Popular Warwick commercial Tunnel Barn Farm has announced that it is banning the feeding of sloppy bread from March 1st 2013. The decision to ban the method, that has produced some colossal summer bags - including the venues record for the last four seasons, has proved controversial however.
The inventor of the method, Redditch rod Paul Newell has vowed never to visit the venue again following the ban.
He commented “I am devastated, shocked and personally hurt by what has happened. I feel that I have been the victim of a backstabbing campaign by a gang of smiling crocodiles – who are nice enough to my face but spread the poison when my back is turned.
I suppose what hurts me the most is that I have been deprived of doing something that I really enjoy. I developed this method six years ago, and have won literally hundreds of matches on it. The only reason that other anglers have pushed for it to be banned is because they don’t feel that they can beat me. Interestingly though, I am often beaten by anglers such as Stu Palser, or Pete Rice, who both fish very differently to me – which makes me think that there is more to this bread ban than meets the eye.
Pete Rice said to me a few years ago that the only way that my bread method would be banned was if it started to impact on the venues profits. I believe that the gang of people who are against me have persuaded the venue owner that this is the case- but it really isn’t.”
Mike Hamlington, who owns the Tunnel Barn Farm complex commented: “We have made his decision after careful consideration due to the number of anglers who fish here that do not like the bread slop method
In the summer, when the method is working, many of these anglers vote with their feet and opt to fish elsewhere. The attendances on our open matches drop dramatically, especially in the week, and some weeks there are no matches on a Wednesday or Thursday at all. The ultimate effect of the loss of anglers is a significant drop in revenue to us here at Tunnel Barn.
We try not to have too many rules here, so it is not a decision that we have taken lightly. We are hoping that by introducing this rule that some of the anglers that have left will return. Anglers will still be allowed to fish with bread punch on the hook - but the feeding of sloppy bread will be banned.
We will in due course have another look at this rule but for the next season the feeding of bread slop will be banned. Anyone wishing to comment on this rule change may do so in writing. I will of course review the decision at the end of next year - I am certainly not saying that the method will be banned for ever. All I can do is trial a ban for 12 months, and see if my turnouts improve.”