Angling Heritage – Preserving Angling’s Rich History

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Angling Heritage is a not-for-profit, charitable trust, founded in 2009 in memory of Fred J. Taylor, MBE. The purpose of the trust is to preserve written, oral and photographic history of anglers from all walks of life.
The foundation of the Trust followed a recording of a conversation between Fred J. and Fred Buller (later awarded an MBE). That recording was later produced as the first of the ‘Recollections’ series of books, and the net proceeds from this collaboration was used to initially fund Angling Heritage. Fred Buller who was the Patron, has now passed away and his role has been taken by angling legend Chris Yates. The Trustees are Sandra Armishaw (Founder), Des Taylor, write and one of the greatest angling all-rounders in the country, Reg Talbot (Secretary and Treasurer) and Ed Whitby.
As previous attempts to establish an angling museum had failed, Sandra decided to make a start on preserving angling history in a way which did not require huge amounts of money and so the quest for old photographs, videos, recording and articles began.

From that modest start, the Trust has developed into a fascinating website based archive which is open to all and the recordings continue.

‘Recollections II’ was Barrie Rickards and Des Taylor; ‘Recollections III’ was Len Arbery and Bob Buteux and currently in the pipeline are recordings between the late John Goddard with Brian Clarke, and Dave Steuart with Bob Church. These give an unique glimpse into the lives of these famous anglers, and also add to the funds available to the Trust

Dr. Phill Williams has contributed significantly as the Trust’s “Roving Recorder”. He has interviewed the great and the good of the sport and added his sea angling expertise. Ed Whitby, who brings his youth and enthusiasm to the Trust by managing the Angling Heritage Facebook page, constantly updating it as things progress.

The website www.anglingheritage.org now has over 200 video clips, even more interviews, and a growing array of photographs and has grown to be one of the largest archives on angling. Access is available to everyone for a nominal fee of 1p per token to see a photograph, approximately 15 tokens for audio tracks and around 50 tokens for a film viewing. Tokens are available at £5 for 500 tokens.

You can see footage of Richard Walker’s record carp, ‘Clarissa’ and listen to Chris Yates talking about his book ‘Nightwalk’ at a fund-raising book- signing for the Trust. In addition, there is a range of films on many aspects of the sport and the characters that have been such an important part of angling history.

The audio recordings range from sea fishing skippers, to fishery scientists, especially those working on conservation, and even old recordings of the Gerry Savage radio shows which was the first significant radio show dedicated to the sport.

However, to continue to grow, the Trust needs support from the sport too. We simply need access to old photographs, recordings (audio or old videos) which we borrow and scan to digitise the information to add to the archive. We would also like any historical data or articles that you may wish to write about the sport, which, subject to editorial overview, we can publish on the site.
To preserve material for posterity, the Trust doesn’t need to keep items, just to borrow them, record the content and return them to the owner, which an acknowledgement of the contribution to Angling Heritage added to the website. The Trustees have found that many people discard items thinking they are of little interest now, but ‘today is tomorrow’s history’ and in a 100 or more years’ time, may well be even more significant in terms of social history.
The message is loud and clear – don’t throw angling related items away, contact the Trust and let Angling Heritage preserve them. If you want to discuss the work of the Trust, ring Sandy or Keith on 01805 625888 and be aware that the Trust is not only interested in the iconic angling figures, but anyone with an interesting story to tell, whether they are river owners, keepers, netsmen, anglers, or poachers, or you may have information about your angling club, which are after all, the heart and soul of the sport and have been so for many years.

When added to the online archive, all of this information provides a more complete history of the sport and preserves it for future generations of anglers and those with a keen interest in fishing.

During the short time the Trust has been established, it has accumulated items of ephemera, and has an agreement with Torrington Museum to allow the Trust space to display them. This will form an integral part of an angling museum when coupled to the website and will fulfil the aims of the Trustees who believe that donations in whatever form MUST be made available to the public for both research and interest.

 

We need your help.

Join Angling Heritage Today

 

You may not know much about Angling Heritage. And you can be forgiven for that. But it’s a worthy operation that exists to preserve written, oral and photographic history of anglers, and anyone can join.

You can become a friend of Angling Heritage by joining the membership scheme on line. For an annual fee of £25 you can have unlimited free access to the data on the site, and enamelled badge, and an annual magazine together with preferential access to Angling Heritage special events such as book-signings with our Trustees. Just visit www.anglingheritage.org .

Chris Yates signs as a trusteeA

 

REEL DEAL MIX IT UP

Reel Deal tope
Reel Deal- tope

Dan Hawkins Charter Boat Reel Deal arrived in Ilfracombe early this summer and after much effort made the headlines with the boating of a huge porbeagle estimated at 450lb. Since then the shark have proved elusive and a move to deeper water resulted in a blue shark estimated at 80lb being brought to the side of the boat.

Dan Hawkins
Dan Hawkins
Dan Hawkins
Dan Hawkins
tope
tope

Dan informed me that the general fishing has now improved with the arrival of mackerel in greater numbers. Fishing marks off the North Devon coast has resulted in turbot, gurnard, whiting, haddock, codling, tope, smoothound, huss and of course the ever plentiful dogfish.

turbot
turbot

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RAIN BRINGS IN A FEW SALMON

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The middle Torridge
The middle Torridge

 

After an exceptionally dry April and May local rivers have been at uncomfortably low levels with migratory fish reluctant or unable to progress upriver. As a result both salmon and sea trout fishing had virtually ground to a halt. The recent rainfall though often very localized brought a significant rise to the River Torridge that has brought several salmon into the system with salmon caught from beats throughout the river. Richard Jewell was among those successful landing a fresh run grilse with sea liced flanks. I fished a mid river Beat of the Torridge and whilst I failed to connect with a salmon I did catch a pleasing brown trout of almost around 1lb.

