Peter Hayes

I was originally an archaeologist, ancient historian, ancient linguist and

(very bad) philosopher who studied in Jerusalem, Jordan, and Oxford.

Reading Literae Humaniores (Greats) I was welcomed as a scholar to

St Edmund Hall by our Visitor, Harold Macmillan, the British Prime

Minister. In his much-parodied patrician accents he declamed: ‘Ah, my

boy, nothing that you learn here will be of any use whatsoever to you in

future life … except this: you will always be able to tell when someone is

talking rot.’ He was right.

I then spent 35 years in management, first in Unilever and then in

WPP Group, the global marketing services conglomerate. I specialised in

Marketing and Marketing Research, and spent nine years as Chairman of

a subsidiary before retiring in 1998.

Since then I have been doing pro bono work for local and national

ecological organisations, focussing on rivers, invertebrates, fish and other

wildlife. This has included setting up the National Fly Abundance Survey

with the Environment Agency and the Salmon and Trout Association, 

and a long running campaign with the Wiltshire Fishery Association and

others to reduce chalk aquifer abstraction, as well as work on other issues

including diffuse pollution.

I was involved with the EA and Natural England in setting up the Sites of

Special Scientific Interest and the European Special Areas of Conservation

on the Rivers Wylye and Till. Together with colleagues I have spent a

lot of time on restoration work, covering seven miles of the former and

three miles of the latter, directing diggers, banging in stakes and weaving

willow to re-energise the river and encourage it to re-naturalise itself after

suffering at the hand of man. Much of this seems to have worked.

I have written a few articles for Fly Fishing And Fly Tying magazine and for

Salmo Trutta, the iconic publication of the Wild Trout Trust, where I am on

the Executive Board.

I received the Wild Trout Trust Bernard Venables Award in 2005 for

researching fly life trends, restoring rivers, cultivating wild trout populations 

and working with The Game and Wildlife Conservancy;

and the Grayling Society President's Trophy  for  having spotlighted

the importance of invertebrate  numbers as supporting grayling populations.

I have fished in some of the ‘before you die’ places around the world and

currently I go hunting big trout in Iceland and New Zealand every year. I

have spent 30 years on the trout streams of England, chalk and limestone

spring creeks, and made a dozen long visits to similar spring creeks in

New Zealand, getting feedback from trout.

For recreation, I fish, photograph wildlife and support my wife Di in

competitive carriage driving. We have two grown-up children and one

granddaughter, six dogs, two cats, three horses, and a fair number of fish.

© Peter Hayes 2014