Annual fundraising match goes ahead in memory of keen fisherman Nick
An annual fundraising match in memory of a keen fisherman will go ahead this weekend after fears it may fall victim to the coronavirus lockdown.
The popular Nick Clark Memorial Events Fishing Match, at Lindholme Lakes near Doncaster, raises funds for Leeds Cancer Centre through Leeds Cares.
Nick passed away following a battle with lung cancer in 2011, and friends organised the first memorial match the following year. Since then, the match has become firmly placed in the angling calendar and has grown year on year. Last year’s event took the total fundraising in Nick’s memory past £45,000 with the goal for 2020 was to £50,000.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic, Lindholm Lakes was closed for several months and organiser Steve Akal was worried he may have to cancel the event for the first time. However as lockdown rules were eased last month, the lakes reopened enabling the match to go ahead.
Some regular favourites of the day will be changing, however. With social distancing measures in place, the ever-popular lunch break barbecue will be going ahead, but with an “at peg” service. While the raffle – usually a staple of the post-match social gathering in the clubhouse – will now take place during the day via Facebook Live.
Despite the concerns over the match going ahead, all places have been snapped up, with 50 competing in the “main match” as well as eight “novices” vying for prizes. And with an impressive 120 raffle prizes up for grabs, Steve is confident that the 2020 event will be just as successful as previous years and pass that magical £50,000 target.
“Fishing has always been a hobby that gives us some ‘time away from reality’ and it’s been a great privilege to organise this event in Nick’s memory for eight years.These days with the news full of Covid-19 and the virus, ‘time away from reality’ is actually really welcome. It’s easy to forget all the other serious illnesses people must face today, and cancer is one disease that touches everyone’s lives in one way or another. We’ve had a few big individual fundraisers this year, so when it’s all put together, I reckon £50,000 is within reach.”