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   Old Thread  #22 13 Mar 2011 at 3.41pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #19
It was 1960 when i got married and moved up to hill country as i have said before i lived with my in laws on the side of the hill at a place called gorsty bank it was quite a shock after living so close to town before and it was a very hard life there was not much to do in those days so you made your own fun i had already had a very keen interest in nature fishing and shooting you certainly had acres to have a go around where we lived, i soon found a little stream not far from our house and although it was not big it held some lovely brown trout they were not big usually around a pound but wonderful to eat they were true wild trout i would walk the stream and fish the pools or deeper water i would free line a worm and on light tackle they really did fight well but it was the food i was after for the family as times were still very hard. It took me sometime to be accepted by the locals as things were very different then, not like today very few townies lived in the country side in those days although i suppose i was not a Townie they really gave me some stick for the first few months i had one or two fights and gave as good as i got they were hard men, and had been brought up in the mining community and did not like strangers at one time it did start to get to me, but when i got accepted as one of them it was totally different they were some of the kindest people i have ever known but first you had to earn there respect.
Photobucket Our house was the white one hight up on the hill

Photobucket Hill country where we lived real ruff in winter
But that little stream certainly kept me sane i got my rods from home although work did come first we needed the money my father in law would snare a few rabbits and the occasional hare he also liked a bit of shooting but could not walk that far as he had silicone disease caused through his job as miner by the time i married my wife he had retired on a pittance of a pension and did other things to supplement it, he was the local man who they called to kill the pigs also the police would call him out to any unstable dynamite that was discovered at some of the old mine workings he sold holly at christmas and whimberries when in season anything thing to get them by i would walk the hedgerows with my father inlaw him one side me the other we would shoot the rabbits as the ran for cover it was lovely country i would walk the hills to try and get a shot at a grouse or two but it was some time before i was rewarded with one it was strictly private and owned by the lord of the manor a Mr jasper moor who was also a member of parliament but it did not stop me poaching his coverts and having a few pheasants away i mostly caught them with a fish hook and line with a big old sultana on the hook it did not make a noise like shooting does i soon got to know the lay of the land and as i have said before had a few of his ducks as well it was a necessity then all was eaten and it supplemented our diet. but the winters were absolutely terrible as we regularly had big falls of snow stopping us getting out of our house we would have to dig our way out i will put a photo up of our house in those days there were only three houses, it was a hard life you would carry the coal for the fires for quite some distance and keeping warm was your priority cutting logs and sticks i did this after a long days work i have walked through snow up to my waist just to fetch the coal and put in the coal house higher up by the house the coal men would drop a ton of coal down the hill and we would fetch it in bags on your shoulders really hard work but i was young and strong and the world was my oyster. more a bit latter
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   Old Thread  #21 12 Mar 2011 at 9.17pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #20
Photobucketder="0" alt="Photobucket">
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   Old Thread  #20 12 Mar 2011 at 9.11pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #19
some of my paintingsi have done in the past

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   Old Thread  #19 12 Mar 2011 at 10.47am Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #18
Well my friend graham went barbel fishing and if you remember i said i would not take a bet on them catching they did not graham said the wind was bitter not really a day to be out on the river but they both tried more than i have done but i suppose i can blame other things this wind does seem to linger on its quite cold this morning i have had a couple of rats under my shed i have put the necessary under neath and thought they had died but they are back so i have put a bit more i am sure they wont last very long before they expire i ,hate the things how some farmers put up with them i dont know the one farm i go to is absolutely over run with the little critters they even run around in the day light i have told a friend who shoots the things with his air rifle so i am waiting to here how many he has he usually goes in the dark and hides somewhere in one of the out houses or lies in the farm hay stack he has shot hundreds like this and really does a good job for the local farmers he has had as many as 250 in one night that's a lot of rats and has gone back the next night and shot as many again its a bit better than poison as you don't know what else will eat the poison, or will an owl feed on the carcass of the rat it can have a knock on effect and kill a lot of other wild life.
Photobucket The lovely barbel a summer caught fish
Another hobby i have done and enjoyed is painting usually scenery but i have not done much of late as it can be very time consuming and you start to neglect other things i had so many orders at one time i could not complete them all so i called time i did not charge and did most for nothing as long as they paid for their materials but it got out of hand two many wanted paintings doing i suppose i could have gone full time but i did not think i was that good but others did i think when any hobby becomes your job some of the enjoyment must go not all but so
Photobucket graham with one of many chub he has caught
I see some of the hedge rows are now in bud the daffodils are out in bloom so spring is definitely in the air but the scenery still looks dank and bear the old ash tree in my garden seems to be in a state of suspended animation although its covered in buds i am off down the woods latter to see how thing are progressing or if any one is fishing the lakes i want to have a look at an old earth to see if the vixen is in residence as she may have cubs by now she has used this earth for generations or her ancestors have, it would be quite sad if it is not in use well thats a bit more i am quite busy today so ill write a bit more latter





