Charlotte hooks first mackerel of the season

PUBLISHED: 10:29 02 April 2019 | UPDATED: 10:08 24 April 2019

Charlotte Bateman with her mackerel. Picture Harry May

Charlotte Bateman with her mackerel. Picture Harry May

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Brownie leader's 'beast of a catch' surprises Lyme Regis skipper Harry May

Lyme skipper Harry May. Picrture Marie FLyme skipper Harry May. Picrture Marie F

Lyme's first line-caught mackerel of the season has been landed.

Charlotte Bateman hooked the fish during a trip on board local skipper Harry May's boat Marie F.

Harry said: “It's very early in the season to catch mackerel but within 10 minutes of leaving the harbour Charlotte said: 'I've got one' and much to my surprise pulled in a fine beast.”

By tradition the first mackerel of the season caught on a hand line at Lyme is presented to the town mayor – but as it was Mothering Sunday Charlotte decided to give it to her mum.

Charlotte, a Brownie leader and St John Ambulance volunteer, was on a trip to Lyme from her home in Bristol with her boyfriend Jake.

She said she didn't realise what an important event catching the first mackerel of the season was for Lyme people.

Harry May is in his 47th year of taking people out mackerel fishing. He started in 1970, then took two years off hitch-hiking to Australia and back, but has not missed a year since.

He said: “I have found the perfect life working from Easter until the end of the first week of November and then taking the boats out of the harbour until the following Easter.”

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