Sea Angling Competition Results

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The weekend proved challenging for sea anglers with the first half blighted by a bitter North East wind that chilled to the bone with temperatures overnight rumoured to drop to minus ten.

Shore fishing was generally hard going with deep water less impacted upon by the low temperatures most productive. I will post a full write later on a my trip on Bluefin with South Molton Angling Club.

COMBE MARTIN SAC Winter Rover Results

Kevin Legge took top spot in Combe Martin SAC’s Winter Rover landing specimen spurdog scaling 12lb 7oz. In runner up spot was Wayne Thomas ( Myself) with a boat caught conger of 30lb boated on John Barbeary’s boat bluefin off Ilfracombe. Kevin also secured third place with a spurdog of 9lb 8oz.

Bideford Angling Club – February Rover Result

Dick Talbot won Bidefords Monthly Rover with a three beard rockling if 1lb 3oz. In runner spot was Dan Walbridge with a rockling of 1lb 2oz and third Dick Talbot with another rockling off 1lb 1.5oz. Terry Dymond took third place with a flounder of 1lb 67/8oz. Fifth was Stephen Found with a dogfish of 2lb 1.25oz.

The end of season result was first and second Dick Talbot with his rockling of 1lb 3oz and 1lb 1.5oz


David John Langbridge took first and second places In Appledore Shipbuilders Rover landing flounder of 1lb 91/8oz and 1lb 71/8oz. Terry Dymond was third with a flounder of 1lb 67/8oz.


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Graham Snow secured first and second in Appledore Shipbuilders January Winter League competition landing a brace of flounder scaling 1lb 155/8oz and 1lb 77/8oz. Third place went to Andrew Atkinson with a dogfish of 2lb 1oz.


Combe Martin SAC member John Avery landed fine winter thick lipped mullet scaling 5lb 1oz.

Bideford Angling Club

24hour results

1st Antony Smith blonde Ray 13lb 14oz   115.625%

2nd Antony Smith smalleye Ray 9lb 12oz 108.333%

3rd Nathan Clements thornback Ray 9lb 11oz 107.638%


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Calm conditions with high pressure dominating has resulted in open coast fishing slowing down with dogfish and small conger dominating catches. Flounder fishing in the estuary is starting to tail off as the flounder start to migrate out to sea to spawn. If the wind swings to the west and Atlantic weather pushes in sport on the open coast should pick up with spurdog, bull huss and conger moving inshore to feed on dislodged food.

During calm weather boat anglers can expect some hectic offshore sport as the spurdog packs hunt the mid channel waters.


John Passmore won the Sportsmans Cup with a flounder scaling 125/8oz Ian Cairns was runner up with a flounder of 121/8oz.

Dennis Toleman caught a fine bass of 5lb 6oz from Fremington Quay but being a flounder only match it did not count.


Jack Sharrock won Appledore Shipbuilders January Rover with a cod of 7lb 43/8oz. The fish was tempted from the expanse of Chesil beach in Dorset and was not a North Devon fish. Cod are very scarce off the North Devon coast in recent seasons which is a mystery as twenty years ago they were prolific.

In second and third was Terry Dymiond with flounder scaling1lb 121/4oz and 1lb 115/8oz.

Seventeen anglers fished.


Rover results
1st Terry dymond flounder 1lb 12 1/2oz
2nd Terry dymond flounder 1lb 11 5/8oz
3rd Graham Snow flounder 1lb 8 1/4oz
4th Graham snow flounder 1lb 5 5/8oz
5th Paul Downing thornback 5lb 10oz
Next competition 19/20th Jan 24hour

Sea Angling Results

Bideford Angling Club and Appledore Shipbuilders hold their monthly sea rovers on the first Sunday of each month and both clubs allow competitors to fish over a very wide area of the South West including  Devon, Dorset and Cornwall. Their results highlight the vast the vast range of species available to anglers in the South West.

Bideford Monthly Rover results

1st – Antony Smith garfish 15 1/2 oz 77.5% (Above)

2nd  -Andrew Clements dogfish 1 lb 13 60.416%

Appledore Shipbuilders Monthly Rover Results

1st- Josh Atkinson – black bream 2lb 7.5oz

2nd – Michael Hammett – garfish 1lb 2oz

3rd – James Mayhew – small eyed ray 7lb 1/8oz

Junior section – Jack Pike – ballan wrasse 4lb 3oz

Triple Hook Club – WYCO EWB – Club Flounder

1st – Mark Hancock – flounder 1lb 1/4oz

2nd – Kevin Hancock – flounder 15oz

Time to catch a bass

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September and October have always been prime time for the bass angler with every chance of that fish of a lifetime showing. If water clarity is good lure fishing could bring its rewards though a big fish bait anchored off a beach is a method with a well proven track record. Don’t rule the estuary either as big bass often prowl into areas that many consider the home of flounder and school bass.

