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Faces from Fishing for Schools - instructor Ben Fox

Introducing the fishing experts who have taken F4S out to more than 110 schools since 2007. Ben Fox of the Yorkshire and Peaks team explains how and why he got involved

Ben Fox is one of the instructors who make up the Fishing for Schools team across Yorkshire and Derbyshire.

How long have you been fishing and how did you get into the sport?

I'm not sure why I decided to go fishing... A few family members fished but I only really became aware of this after showing interest in the sport. A seven-year-old randomly deciding they wanted to sit by a lake led to a wonderful hobby, career and passion. Thirteen years on and I still live and breathe angling.

What sort of fishing do you enjoy the most?

I really do enjoy all my fishing. There's no fishing I don't do at least semi regularly but I do spend an awful lot of time waving fluff around (fly fishing)

How did you get involved in Fishing for Schools?

I met Charles Jardine (founder and director of Fishing for Schools) when he managed the England Youth Fly Fishing Team. When he looked to expand the initiative north he asked me to be part of the team. Something that was, and still is, a real honour.

What part do you play in the initiative?

I am part of the Yorkshire and Peaks team working in schools across the North of England as an instructor.

Why do you think F4S is important?

Education is a right and anything that can be done to help someone connect with education, learn and develop is fantastic. The outdoors is the greatest classroom and fishing is a fantastic way to get out and enjoy it.

Do you have any fishing boasts?

I wouldn't say I have boasts but I am very proud of the things I've achieved in my time fishing. I've represented the England youth fly fishing team twice, winning bronze and silver medals as well as being English top Rod and coming second over-all in an international.

Are you involved in any other fishing-related groups or activities?

I regularly fish fly and coarse competitions and have run some angling tuition groups.

Is there anything else you'd like to say about fishing in general and F4S in particular??

Fishing for Schools is about so much more than fishing. It's about reconnecting young people with education and connecting those who may not usually have the chance to the outdoor world. It's not a classroom but for some it's the best learning environment there is.

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