North Devon Match Group versus Bude Canal Angling Club @ Killock Fishery Results

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May 26th  results : North Devon Match Group versus Bude Canal Angling Club @ Killock Fishery


1st Simon John Allen  Bude 60lb 12oz

2nd Ian Gray  Bude 38lb 2oz

3rd Colin Cherrington  NDMG 36lb 14oz

4th Neilsen Jeffery NDMG 33lb 14oz

5th Steve Whitehouse Bude 29lb 1oz

6th Kevin Hill 21lb 7oz ,

The first leg of our annual interclub was contested on 2 of the lakes at Killock Farm. A hearty breakfast was served in the Atlantic Highway Cafe, before the two teams of 12 braved the 5 hours of misty rain .Bude team captain Simon John Allen led his team to a well fought victory, 157 points to 143 . Simon took the individual honours with a great catch on the pole on the bottom pool. Ian also of Bude, took best weight on the top lake and second in the match on the method feeder. Top weight for North Devon and third in the match was Colin with a pole caught net on peg 16 ,on meat. The cafe also served up a fine after match spread , a good day was had by all ,we look forward to our return match on the canal.

Twenty nine pound carp caught twice

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Simon Bennett and Bob Davey have remarkably caught the same common from Upper Tamar this week. Bob was the first to catch it from the Lookout Tower and it weighed 29lbs and Simon has landed it this morning from the end of the Bradworthy Arm and this time it weighed 29lb 4oz. a toffee boilie on a Ronnie rig did the trick for Simon.

Big Perch Catches at Tamar

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Adam Moxey, Chris Lambert and Steve Moore have been among the perch at Upper Tamar recently. From the perch boat they boated lots of fish to just under 4lbs on a mixture of soft lures and weighted hooks with self-made flies. The chaps were catching that many fish they were returning fish of 2-3lbs without weighing them in the end! A real red letter day at the prolific venue! Remarkably Steve Moore also had a 14lb common carp on his weighted hook and fly!

Focus on Barnstaple and the Taw Estuary

Focus on Barnstaple and the Taw Estuary

The market town of Barnstaple straddles the River Taw that meanders from its sources on Dartmoor and Exmoor to converge with its sister River Torridge before flowing into the lower Bristol Channel. There are many opportunities for the angler in and around Barnstaple with the estuary providing sport all year for a variety of species.

The Autumn is very popular with flounder anglers whose season traditionally kicks off around the time of the towns famous fair that visits the town in mid-September. The humble flounder offer relaxed fishing from Rock Park above the towns bridge down to Fremington Quay and beyond.

During the summer months the upper estuary provides good sport with thin lipped grey mullet that can be tempted using spinners baited with ragworm on light tackle. Thick lipped grey mullet are also present in the estuary and provide a real challenge for anglers prepared to persist with light tackle and freshwater tactics.

Bass can be caught throughout the estuary from April until late autumn with the lower estuary proving most productive with a variety of tactics working. Fly-Fishing for school bass has become increasingly popular with large numbers of these silver flanked sport fish caught. Lure fishing is also very popular with a wide range of patterns bringing success.

The lower estuary also holds increasing numbers of gilthead bream with fish of over 5lb caught each season to anglers using small crab or worm baits. May through until early autumn is probably the best time to target these hard fighting fish.

During autumn and winter the lower estuary once produced good catches of codling and these fish are still occasionally caught but sport is a shadow of what it once was. During the 1970’s several outsize cod were caught from Crow Point the best over 30lb.

Recent seasons have seen smoothound and dogfish caught in the Lower estuary.

The estuary around Braunton where the River Caen flows into the estuary also brings success for anglers targeting grey mullet and bass.


Salmon and sea trout

The River Taw is an iconic game fishing river famous for its salmon and sea trout fishing. Whilst much of the river is Privately owned day tickets are available via the Rising Sun at Umberleigh and via the West Country Passport Scheme. The Barnstaple and District Angling Club gives access to water at the top of the tidal section of the river at a very reasonable cost. Day Tickets can also be obtained at the Fox and Hounds, Eggesford and from Highbullen Hotel., Chittlehamholt.

For information on the Taw visit the River Taw Fishery Associations website.

River Trout

Brown trout are to be found in the majority of rivers in the Barnstaple area and can provide great sport on light weight fly tackle. In some instance’s permission can be obtained by asking the landowner. The Lower Taw has water available via the Barnstaple and District Angling Club. The West Country Angling Passport provide access to some fine trout fishing via their Token scheme: –

Stillwater Trout

The Stillwater Trout anglers is well catered for with two of North Devon’s top fisheries located within five miles of the town.

Blakewell is a well established trout lake situated just off the B3230 road to Ilfracombe.

The fishing lake is generally crystal clear and is well stocked with quality rainbow and brown trout to specimen size. Additional stocking is also made with both spartic trout and tiger trout.

The fishery is an ideal venue for both the experienced fly fisher or the novice with fish responding to a wide variety flies. Small imitative patterns are generally favoured with floating fly lines effective throughout the year even during the depth of winter when longer leaders and bead headed nymphs a wise choice.

There are two main day ticket options available including a catch and release option that allows the first two fish to be retained with fishing then allowed on a catch a release basis for the remainder of the day. A standard five fish ticket entitle the angler to retain five fish and then stop fishing.

The fishery has well stocked tackle shop on site that sells a variety of flies suitable for the venue and a range of tackle from West Country Tackle company Snowbee. The tea room is open throughout the day with delicious cakes, tea and coffee to enjoy during a break from the fishing.

