Anglers back to their sport

Angling by Roy Webster

After weeks of facing lakes, ponds and boatyard lagoons frozen solid it will all be back to normal this weekend, when anglers may rest assured all their favourite venues will be ready for action.

The River Thurne and the boat dyke at Martham will be popular venues for pike fishing as will Hickling Broad and Horsey Mere.

Pike anglers are entering the most prolific period of the season when the odds of hooking a real monster shorten considerably. It was March when John Goble and Chris Humphries winched out their two 40lb-plus giants in the past two seasons.

Perch have never grown larger in the history of the Broads and rivers with 4-5lb specimens waiting for the keen angler to drop in that small lure or tiny dead bait or even a wriggling lob worm in front of its nose.

The heaviest perch caught from Thurne waters was a 5lb 1.5oz giant reeled in by a young angler while spinning for pike on Heigham Sounds.

There must be more of the same located there, and in the Martham Ferry and the top of the river at Somerton and along the quay headings of the Horsey mill dyke.

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Bream and roach anglers may well be rewarded on the Thurne below Cess Road, the scene of massive match catches before the winter closed in.

The Thurne between the bridges at Potter Heigham has always been a winter hotspot following a hard spell and the wides below the old bridge in front of the boatyard is worth a cast or two for bream when the water is nicely coloured.

On the River Bure, there are often shoals of roach and bream congregated around Acle Bridge at the start of the year, and a dabble in the Bure at St Benet’s Abbey could bring a pleasant surprise.

The River Yare, controlled by Yarmouth at the Beauchamp Arms, can also come good when the tides are neap. Fish upstream of pub for the best results.

Meanwhile, beach anglers have given up hope of a decent cod winter. A local weekend match revealed just one small codling with flat fish species making up the numbers.

The desperate conditions of North Sea cod stocks were highlighted on television this week when the programme The Great Fish Fight presented by Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall showed a trawler jettisoning hundreds of dead cod because the skipper had filled his quota with half his catch.

The presenter described it as madness and this thorny issue has been taken up by our own fisheries minister Richard Benyon, who has met his European partners.


Stalham (club lagoon) midweek: D Hammond 8-15, D Gipson 7-00, M Charlewood 6-12. Sunday: C Timms 10-00, M Brown 4-12, D Egerton 2-00.

Freshwater fixtures

Marsh Trail Lakes Open, Saturday, January 15 Lake A. Draw 9am, fish 10am to 3pm, �15 per head all in fee. Optional gold/silver pegs standing at �200. For booking and details contact John on 07766 697873 or 01502 586284.