The Medlar News Blog

Medlar has been publishing fishing books since 1994 and we are proud to have produced works by many of the finest angling writers. In our Blog we’ll give you an insight into the new books we’re working on, provide the occasional extract from our Books of the Week, author news, book reviews and loads of angling snippets (from how to fish to fishing history, fishing tackle, great angling literature and much more).

J.W.Young New Edition

100 years of making fishing reels
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J.W.Young - One Hundred Years of Reel Making


Soon to be published is an all new, completely redesigned edition of this classic angling history book, with over three hundred pages and many new reels and chapters. Fully illustrated in colour throughout, the chapters include the history of the company, all the reels from 1894 to 1971, centre-pins from 1984-2001, prototypes and specials, the Ambidex, the Aerial, leather reel cases, catalogues and appendices.

The ‘Ambidex’, for example, is arguably the most successful ever British-made fixed-spool reel, which was instrumental in the capture of two British record carp, almost thirty years apart. For almost a quarter of a century the Ambidex was regarded as the first choice of fixed-spool reel by many thousands of anglers throughout the country.

Ted Young began work on his new reel during the early 1940s following a suggestion by elder brother James that there was a need for a ‘worm driven’ fixed-spool reel that could be used by both left- and right-handed anglers. The only ambidextrous fixed-spool reel available at this time was the Allcock ‘Duplex’.

The Ambidex was a great success. At almost seven pounds a reel it was certainly not cheap, yet this is the reel that is considered by all surviving Young’s family and staff as the turning point in the success of the company.

Anglers the world over are familiar with the reels of J. W. Young but few are aware of the history of their development. With astonishing attention to detail and a wealth of historical documentation and illustration in support, Elwyn Attwood has traced the life of this influential company and the products that made them so famous. As well as providing a historical background to the development of the Young reels, it also gives a fascinating insight into the characters that formed the corporation over a century of reel-making.

The book is limited to only 350 copies, but you can reserve a copy by clicking
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Above: A unique Ambidex used as a sales aid by J.W. Young

Below: The Ambidex De Luxe, the very best of the Ambidex range.

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