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   Old Thread  #18 11 Mar 2011 at 3.17pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #17
What i love to do is to stand in the hills and look back at the rolling planes of Shropshire so much to see, looking back i can see the woods some i have poached i can see the wandering streams that in my younger days were so full of trout the streams i fished under the moon light night, i had no cares or worries in those days. The moon would strike the water throwing shadows like silver moon beams and i knew i was home a place of beauty and i was content i cared for all that went on around me, the vixen screaming or sending out a sharp warning to her cubs with a bark, the owl above gives a call or to watch the barn owl drift across the fields like a white ghost what more could one ask , to free line a worm under the sills of the falls and hear the keepers dog bark far away you knew you were safe tonight and the keeper had gone to bed so you could roam the river far and wide you had not a care within your head you would cast your rod and hold the line between your fingers as the worm trundled down you would feel the pluck as the trout as he took hold, and your rod would buck and arch you played this beauty to the side and held him in your hand what a marvelous sight to behold a block of spotted silver another for the bag,
Photobucket The beautiful hare
Photobucket The barn owl drifts like a ghost across the fields
You sat with you back against the old oak tree and listened to the noises of the night and watched the badger cross the field which looked like a silver lake, where is he going maybe to worm on some far off field so much to see you would drink you tea from the flask and be deep in thought it was all part of me you would jump with a start as a big old hare came through the fence next to where you sat he stopped and smelled the air i could of touched him on the head that's how close he was to me, he did not give me one look as he never knew i was there , across the fields he did go as i watched him in the moon light rays as he vanished from sight into the far off woods but i was there for trout to feed my family so once again i trundled down a worm and caught another trout it was the way i spent my younger life but it was a life i loved at one with nature and piece and quite, As Sam once said to me years before nowt, will hurt you in the woods or fields or streams, only another human and he was right and on some nights i have had to run or swim the river to get away or lie under the river bridge and listen to the keepers shout don't let him get away, but i had learned about this place many years before i knew it back to front so never once was i caught but what a merry dance did i give them all, up trees did i hide and heard them talk old Sgt landers was there as well. That old bugger knew it was me and would go and see my mother but he could not prove a thing and i always got away he knew i took the pheasants but i was always one in front he chased me night and day i have even hid up in the hay stack and have watched him far below talk to the keepers and old stan his side kick from the local police station on our village it was away of life, and a time of hard ship that we will never see again a life i loved and lived many years ago. well a bit more latter

Photobucket The badger
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   Old Thread  #17 10 Mar 2011 at 11.59am Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #13
I have been quite busy the last couple of days what with hospital appointments and such so i did not put a story on yesterday. My mate graham has gone barbel fishing today with his son in law i hope he catches one or two but i would not take a bet on it as i write this the wind is blowing very cold and in between it is raining not really the weather graham likes at his age he is now 75 years old and can not stand the cold like he did when he was younger i would of joined them but other pressing things to attend to.
Photobucket Barbel fishing
A few years ago would have seen both of us out in freezing weather trotting a float or ledgering on the river the frost made no difference then i have said before the line would freeze to the rod but we would be out all weathers when the hoar frost has been on the grass beside the river and the clear water that had not frozen, you would find us sitting on our old wicker baskets trotting a cork bodied float down the the stream or river between the patches of ice we had fantastic sport catching roach dace and chub we mainly fished with maggot or casters in those days but we also did well on home made bread paste mixed with danish blue we absolutely caught loads of big chub on the paste with a few roach thrown in but usually they were the bigger roach that we caught using paste, one method we always did well on was wasp grub you could only get them in season and could be a bit dangerous as we both found out a few times i remember one quite well we went to the nest and applied a good sprinkling of the white stuff ,we had always had no problems they were usually dead in the nest by morning so up we went in the morning spade in hand graham dug one sod out and bloody hell all was let loose they came out of that nest in a swarm did we run the spade was left where it was we were stung all over what the people at the nearby houses thought i don't know perhaps they thought we were completely mad jumping up and down kicking our legs out i forget how many times we had been stung but they had even stung us thought our trousers we had calamine lotion rubbed all over us i said to graham bugger the wasps but they were an excellent bait and if you could get the nest you used the grubs on the hook and the nest you would break up for ground bait we had some awesome catches of chub ledgering wasp grub.
Photobucket A nice photo of chub and roach
Photobucket Inside a wasps nest
we poached a number of small lakes in those days some estate lakes that had never seen a rod and line we were always on edge in case any one came and caught us but we had a lot of good sport fishing these no go areas, some of the lakes contained some very big tench and it was nothing for us both to have over a hundred pounds of fish we were meticulous on how we left the lake and would always clean up before we departed just in case the keeper or owner realized some one had been fishing his lake we never did get caught some of the locals could not believe we had fished some of the lakes and unless you showed them proof . i would say to graham take no notice most were jealous they had they same opportunity as us but were to frightened to have a go but most lakes then were strictly private. most were big shooting estates and they used the lakes for there duck shooting so fishing did not come ,into the equation they would not let any one onto the estates so you had no option but to poach. well a bit more latter

