Posted by: Jim Williams | March 28, 2014

AAPGAI Assessment Weekend – March 2014

In some harsh windy weather, a number of candidates proved successful in attaining a cross section of both Provisional and Advanced Salmon & Trout qualifications at our Spring Assessment weekend and Open Day.

Many congratulations from us all to the following AAPGAI Instructors

Steve Reid – Advanced Salmon


Stuart Ray – Provisional Salmon


Derek Kelly – Provisional Salmon


Keith Passant – Provisional Fly Dressing


John Pape – Provisional Salmon


John Walker – Advanced Trout


Tom Bell – Advanced Salmon


Neil Truelove – Advanced Trout


Bob Sherwood – Assessors Certificate


Although not the most comfortable of conditions we were delighted to welcome many open day attendee’s on the Saturday following the weeks assessments to enjoy some demonstrations and receive an afternoon of 1-2-1 instructions with members.

Sue MacNiven – A demonstration on being Powerless to Cast


John Little – Why a Switch Rod


Trevor Hayman – The Single Spey (SH Rod)


Stuart Ray & Tom Bell – The Deadline Roll Cast


Autumn Assessment dates
16th & 17th October 2014

To be held at the: Caer Beris Manor Hotel, Builth Wells, LD2 3NP

Public Open Day on the 18th October 2014 – All are welcome



Posted by: Jim Williams | April 17, 2013

Open Day Weekend – March 2013

First, a huge thank you to all the members who turned out for our Open Day on the Derwent at Cockermouth on Saturday. It was great to see so many of you there, and necessary given the 25 members of the public that attended. It was a great day in spite of the rather cold and damp conditions, and we have had a fantastic response from those that came along. Karl Humphries, our open day organizer, proclaimed it the best yet.

Clive Mitchelhill

These events are hugely important for the AAPGAI brand, not just to appeal to budding instructors but to show the public what AAPGAI is all about – the level of skills, the clarity of instruction and the openness and friendliness with which we operate. There’s nothing really to compare with these events in the UK and they do us a power of good. It’s also one of the rare occasions we have to get together for a cast, to share knowledge and have some fun.

I know many of you came from far afield for the day and Illtyd, Karl and the rest of the AAPGAI committee were delighted by the turnout and grateful for all your efforts.

On the day we had some excellent demonstrations – Illtyd Griffiths on skagits, Clive Mitchelhill on anchors and anchor points and Glyn Freeman on the double spey – while Paul Little performed his customary magic at the vice in the hut by the river to ensure all the AAPGAI disciplines were on show. Jim Fearn and John Legg, from Guide Fly Fishing, also helped by providing a wide range of outfits for everyone to cast, while David Moore came loaded with Loop lines.

Glyn Freeman

But, judging from the feedback, the most valuable part of the day was the one-on-one time spent with AAPGAI instructors. Here are just some of the unprompted comments we have received:

“What a great day! Couldn’t sleep last night trying to digest all that information, and I’ve been walking around the house casting all day!!!”

“It was an inspirational open day which far exceeded my expectations. One of the key things I took away was that the quality and standard for AAPGAI is extremely high. This was evident from the very valuable and informative demonstrations and it’s clear that all the instructors are top class casters. However, the thing that impressed me most was the communication skills in the one-to-one sessions.”

“I really enjoyed today immensely…I was not expecting to come away having learned so much! I can now (albeit not perfectly of course) do a roll cast, single Spey and a C Spey. Remarkable. And it’s all down to the excellent instructors and their proactive help and guidance. Fantastic.”

I think that says it all, really. And, of course, our thanks to Karl for organizing the day and making it run so smoothly – it’s not easy, he just makes it look that way.

On the assessment front, not everything went quite so smoothly! Weather conditions were brutal on Friday with wind, continuous rain and a particularly impressive hail storm. Most of the assessments will, I think, be chalked up to experience by the candidates. We’ll look forward to seeing many of them again in the Autumn.

