Well, that is me sorted for Christmas which is a relief. I always start worrying around this time of year as my family begin to badger me for my Yuletide shopping list. My advice to you all - get in early and go big.
Now, let's face it the new Bentley Bentayga, the luxury SUV wagon, is an OK sort of a request. For the fishermen it is practical and safe. Always wise to emphasise the 'safe' word as your loved ones don't like the thought of anything bad happening to you. After all we do go to VERY dangerous places just off the M3. But on its own, let's face it the Bentayga (named after a rugged peak in the Canary Islands apparently), is something of a paltry gift. I laugh at the £175,000+ price tag.
So, as I say go big and insist on the ultimate optional extra with the Bentayga Fly Fishing edition which has been created by Bentley's in-house coachbuilding division Mulliner. For a mere additional £80,000 Bentley tell us you may upgrade to all this:
"Four rods clad in special leather trimmed tubes sit under the parcel shelf, above landing nets in matching leather bags stored in carpet-trimmed pockets in the boot side. Three individual, saddle-leather-trimmed units sit at the heart of the setup - a 'master tackle station' with a sliding tray, a refreshment case and a waterproof wader stowage trunk.
That station houses a Burr Walnut veneered drawer containing fly-tying vice and tools, as well as a selection of hooks, feathers and cottons. As you would expect, the refreshment case contains a set of Mulliner fine-china tableware and metal flasks, perfect for when you need a break from reeling them in. All three units can be removed from the Bentayga's boot, giving maximum luggage space back.
For those fearing a fishy hue could detract from the smell of diamond quilted leather, Bentley provides a handy electronic dehumidifier unit to ensure your favourite hobby doesn't sully the Bentayga's interior. Further protection comes in the form of rear-sill protection covers and a waterproof boot-floor."
Of course the canny amongst you will be wondering what are these rods. Trout or salmon? Cane or carbon? What weight? What make are the reels and lines? Are the hooks barbless? And so on. Sadly, despite much trawling through numerous Bentley press releases and web pages I have still no idea. It seems to be something of a secret. But hey, why spoil the surprise for Christmas Day.
HOMES ON THE RIVER
You may take your pick between a quaint cottage at Bishopstone on the River Ebble, a rather more modern house on the River Bourne and the aptly named barn-style Fishermans Reach on the River Nadder.
It is fair to say none of these are massive beats but speaking as one who lives over and beside the Wallop Brook it is hard to resist the allure of a river. The ever-burbling stream is a wonderful sedative to the stresses of life and aside from the fishing any bit of chalkstream, however apparently insignificant to the uninitiated, is a haven to be treasured.
Here are links to all three:
Of course if you don't want a home on the river but just the river it seems Wiltshire is the place to look this month with a good, long beat on the River Wylye on the market through Strutt & Parker. The guide price is £415,000 for both lots, the land and the fishing.
|River Wylye at Stapleford, Wiltshire|
A few random teasers this week.
1) How long is the Tour de France?
2) Does the Tour circuit France clockwise or counterclockwise?
3) Has angling ever been an Olympic Sport?
4) Jeremy Fisher of Beatrix Potter fame was what kind of a creature?
5) And who tried to eat him?
It's just for fun and answers are at the bottom of the page.
Have a good weekend.
Simon Cooper firstname.lastname@example.org
Founder & Managing Director
1) 3,500 km or 2,200 miles over 21 stages. 2) The race alternates between clockwise and counterclockwise circuits of France. 3) Yes. Angling was an unofficial sport at the 1900 Olympics in Paris. At a series of competitions in August, some 600 fisherman participated in 4 separate events. No results have yet been discovered for these competitions. 4) A frog. 5) A large trout.