish onto the bank if it was not to deep and on a few occasions have literally dragged the fish up the bank but don't forget this was in early fifties and we had no money to buy such things as nets and such this was how people fished in those far off days.

It was exiting fishing the baits we used were very basic lob worms red worms bread flake bread crust bread paste which you could flavour i lived by the abitor and would go and collect the maggots from the bones and skins that were thrown out for the rag and bone man to fetch i would go home stinking and my mum would play hell and i would get a clip behind the ear but they worked you could not buy them where we lived as yet. but they did eventually come on the market and were sold in brown paper bags for three pence you would take them home and put them into an old tin box i think mine was an oxo box but it did the job and with a bit of saw dust added kept them fresh we also learned about using par boiled potatoes and they certainly worked slugs were another bait we even tried snails but i never did any good with them i would nick a few sultanas and currents from mums jars and i did catch fish but not carp loads of families kept pigeon in those days and i would scrounge the little peas that they fed them on they were deadly when soaked and boiled and i caught loads of fish using them especially roach. well ill carry on latter and tell a bit more
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   Old Thread  #710 27 Sept 2010 at 9.24am Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #709
When we moved to craven arms i got to know a chap called peter finch he was a lot older than myself and would meet him when i was fishing the river onny poaching of course. he owned some half decent tackle well for those years it was very good. i struck up quite a friendship with this gentleman and he gave me lots of information about local waters some strictly private some not one pool i could go to was a small pool about two acres he said i the owner charged one shilling a day and it was stocked with carp Tench and perch.


Asking if i had a bike he said he would show me where it was he asked my parents if it was ok for me to go and two days latter we were sat beside this beautiful pool it had a dam at the one end and was covered in lilies it was a dream i did not know much about carp only what i had read and most said they were impossible to catch. the pool would get quite busy at week ends mysterious chaps creeping around the pool with big old hats on there heads, a rod in hand i would watch them drop a bait in between the weeds or a hole in the lillies usually a big old worm then set the rod down on a forked stick and wait . funny i never saw them catch one fish perhaps i was not there at the right time most of these anglers where from away and most had tents transport was a lot easier to get and some came on motor cycles with sidecars. I got to know the owner quite well over the time i fished there. i would knock the door to pay him and he would invite me in and give me a big glass of pop and tell me wonderful tales about the pool he never once charged me and would wave me away with his hand he was a great old man and allowed me to take a friend and fish days or nights if we wanted to, we certainly did.

Well with my parents permission we would be away on our bikes rods tied to the cross bar bag on our backs with a few sandwiches and a bottle of pop and maybe and old army blanket to keep us warm on a cold night i would get a sack from the farm to sit or lie down on. not that comfortable but we were only youngsters and were to exited to worry about creature comforts if it rained Ray and i would head for the barn and clime up into the hay or straw wrap our selves in the blankets and sleep like babies i would love the sweet smell of new mown hay and we would be as warm as toast but that's years ago. ill tell you more latter about this little pool
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   Old Thread  #709 26 Sept 2010 at 10.25am Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #708
The first time i went fishing i was only three years old my grandfather would take me it was 1945 the end of the second world war was in sight. i would stand with a cane with a bent pin as a hook for hours and hours . fishing has had a great influence on my life grandad did not know what he had started he died in 1947 i was broken hearted as he was my mentor i had also lost my father in the war . I was young but as the years past i soon learned to look after myself i fell in love with the countryside.


When mum met my step father things really started to improve he bought my first bamboo cane rod and with an old fashioned wood reel i would wander the streams brooks and pools as i have said tackle was limited we were very poor so i made do with silk line peacock quills and what hooks we could get mostly big black things they were used for eel fishing i think i did manage to get hold of some model perfects a friend of my step father managed to get them from shop at ludlow but we mostly managed with the old eel hooks i think they were a penny each but they did most of my fishing it was quite some time before i used the nylon line you could not get hold of it where i lived.

A s i have stated before my father was a signal man with the railway not a very well paid job but it was a living before we moved from my village of bays-ton hill i would wander the banks of my beloved Rea brook i was only around six years old but in those days you had freedom you were safe not like today it has completely changed. i well remember the first big fish i caught from the Rea i was fishing in a big old Edy my float went under and i was connected to some monster my rod was bent double and i thought it would break i could feel every moment every twist and turn we had no landing nets in those days so i managed to get it to shallow water there it lay in all its glory a big old roach no more then a pound and a half but to me it was a true monster and i could not wait to get home and tell mum and dad about my capture this was one of many from the Rea. but it turned my life upside down i was truly hooked i slept and dreamed about fishing i think if i remember right my father bought me a copy of Mr Crab tree goes fishing i would lie in bed with an old oil lamp for light and read that book time and time again it must of been one of the first copies out. i was fishing mad.

When we moved to craven arms that really changed my life and my fishing dad got hold of two tank aerials which he had made into rods they were certainly better than the old bamboo rod i had i was now nine years old my dad did not fish so i really taught my self i made mistakes but i steadly started catch a fish or two mainly trout but it was a start more latter
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   Old Thread  #708 24 Sept 2010 at 10.24am Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #707
The leaves are starting to change to yellows and browns and some are already coming off the trees autumn is approaching fast. Its a great time off the year you can now feel a chill in the air as evening approaches at this time of the year the fishing usually improves we catch the bigger fish carp and barbel as they stuff them selves full to help through the impending winter.

