2020 AGM

Updates from our AGM last night

We had a good turn out for the AGM with 38 members in attendance.

Jim Bumby was elected to the committee as Secretary and Alan Horniman was elected to the committee as Assistant Treasurer. Both will bring a vast wealth of knowledge and experience to our club. Various reports were given by myself, Jim Mclean on membership levels, Jeremy Macbeth on club finances and Dave Cave on bailiffng matters. All in all we are in a good posiotion as a club and look forward to another successful for our members.

All club waters bar one have been retained for this season. The only beat not available is the Start fishing on the river Tweed. This beat was owned by our late committee member Dave Charlton and his daughters do not know if they will lease the fishing, sell it, lease the cottage as a holiday let or sell both. With these varying options we as a committee decided there could be pitfalls ahead and agreed not to enter into a new lease. Following the beat survey carried out at the end of last season Crag Lough was only fished on five occasions. If this trend on this water continues this season then the committee do not see this as good value for the membership and will not renew our lease. As said last night, use it or lose it.

Committee members Jim Bumby and Jim Mclean have been updating our club constitution and members handbook. Once the committee are satisfied that it is all spruced up correctly than all members will receive an updated version to replace your current version?

Members present at the AGM were supplied with the catch returns for 2019. This will be issued to all members with the next newsletter in the next two weeks. Alan Horniman gave a detailed breakdown on all catches on the waters and all beat catches for salmon and sea trout were up on all beats with the ecception being the river Wear where the salmon catches were down on 2018. Of all the migratory fish caught by members in 2019 there was a 91% release rate overall by the membership with  the river Coquet having a100% release rate. Congratulations to you all.

There were no new recomendations for committee and all current members of the committee were re-elected.

Following the length of service, time and commitment on the committee, messrs Dave Cave, Jeremy Macbeth and Alan Horner were nominated by the rest of the committee for life membership to the members present. This was accepted 100% by the members.

Subscriptions for this season remain unchanged with the last increase being in 2015. As usual this will be reviewed at the end of the season.

Stockings of Rothley and Thornton Steward will be the same as last year but with slight changes. The initial stocking at Rothley will see some bigger fish introduced this year. At Thornton Steward Reservoir the additional summer stocking we make will now be fish of the regular 2lb size rather than smaller fish.

President Stephen Garrett of Pure Fishing made two awards, one to Dave Ryan and the other to Barry Gibson for the outstanding work they have done on behalf of the club and its members in 2019.

Club trophies were awarded for the largest salmon caught on fly, 25lb by Geaff Horrill, largest salmon by any other method, 18lb caught by Jim Bumby. Largest sea trout caught on fly, 11lb by John Eardley. Largest sea trout caught by any other method, 8.5lb by William Hindmarsh.

Our thanks and gratitude go to Birtley Golf Club for allowing us the free use of its facilities for our committee meetings and also the AGM. Also a special thanks to club steward Simon Green for putting on another superb buffet that was enjoyed by one and all.

Late updates

Sad loss

Regretfully we have to announce the sad death of member George Hawes last Monday after a major heart attack. George had been in poor health for the last few years but it did not stop him from fishing his dream water at Thornton Steward Reservoir. Doing the catch returns throughout the season for TSR it has to be said he knew how to fish the water and all fish returned. At this sad time the committee and also the members we offer our deepest sympathy to his wife and family . RIP.

Rods at the Ready

The season gets underway on Saturday and any chance of an early fish will certainly be on our Till beats. If you do wish to wet a line on this river please remember it is fly only for the first two weeks.

2020 AGM

Last reminder that our AGM takes place next Wednesday at Birtley Golf Club with a prompt 8.00pm start. The clubhouse will be open for the early arrivees from 7.00 pm. If you do attend please ensure you bring your agenda and minutes for the 2019 AGM. The committee look forward to seeing as many members as possible attend for what the committee believe will be a very informative evening.

Northern River Angling Association (NRAA)

Members may be interested in accessing and reading The Northern Rivers Angling Association (NRAA) website. NRAA operate a very informative web site on game fishing in general and game fishing in the North East in particular. The NRAA website can be found at: http://northernriversanglingassociation.com

The NRAA site also links into, and gives access to, the Northumbrian Game Fishing Association (NGFA) Website and the Wear Anglers Association (WAA) Website, both worth a look. The WAA also operate a Facebook page “The Wear Anglers Association” at https://www.facebook.com/WearAnglersAssociation/ 

These are now in the links section on the website.

EA Consultation: Potential Expansion to the sea trout netting season

As many of you will know last year saw trials of modified T-nets of the Northumberland coast and modified J-nets of the Yorkshire coast. The aim of the modified nets was to allow them to catch sea trout but not salmon. These trials were "successful" particularly the modified T-nets. Consequently the EA have now launched a Consultation into the Potential Expansion of the Sea Trout Netting season. The EA are considering four options:

OPTION 1: Maintain the current beach netting season with no extension.

OPTION 2: Extend the beach netting season on a trial basis in 2020

OPTION 3: Partially restoring the beach netting season for sea trout

OPTION 4: Fully restoring the beach netting season for sea trout.

You can have your say at:


where you can find a full report on the net trials and full details of the consultation. We have made a submission on behalf of FFFC but please make your views known bu completing the consulation. The Consultation is straightforwrad to complete. 

Briefly, the drift net fishery was closed in December 2018 whilst the shore based T and J net fisheries were closed for salmon, but NOT sea trout, also in December 2018. Although the T and J nets can still operate for sea trout the length of the  netting season was reduced at the start of 2019 in order to protect salmon; the actual dates depending on location. Traditionally the netting season ran from 26 March to 31 August but for District 1 (the NE coast), for example, this was shortened to run from 26 March to 31 May. The trials in 2019 with 5  modified T nets took place after May 31st and caught 3342 sea trout and very few salmon. One of these trail nets operating at South Shields, very close to the mouth of the Tyne, accounted for  60% of this catch with some 1991 sea trout harvested. 

At this point in time stocks of both sea trout and salmon are in a perilous state and we believe any potential changes must take a precautionary approach and therefore believe OPTION 1 to be the way forward.


Help Required Please

Help is required  at The Jack Charlton Disabled Angler Association Trout Cups events this year. These events will be held on the 3rd June at Kielder and on 12th August at Sweethope;  these two events are for adults. An event for children will be held on Sunday 12th July at Sharpley. Help is required in number of ways, for example boat handling. Anyone able to help could you please contact the Secretary in the first instance.  Thank you.

Also if you are aware of any disabled anglers who would like to take part again please contact the Secretary in the first instance.


More Articles...