Photobucket A pair of mallard duck like the ones shot on the estates
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   Old Thread  #16 9 Mar 2011 at 6.45pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #15
Plenty of life left in you yet Pete, get a good nights sleep and start planning your spring offensive with your rods mate
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   Old Thread  #15 9 Mar 2011 at 5.56pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #14
hi pete seen the specialist to day had a vascular scan the bulge in the aorta is only 4.5 so i have got top go back every three months for another scan to see if it has grown he will not operate unless its five and over so perhaps ill get some sleep ,tonight the specialist told Me not to worry over it so i will try thanks for your kind words pete
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   Old Thread  #14 8 Mar 2011 at 11.42pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #13
It looks as if the countryside waking up to spring has given you a lift Pete, hopefully the specialist will give you some good news on your next visit. Good to see the pictures on your posts now, keep it up mate but don't overdo things.
Take care
Pete
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   Old Thread  #13 7 Mar 2011 at 12.59pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #12
The country side is now becoming alive the birds are now in full swing with there nesting i have a tree sparrow that has built her nest in the honeysuckle tree just out side the bathroom first i have had in my garden one thing i am very pleased about is the return of the green finches, we have not seen any all year apparently, loads have died with some disease, but i now have three or four pairs visiting my feeding station so it just goes to show a few do survive we had the long tailed tits again yesterday there must of been at least thirty of these beautiful little birds feeding on the nuts they have come up from the woods a few times this year they are funny little things small but most welcome in my jungle of a garden, the one corner is set aside with trees and bushes i leave it to go completely wild nettles briar's and such in fact the vixen lies in there when she brings her cubs from the fields a few years ago one vixen had her earth in the corner and reared her cubs there funny really i had two dogs at the time a terrier that would kill rats rabbits most things i also had a lab but the terrier who i called marky never even bothered them
they seemed to get on together very strange as marky if taken down the fields or woods would chase and have a go at most things fox included.
Photobucket The beautiful gold finch that breeds in my garden
Photobucket THE little long tailed tit that visits my garden
The nettles draw allsorts from butterflies bees even spiders, its always nice to be able to leave a few nettles in the garden as they certainly help our wild life, i have two big hawthorn hedges which certainly helps the birds, i have blackbirds nests the dunnock most will know him as the hedge sparrow, and of course the robin i have also got the thrush, and in the old fir i have the gold finch, and of course jenny wren, who builds her nest in the ivy growing on the old plum tree, so i have a plenty to see and watch of late i have not cast a line i hope one of these next days will see graham and i out fishing for the carp its not that i don't want to go but it has been so cold of late with a easterly wind at times and with my health it really puts me off and graham is no spring chicken he is now seventy five and of course not as fit as he was but we shall try our luck in the coming months and hope that we see a few grace the bank, the specialist rang this morning and told me i have a small aneurysm and he will arrange for me to go to his clinic to have a chat maybe next week i really hope so as it is rather frightening but he says i will be OK lets hope so.
Photobucket The wren that nests in my garden

