Best of the Best

Best of the Best

Details of the 2018 competition coming soon

The £2000 Best of the Best trout competition should be on every angler’s radar. Whether you are a pleasure angler, or a competitive angler, everyone has a chance to win big and claim the reputation as the best around. It is without doubt the biggest prize fund in the trout angling calendar!

1st Prize – £1000 cash
2nd Prize – £400 cash
3rd Prize – £250 cash
Biggest Fish (not finishing in top 3) – £200 cash
1st Blind Pairs (drawn on the day) – £100 cash
2nd Blind Pairs (drawn on the day) – £50 cash

Qualifying for the final could not be easier, simply catch the heaviest or second heaviest Rainbow trout in any one week from the following South West Lakes Trust venues, Kennick, Siblyback, Stithians or Burrator.

Fish must be witnessed and weighed by a member of staff or another angler. 2 people can qualify from each venue per week!  With unlimited entries, this is your chance to get your name etched onto the Honours board and claim the title of ‘The Best of the Best’

Past qualifying fish have varied from 1.5lb up to 6lb. You really have to be in it to win it!

2018 will be the fifth year of this big money competition which has attracted anglers from all over the country.

Click here to read the 2017 Best of the Best results.

Click here to read the 2016 Best of the Best results.

Qualifying Period

4 March –  8 October 2017

Bank fishing only on 15 September 2017, at Kennick Reservoir, Devon.

We are delighted to announce that the new sponsor for the Best of the Best competition is Snowbee. Simon Kidd, Sales and Marketing Manager at Snowbee had this to say;

” Snowbee to Sponsor SWLT ‘Best of the Best’ throughout 2017.

With Snowbee UK being based in the South West of England and surrounded on all sides by superb scenery and fishing, we are delighted to be supporting the SWLT ‘Best of the Best’ Competition for 2017. With the best fish caught every week, from the start of the season, on all the Trusts premier waters qualifying their captors for the final, this is indeed the country’s premier ‘season long’, open fly fishing event. With the nation’s biggest prize fund too, then in addition to the great fishing across the range of the West country’s most spectacular venues, there is a real chance of any angler sharing a substantial prize especially with the new format. We are really keen to help as many anglers as possible enjoy and be more successful in their fishing all season long also, whatever their experience, so this makes for a great association for us too. ”

There will be some fantastic prizes with as many as 20 people guaranteed a prize at the final! There will also be prizes for the largest fish in qualifying from each lake.

1st Prize – £1500
2nd Prize – £750
3rd Prize – £300

Biggest Fish in the final (not finishing in top 3) – £200
Blind pairs (drawn on the morning of the final) £300
Second Blind pairs (drawn on morning of the final) £200

Ben Smeeth, Angling Lead for South West Lakes Trust commented ‘the Best of the Best is an outstanding competition which is gaining in popularity. Not only is it the biggest in prize money but it provides a chance for anglers of all abilities to win some serious money at our final. There will be 8 anglers winning from £100 to £1500 at this years final and at least another 15 anglers winning prizes! The final itself, at Kennick, is a fantastic venue for the event and I cant wait until 15 September!’

