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It is with deep regret that I have been forced to make the decision to cancel this year’s intended World Catfish Classic.

Unfortunately, after two years of negotiations at local, regional and national level to try to secure the future of the upper Ebro as a world class fishery,
the assurances I was given did not come to fruition.
I and my team did all that we could to cleanse the banks of the area to be used in the competition, and cleared 50 tonnes of rubbish in the course of just a few days each year but, sadly, it wasn’t nearly enough and all of the effort we put in was wasted. Nothing has changed, and the banks were spoiled again because of poor legislation and controls.
Similarly, the assurances I was given that the slaughter of catfish and carp would cease, were no more than hollow words.
It hasn’t, and evidence of this was submitted to me just days after the launch of the 2013 Event. Upon seeing the photographic proof of severely
littered areas, most containing grizzly images of the corpses of dead carp and catfish, I had no choice but to cancel the event.
It would have been very easy for someone less caring than myself to simply turn a blind eye and run the event, count the money and walk away.
However, the sight of this carnage sickened me and it stands against everything I believe in ethically and morally. I have very strong personal
views on both issues, and I simply cannot overlook exactly what is happening in the area.
I am truly appalled that what is without doubt the best wels catfish fishery in the world is being symptomatically destroyed. It is sad to say, but the relevant authorities appear to be powerless (unable or unwilling) to do anything about these issues and that being the case, I cannot in any way justify running an event there. I will not and cannot, because to do so would support the environmental devastation that I so strongly oppose.
It is with deep regret that I have been forced to make the decision to cancel this year’s intended World Catfish Classic.
Unfortunately, after two years of negotiations at local, regional and national level to try to secure the future of the upper Ebro as a world class fishery,
the assurances I was given did not come to fruition.

I and my team did all that we could to cleanse the banks of the area to be used in the competition, and cleared 50 tonnes of rubbish in the course of just a few days each year but, sadly, it wasn’t nearly enough and all of the effort we put in was wasted. Nothing has changed, and the banks were spoiled again because of poor legislation and controls.
Similarly, the assurances I was given that the slaughter of catfish and carp would cease, were no more than hollow words.

It hasn’t, and evidence of this was submitted to me just days after the launch of the 2013 Event. Upon seeing the photographic proof of severely
littered areas, most containing grizzly images of the corpses of dead carp and catfish, I had no choice but to cancel the event.
It would have been very easy for someone less caring than myself to simply turn a blind eye and run the event, count the money and walk away.

However, the sight of this carnage sickened me and it stands against everything I believe in ethically and morally. I have very strong personal
views on both issues, and I simply cannot overlook exactly what is happening in the area.

I am truly appalled that what is without doubt the best wels catfish fishery in the world is being symptomatically destroyed. It is sad to say, but the relevant authorities appear to be powerless (unable or unwilling) to do anything about these issues and that being the case, I cannot in any way justify running an event there. I will not and cannot, because to do so would support the environmental devastation that I so strongly oppose.

Ross Honey

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