Recreational anglers will be delighted to hear that the total ban on retaining bass is to be lifted from October 1st 2018 with one bass per day to be allowed for the table. Whilst the majority of anglers return the fish they catch most will be pleased that they can take the occasional fish for the table.

(below)Ali Laird enjoyed a successful session on a local beach beaching two small ray a brace of bass of 3lb to 4lb and this fine bass of 9lb 12oz.

(Below) Tony Slade won Appledore Shipbuilder’s Bass Competition at Westward Ho! with a bass of 7lb 4oz.

(Below) James Atkinson took second and third with bass of 3lb 5oz and 2lb 12oz.

Fifty Eight Pound Tope Sets Club Record

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Kevin Pike has set  a new Appledore Shipbuilders Club record boating a huge tope of 58lb whilst fishing from a Private boat off the North Devon Coast. Kevin also boated a tope of 41lb 8oz. Jack Pike fishing on the same trip boated a personal best of 47lb and Cameron Atkinson a tope of 45lb. The trip saw four tope boated for a total weight of over 186lb! It is also good to hear that mackerel were plentiful.

Jack Pike – tope 47lb
Cameron Atkinson tope 41lb 8oz

Boat Fishing Sport Round Up!

Thomas Atkinson won Appledore Shipbuilders Boat Competition with a fine smoothound of 17lb 10oz. Andrew Atkinson was second with a hound of 13lb 4oz and third Michael Hammett with a hound of 12lb 6oz.

(Above)Andrew Atkinson with a smoothound of 13lb 4oz
(Above and Below)Thomas Atkinson smoothound 17lb 10oz

Appledore Shipbuilders enjoyed  a great good day on the hounds with the average size around 9lb they also had a couple of tope around the 20-25lb mark along with a few small pollack and a few small huss.

Anglers are also finding goof sport off Ilfracombe aboard Dan Hawkins boat Reel Deal with beautiful weather and flat calm seas hard fishing at times but some good early sport  The Tope are starting to show more often now along with Huss, dogs and bass.


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It seems that summer fishing is on its way with smoothound moving into their summer haunts and putting bends in anglers rod at last after what has been a difficult spring. There have also been a few bass tempted from marks around Ilfracombe with fish tempted on lures in the clearing water.

Bideford Monthly Rover results

1st  Andrew Clements wrasse 4 lb 9oz         91.250%

2nd Terry Dymond  smooth-hound 8 lb 8oz  85%

3rd  Taz Watton thornback 7 lb 1oz              78.472%

Appledore Shipbuilders Rover

Smoothound dominated the results for Appledore Shipbuilders with Michael Toogood securing top spot with a fine hound of 14lb 2.75oz.

1st    Michael Toogood   smoothound 14lb 2 3/4oz

2nd   Kevin Pike  smoothound 9lb 15 1/4oz

3rd    Jazza John   smoothound 9lb 1/2oz

Junior angler Jack Pike set a new Junior Club Record with a hound of 13lb 7 5/8oz.

The coming weekend sees Combe Martin SAC hosting the annual Putsborough beach open. The warmer condtions should have brought small eyed ray into the shallows where they feed primarily on sandeels.

Combe Martin Sea Angling Club

Presents Our

Putsborough Sands

Open Fishing Competition 2018

Saturday May 12th

Fishing From 9.30pm to 1.30am

Book In From 8.00pm to 9.00pm

Weigh In By 2.00am

Cash Prizes Of £100 & £50

Sakuma, High Street Tackle,

And Many Other Donated Prizes

2 Rods, 4 Hooks, Specimen Sizes

Entry £5 plus £1 Pool Best Brace

Phone Nick 814703 Or Wayne 850586

For More Details Please Check Or Our Facebook Page

Please Respect Putsborough & Remove All Litter

Sea Angling News and prospects

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(Above) Many thanks to Josh Atkinson for this stunning picture.

Sea anglers are certainly having a lean time with just three fish weighed into Bideford Angling Clubs Monthly Rover. Dick Talbot dominated the results with a brace of wrasse for first and second weighing 3lb 13oz and 3lb 6oz. Andrew Clements took third spot with a spotted ray of 3lb 1/4oz. In Appledore Shipbuilders Rover the eighteen competing anglers failed to find a fish big enough to bother the scales. Several members of the club ventured to south coast venues in search of plaice where they enjoyed some success but none above the qualifying weight for the scales.

As temperatures start to creep up fishing should improve and the first bass should soon be caught from the lower estuary. The local surf beaches will produce ray that move inshore to feed on sandeel in the surf. Grey mullet are already present along the coast and the first thin-lipps should be in the estuary’s as soon as the flood water subsides. Rough ground marks on the coast will yield bull huss and the occasional conger.

Anglers fishing Ilfracombe Pier with small worm baits can expect plaice and dabs.

Dogfish will provide plenty of rattles on the rod tips.