For more information, please contact Ben Smeeth on 01566 771930 or email

Name fish size lake
Martin Butland 2016 2016
Paul Lee 4lb 4oz Kennick
M Peppitt 4lb 4oz Kennick
Pat Power 3lb 10oz Burrator
Mark Brimblecombe 4lb 1oz Kennick
Eddy Carter 3lb 12oz Kennick
Paul Wicks 4lb Kennick
Richard Keast 4lb 3oz Stithians
Dave Perks 3lb 12oz Siblyback
R Cugar 4lb 6oz Siblyback
Bill Tomas 3lb 8oz Stithians
Andrew Alger 4lb 2oz Kennick
Tom Hendy 2lb 8oz Kennick
Andy Lobb 5lb 3oz Kennick
Barry Ware 4lb 11oz Kennick
Chris Bee 4lb 04oz Kennick
Stephen Cook 1lb 4oz Stithians
D Williams 4lb 0oz Drift
Paul Davis 3lb 2oz Kennick
Ron Wilday 1lb 8oz Siblyback
N Barron 5lb 4oz Siblyback
Chris Bolt 3lb 14oz Siblyback
Rob Gale 4lb 2oz Siblyback
Mike Sleep 3lb 15oz Kennick
Peter Brown 4lb 12oz Siblyback
Mike Stone 4lb 7oz Siblyback
Paul Jones 4lb 3oz Siblyback
Mick Dodkins 4lb 3oz Siblyback
Pete Kempton 4lb 3oz Siblyback
G Dummett 4lb 10.5oz Siblyback
S Glanville 3lb 2oz Stithians
N Tompkins 3lb 1oz Burrator
Steve Trinder 3lb Stithians
Darren Penfold 1lb 14oz Kennick
Andy Gooding 1lb 13oz Kennick
John Anthony 3lb 10oz Siblyback
Craig Piper 5lb 3oz Siblyback
Andy Watson 3lb 13oz Siblyback
Mick Crook 4lb 10oz Siblyback
N Burley 4lb 13oz Siblyback
Noel Endean 4lb 13oz Siblyback
Richard Buckingham 4lb 13oz Siblyback
Andrew Hull 4lb 4oz Wimbleball
B Ware 7lb 1oz Kennick
D Everitt 5lb 12oz Kennick
Dil Singh 3lb 14oz Kennick
Andy Cottam 4lb 9oz Siblyback
J Dolley 3lb 6oz Stithians
Nigel Perrin  2lb 5.5oz Kennick
Richard Mason 4lb 12oz Kennick
J Bailey 6lb 12oz Kennick
John Rumbold 2lb 3oz Siblyback
Alec Hoare 3lb Kennick
John Bird 3lb 15oz Kennick
Malcome Ure 2lb 2oz Kennick
John Hern 1lb 7oz Kennick
Mike Boston 1lb 7oz Kennick
Alan Lawson 3lb 3oz Burrator
John Hern 1lb 8oz Siblyback
Steve Floyd 1lb 5oz Siblyback
Pete Philips 4lb 1oz Siblyback
D Keir 3lb 3oz Kennick
John Tapper 2lb 4oz Kennick
T Dymond 1lb 10oz Kennick
J McCormack 1lb 10oz Kennick
P Runnalls 1lb 8oz Siblyback
D Johns 1lb 8oz Siblyback
John Huckings 1lb 12oz Kennick
Alan Ruddell 1lb 2oz Kennick
Alex Johnstone Not listed Siblyback
Alan Behan 1lb 2oz Kennick
Roger Truscott 3lb 11oz Siblyback
Lee Ratcliffe 1lb 12oz Siblyback
Paul Wallace 3lb 11oz Stithians

Layout for the day:

  • £35 entry fee per person payable in advance of fishing on 01566771930
  • Registration from 7:30am – 8.30am in the lecture room (just round the corner from the permit room)
  • Briefing outside the lecture room 8:35am
  • 45 – 9:45 Anglers take their positions around the lake. We will provide transport by boat to certain areas of the lake. Cars must be parked in the car parks provided.
  • Competition will start at 10am at the sound of an air horn
  • Competition will finish at 4pm at the sound of an air horn
  • Anglers return to the permit room by 5.15pm latest to weigh in
  • Refreshments and presentations in the lecture room as soon as weigh in completed



  1. Competitors must have a current Environment Agency Rod Licence.
  2. Entry fee of £35 must be paid before fishing
  3. Fly fishing only
  4. There are two exclusion zones for fishing which are sailing club bay (marked by two white posts on the bank) and the far side of Bessoms Bridge (Nature reserve)
  5. Anglers may fish anywhere apart from these two zones
  6. Rainbow trout and Blue trout only – Browns must be returned
  7. Bag Limit is 10 fish per person
  8. There is no time bonus for anglers who catch 10 fish early
  9. Any Rainbows or blues must be killed and not returned
  10. Each person will receive 10 numbered cable ties when they register. When a fish is caught you must put a cable tie through its gills immediately. When the weigh in is done your cable tie numbers will be checked. Anyone with incorrect cable tie numbers will be disqualified. Any fish without a cable tie will not count.
  11. Only fly fishing tackle may be carried. Loose feed or pellets in any form may not be carried. Any rod in use must be held at all times whilst the fly is in the water.
  12. Anyone fishing before the 10am horn will be disqualified
  13. Any fish hooked before the finishing horn but landed after the horn will count
  14. Any fish hooked on retrieving when the final horn has sounded will not count
  15. No angler shall fish within 10 meters from the next person
  16. The lake will be open to the public for boat fishing only
  17. Maximum of 3 single hook flies per cast (3 hook points)
  18. Wading is permitted to thigh depth only
  19. Dogs are not permitted to accompany anglers
  20. When fishing has finished anglers must return to the permit room for weighing in no later than 5:15pm. NIL returns are also required.
  21. The winner will be the person with the heaviest bag of fish (brown trout and coarse fish do not count). In the event of anglers having the same weight the largest number of fish will win, if still a tie the largest individual fish from the bag will win
  22. Marshalls will be patrolling the banks throughout the competition