Hopes boosted for new angling season

The Environment Agency and the Broads Authority are consulting and co-operating with local anglers to free up access to more public fishing on tidal rivers in time for the new season that comes in on June 16.

The Environment Agency and the Broads Authority are consulting and co-operating with local anglers to free up access to more public fishing on tidal rivers in time for the new season that comes in on June 16.

One of the most popular broads rivers is the Thurne which offers free fishing from the mouth of Candle Dyke down to Womack Water on the north bank and from a point near Dungeons Corner at Martham down to Repps on the east bank, writes Roy Webster.

At present much of this tidal embankment is overgrown with reed and various other greenery. And although the fishery is administered by the Environment Agency, the Broads Authority has a say in how the reed mace and other bank-side vegetation should be trimmed back to allow angling.

However, according to Tony Gibbons, the broads main match event organiser and a member of the Broads Angling Strategy Group, the Environment Agency has embarked on a project to install more special angling platforms for disabled anglers on the river Thurne banks and in addition they are cutting out fishing stations for the able-bodied.

And as more and more anglers appear to be returning to the natural rivers to enjoy value for money sport, Gibbons expects the Norfolk Broads will prove a great attraction this summer for visiting and local anglers alike.

“Because of the credit crunch and weak sterling on the rate of exchange I think more anglers will stay in this country for their angling holidays this summer,” he declared. “We have to accommodate these visitors because it is most important that they keep coming and help the local economy.”

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In addition to the river Thurne there is considerable free fishing on the River Bure between Upton Mill and Acle. This too is likely to receive a facelift; indeed if these tidal reaches either side of the mouth of Upton Dyke become available for club fishing phenomenal catches are likely to be weighed in consisting of quality bream and roach.

The river Ant above Ludham bridge also offers free fishing and in the past the Great Yarmouth, Gorleston and District Amalgamated Anglers Association made use of this venue more than any other for their important tournaments and national team qualifiers. The river Ant is hardly ever fished now because the banks are grown up and impenetrable, but if cleared this opens up another great venue which anglers used to cherish.

If all this work is completed over the next 12 months freshwater fishing on the broads could once again become an important feature of the local tourist industry.

Back to the present there were splendid carp caught by local enthusiasts last week.

The Stamp brothers from Caister visited their favourite Taswood fishery where Darren winched out the heaviest carp of the week, a common scaling 32lb 10oz along with a mirror of 25lb 3oz.

Jason bagged five fish, consisting of mirrors and commons and a ghostie around the 25lb mark.

Hall Farm, Burgh Castle was on form again for Royce Dorova of Bradwell and Gorleston's Steve Aldous who between them bagged 64 carp for an estimated total of nearly 400lb.

Josh Stephenson of Blundeston had four carp including a 21lb 2oz leather while Cobholm duo Jono Griffen and Luke Measures shared a 30-fish haul consisting of mirrors and commons up to the

16lb mark.

On the match circuit Ray Kent of Jollyboys heaved out the best of the year catch from Mill Farm, Great Ellingham while winning the midweek open there with 138lb 8oz. He completed the double to head the Oddfellows card on the Willow with 60lb 4oz.

R Silverwood won the Burgh Castle open with 31lb 1oz followed by Dave Docwra also Sportsmans with 19lb 1oz and then A Goram of Beccles Caxton with 17lb 10oz.

Club results: Stalham (Metton): D Gipson 88lb 4oz, A Watson 63lb 14oz, S Lawrence 54lb 4oz. Sportsmans (Weybread): K Hodgins 55lb 11oz, R Silverwood 24lb 13oz, Sid Huggins 22lb 9oz.

Along the beaches school bass and smooth hound continue to feed off the sandy shores between Sea Palling and Horsey and there are still spring codling being caught from most marks between Gorleston and Hopton.