The main positive note was that we were delighted to welcome Neil Lobban, a PE teacher from Tyneside, as a new provisional member.

Neil Lobban

Neil performed a very impressive Provisional Salmon assessment and I’m sure he will prove to be a valuable member. We’ll look forward to seeing him progress through the AAPGAI qualifications over the coming years.

In other news, Karl Humphries has been working hard over the winter to put together a long list of shows at which AAPGAI will be represented. I’ll circulate the list and the details soon, so you will have the opportunity to join the AAPGAI teams at your local shows.

Enjoy the new season.

(Apologies for the delay all, a few WordPress system gremlins needed a stern talking too which were affecting our ability to post updates – all is now sorted)

Posted by: Jim Williams | April 5, 2013

AAPGAI & SANA on the Tay 30th March

We were blessed with a stolen day, as far as the weather was concerned, with sunshine in attendance throughout most of the day for the 2013 SANA SGAIC Spring assessment event on the river Tay.

Once again AAPGAI and SANA continued its excellent working relationship in a joint endeavour to identify the best instructors available to represent SANA (Scottish Anglers National Association) in Scotland. However, successful completion of this qualification also identifies instructors who may have the potential to take their qualification to the next level, the AAPGAI advanced. Under the present rules, SANA instructors who have been jointly assessed by both SANA and AAPGAI assessors can apply direct to take the AAPGAI advanced assessment at the next official AAPGAI assessment event, and if successful, would then also become full members of AAPGAI. So making the correct call on the day was very important to all involved.

This is now our sixth year working closely with the SGAIC committee (Scottish Game Angling Instructors Certificate) and our second year on the river Tay and I am pleased to report that the professionalism and enthusiasm to maintain standards, from all involved, is still an integral part of the process. Without this level of commitment the process would simply not work, because for any organisation to gain respect by providing a professional service through its working practices, maintaining standards is paramount.

As with AAPGAI, part of the SGAIC assessment is knowledge based and throughout the day candidates were addressing their written papers as well as their practical assessments, so with that in mind, I would like to thank Iain Kirk, on behalf of AAPGAI, not only for the use of the beat, but also for the indoor facility he provided to enable this to take place, not forgetting the administrative team involved with this (Lennie Fuller and John Hood) who did a fantastic job and one that is often overlooked.

The outcome on the day was very favourable, with three out of four of the guys registering a successful outcome, i.e. a 75% pass rate, and we certainly look forward to seeing some of these new instructors partaking in our advanced assessment programme at one of our future AAPGAI events.

As always the feedback and enthusiasm from the candidates was great, regardless of the outcome, and all were very keen to address and improve upon their casting and teaching techniques. “A credit to their association”.

I would like to conclude my report by thanking the SANA SGAIC committee, once again, for their hospitality on the day, and to congratulate them on all the hard work and professionalism that has gone into making their assessment events what they are today, offering their instructors a potential pathway to improvement through the Association of Professional Game Angling Instructors. We look forward to working with them again in the near future.

Posted by: Jim Williams | February 8, 2013

AAPGAI out and about in 2013

1-2-1 fly casting tuition & demos with AAPGAI instructors at the following country shows & game fairs in 2013.


Assessment and Open Day events take place between the 14 – 17 March 2013.
Public Open day is on 16th March… more


Interested in becoming an instructor?… more


Longleat Fishing & Country Show
14th & 15th June… more


BFFI British Fly Fair International
22nd & 23rd June… more


Irish International Fly Fair
29th & 30th June… more


West Cumbrian Game Fair
13th & 14th July… more


Peover Game and Angling Fair
4th August… more


Lowther Country Fair
10th & 11th August… more


Chatsworth Country Fair
30th August to 1st September… more


Midland Game Fair
14th & 15th September… more


Burton Fly Fair
6th October… more


Assessment and Open Day events take place between the 17 – 20 October 2013.
Public Open day is on 19th October… more

There’s still more to list once we’ve had venues and dates confirmed so keep checking back here or the website. We look forward to catching up with you at some point during the season.

