This week the Angling Trust announced a new package of benefits for individual members, which includes 10% off day tickets at more than 50 coarse and game fisheries and 15% off all purchases at Cotswold Outdoor. This is on top of the 15% members discounts off Pallatrax baits and just shows that it pays more than ever to be a member of the Angling Trust. Now obviously we think all anglers should join to support our campaigns to protect fish stocks from pollution, over-abstraction and predation and to take polluters to court but we hope that these extra enticements will attract more members.
As a keen river angler I was particularly excited about the new offer from Thames Water to fish not only their reservoirs at Farmoor and Walthamstow, but their 3 kms stretch of the Upper Thames behind the Farmoor which is now exclusively available to Angling Trust members free of charge. Clearly a test fishing session was called for in order to promote the new members only stretch and there was no one better for the job than Tight Lines presenter and Angling Trust ambassador Keith Arthur. I’ve reproduced below Keith’s article and pictures of our day from his Angling Times column.
You can find out more about all the new deals on offer by visiting our website HERE
Worth Far More than Money
by Keith Arthur
The latest in a long – and lengthening – line of benefits for Angling Trust members is a liaison with Thames Water that will allow AT members use of their stretch of River Thames behind Farmoor Reservoir near Oxford. Although the Pinkhill-Eynsham section doesn’t have a great reputation amongst match anglers, for individuals it is a superb stretch. Plenty of bends with a wide variety of depths, there are shoals of bream, plenty of small fish when there is some colour in the river, huge chub and barbel that are a well-kept secret and plenty of predators too.
I was lucky enough to be invited to a test fish and with the river fining off after some high, dirty water I decided to take just a lure rod and some soft baits. Unfortunately torrential rain overnight set the river on the rise but I still sneaked out a couple of perch, with the better sample around 2lb, and a couple of tiny pike.
Thames Water’s Will Barnard started with an 8oz roach on his feeder rig, then getting a small fish – chub, dace, roach and perch – almost one a throw until the extra water came through. He then moved above Pinkhill Lock and had a small pike on livebait that was taken by a serious Esox just before he could net it. Martin Salter had much the same thing while Stuart Yeomans from Reading Angling Centre found a 3lb bream and a bag of ‘bits’ from a small far-bank slack on the groundbait feeder.
I did a bit of leading around and found some superb gravel runs with ‘barbel sticks’, those dark green rushes that usually mean ‘whiskers’ are not far away. Thames Water have already said they have more river sections that they would like to offer, it just needs sorting and it could well be that the Thames Water offers kick-start other companies that control waters that are currently unavailable into doing the same thing. That £25 is sounding better value than ever !