Youngsters get first taste of fishing thanks to Apuldram anglers

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The annual Chichester Harbour Conservancy Fishing Day was hosted by Apuldram Fishing and Boating Club in partnership with the Education Centre at Dell Quay.

More than 50 young people and adults attended this very enjoyable event.

The aim was to introduce people to fishing, and an experienced team of club members were on hand with rods, line and bait.

The fishing clubhouse and education centre were open to all participants for refreshments and information.

The day began with an introduction and safety talk by Judi Darley from the Conservancy and John Bassett and Allan Blamire, members of the fishing club.

The prospect of catching fish looked promising as baited lines were cast from the quay. People could use rods, bait and also crabbing lines. Crabs were measured and the efforts of many young people were amazing.

The youngsters were shown how to safely and gently handle them. They then carefully released them back to the harbour from their water-filled buckets.

The rules for this part of the day closely followed the world championships, held in Suffolk. Young people who used the crabbing lines to good effect included Tom and William with a crab measuring 56mm, Alex Modell (60mm), Abigail Birch (61mm), Oliver Miller and Ben Meavy (67mm), Rachel Wilkinson (69mm) and finally Dylan Drew with an incredible 79mm.

Fishing with rod and line proved successful, too, with five fish caught from the quay which included four sea bass. All were returned safely to the water.

A number of people have subsequently joined the fishing club, who welcome new members and offer good clubhouse facilities all year round with support from experienced club members and a full programme of fishing events.

Further information is available at


Last Thursday heralded the opening of the coarse-fishing season on local rivers.

Petworth & Bognor Angling Club have long stretches on the Arun and Rother and good catches of roach, chub and bream have been reported from the Coates Castle stretch on the Rother.

Lack of rain has left the Rother (pictured right) in particular very low but recent downpours have improved water levels – although in the first flush through, the water remained coloured but will slowly clear.

This does not have a significant impact on the fish, who are at last able to feed better from the wealth of food that accompanies the fresh water, but it does present a challenge as to what baits to use.

Bread and worm have been successful but when the fish start feeding, a good variety is worth taking to the river.

A club barbecue match at Walberton was won by Nelson Keet, who apart from being the fishery officer maintains this popular water. What he doesn’t know about fishing there is not worth knowing. He deserved his win with some large carp totalling 24lb 9oz. Second was Vince Herringshaw with just over 15lb.

The club’s new lake, The Granary near Storrington, is producing a range of carp, rudd and roach, with some large eels being caught mainly on meat and worms. Most of the carp have been from the margins which they seem to prefer in the warmer weather.

Members are reminded to use the club book to sign in and record their catches as this is a new venue and club officials are keen to see what’s being caught.

Work continues at Hurston Lane Fishery, where the middle carp lake was drained. Once the water is returned a large re-stocking programme can commence. The adjoining small River Stor is having bank improvement work. In the other two ponds, match and tench are both fishing well.

The club need volenteers for work parties, usually on a Sunday morning. Just a few hours of people’s time can help keep their waters in good shape. Check for full details.

Anglers will now be out fishing in some of the county’s most beautiful spots,but the recent loss of fish in the upper Arun because of a sewage leak highlights why everyone who benefits from these lovely rivers should be aware of what can go wrong.

The new Rother and Arun Rivers Trust will keep a careful watch. Any anglers can join.