Posted by: Jim Williams | October 30, 2012

AAPGAI Autumn Weekend

A big thanks to everyone attending the recent AAPGAI Assessment and Open weekend for making it yet another truly memorable one. We had a number of special guests and visitors from our home counties and across the water from Ireland & Germany.

Our busy assessment timetable concluded with an Open Day on Saturday where we invited the general public to see what AAPGAI are all about. As well as them receiving some 1-2-1 instruction, we were all treated to some superb demonstrations from exceptional and internationally renown fishing instructors and fly casters.

First up was Paul Arden demonstrating accuracy and distance techniques for those interested in competitive casting. Competition casting it may be but he has a knack of making it all relative to the everyday casting and fishing instruction as only he knows how.

AAPGAI Autumn Weekend

Next up was Bernd Zeische. Bernd had passed his Masters Single Handed Rod assessment the previous day and was cajoled into providing us with a superb demonstration on the 6 Casting Essentials.

AAPGAI Autumn Weekend

Ian May followed next with a great demonstration on casting strokes, the length, the speed and everything else associated with it before handing over to Clive Mitchelhill below who took to a double handed rod and extoled the virtues of spey casting.

Clive’s in there somewhere

AAPGAI Autumn Weekend

Oh!… there he is

AAPGAI Autumn Weekend

Concluding the Open Day demonstrations was Gary Champion… presentation casts personified, Gary ran through mends and curves with a single handed rod, onlooker participation guaranteed, many were made to wear a fly line necklace during his very entertaining demo.

Finally to the presentation evening: Special congratulations go to the following successful candidates who pulled out all the stops to gain qualification as AAPGAI Instructors.

Keith Passant with AAPGAI Chairman Illtyd Griffiths – Provisional Single Handed Rod

AAPGAI Autumn Weekend

Lee Gallant – Advanced Single Handed Rod

AAPGAI Autumn Weekend

Graham Waterton – Provisional Double Handed Rod

AAPGAI Autumn Weekend

Paul Becher – Provisional Double Handed Rod 

AAPGAI Autumn Weekend

Bernd Ziesche – Masters Single Handed Rod

AAPGAI Autumn Weekend

Karl Humphries – Masters Fly Dressing

AAPGAI Autumn Weekend

Gary Champion – Masters Fly Dressing

AAPGAI Autumn Weekend

On behalf of everyone at AAPGAI, thank you all for your participation, congratulations to all of the successful candidates and commiserations to those that were unsuccessful this time round.

Here’s looking forward to our next Spring Event in Cockermouth, Cumbria on the 14th, 15th & 16th March 2013details

Posted by: Jim Williams | August 18, 2012

Lowther Country Game Fair 2012.

Lowther12 007The weather fortunately held out dry and sunny for the weekend of the game fair at Lowther in Cumbria which was very well attended. AAPGAI had organised the fishing island with competitions in accuracy casting, distant target casting for both single and double handed rods, also adult casting clinics for salmon and trout and a junior clinic.

It was a relaxed weekend with a good atmosphere and everyone had great fun. There were demonstrations every hour on the hour on the casting pool covering many subjects aimed at the public. All the AAPGAI team there played their part; Karl Humphries did an excellent demonstration on switch rods and fly casting along with some fly tying in the AAPGAI stand along with Tony Riley.


Lowther12 015

Clive Mitchelhill did presentations on the differing styles of fly casting and Spey casting techniques,

Lowther12 050

John Young was explaining methods and mechanics of the various basic casts. Tony Riley and Glyn Freeman did various fishing casts of both overhead and Spey with fishing techniques along with faults and cures.

Lowther12 068

A successful weekend which was enjoyed by all and AAPGAI will be there again in August 10th and 11th 2013.

Posted by: Jim Williams | March 27, 2012


Some exceptional March weather conditions culminated in yet another successful Spring Assessment & Open Day weekend at Cockermouth with AAPGAI.

Amongst the participants attending the open day on Saturday were many of our members presenting workshops or assisting with some 1-2-1 instruction.

