Paul believes that urban fishing plays an important part in the daylighting movement and explains that the more people become attached to the rivers and see the benefits they can offer, the more they will want to defend them. That’s why he is keen for the younger generations, such as 19-year-old Jess, to get involved.
Jess is already an accomplished fly fisher: she has been fishing with her father since she was a child on wild rivers in Scotland but this is her first experience in town. As a young woman she is a minority in the sport but believes that negative stereotypes of the sport are standing in the way of it becoming more popular.
‘Fly fishing is seen as an old man’s sport but it’s really not,’ she explains, sheltering from a shower of rain under an Audi umbrella. ‘It can be quite extreme at times. You wade out into the water and you are constantly moving, casting the rod forwards and back. It’s also much more accessible to people in town than it used to be. If you want to have a go for free, Orvis the fishing rod makers do demonstrations at their shops or you can go to big events such as the London Fly Fishing fair. Just be warned: once you have started it’s pretty hard to stop!’ Words by John Silcox. Photographs by Tom Cockram.
Special thanks to Abbas Al-Samsam at Audi Victoria for organising accessories.
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