COMPANY director Dave Broady obliterated the River Thames barbel record with this 19 lb 8 oz beast.

Fishing a deep secret stretch, Dave added 7 oz the old River Thames best set by Gary Teer last November (2017) at 19 lb 1 oz.

The 58-year-old from Walkern, Hertfordshire, explained: “I set out for an evening session with colleges, arriving at the river around midday.

“It looked like it was dropping from the recent high water but still had a lot of colour in it and was pushing through, and the temperature was quite low at 5.5 degrees.

“I started by fishing boilies over a few loose offerings using a large running ring with a break-away feeder attached.

“This was stopped by a tapered tulip bead pushed over leger stops to act as a buffer and I fish straight through with 10 lb Maxima line to a size 10 Pallatrax’s Barbel Hook, with a hair rig.

“I fed the upstream rod during the afternoon, but shortly after dark I switched the upstream rod to a chunk of meat and packed the feeder to give off a scent trail over the baited area.

“Shortly after the bait was picked up, a solid lump dropped downstream on a really steady run.

“After turning the fish, it seemed ages before it turned in front of me and went sideways into the net first time.

“At first you never know how big. But I know it was a good fish but until I went to lift and it turned on its side, I thought I had something really special and was about to smash my PB.

“Up on the mat the profile of this fish was amazing and it took a while to sink in just how big this fish was and what it meant.

“The fish was witnessed by two other anglers, plus it was weighted separately by two sets of scales.

“My old PB was 14 lb 10 oz from the Kennet at Burghfield, and from the Thames I have had them to 13 lb 12 oz.

“I have been fishing since a small boy and for at least the last 20 years or more, I’ve been fishing mainly for barbel all over the country, most weekends and spare time. I have had doubles form quite a few different venues over the years.

“I know from leg work we did, there was reports of larger barbel in this section of the Thames and seen others in the summer, so for the last two or three winters I have put time in on this section hoping for a big one, without much success.

“I fished a deep section and put my baits just off the main flow over a gravel and mussel bed. I have always said ‘it only takes one bite’,” concluded Dave.

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