The few miles North of Barnstaple is Bratton Water situated in a steep wooded valley it is well sheltered from most winds and boasts crystal clear water and some stunning brown trout that can often be tempted on dry flies or small nymph patterns. This water is also suitable for novice or experienced fly fisher with its small acreage proving less daunting than the larger reservoirs.


There are numerous Coarse Fisheries in the Barnstaple area including Furzebray Near South Molton a fishery that has a well-deserved reputation for producing some stunning carp approaching fifty pounds.

Hacche Moor Fishery near South Molton opened to day ticket anglers in April 2019 and has already produced carp to well over thirty pounds.

Riverton Fishery also has day ticket opportunities for a wide variety of coarse fish.

Barnstaple & District Angling Club have fishing at Aller Pond near South Molton for details contact:- John Webber

Flooding tide last cast bass

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I have been looking forward to getting back out onto the rocks after a bass on the lure and today I made my first foray. It was great to once again scurry across the rocks as the tide dropped to low water timing my arrival to coincide with the bottom of the tide.

Water clarity was great and I was full of confidence as I searched the water starting off with a Patchinko surface lure and alternating through shallow divers and soft plastics. I gave each of my favourite spots ten minutes or so before moving along the shoreline as the tide began to push in over the boulders.

Despite a lack of interest in my lures confidence remained high and even if a bass did not intercept my offerings it was good to be out in the warm sunshine taking in the splendid scenery. A pair of peregrines swooped above beside the steep cliffs hunting an unfortunate pigeon that was I believe lucky to escape on this occasion.

I had reached my final rock and as the tide rose it was  to time to go as I had stated I would be home at around 7.30pm and it was now 6.30pm. One last cast! I had just changed to a shallow diving plastic; as the lure came close to a boulder ten yards out a savage take was followed by a screaming reel and a bent rod. A bass of around five pound battled for cover and won its freedom as the hook hold gave way. I recast to the same spot and to my surprise had a repeat performance as another bass hit the lure hard. After a spirited battle a three pound bass was brought to hand and on this occasion was destined to arrive on our dinner plate pan fried with new potatoes and fresh salad just over an hour later. I only take two or three bass for the table each year returning the vast majority especially any fish of over 7lb.

The catch raises a couple of questions. Was it the result of a change of lure or just being in the right place as a shoal of bass happened to arrive where I was casting?

Earlier in the day I had visited Danny Watson at High Street Tackle and selected a couple more lures to try out. On this occasion it was an old battered lure that had done the trick. I tend to rely on half a dozen lures, a couple of hard plastic shallow divers, a couple of soft plastics and a couple of surface lures. The lures I take will to some extent depend on the chosen venue.

Focus Group on Special Places on the Northern Devon Coast

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I am posting this information on North Devon Angling News as anglers are important stakeholders in regards to the North Devon Coast and most have a deep appreciation for its beauty and natural diversity.

Focus Group on Special Places on the Northern Devon Coast

Local residents in Northern Devon are invited to take part in a Focus Group about Special Places on the Northern Devon Coast. The focus group is part of a wider study, being undertaken by Collingwood Environmental Planning (CEP) and ABPmer, on behalf of the Marine Management Organisation (MMO).

The focus group will be held in Barnstaple on Thursday 6th June 2019 at 7pm.

The purpose of the focus group is to gather feedback from local residents (adults aged 18 or over) on their experiences and perceptions of places on the Northern Devon coast which they consider to be special and to explore the reasons why. This information will be used to help the Marine Maritime Organisation (MMO) to understand how coastal views contribute to enjoyment of the coast so they can consider this in future planning and projects.

The focus group will last a total of 2 hours, and light refreshments will be available. As a thank you, a £50 cash incentive will be provided to participants upon completion of the session.

To register your interest to participate in a Focus Group please email: Sian Morse-Jones at as soon as possible.

Also, if you haven’t done so already, there is still time to complete the online Survey on Special Places on the Northern Devon Coast, which is live until Friday May 31st 2019, by clicking the link here:

Pledge for Nature!

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Hello North Devon Angling News

I’m a keen freshwater and sea angler, and also passionate about nature.

The North Devon UNESCO Biosphere is launching a Crowdfunder to raise funds for a ground-breaking local initiative called Pledge for Nature! – to engage north Devon’s communities in nature’s recovery. We are extremely concerned by rapid declines in the quality of some habitats and populations of some of our key species like breeding cuckoos, lapwings and curlews in our farmland, salmon, sea trout and freshwater pearl mussels in the Taw and Torridge river systems, and even commoner species like hedgehogs, swallows and house martins, wildflowers and insects.

Nature needs more space and wilder areas to thrive. Pledge for Nature! aims to engage citizens and particularly farmers across north Devon in practical actions to tackle the damaging effect that decades of development and intensive land use have had on North Devon’s precious ecosystems. Their actions will help to boost wildflowers, insects and birds in farmland, gardens and greenspaces, plant trees and woodlands, and improve our rivers.

We are asking the National Lottery Heritage Fund to cover the majority of the coordination costs (and have passed the first round in the application process), but we urgently need to raise at least £10,000 as match funding to demonstrate to them that our community cares. Anglers are a really important group to help address some of these problems, and many are already very active (eg I’m a member of the Taw Fishing Club which is doing lots of habitat work).

I’d be really grateful if you could share the link to the crowd-funder site through the North Devon Angling website and social media and help spread the word in any way you can to friends and colleagues. I also attach a poster that can be printed and put up in community centres etc..

Many thanks for your help, and fingers crossed we can beat our target!



Mike Moser

Chair, Nature Improvement Group

North Devon UNESCO Biosphere