When father-of-four, Vince Grove, died in the summer of 2018, following a cancer diagnosis just four months before, his family was, understandably, devastated. Each family member followed their own painful pathway of grief, not knowing where it would lead nor how it would ease, or if it would ever end.

2019 brought with it a determination to honour Vince’s memory in a positive way. Sam Grove, Vince and Karen’s son, had the idea to stage a Charity Angling Contest in remembrance of his father. Vince Grove had been a life-long, keen angler so this had seemed to be to be a very appropriate event by which the family could remember Vince, while at the same time do something positive for other families who could find themselves in similar situations.

But where and how should Sam begin? He had never organised an event before, let alone an angling competition. Sam would like it to be known that he is most grateful to Ali Forshew of the Clanfield Angling Club and Jack Swallow of the Burford Angling Club, who spared no effort in supporting Sam to organise an extremely successful day at Lyneham Lake. Much-appreciated help was also received from the owners of the lake, who closed the lake to other anglers, as well as making a donation to the cause.

The 21st September was a gloriously sunny day. Whilst Sam, Ali and Jack were involved with the competition, Karen, Vince’s widow, together with daughter Fiona and son, Tim, worked throughout the day to provide a tasty barbecue, much-appreciated drinks and a tombola. The family is grateful for the donations made by The Co-op, Bampton and by States Fishing Tackle shop in Witney.

The result of this most successful family day was a cheque for £250.00,  which was presented to The Bampton Welfare Trust in appreciation of the support the family received at the time of Vince’s illness. It was the family’s wish that the money should help other families in Bampton to receive support at times of extreme difficulty. It is Sam’s intention to make this an annual event, with The Bampton Welfare Trust being the beneficiary. Calling all anglers: next year it is hoped that it will be an even bigger event, held at an even larger lake.

This is a wonderful example of community support and responsibility. This family, even in their grief, was able to think of others, whilst at the same time finding a way to honour Vince’s memory. This is Vincent Grove’s legacy: a loving, caring family.

Janet Newman. Welfare Officer for The Bampton Welfare Trust

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