Farewell to Tony Smith, the quiet man of angling
I’M sorry to have to tell you that former Drennan Cup runner-up Tony Smith passed away peacefully at his home in Ferrybridge, West Yorkshire, on December 6.
Tony was one of the quiet men of specialist angling and rarely publicised or wrote about his success. He had a scientific approach to the sport, and religiously studied Angling Times and other magazines for clues about waters which held the calibre of fish he was interested in catching.
He chatted and wrote letters to anglers and fishery owners to gain further information, and kept files devoted to different species for reference.
When he decided to break his self-imposed code of silence by making a bid for the 2015-16 Drennan Cup, his success came as no surprise to those who knew him.
He finished a close runner-up to Dai Gribble, catching bream to 18lb, tench to 13lb 13oz, barbel to 16lb 9oz and a 5lb 6oz eel.
He will also be remembered as the captor of two huge eels in September 2004, from a busy dayticket water in Lincolnshire.
He landed a specimen of 8lb 11oz, and followed it up a few hours later with another of 9lb 4oz.
Tony was not motivated by fame and glory. He simply enjoyed being at the waterside, enjoying the camaraderie of mixing with specialist anglers and, above all, he enjoyed the challenge of catching exceptional fish.
He leaves a wife, Ann, and a son, Steve. Dave Tipping, Harrogate
Tony Smith and a 10lb 15oz tench.