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Another season is under way and judging by the way some are going over here while training they have a long way to go before, they are going to be topping the lists. There are some that are really racing through here and the way they are going they will be the early winners. The problem is those early winners far too often don’t last the season they start to slow down unless their owner treats them with respect during the week. We see lofts having years when they cannot do anything wrong, these are the years when the pigeons are in perfect health and keep going no matter what. The fanciers who are looking for the longer races especially the Nationals will mostly not be going all out for the early races, they will bide their time. The seasons are changing, and we have had some good days in April for fanciers to get some good training tosses behind them, if you have caught these days then your pigeons will have had a good start. The 8th April was a real good day in this area to train, Elizabeth and myself were sitting in the garden having a glass of wine after lunch. As we sat there, I said it was a good day for training, and as I finished, we heard a whoosh as a batch went over, Elizabeth said “They sound well” she was right they did, heading home in good condition for the races. These are the cases where you hear that sound, but before you can look up, they are gone. That is the difference between having the pigeons in the right condition for the races and you seeing the others going over. The later are the batches you see and think to yourself, “They need livening up or they are not going to win much”



North West Classic

The club is on course for another good season with nearly everyone paid up but there are still a handful who have not replied after registered letter’s being sent out. We will give them a few week’s before dropping a line to the RPRA. I was talking to Kim about the stationary and we have had a couple of requests for their paperwork for the season, it looks like odd ones have left their package at Blackpool, which is nothing fresh. For those who are still looking at the club the race programme is as follows. Carentan 8th June. Fougeres 22nd June. Messac 6th July. Saintes 12th July. Carentan YB’s including the Gold Ring race are on the 14th September. This of course is if we are going over the channel, the way the MP’s keep messing Brexit up we never know. There is £8,000 already in the kitty to pay out this year and then we have the excess from the entry fees.





Pigeon fanciers are always having obstacles put in front of them one way or another and then generally overcome them. The one we cannot overcome is the BOP problem that is on the increase year after year. What we need is for pigeons to be recognised as livestock which I believe the RPRA are pressing for, there is a possibility that could start to change things. Having said that, a move like that would take some doing but if the sport does not try then we are not going to move forward. Through conversations with Ian Evans and Richard Chambers I think they are on the right track; it’s getting others to change where the problems are. Even so making changes in pigeon racing is never easy, or in fact anything in life as we are seeing daily on the newspapers. The RPRA is always going to be a talking point because they govern pigeon racing and that’s where the decisions process ends up. However, the feeling from many is that getting anything from club to passing at the top is never easy unless it suits some, even though something under discussion may be good for the sport. In the past I have seen good ideas go from clubs but appear to have been lost in translation along the way. I have said for years that I do believe the RPRA committee’s and Regions should be streamlined to a selected handful of people put there to do a certain job. For regions those positions should be applied for and voted on each year through the clubs. Through experience it is a fact, the more people you get at any meeting the less chance of getting anything passed. The reason I say that is because during any meetings there is always going to be a conflict of interest, so getting agreement is never always going to be easy. It is a fact, if so and so doesn’t like him in a meeting and so forth then they will disagree and the one who has the most friend’s in a meeting gets their way. Might sound odd to some but that is the way the system works. Friends mean more to some than moving forward, people do attend meetings but look up to certain members to decide which way their vote goes. Over the years I have been at many meetings and watched when it comes to the vote, some sit and wait to certain people vote and then they vote and that is 100% a fact of life. I remember when I first took over as secretary to the Middlewich FC, the previous people in the job were Roy Smith and Alan Groom who did a good job. For years after that when it came to a vote some members waited for Roy and Alan to vote before they put their hands up, in those days the room was mostly full for all meetings. If we had secret votes for everything that is put forward, I am sure we would very often see different results. Another hard worker for the pigeon sport has left us when John Tyerman recently passed away, John was forward thinking and was a good supporter of the BICC. We have known John & Linda for many years and to me he was a fancier who worked for pigeon racing. John was telling me something that many know, and that is there are far too many people in premier positions who have a track in mind and follow it no matter what. The sport is in a position where changes need to be made, but not much does happen that will take us forward. During our many conversations John did say there was no point in attending some meetings because no one listened to good sound advice, something I agreed with him on. About reading articles, I had a call a few weeks ago from Brian Lee who had read the article by Mark Lyford, he initially thought it was something to do with me and when I said it was not, he suggested I read it. I must admit I don’t read much because most of the time I don’t have the time to sit down and read papers, I should do but I don’t unless someone points something out to me. I have the daily paper, but seldom read much in it, again I do scan through it and occasionally stop to have a look. I do scan through this magazine every week, but rarely stop to read anything unless it catches my eye, at one time, many years ago I might add, I read it from front to back. The reason I stopped was because I was always looking for improvement and when I saw something of interest, I would change what I was doing, and it nearly always worked against what I had set out to do in the first place. I know many fanciers who still read the pigeon papers from front to back and enjoy them, in the same way that I used to.




Middlewich FC

The local Middlewich FC have sponsorship this year starting at £30 per inland race for a set number of birds entered and £1 per bird for the channel races. So, once they go over the water each bird entered will attract £1 additional prize money, 50 birds equal £50, 100 birds £100 to start with. What will the total prize money for the season be, that we will not know until the last race has been flown, all sponsorship is agreed between the secretary and sponsors Elimar Pigeon Services Limited. We very often hear that there is nothing to fly for in club racing, well this season we have somewhere to start, the rest is up to the members. 





I see there is life after pigeons as can be seen in the photograph that Brian Lee sent me it was taken in the ex-pigeon loft of John Brocklehurst. Since parting with the pigeons John has taken to looking after fish and converted his pigeon loft to suit. Brian mentioned that John was a joiner by trade and has made a good job of the conversion, you could even live in it. Fish are very relaxing; we had a small natural fish pond in the corner of the garden when we moved here in 1993 and I used to sit there watching them for hours, also watching the pigeons at the same time of course. But one day while I was at work the white poodle that we had at the time decided to go swimming and didn’t do very well, so the boss filled it in, the pond not the poodle. When it rained heavy the water would run from that corner of the garden down towards the house like a small river but then we had it land drained and we don’t see that anymore. What I did notice at the time was how we used to see the heron’s flying around, like the BOP population they must have good eye sight. If this goes through all birds no wonder the pigeons won’t drop at times, they can see something somewhere in the immediate are that we are not seeing. In my younger days I used to have tropical fish and bred Siamese fighting fish. They were not easy to breed because the female would eat her young if she had the chance. So, when she looked as if they were ready to arrive, I had a special box in the tank where I put her. Then as they were born, they would drop through the V shaped container into the tank itself where the male would look after them, collecting each one up and blowing it into what appeared to be a creche for them all. I do find fish relaxing and even when I get near water, I want to go for a swim. But approaching my 70th birthday early next month so I leave swimming to the younger generation, unless we go to a good hotel where there is a pool.


John Brocklehurst and his new fish tank in the old pigeon loft



I know that I used this photo a few weeks ago but I am using it for the last time in remembrance to our good friend the late John Tyerman. The last photo we had taken at the BICC presentation earlier this year. Thanks to Chris Sutton for the photo.

Les & Elizabeth with Linda Tyerman and the late John Tyerman



Les J Parkinson. 11 Rushton Drive, Middlewich, Cheshire, CW10 0NJ. 01606836036 Mobile 07871701585. Email elimar908@btinternet.com web site www.elimarpigeons.com


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