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 2020 News & Events

Obituary, Jim (The Fish) Smith, 31.07.1944 to 27.12 2019

It is with great sadness that we report the peaceful passing, on 27th December, in Eastbourne Hospital, of Jim Smith, a much loved and familiar character to so many anglers here in the south east.

Jim was a long time member of Salmon & Trout Conservation and for some years also a member of the Cinder Hill Trouting Syndicate, although unfortunately he didnít manage to fish very much in recent years.

From his home in Isfield, in his capacity as bailiff for the Ouse Angling Preservation Society and the Environment Agency, Jim would walk the banks of his beloved rivers Ouse and Uck and woe betide anyone caught fishing without an appropriate permit or licence.

A true countryman, his knowledge of the rivers and the flora and fauna surrounding them, their history and nature in general was without equal and he was always more than happy to convey this knowledge to anyone interested.

Jim will be sorely missed but well remembered by all who knew him.

A further tribute to Jim follows, courtesy of Mark Orchin, Secretary of Cinder Hill Fly Fishing.

I remember fondly the many chats I had with Jim along the river bank on the Sussex Ouse going back over 30 years, his figure instantly recognisable slowly making his way down the bank towards us anglers to check our licence, give advice and have a good old chin wag about anything to do with the river and its inhabitants.

Jim (As Field Officer and honorary Bailiff) wrote regularly in the Ouse and Arun River Trust (OART) quarterly magazine by way of his countryside diary, where it was clear that his countryside knowledge was not only superior but borne from a lifelong love of the river and its surroundings. It was no surprise on several occasions to see Jim interviewed about the river on TV and he would have given Jack Hargreaves & Oliver Kite a run for their money! As a committee member of our local Historical Society I invited Jim over to give a talk one evening a few years back and he kept a sizeable audience enthralled with his knowledge of the river, its history and the wildlife it contains, going back some 60 ó70 years, in fact, after 2 hours we had a job to get him to close the talk!

I think it is Jimís legacy, that all of us who visit the countryside, should try to learn more about the wildlife and surroundings, not just the fish, but the birds, plants, trees and insects and how our current climate crisis is affecting nature and to pass it on to future generations. Jim was passionate about keeping everything as it should be and wrote frequently about the litter he and colleagues picked up at Barcombe Mills after hot summer weekends, often filling dozens of bin liners Ė a thankless task so often repeated.

I once saw Jim in the Anglers Rest at Barcombe (now sadly closed) singing old folk songs with pals with a pint of Harveys after a day on the river, a treasure of knowledge has now left us. RIP Jim Smith.


Our Chairman's New Year Newsletter, January 2020

To view Rod Yuill's New Year Newsletter please click here.





Cinder Hill Fly Fishing

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Updated January 2020