Thames Festival 2019

Another successful festival with great weather, plenty of smiles and diverse but interesting fishing conditions.

Thanks to these gentleman the pegs were all made easy to access and fish

In its seventh year this festival has grown and grown in popularity due to its welcoming and friendly atmosphere. The dedication and hard work that goes into this festival by organiser Paul Glenfield and the team doesn’t go unnoticed, it isn’t just the weighing in and the admin that they have to do. All the pegs are spruced up and made accessible for the competitors taking part which takes days for a group of dedicated individuals to clear a total of 78 pegs!

Left to right; Monty, Jay and John enjoying a well earned meal after the weigh in

Although we have had mild conditions throughout the year the fishing on the Thames has been difficult. This is possibly due to lack of rain that would normally cause flow and colour to enter the river. Regardless to this there were still fish to be caught and Roach and Perch made up the majority of the catches. Also this year, due to the conditions Bleak have also played a huge part and for the people that targeted them often securing good section points. The bream in each of the sections seemed to have shown on the first day but dissapered on the Wednesday and Thursday with only solitary fish being caught. The festival lent itself towards small fish and setting up a variety of rigs and making quick tactical decisions if you wasn’t catching was imperative.

2019 Thames Festival winner Bradley Gibbons with a first day section winning catch of Bleak 

Small fish tactics was the name of the game meaning multiple rigs, sensible feeding and quick tactical changes. None other than young England star Bradley Gibbons perfected this and showed a class preformance over the 3 days. Bradley explained “Whips were first out of the bag ranging from 3m to 4m and then pole rigs anything from .4gr to 3gr depending on depth and tow” “My plan was to just keep fish going into the net throughout the 5 hours because I felt that this would get me good section points over the 3 days. Fortunately the bream didn’t really show this year which kept weights relatively low”

Top 3 left to right; 3rd Shaun Bryan 1st Bradley Gibbons and 2nd Matt Herbert

Section winners, zone winners and individual winners results over the 3 days