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Barry KentMember Since 24 Sep 2008
Offline Last Active Sep 08 2016 08:46 AM
Flies in my life! -The little buggers have controlled most of my professional life and taken me around the world!!
The first fly I ever tied successfully was a Black & Peacock Spider, to this day, one of the deadliest trout flies out there! It was back in the 60. I was working as a trainee teacher in the Graphic arts annex of Croydon College of art, Thornton Heath, South London, England. The warehouse of E. Veniard & Sons, Europe's premier source for fly tying materials, was within walking distance from the annex. So guess where I spent most of my lunch hours! John Veniard was one of my first fly tying teachers. I would help him pack feathers and furs being shipped around the world. Picking his fly tying brain all the while!
But I owe the greatest thanks to Bob Warrell. Bob had a tackle store in West Croydon where I went to college. Bob invited me to his Tuesday night, winter fly tying sessions. He was the first person to take me fly fishing. We went to Wierwood reservoir, South England. We rented a boat and both got our limit of 8 rainbows that day! Man was I hooked.
In 1969 when I was 21 the cold, damp, overcrowded life of London was getting to me. I was yearning for Wide open spaces, sunshine, trout fishing and girls! I answered a employment ad for Typographers, interviewed in Central London, got the job across the desk and was on a plane to Johannesburg, South Africa all in three weeks. My mother nearly died!!
On arriving in Joburg I visited Rosettensteins Tackle shop and I was tying flies for the store within the month.
Years went by, I was now working as a freelance graphic artist when, in 1975, Alan Gadd walked into my life. Alan was the epitome of an entrepreneur. Carried a calculator in his pocket like a six-gun. He clicked onto my idea of a fly tying factory instantly. By August, 1976 we had an empty, custom built factory, in Butterworth, Transkei, Southern Africa for our new fly tying business called High Flies (Pty) Ltd. - By 1979 we employed 360 local people, tied 1000 dozen a day and shipped them all around the world! I would fly twice a year to Europe, Canada and the USA with an order book to be filled! It was an exciting time in my life! I ran the factory and Alan cooked the books in his palatial office suite in Joburg! - The factory became locally famous and from this the Transkei fishing fly postage stamps were created. These stamps were the first in the world to depict fishing flies! A five year series, five new stamps issued each year making a collection of 25 stamps between 1980 and 1984. - -to be continued
- Group Members
- Active Posts 19
- Profile Views 1,496
- Member Title Beginner
- Age 72 years old
- Birthday May 15, 1947
Oakridge, Oregon, USA
Fly tying, photographing, mounting and framing fishing flies
Saltwater flats flyfishing from a canoe, Golfing when Iím not tying or casting!
Brown & Rainbow Trout & Redfish
- Website URL http://hiflies.com