Hall of Fame - K
Inducted: March 2015
There can be few in carp fishing that can lay claim to coming up with two universally accepted successful rigs, for Mike Kavanagh is rightly credited with the stiff rig and the more recent multi-rig creation.
His talents don’t just stem around the catching of carp, for Mike has over the years been a major driving force in carp conferences staged in this country. He was a stalwart of the Carp Society in Essex early on and later in the 1980s became their Conference Organiser – who can ever forget the Richard Walker Remembrance Conference staged at Dunstable in 1988. Mike was the mastermind behind this hugely (and fondly remembered) successful day and other shows that followed. These days Mike is still involved at a high level at the Carpin’ On shows, looking after the Rig Clinic area.
On the fishing front Mike started seriously fishing for carp in the late 1970s and has over the years put his highly effective rigs to work with both mirrors and commons to over 40lb from the UK. He has always been a loyal Mainline Baits user since the company was formed and has been in charge of Carpworld magazine’s ‘Rig World’ column for many years.
Inducted: March 2015
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Inducted: December 2017
Born in 1949, Duncan Kay was a successful angler and writer of the 1970s and 80s. He progressed to fishing for big fish and then specialised in carp fishing. He became one of the first British Carp Study Group members after it was formed in 1969 and was also a stalwart of the CAA. He fished at famous waters such as Billing Aquadrome where he caught some very difficult carp, the River Nene and Hemingford Grey, catching a 20-pounder from Billing in 1970. It was because of these catches where he made his name, and at the time it’s fair to say he was one of carp fishing’s ‘leading lights’.
Duncan famously developed his own carp fishery – known as Mid Northants – which was fished by many famous anglers of the day. It was a much sought-after ticket and Duncan was known for his antics on the opening day of the season, often playing pranks on the members in an attempt to make light humour of what is often described as a serious sport. Eventually, Mid Northants was closed for the reworking of the gravel, at which time Duncan moved his fish to the now infamous Ringstead Fishery, which produced the British record carp to Roddy Porter in 1995.
Besides his famous catches and running his lakes, Duncan was also a pioneer in the bait world and formed one of the very earliest readymade bait firms. Amongst his more popular baits were the pink Red Karpi boilies and his famous Slyme pastes which accounted for many big fish at the time.Duncan Kay passed away in January 2016, but his name is forever etched into carp fishing history.
Inducted: December 2017
Inducted: November 2010
During the 1960s and early 1970s Bill Keal became a major influence in the development and spread of fishing for carp in this country. A Fleet Street photojournalist by trade and an angler by inclination, Bill had a penchant for big carp. He wrote considerably on the subject including regular features (with occasional twopage centre spreads) in The Angler’s Mail that were widely read.
On the fishing front, after becoming smitten with carp way back to 1950s, Bill had by 1962 caught a considerable number of double-figure fish to around 17lb. He craved, like many, for that elusive 20-pounder and, as often happens in fishing, he caught one then in short order landed another! The scene of his triumph was Jim Eggett’s fishery in Huntingdonshire. Another famous old carp water where Bill fished was Cheshunt Reservoir in north London, and after the great freeze-up of the 1962/3 winter when the water’s stock was decimated Bill saw to it that the fishery once more came back to life.
Inducted: March 2009
A vet by profession and angler by persuasion, Dick Kefford was a kindly, quiet, self-effacing character who was softly spoken.
A member of the highly influential Carp Catchers’ Club of the early 1950s, Dick Kefford was instrumental in Richard Walker gaining access to the fishing at Redmire Pool in the early summer of 1952 and accompanied him on DW’s second visit to the water in July.
Dick Kefford became interested in catching carp from before the Second World War and in late 1951 he corresponded with both 'B.B.' and Dick Walker about carp and fishing for them. He was also prolific writer on carp fishing in magazines throughout the 50s and 60s. The most famous of which were his yearly ‘round-ups’ of big carp catches written under the nom de plume of 'K.K.'
He also stocked carp into a number of his own waters near to his Wickham Market, Suffolk, home. He was an ardent observer and lover of wildlife, and a dedicated conservationist. Though he caught many carp over the years, he banked no spectacularly large specimens, and if he had Dick would have more than probably kept the capture to himself. Dick Kefford passed away in 1990.
Inducted: March 2017
Kev is one of the founders of the hugely successful Mainline Baits. Mainline is now one of the biggest bait companies in the world and has brought us such legendary baits as the Grange CSL Mix, Activ-8 and Cell.
As well as having a wealth of knowledge in bait, Kev also has a string of big fish under his belt. In the early years of Carp-Talk he was a regular face in the news pages with monster carp from Little Grange in Essex, a name which Mainline used to launch what is now one of the greatest big carp baits of all time.
Kev’s personal fishing stayed low-key during the early foundations of his company, although he regularly competed on the evolving carp match scene towards the turn of the Millennium. He made lots of appearances in the British Carp Angling Championships in its early years, finishing third in 1999 and also winning the high-profile Fish with the Stars event in the same year.
Behind closed doors Kev's contribution to carp fishing has been immense. He has played a massive role in the promotion of Carp Angler of the Year projects and been responsible for hundreds and thousands of charity event donations.