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Britain’s oldest fly-fishing club is ‘anachronistic’

Fly-fishing, as Ms Mantle points out, is not strictly a male preserve

Lucy Mantle, chairman of City Flickers, a fly-fishing club that tries to involve young people in the sport, has written an open letter to Alastair Collett, president of the Flyfishers’ Club, criticising the club’s male-only membership policy.

In an open letter posted on Instagram, Ms Mantle branded the club’s membership practices “anachronistic and archaic”. She added: “There are many of us, both men and women, who view the policy as indefensible, unsustainable and above all unwise.

“At a time when the need to defend our environment, and in particular our precious rivers, is paramount, the exclusion of half the population from entry to debate in the corridors of influence seems profoundly unwise,” added Ms Mantle.

The Flyfishers’ Club, which was founded in 1884, said in its original prospectus it aimed “to afford a ready means of communication between those interestedin this delightful art”. 

The club has had several homes over its 140-year lifetime but is now based at the Savile Club in Mayfair.