Giant Hampshire Avon barbel leaves it late

16lb 10oz specimen is same fish that holds current river record

Giant Hampshire Avon barbel leaves it late

by Angling Times |

THIS long, lean, Hampshire Avon barbel sent Bournemouth angler Ben Fairweather’s centrepin into meltdown just as he was about to pack up.

On his second after-work session in the space of a few days, Ben found his chosen stretch devoid of anglers and was able to get into a fancied swim.

With it now being 7pm, he didn’t have long before he had to head home, so he cast a 14mm fishmeal boilie alongside a single mesh bag of free offerings. He used a backlead 6ft up his mainline to pin everything down, away from any feeding fish.

Time flew by, and Ben stood up to pack away his chair. Hearing his friend returning from upstream, he decided to reel in once he arrived. But almost as soon as that thought entered his mind, Ben’s centrepin made what he describes as ‘the most beautiful noise’, as a powerful fish tore off downstream. The barbel found a weedbed, but with steady pressure he was able to free it and guide it into the landing net.

Upon closer inspection, Ben realised he had caught the barbel that holds the current Hampshire Avon record at 19lb 11oz, but well down in weight at 16lb 10oz. Still, he was ‘mind blown’ by the fish.

Ben Fairweather – 16lb 10oz barbel
Ben Fairweather – 16lb 10oz barbel
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