Phil Smith (Angler)

About Phil Smith

Common to most schoolboys Phil dabbled in local ponds after sticklebacks and the like, but it was not until he reached the age of 21 that he began to take fishing seriously. He has from that time always tried to catch so-called specimen fish, initially 3lb chub, but as time passed bigger and bigger fish became the target. Much of his early development came about as a member of the very successful Coventry Specimen Group, along with anglers such as Mervyn Wilkinson, Tony Miles and Trefor West.

Encouraged into writing about his fishing exploits by Edwin Grant, a prolific angling writer of the late 60s onwards, he has over the years written for both major weeklies, many monthly magazines, although most are now defunct, but he has regularly contributed to Coarse Angling Today since it started publishing over 10 years ago. Indeed, since this book covers the capture of major fish taken within that time frame, the story of their captures will have appeared within the diary style piece that was carried within the pages of C.A.T. Phil also wrote chapters for many successful books, such as Top Ten by Beekay Press, Red Letter Days by Beekay Press, Quest for a Queen by Crowood Press, Bream Tales and Tactics by Crowood Press, The Complete Specimen Hunter by Crowood Press, and Big Fish from Famous Waters by David and Charles. Phil wrote a book about his early angling called Rainbow's End, published in 1987, then followed that with a continuation of his fishing story with Magic Moments in 2004. This present book will bring the reader right up to date with his continuing journey chasing monster fish.

Phil is a Life Member of the SAA having served as Chairman of its predecessor the NASA for 25 years. He also served on both the British Record Fish Committee and the NASA Record Fish Committee for over 20 years. He was one of the early members of the Chub Study Group, a founder member of the Barbel Society, and is also a member of the Tenchfisher's Group.

For recent news and updates, please visit my blog, Travelling Man.

"Targets set and Achieved"

This book takes over from the stories of fish captures related in Magic Moments [2004] and includes crucians to 4lb-9oz, chub over 7lb, and tench to 11lb-14oz amongst other monster coarse fish. About one third of the book is used to relate the stories behind the capture of double figure barbel off 20 different rivers, 16 of these in one season.

Tackle, tactics, tips and ideas are there for the reader to take on board and use on their own waters if appropriate. Lots of colour photographs are included to also give a visual aspect to the book.

There will be 1000 standard editions at £26, and a limited run of 40 leather bound copies at £175. Please note that there is a charge of £5 for Postage & Packing. Before ordering a leather bound copy, please check availability by e-mailing

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