A river on a summers evening is a magical place, and tonight I was on the Lea in search of a lone dark one. By the time I had hooked a carp it was almost nightfall and when I managed to finally scoop the carp into a fully extended landing net, darkness was all around me. My swim (one of the secret swims) was so small that no space was free to take any decent photos as I disentangled the rod, the net, the line and the hook from one another. The carp was a lovely dark old fish of around fifteen pounds that was quickly released back into the inky blackness.
I have always fancied owning an Allcocks Aerial, some models do command a very high price amongst collectors which has put me off but many are quite reasonably priced especially the post war models which are excellent users.
This weekend was an early start as I was working at the Angling Auctions in Chiswick, while browsing through the cabinets on the friday I spotted an Aerial C 815 which was a good ‘user’ and I had a thought that it may just pass by the bidders who seem more focused on Speedias (currently very much the reel of choice amongst traditional users) or the more elite centre pins like the Coxon and the earlier Allcocks that the collectors favour.
Lot 192 came up, a starting bid of one hundred was announced and the room fell silent, my hand raised and the hammer fell, Neil at Angling Auctions does not like to hang about when the room becomes a little sleepy, a few quick lots normally wake the hall. It happened a little later on with a pristine Mark IV thats also fell at the hammer for a £100!
Coincidently, this weekend I had my eye on a EBay lot marked down as a selection of sea tackle, pick up only. Within the single group photograph lay what suspiciously looked like another Allcocks Aerial. I contacted the seller and my suspicions were correct after two new images were sent. Sunday night, a last-minute bid with a few seconds to go and another Aerial was in my possession for £30, plus a fishing bag, cardinal reel, some sea rods, a fly waistcoat and a fly box! The lot was up in the west Midlands somewhere but this is where my cunning plan came together, I’m heading there this thursday to fish the Wye at Hereford for my annual week after barbus maximus, and possibly a Wye pike to celebrate the start of the pike season. In the meantime the reel pictured will be loaded with 8 or 10 lb line (I can’t decide yet) and hopefully the other Aerial when picked up will get the same treatment as I take it down to the Wye.
This morning the postman came a knocking and delivered me the following…
The Tokoz centrepin reel could be considered to be one of the most badly made centrepin’s of all time but this reel (along with twenty others) has recently been re-discovered in a box in a tackle shop in Cambridgeshire, sourced from my good friends at http://www.thepathbythewater.net/
Why did I buy one? Well firstly it cost £1.50 + the same again for postage and secondly, any thirty year old reel still wrapped in it’s grease proof paper wrapping has to be freed from it’s darkened box for all to see.
In the spirit of the tuesday swim, the Tokoz centrepin gets it’s first airing in thirty years, a monumental day?