River record barbel
19lb 1oz fish forms part of an incredible 31lb 9oz catch double
Full story and pics of massive Thames and Cherwell fish
THE River Thames barbel record has been broken with the capture of a giant fish weighing 19lb 1oz.
The historic catch fell to bigfish angler Garry Teer from an undisclosed stretch of the capital’s waterway.
It was one of a pair of fish taken by the Northamptonshire man, who also landed a 12lb 8oz barbel as part of a memorable double hook-up.
Both barbel were taken on a single 20mm Bankside Baits
Team Barbel boilie fished in conjunction with a PVA bag of broken boilies.
The larger of the two is believed to be the same fish caught by the 51-year-old last month at a weight of 17lb 9oz, a fish that was reported in Angling Times.
A shocked Garry told us: “I had only been at the river for a little over half an hour when my downstream rod screamed off and the 12-pounder soon made its way into the net.
“As I was just about to release the fish, my other rod, which I had cast on to the shelf of a deep hole mid-river, also screamed off. I knew this one was big as soon as I hooked it, as it just wouldn’t budge from the bottom.
“When I saw it in the net after a good fight it just dwarfed the 12-pounder. It had a 22ins girth, the fattest barbel I’ve ever seen.”
Garry’s winning rig consisted of a 2oz lead with a 2ft hooklink of E-S-P Strip Teaze tied to a size 8 hook with a small piece of tubing to act as a line-aligner and improve hook-ups.
His catch, which easily beats the official waterway best for the species, an 18lb 2oz specimen caught by Guy Robb in 2007, came during the same week that rumours were circulating of a
UK record 21lb 10oz barbel, again from the Thames. If true, this fish would beat the current British record for the species, held by Graeme King, by a mere 9oz.
Garry’s 19-pounder comes as no surprise to him and other Thames regulars: “The river has the possibility to throw up some really special fish, not just barbel, and being such a large waterway with
“In the net it dwarfed the 12-pounder. It had a 22ins girth, the fattest barbel I’ve ever seen”
a high food source, barbel could easily grow to record proportions,” he said.
Another Thames regular, John Gard, told Angling Times: “The Thames has been on fire this season with numerous big barbel, especially in the middle reaches.
“A 21lb fish is certainly possible as the Thames can hold some real monsters. We have already seen carp to 50lb and roach to over 3lb.”
It’s not just the main river that has been producing the goods for barbel anglers – Thames tributaries have also been throwing up some cracking fish, as Kenny Massey can testify after breaking the River Cherwell record with a 15lb 9oz stunner. Undeterred by rumours that all the big barbel had been predated in the stretch, the Londoner visited a private stretch of the Cherwell in Oxfordshire where he’d prebaited several likelylooking spots with broken boilies.
On the day, Kenny settled in his first swim and threw in some freebies before casting out a leger rig made up of 12lb mainline, a 3oz lead and a critically-balanced meaty boilie wrapped in paste.
After only 30 minutes he had a screaming bite that resulted in not only a new record but – amazingly – his first-ever barbel from running water. Had Kenny claimed a record, the capture would beat the previous Cherwell best by a massive 2lb 9oz, a record held by Mick Coleman since 2002.
The 19-pounder dwarfs Garry’s other fish.
Kenny Massey’s 15lb 9oz River Cherwell barbel. Here it is... Garry Teer’s Thames monster.