Tales of the riverbank
As Aldiss marks its milestone 125th anniversary, the company’s chairman Tim Aldiss reflects on his passion for fishing, and, after a lifetime of shop-keeping, how taking time out to enjoy nature keeps him grounded in the fast-moving retail world
What are your favourite things to do in your spare time?
I’M an avid fly fisherman and have loved fishing since I was a boy. When I was about three I would be taken down to Dodds Mill with a little fishing net and would catch tiddlers. I’ve been keen on fishing ever since.
How often do you go fishing and what are your favourite fishing spots?
In the summer I go fishing quite a lot. Usually I would go two or three times a week and I tend to spend most of my time fishing in the Wensum or Bure, or on the local trout lakes. So far this year I’ve not done as much fishing as I usually would because I’ve been working to restore a piece of the River Wensum at Lenwade.
It’s the first time I’ve been able to own a stretch of river and I’ve created a permissive path to enable everyone to enjoy it. The Environment Agency has been a great deal of help to me and has given me a lot of very sound advice. Friends have given me sound advice too. It’s amazing how kind people are when you want to do something like this and give you their time.
Have you ventured further afield than Norfolk on your fishing trips?
You name it I’ve been there. I am really fortunate to have travelled a lot. One of my very favourite trips is saltwater fly fishing in the Seychelles, where you get fish like trevally and milkfish.
What is it that’s so special about fishing?
You are at peace with the world. You feel at one with nature, completely relaxed, and you can lose yourself in your thoughts. Especially when you’re in business, sometimes you get very stressful days and it’s nice to be able to get down to the river.
Is there a catch that you’ve never been able to net?
All men are equal before fish, the saying goes – you could have all the money in the world and it wouldn’t mean you are going to catch the one you want.
I suppose everyone wants to catch that super-sized trout or salmon. I’ve been lucky to have caught some reasonably large fish. When I started I was always bothered about how many fish I caught. Then it was the biggest. At the stage of my fishing life that I’m at now, it’s not the biggest or the most I’m after - it’s about the most challenging catch.
This spring Aldiss is celebrating 125 years of trading in Norfolk with a series of special promotions. Find out more at their stores at Oxborough Lane, Fakenham or Hall Road, Norwich or online at www.aldiss.com
Mr Tim Aldiss