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PCF Welcomes Mark Horspool

By Mark Horspool
In January 27, 2017
1999 Views

To say I was surprised and honoured when I was asked to play a more active role within PCF would be an understatement. Shortly after joining TeamPCF I knew I had made a great decision, with a vast amount of baits to choose from not to mention the lakes, other team members and of course the socials I knew I was onto a good thing.

So where did my love for angling begin? Well if you ask my dad (also a team member) he’ll tell you he took my mum fishing whilst she was pregnant with me and he hasn’t been able to get rid of me since! I’m sure he doesn’t mean it.

I cut my teeth fishing local ponds and lakes and also the local river, not for carp but for silver fish. In fact I didn’t start carp fishing until I was around 13 years old. Not because I didn’t want to but because my dad wanted me to learn how to fish, appreciate the wild life and most importantly enjoy myself. He used to have me sit me in the garden with a float Rod set up casting into buckets, sure we got some strange looks from the neighbours but my accuracy improved greatly. It is these little things that have contributed to help me along my fishing path.

I was introduced to carp at a young age, Dad used to take me to the pits at Maxey where I would sit trying to catch the rudd and roach whilst he targeted these mysterious black shadows that seemed to appear from no where. Back then carp fishing was different. There wasn’t the lakes like we have now, the stocks were very limited and everything was a secret. I do remember vividly one day dad catching a carp using bread, which if I remember rightly was a bit of my jam sandwich. I was in ore of this creature, I’d never seen a fish of this size on the bank, the love of carp had been ignited.

I spent many years fishing for roach and skimmers, moving up to bream and tench when I was bought my first ledger Rod. I joined the local junior match team and competed up to national level but deep down I knew what species I really wanted to target.

My first opportunity came when dad took me to Heron lake at Wyboston where he had been the previous week helping with a fishing charity. The kids from the charity had gone home and dad had permission to bring me down for the last night.

The swim i was fishing was a good 150 metres away from dad. He helped me with setting up but I did the casting and baiting. Well that night we suffered probably one of the worst storms I’ve ever been in. I was at the age where I was petrified of thunder so I lay there on my old flowery sun lounger with my head under the pillow praying it would bugger off, after what seemed an eternity it did. I remember laying there under my 45 inch brolly wondering if I was still alive when one of my Banford conversions burst into life. This Rod was an old glass fibre rod with a Mitchell 300 fishing churner style, basically anti-reverse switched off to allow line to be taken. The reel was spinning at 100mph I fell flat on my arse getting to the rod, smashed my fingers trying to grab the spinning reel handle but I managed to play and land the fish before my dad appeared out of breath behind me. I don’t know who was most emotional but I’d do remember him giving me a big hug, both of us in tears, something that still happens today when either of us catches a lump.

So that was the start of it, my love and passion for carp fishing something that has never really changed other than a year i spent fluff chucking for trout.

I fished a lot of local waters around Peterborough, Maxey pits, Bainton fisheries, Lolham syndicate to name a few. I was also fortunate enough to fish Baston Fen which was at the time one of the leading carp complexes in the local area. I spent a few years fishing the river nene for carp and doing so quite successfully.

I now live in Bedfordshire, a county that has more water than land. I have been fishing local club waters for the last 6 years and I am currently fishing a lake no more than a 10 minute walk from home which contains carp to over 50lb, so I’m pretty spoilt.

Over the coming months I will be updating you with the trials and tribulations of fishing this lake. It is by no means an easy water and does get extremely busy at times. Due to how busy it gets its not everyone’s cup of tea but with the fish that are swimming around in there it’s defiantly worth it.

This isn’t the only place I’ll be fishing this year and will be writing about my other adventures. One trip I have planned in may/June which should have you shaking your head. Let me just say it contains an amusement arcade, bumpy slide rubber dinghies and a bunch of northerners asking ‘caught out mate’. But I’ve had anything up to 35 fish in a day out of there, it’s good fun sport.

I’ll also be doing video blogs to and some live streaming on facebook too to keep you all updated.

So for now I want to thank Gary, Steve, Carl and Ben for giving me this opportunity and I hope to meet a lot of you throughout the year.

Get out there, catch a few and most of all enjoy it.