. i would love to be out and about at this time of year especially the beginning of October this is when we would start to ferret the rabbits or poach a peasant or two or stand under the hedge on a moonlight night and shoot the geese as they come into rest on the quarry pools canada's grey lags we never over did it only taking what we needed four or five geese and we would be away the younger ones always made good eating ,and were quite tender if cooked the right way.

some people did not like us to shoot the geese but it was our heritage and a necessity we needed the food nothing was wasted the same with the rabbits and pheasants we harvested them like the farmer does with potatoes. There was nothing like a brace off partridge lovely to eat and i really prefer them to pheasant. i have also caught the bigger rainbows in September and October and loved to be out in the punt all legal and i did not have to pay as the owners were friends looking back i caught my biggest an 18 pounds plus fish in September and i donated it to the local blind school at Condover who were very grateful. And so was i they had let graham and myself fish there private stretch of the brook for many years and it was away off saying thank you. When that blind school closed down it really caused a lump in my throat as we had made many friends over the years even the kiddies knew us and would be after us for sweets how they knew we were there i don't know. i do know their hearing was very good and could distinguish between graham and myself we would take bags of toffees and such and would be surrounded by this lovely kids who were really unfortunate to be born that way. Old Bell the game keeper could not bare the thought, of us fishing on that private stretch and even went to see the head master to try and stop us but he failed miserably it was all about the trout that the brook held it was stocked for the local gentry and he could not bare the thought of us especially me fishing there as i had often poached the estate and the brook for its trout he had chased me on many occasions but could never catch me but alas those days have now gone and old Bell now lies at piece and most of his underkeepers those days we will not see again they were exiting days i would do all again if permited but thats not an option so we live with our memories and pass on our experiances to the younger generation just as my grandfather did to me more latter
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   Old Thread  #707 23 Sept 2010 at 7.56pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #706
my wife was rather shocked today when the sparrow hawk returned while she was in the kitchen it took a pigeon in flight and crashed into the kitchen window, it crashed to the floor in the back yard got up and flew away with the pigeon still in its talons its a wander it did not kill its self i have seen this happen before and the bird has been killed


Well we had a good days barbel fishing the river had a bit of colour and i started to use the small ellipse pellet first cast i accounted four a six pound fish not bad really as others were struggling i caught five barbel in total and two chub the biggest barbel was eight pound plus and the smallest five pounds the chub really pleased me as they were both five pounds plus. My poor old mate graham struggled a bit not catching any barbel but managed a couple of good chub on small halibut pellets the biggest five pounds eight oz very good fish. i think we would have caught a few more if we had been a little bit earlier this morning but i had a appointment at the docs so we were a bit late starting. Talking to other anglers who came for a chat said they had not caught and were really struggling as graham says that's fishing we will be going again next Tuesday and i hope we can catch a few more of these hard fighting fish i never fish the week end as i like piece and quite you just get to many fishing and that not my style well i am a bit tired so i will tell you some more tomorrow
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   Old Thread  #706 22 Sept 2010 at 11.08am Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #704
As i went out into the garden Monday evening i got quite a surprise sitting on a big plump pigeon was a hen sparrow hawk she was ripping out the feathers to get at the succulent meat on his breast. a managed to approach the hawk to within two feet she started to get very aggressive and jumped up and down towards me showing her talons warning me it was her kill and i was not taking it from her. well i had a camera in the car and managed to get a few shots of her feeding on the pigeon i had to use the flash and was surprised she was oblivious to all that was going on around her and was not frightened one bit i had to go up the road to my daughters and when i came back she was still there so i left her in piece to finish her meal all that's now left is a few feathers but its not the first time she has visited our garden as we have found feathers before black birds as well but its the first time i have caught the culprit in action my neighbours really do not like it and i am a bit surprised as most have been brought up in the country side and still don't understand its ways i have told them nature is very cruel and only the fittest survive i expect she will be back in a few days for another pigeon as we have a good many which have breed in my garden

Graham and myself will be out barbel fishing tomorrow and are quite hopeful as there is a bit of colour in the water and it is slightly up talking to the local anglers they seem to be catching a few up to around nine pounds plus but have also been catching some big old Bream good fish between six and seven pounds mostly on pellet i am an all rounder and will gratefully exept anything that graces my net be it chub bream or barbel its not just the fishing its about being out and about being one with nature. Talking to the Salmon anglers they have not done very well fish being in short supply but have caught some very big barbel while fishing the worm they have also caught some nice perch and pike while spinning so its not all bad news. i must now go and mix some ground bait for our feeders for tomorrow. more a bit latter
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   Old Thread  #705 20 Sept 2010 at 11.43pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #704
hi pete it was a pleasure to meet you and graham and we did have a chuckle over a cider. also it was nice to see you were passing your knowledge on to grahams grandson. i hope he takes it all in.
all the best pete,
rob.
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