Members and guests start to arrive and convene on the river Derwent

AAPGAI Cockermouth

Gary Champion demonstrating Switch Rod techniques

AAPGAI Cockermouth

Neil Barcock on Salmon Skagit lines & techniques

AAPGAI Cockermouth

Lee Cummings on Shooting Heads as only he knows how

AAPGAI Cockermouth

Last and by no means least we held our presentation dinner at the Trout Hotel to celebrate those successful candidates who passed assessment this weekend…

Many CONGRATULATIONS to them all on their achievements… an 85% pass rate, the highest ever achieved at any of our AAPGAI assessments, our new members really are setting the highest of standards anywhere within game angling instruction.

Firstly Jim Lowe – Provisional Salmon

AAPGAI Cockermouth

Alexander Chernysh – Advanced Trout

AAPGAI Cockermouth

Nick Taylor – Provisional Salmon

AAPGAI Cockermouth

Brian James collects the award on behalf of Tiggy Pettifer – Advanced Salmon

AAPGAI Cockermouth

Dave Wiltshire – Advanced Trout

AAPGAI Cockermouth

Trevor Hayman – Advanced Trout

AAPGAI Cockermouth

Graeme Simpson – Advanced Trout

AAPGAI Cockermouth

Brian Towers – Provisional Trout

AAPGAI Cockermouth

Gerald Spiers – Advanced Trout

AAPGAI Cockermouth

Frank Moors – Advanced Fly Dressing (Awaiting Image)

Our next Assessment Weekend & Open Day is from the 18th – 21st October 2012

See here for further details

Posted by: Jim Williams | November 26, 2011



have been applied to the Single Handed and Double Handed Provisional, Advanced and Master Assessments

26th November 2011

Posted by: Jim Williams | October 30, 2011

AAPGAI Autumn Weekend – October 2011

AAPGAI Instructors and those ‘Who want to be’ came together at the Caer Beris Manor Hotel in Builth Wells last weekend for the second of our annual assessment events.


Many congratulations to the following for passing their exams in both Provisional, Advanced and Master level assessments.









Following the exams we opened our doors to the general public. A variety of demonstrations and workshops provided great entertainment to visitors prior to spending the afternoon receiving 1-2-1 tuition from the large gathering of willing and helpful instructors.

Jim Williams & Ian May demonstrated ‘Anchors’ & ‘Angles’ in spey casts, Gary Champion below demonstrating the effective use of Switch Rods.


Paul Arden gave a great demonstration on ‘Casting Essentials’ and ‘Tailing Loops’


To cap what was a truly fabulous Autumn event, we were all delighted to see Brian James and Joe Stitt welcomed as AAPGAI Life Time members ~ Well deserved!



Posted by: Jim Williams | May 30, 2011


BFFI 2011

AAPGAI instructors will be providing demonstrations and 1-2-1 tuition at the British Fly Fair on the 18th & 19th June at it’s new location – The Staffordshire County Ground.

Program for the weekend:


Clive Mitchellhill – Make mine a Double – Spey Casting Techniques

Jim Fearn – Shooting Heads for Salmon

Gary Champion – Presentation Casts

Martyn Armstrong – Chalkstream Techniques

Lee Cummings – Distance with a Single Hander

Neil Truelove – The Single Spey – Circles & Snaps

Vic Knight – The Roll Cast

Jim Williams – Czech Nymph Techniques

Tony Riley – Trout – Faults & Cures


Clive Mitchellhill – Make mine a Double – Spey Casting Techniques

Jim Fearn – Shooting Heads for Salmon

Gary Champion – Presentation Casts

Martyn Armstrong – Chalkstream Techniques

Iltyd Griffiths – A Little Bit of Skaggit

Neil Truelove – The Single Spey – Circles & Snaps

Vic Knight – The Roll Cast

Jim Williams – Czech Nymph Techniques

Tony Riley – Trout – Faults & Cures

It should be a great weekend with lots to see & do… we look forward to seeing you there.

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