17 rivers in 14 days

● Char­ity mis­sion ● Bar­bel ace and pals ● Light gear ● Pub­lic trans­port

Anglers Mail - - You Must Learn Now! -

AN AN­NUAL chal­lenge saw its in­trepid or­gan­iser tackle an im­pres­sive 17 rivers across Europe in 14 days.

Bar­bel spe­cial­ist Jerry Gleeson, a head chef, raised nearly £5,000 for ABF The Soldiers’ Char­ity, bring­ing the to­tal over four years to £15,000.

Jerry told An­gler’s Mail: “The whole thing is ex­haust­ing. I’ve come back with ach­ing body parts I never even knew I had.

“I travel as light as pos­si­ble. There’s no bed­chair or bite alarms, just a light­weight seat and rod rests.

“I started on my lo­cal River Goyt then worked my way down south, joined by a mate on the River Lea in Hert­ford­shire, then a few other friends for the Euro­pean leg.

“We fished the Meuse and

I’ve come back ach­ing in parts I never even knew I had.

Se­mois, in France, then fished in Bel­gium, Ger­many and Hol­land.

“The best bar­bel I had came

from the mid­dle River Trent, at 14 lb 2 oz, but I also had a very good spec­i­men of 12 lb 2 oz from the Dove, which was even more pleas­ing, as there are few big ‘uns left in there. Jerry Gleeson

“I man­aged to tempt 15 dif­fer­ent species, most of them very small, but had a 7 lb bream on the Trent and a 4 lb 8 oz chub in France. The only river I didn’t catch from was the Colne, where I had been joined by a friend, but de­cided not to fish be­cause I was so tired.

“The char­ity is very dear to my heart, as I had two broth­ers and sev­eral close friends in the Army. It is run to­tally by vol­un­teers, so there are lim­ited costs, mean­ing most of the money goes to help the vet­er­ans and their fam­i­lies.

“I won’t be do­ing the same thing again, as it’s just too ex­haust­ing, but I’ll look to do some­thing dif­fer­ent,” added the 43-year-old from Stock­port, Lan­cashire, who trav­elled to the rivers in this coun­try by pub­lic trans­port.

Jerry was chuffed with this 12 lb 2 oz whisker from the River Dove in Der­byshire.

Jerry en­joyed com­pany from pals. Christophe Pel­hate had this 11-pounder dur­ing Jerry’s brief visit to the Ken­tish Stour.

Help from lo­cals, in­clud­ing this French tackle shop, was in­valu­able to Jerry.

TIM KNIGHT

■ Jerry Gleeson shows his best fish from his lat­est rov­ing mis­sion – a 14 lb 2 oz bar­bel from the Trent.

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