News Archives


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Rules revamped

The rules now have a new look and numbering system which hopefully makes things easier to find.  Most are still worded the same but the following new and updated rules were agreed at the committee meeting on Wed 7th Mar 2012:

Updated:  ‘No member is to use a fixed weight of greater than one ounce’ replaced by ‘Any fixed lead used must be able to detach itself from the hooklink should the main line happen to break (excluding split shot)’.

New:  ‘Members must produce their membership card when asked to do so by another membership card carrying member’.

New:  ‘The society reserves the right to refuse an application to join from anyone without giving a reason’.

Updated:  ‘No bait is to be discarded into the water at the end of a fishing session’ replaced by ‘Surplus bait must be taken home’.

Updated:   ‘Howells Lake, Little Park and Beckingham Hall; no junior members are allowed on these waters unless accompanied by a responsible adult member at all times’ (this is now a lease requirement).

Litter letter

I was interested and concerned to read in the newsletter about the problem caused by litter left by a minority of anglers, usually food wrappers or drink containers but sometimes packaging from tackle items, spare line and even hooks and line attached.

In the last few years I have often fished the river at Hoe Mill and have on several occasions taken away bags of rubbish that others have discarded, unfortunately there is no refuse bin at this “beauty spot” but how about a bit of minimum tolerance.  If all members cleared up a bit before or after fishing how much nicer it would be for everyone.  Why not pick up someone else’s rubbish as well as your own, put it in a black bag, take it home and put it out for the refuse collection.  No one wants to fish in a refuse tip.  Sorry for the rant but at least you know that one member is behind what the club is trying to do to keep the fisheries tidy. 

With thanks, 

Bill Jeffery – Tollesbury

River close season reminder

The last day of the river season is Wednesday 14th March and the close season on the Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation and River Blackwater runs from the 15th March until 15th June inclusive so there is no fishing allowed on the Navigation and other Rivers.  Fishing will resume on Saturday16th June 2012.

Each year there is some confusion about Browns Wharf, Chelmsford and whether the close season applies to that section of the canal. It does and if caught you could be prosecuted by the Environment Agency.

The whole of the Navigation including the canal downstream of Beeleigh to Heybridge Basin is classed as a river so the close season applies.

No fishing anywhere on the canal for three months from 15th March.

Fixed Lead Clarification

New member David Clarke put the following question to us:

I am writing not to be finicky but could you define the MAS definition of ‘Fixed-Lead’. The reason I ask is if you (as I did) Google ‘fixed lead’ and ‘running lead’ you get a complete array of images and set ups with varying definitions of what is fixed and what is running. Even manufacturers use terms like ‘semi-fixed’ eg Korda semi fixed safety clip. I am sure everyone’s idea of what is ‘fixed’ and what is not is very different and that is why I hope you can inform myself (and all members) what MAS’s definition exactly is. Again, I wish not to be finicky and can’t believe I am the only person that hasn’t thought this.

David was right to ask. My answer was, as it often is, too long to include on the FAQ page so I have posted it here instead:

We have encountered three different sorts of unacceptable fixed lead ‘death rigs’ over the years mostly dragged out with snags at working parties and fortunately none with a fish attached! The first I actually saw was in use at Totham Pit and the angler concerned was permanently fixing his 2oz lead to a three way swivel with a snap link. When challenged his argument was that he had never lost a fish on this rig and that his main line never breaks. A bold statement indeed especially as he fishing in a swim known as tiger bay next to the notoriously snaggy reedbed on the shallows. This individual prompted the introduction of the rule in the first place.

Another more recent example is the lead between two swivels rig. Unbelievable! Luckily the bolt rig is not as popular now as it was in the 80’s but no one had told the angler concerned or shown him the correct way of tying it.

Finally, and bringing this more up to date, is the chod rig with a leader where the top bead has too small a diameter bore to pass over the leader knot. This is the main reason we banned lead core leaders for several seasons (not anymore though). Worse still I have seen leaders attached to the mainline with a swivel.

To better illustrate these three rigs, I’m sure you can think of other examples, I have drawn up these banned fixed lead rig diagrams.

The golden rule is if your mainline breaks your lead must be able to detach itself from the rig and slide off the end of your leader / line.

I personally use a semi fixed lead rig incorporating a John Roberts (remember him) ledger bead on a short length of tubing that pushes over my swivel but pulls free on the take turning the whole lot into a running lead rig.

As a result of my response David has suggested we re-word the rule regarding fixed leads and I will put his suggestion to the committee at the next meeting. If they agree to David’s proposal the newly worded rule will appear here after Wednesday 7th March.

The decision was unanimous and here is the new rule:

Any fixed lead used must be able to detach itself from the hooklink should the main line happen to break (excluding split shot).

Banned for life

In mid January, before the big freeze, one of our junior members was caught red handed leaving rubbish at Howells by another member who reported the incident to the fishery bailiff resulting in the junior concerned being banned for life at the February committee meeting.  Littering will not be tolerated on any of our venues and Howells in particular is being closely monitored in the run up to the new limited numbers night permit starting on 1st April 2012.  If you witness anyone leaving litter around our fisheries please report them to the bailiff or contact the head bailiff directly.

The committee would like to thank the majority of our members who, when they encounter rubbish left by others, clean up after them while asking why anyone would want to spoil the surroundings that they have paid to visit!

Rule changes

These recent rule changes were shared with members at the AGM on Sunday.

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