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I suppose the best place to start is at the beginning.  I was a day late landing in England due to a little plane trouble that caused a forced stay over in Dubai; all very frustrating but that is another story. 

Ole picked me up at Birmingham Airport as normal with a big smile and a very warm hello.  Then it was back to our B&B to sort out our itinerary for the rest of the day.  We stayed in one of those very old English pubs built way back in the dark ages that went with the quaint name of “The Boot”.

Having a beer with Steve Cooper
Steve is President of the Potteries Branch

What can I say; there was so much stick being thrown back and forth, Aussies versus Poms, you know the stuff, that I was only able to talk for about two hours instead of all night as usual.  Such is life but it was a great night.
Early next morning there was a mad dash half way down the British Isles to London and as one would guess, the motorways were jammed; the M4-M5-M6 were all a total loss.  We ended up about an hour late for a fly tying session at that great English fishing tackle/clothing icon, Farlows of Pall Mall.  If you have never been to Farlows then put it on that must do before I die list.  Some three storeys of fishing gear and clothing, plus a tradition of excellence that dates well back over one hundred years.

Pages 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
With the boss of Farlows, Brian Fratel

Parts of the building were that old, dating back to the early 1400s, it made you wonder just how many people had stayed there over the centuries, how many pints had been consumed and, was it haunted?  If it were haunted I will never know as after a few pints that evening and a good English pub-cooked meal, I slept like a log under the huge Duck down doona and the earth could have done a bit of rock and roll and I would have been oblivious to it all.

The next day was the start of a very busy couple of weeks.  The first club talk was at the Fly Tyers’ Guild branch at Stoke-on-Trent at The Potteries, another old English pub.

Partridge of Redditch

Again this year I was invited back to merry old England to participate in the British Fly Fair held at Stoke-on-Trent on 1st & 2nd November and what a show it was!

My host in England was Ole Bjerke, Marketing Manager for Partridge of Redditch and apart from the BFFI, we spent two weeks travelling all across England doing instore fly tying workshops, club talks and a bit of fishing.