Carp Society coup complete

Carp Society coup complete

A popular campaign to secure the future of the Carp Society and Horseshoe Lake looks like it has succeeded.

A new board of directors seized control of the society last year after it was feared the previous directors were trying to sell the organisation's Horseshoe Lake and share the proceeds.

However, the deposed board took legal action and a High Court hearing was set for the end of the month. Now, though, the previous directors have agreed to end the fight and pay some of the legal costs, according to a statement from the newly installed board.

The society's iconic Horseshoe Lake in Lechlade

The society's iconic Horseshoe Lake in Lechlade

The Carp Society was founded in 1981 and Horseshoe in Gloucestershire was purchased in 1992 by selling more than 1,000 11-year permits to members. However, the water became a day-ticket lake and membership numbers fell sharply.

In 2015 fears were raised the then-directors planned to liquidate the company and sell off the £1m-plus lake and distribute the profits to the very few remaining members.

A statement from the current board said: "Following a 10-month legal case, the directors of the society are delighted to announce they have fully gained control of the society and can be recognised as the Carp Society board.

"With the case heading for a High Court hearing at the end of March, the four deposed directors, who brought the proceedings have agreed to pay a significant part of our legal costs to bring the case to an end.

"They will walk away and have no part in the future of the society either as directors or members in society affairs.

"Although we have always been advised by our legal team of the strength of our case, the ever-escalating costs involved in proceeding to a final hearing would have made it unlikely that those costs could be retrieved from the other side even if fully awarded to us.

"We can now begin to move the Carp Society forward in the manner that was always intended."

The re-invigorated Carp Society will continue to raise funds to cover the balance of legal costs still due.

The statement, issued by new chairman Derek Stritton, concluded: "Massive thanks for the positive comments and support, everyone.

"It’s been a bumpy and sometimes uncomfortable ride, but we got there in the end! Along the way there has been the odd comment of 'why bother?' [but] the society and its assets were built to support the world of carp fishing and angling in the future, not for the benefit of a few individuals.

"This was a battle that had to be fought, for justice and for the future of carp fishing."