Steve Pagulatos isn’t a name that will be all that familiar to modern-day carpers, but 20 years ago it was a different story.
The Surrey specialist had an uncanny knack of catching some of the country’s biggest, and most under-pressure carp, and it often didn’t take him that long either.
That was certainly the case in June 1998 when Steven banked Britain’s biggest-ever leather carp, the legendary Heather, weighing 47lb 2oz from the Car Park Lake at Yateley.
Here’s how Steve, in a rare appearance in the press, recounted the tale of the catch.
“I’d gone (to Yateley) to fish the North Lake but Basil had been caught an hour before. Nigel Hodgson was fishing the Car Park Lake and persuaded me to fish there too.
“When I saw the fish swimming in a weedbed my mind was made up.”
After a blank first day, Steve risked spodding out 3kg of trout pellets and 40 chopped boilies, before casting out his Mainline boilie tight to the weed.
A few hours later he got the reward he was looking for.
“I had a tench-like bite,” said Steve, “I struck and the fish rolled against the bank of weed. It was obviously a big carp.
“It dragged a load of weed about for 25 minutes before Nigel slipped the net under a massive ball of weed and fish.
“When we parted the weed we realised it was Heather and up went the customary shout!”