Photobucket The green finch that has returned to my garden
on Wednesday i pick up another car a 4 4 once again but a sixteen hundred cc so should be a bit better on juice than the one i did have which was in four wheel drive all the time so i shall be able to get to places others cant and watch my beloved wild life or fish in extreme places where others have to walk they are a handy tool and one i really found i could not do without. the price of fuel is absolutely disgusting and i am surprised at the public not doing anything about it if it was france they would demonstrate but not good old blighty we seem to exept all that is thrown at us well that's enough of that, i am going to take a ride down to shrewsbury weir on the severn to see if any one is fishing as it is quite a nice day here with the sun shinning so there maybe a few out after the Barbel the wind or breeze is quite chilly but some of my hardy friends may be fishing there is now only a week before the close season and the river banks will be deserted once again. well that's it for now more latter
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   Old Thread  #12 6 Mar 2011 at 11.45am Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #11
I suppose i am very lucky where i live because if i walk just up the road i am in the fields my little river the Rea is only about a mile from my front door when i fished there years ago i never took to much tackle with me rod reel a few hooks weights landing net and that was about it i always walked down when i was much younger there is some really good roach to be caught i would stand or sit down, and trot down the side of the river i have caught lovely roach with fish going a good pound which is good for such a small river, the roach are still there but it is now dominated by grayling because i can not walk the distance i have not had a go for them but a friend who goes quite regular has caught them to one pound eight oz, he fishes very like i did and has caught some good bags it has also been stocked with brown trout by a club from upstream as my friend said you cant help but catch them do you put them back Andy he smiled of course i do pete. There are still some decent chub to be caught and i know of friends catching them to four pounds plus. I have one friend that fly fishes the Rea he only uses a seven ft rod and a weight forward, size 4 floating line but he has some good sport he uses a selection of wet flies and nymphs and he does very well the grayling he catches are wonderful fish the lady of the river, as he said to me its one way of getting away from the pressures of life i know exactly what he means as it is a different world beside that little river, its you the fish and the wild life it teams with all manner of wild life the kingfisher the dipper although you dont see him as much as when i was young, in the summer you have the sand martins the dragon flies all manner of birds what else could one ask well for me nothing, i only wish i could get down there and cast a fly for those fish and maybe breath the fresh air and the smell of the new grown vegetation. But alas i think those days have gone i must now leave it to the younger ones.
Photobucket The lady of the river the grayling
Photobucket The beautiful brownie
Photobucket The seven ft fly rod what my freind uses on the river Rea
A friend came to my home to see me yesterday i have mentioned his name many times in my stories Bern he has Been a good friend of graham and myself for many years and has fished with me all over Shropshire and into wales he has been a true friend but like me Bern has suffered over the last few years and has spent a fair bit of time in hospital he suffered an abscess on the spine and was in hospital for around eighteen months but he is now back at work although he is in his sixties. Bern loved his fishing and he was in the Acton burnell syndicate for many years before it was taken over by rob hails he caught some wonderful fish with many going well over thirty i met him for the first time when graham and i first fished Betton he always fished with his father albury and his brother charlie graham and i had a bit of a reputation in those days for catching big fish and had a fair bit of publication for catching the big bream Bern and his family were fascinated with the way we fished and the big bags we caught and from that day forward we have been great friends i have fished with bernall over and we have had some great times he is also a member of my shoot syndicate and is a good shot. well a bit more latter

Photobucket The lovely roach like i caught ot of the river Rea all those years ago
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   Old Thread  #11 5 Mar 2011 at 10.16am Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #6
Thanks chaps i have got to live one day at a time my docs told me not to worry so for the time being i will take her advice. where was i oh yes charlie he learned me more about foxes than any one i have met if he put you to stand with the gun you knew you would shoot a fox he was a master and knew exactly where the fox would break cover his last words when he left you was dunna you miss him i never had the pleasure of missing so i never got a cussing but i saw others get the hair dry treatment they would be put in the walking line for a few weeks charlie would rather you did not take a shot and leave the fox to another gun if you were unsure of a kill.

I can see him now walking across the field in his brown check shirt and brown corduroys and before he has got near shouting have you had him pete. yes charlie well done, sir will be pleased. charlie was one of the old school all his superiors he would call sir and tip his hat especially his boss lord Forrester but he could also talk to him on his own level. when he was keeper we would be invited on the big hare drives on the willy and shirley estate it was not uncommon to shoot at least 100 hares those were the days different farming methods then, charlie would put all the guns out or leave it to me then walk all the way back to the beaters that could be over a mile away you would see the hares coming in the distance like little dots at times there could be as many as sixty running forward at the same time you hid behind the hedge and shot them out in front it was a necessity in those days as they could really do a bit of damage for the farmer or estate owner at the end of the day you were offered a hare to take home i never bothered as i did not like the taste much they had a very strong smell and taste. All that was left was taken to market to sell the revenue made went back into the estate they would have two or three hare drives a year some times you were asked to be a walking gun one thing i soon learned was not to shoot one if walking as you would be expected to carry the animal until the end of the drive have you ever felt the weight of a hare they are big and heavy by the time you got to the end you would be knackered.
Photobucket The lovely brown hare
But they were great days you met so many different farmers and men some have remained friends ever since they were from all walks of life but mostly country folk who understood the country side alas a good many have passed on and all we have is our memories but they are good memories of a time long ago where the country side was a very different place. In those days there was no shortage of wild life today a lot has vanished not as many hares well in shropshire there is not but they are making a come back i banned all shooting of them on our small syndicate i think farming methods was a major factor in there decline agriculture sprays and such our country side is so fragile and it needs looking after for future generations. a bit more latter
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   Old Thread  #10 5 Mar 2011 at 3.30am Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
In reply to Post #6
Best wishes Peter, and take it easy!.
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   Old Thread  #9 5 Mar 2011 at 1.50am Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
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Enjoy reading these Pete. Get well soon, thoughts are with you
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   Old Thread  #8 4 Mar 2011 at 10.31pm Login so you can post / reply  Register so you can join in!
All the best to you Peter.
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