Torridge brown trout
Torridge brown trout

Taw regular Len Francis was one of the first to benefit from a slight  rise in the Taw landing a salmon from a mid river beat. Heavy rain is falling as I type this so hopefully the rivers will rise further bringing a good run of fish over coming days.

APPLEDORE BOAT RESULTS

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Thomas Atkinson with a fine bull huss of 13lb 2oz
Thomas Atkinson with a fine bull huss of 13lb 2oz

Thomas Atkinson earned top spot in Appledore Shipbuilders boat match landing a bull huss scaling 13lb 2oz. Andrew Atkinson took second and third with a bull huss of 11lb 14oz and a colorful cuckoo wrasse of 151/2oz. After a week of brisk West to North West Winds boats have been able to venture out and with the algae bloom now clearing I am hearing reports of few mackerel from boats between Hartland and Minehead.

Bratton Water

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Bratton Water
Bratton Water

 

BRATTON WATER

Bratton Water is nestled in a sheltered valley beside Bratton Stream and offers fine sport with free rising brown and rainbow trout. Eddy Hazeldon enjoyed a four-hour session at the water with his sixteen-year-old daughter Charlotte and landed a brace of trout each averaging 3lb.

Long time member of Wistlandpound Fly Fishing Club Bob Gooding fished the water to land a stunning brown trout of 8lb.

Small imitative patterns tend to work well at this water with dry flies always worth a try especially during warm summer evening’s.

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MID WEEK RESULT FOR KEVIN SHEARS

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Kevin Shears
Kevin Shears

Bideford & District Angling Club members have been enjoying summer evenings fishing their mid week matches on home water Tarka Swims. Kevin Shears won the latest on June 15th with a 12lb 4oz net of carp. Martin Turner was runner up with 10lb 4oz and David Bailey third with 4lb 9oz in forth was John Lovell with 3lb 10oz.

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RAIN BRINGS HOPE TO RIVER ANGLERS

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The Upper Torridge

Whilst many will be grumbling about recent rain in localized areas salmon and sea trout anglers will have a little hope in their hearts. After an exceptionally dry April and May local rivers have been at uncomfortably low levels with migratory fish reluctant or unable to progress upriver. Both salmon and sea trout fishing have virtually ground to a halt. A quick look at the Environment Agency gauging stations indicates a substantial rise in the Upper and middle Torridge that should give encouragement that a few fish will move over Beam Weir. The initial flush of water after a prolonged drought is often very dirty and this can deter fish from moving into the system. As the water clears fish should run giving anglers a chance of sport. Ideally we need a sustained period of rain to maintain the river level for a few weeks.

The Taw does not seem to have benefited to the same extent as the Torridge but even here a small rise could bring a few sea trout and salmon into the Lower reaches.

The Lyn seems to missed out on the rainfall and is still exceptionally low.

Where are the mackerel?

posted in: Article, Sea Angling, Sidebar | 0

Where are the mackerel?

Mackerel
Mackerel

Summer should herald the arrival of mackerel along the North Devon coast a migration that once seemed as routine as the arrival of the swallows, martins and swifts. So far this year numbers have been very patchy as they were last year when many local boats suspended the traditional tourist trips in search of the species in embarrassment at a lack of fish.

This apparent decline in stocks is cause for grave concern for the mackerel are an essential part of the food chain. In addition to bass, tope, shark and other predatory sea fish the mackerel is also food for gannets and dolphins creatures the sighting of which often provide the highlight of a day on the water.

Catches of mackerel are not always entirely representative of stocks as water clarity can impact on the mackerel being able to see the lures. Populations can also vary greatly from local regions and I well remember just two years ago when huge catches were being made from many marks on the South Coast. I will never forget one evening when walking beside the water in Penzance seeing vast shoals of mackerel harassing whitebait within the harbour. The site of thousands of mackerel shimmering in the night and sound of water boiling as they feasted will live with me till I die.

I remember well looking out over a calm summer sea back in the seventies to see mackerel shoals erupting from the water.

It is easy to blame overfishing on the mackerel’s demise and the plundering of stocks by ocean going factory ships has without doubt caused mass casualties. Another factor could be global warming with reports of mackerel being abundant far further North than historically documented.

We once took the humble mackerel for granted but it is one of our most beautiful fish and a symbol of the health of our waters. Its demise could be a barometer of the health of our coastal waters. Where should we look for its salvation? Does the European Union offer the fish protection? Do we trust the UK government to put the survival of the mackerel high on its agenda?

It would be a tragedy for sea angling if the mackerel were to disappear from our waters. The ease of catching has spawned many an angler; from glimmering twisting fish upon a string of feathers to the pleasing plunge of a brightly tipped float followed by the pulsing fight of a mackerel on light tackle. We once commented if only mackerel grew larger they would be the most sort after fish in the sea. Today we may well comment; “If only we could catch a mackerel!”

And finally is there a better tasting fish fresh from the sea; fried in butter with a sprinkling of pepper?

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WINNING ZYG

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Winning Zyg
Winning Zyg

Zyg Gregorek continued his winning streak at his own water and sent me this report… Our June 5’C’S Syndicate match held on the match lake saw my creaky split cane tackle called into action once again catching this nice 14lb 12ozs Mirror Carp. The winnings were once again donated to charity. A different fish smaller than the last one, you can see from the marks the fish had been engaged in amorous activities (that’s why it lost some weight) so I had to give it a kiss before putting it back.

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