I first met Basil at the 2001 Canadian Wildlife Carving Championship at Midland, Ontario. This show was one of Ontario’s best, and it was my first time competing there. As I was standing around admiring all the carvings, this gentleman came up to me and asked if I was Ron Bailey, and I said yes, and he introduced himself as Basil Derrough. Well, I instantly recognized the name as I had admired his winning fish carving earlier that year at the Artistry in Wood Wildlife Carving Championships in London.

For the next five years or so, Basil would be my fish carving rival, competing at various shows in Ontario. We both took carvings to a show in Ocean City, Maryland, however, the judges were not “co-operative” in their choice of the best carvings. We both agreed that the judging had much to be desired. This would be the last year this fish carving competition would be held.

Basil being an avid trout fisherman is very knowledgeable about trout, which has helped him to make very accurate and beautiful fish carvings. While at the Maryland competition and watching one of the judges provide a critique of Basil’s carving, I had to chuckle. I’m sure the judge was not aware that Basil probably knew more about trout than he did. We both had a good laugh over this.

When I visit Basil at his shop, I never know what I will find Basil working on. Without a doubt he is not only a highly skilled fish carver, but also is a fine cabinetmaker and automotive restorer. I am always in amazement of his energy and many talents. Recently he completely restored a 1953 Studebaker Starlight car which he and his wife Marg enjoy showing at various car events in Ontario. Below is a photo of this car.

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