Angling club on the lookout for new members

Leonard Burnett and James Blackburn from the Nelson Angling Association at Lower Coldwell Reservoir.

Leonard Burnett and James Blackburn from the Nelson Angling Association at Lower Coldwell Reservoir.

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A fishing club is casting its line to catch new members after years of dwindling numbers.

Nelson Angling Association, which fishes at Lower and Upper Coldwell Reservoirs, also has an issue of an ageing membership.

I’ve spoken to various school groups about fishing and the response you get is it’s boring, they’ve never tried it, but it’s boring because it is not an electronic game

Head bailiff

Founded in 1908, the association was formed by local labourers who tickled trout in the stream running from what later became Lower Coldwell down towards Walverden Reservoir.

Current members hope the draw of a beautiful setting and a thriving rainbow and brown trout population will entice back those who have fished in the past or encourage new people to take a bite and give it a go.

Head Bailiff Leonard Burnett said: “We’re struggling to get new members. We’ve got quite an ageing membership, the majority are getting on and are quite old and we’re trying any way we can to fetch new members. We do sell about six day tickets on a Saturday and a Sunday but now that has dropped off.

“When I go into local tackle shops I speak to the guys in the shops they say there aren’t the same number of people going in for fishing tackle.

“I’ve spoken to various school groups about fishing and the response you get is it’s boring, they’ve never tried it, but it’s boring because it is not an electronic game.”

On the benefits of fishing, he added: “The first thing is you’re out in the fresh air instead of being cooped up at home; you’ve got the sport, the fish are there to be caught; you’re learning things all the time; there’s the wildlife you see and you make a lot of good friends as well.

“We’ve had people drive past and stop in their cars and say what a beautiful area it is. It’s a fantastic place.”

The reservoirs are disabled friendly and wheelchair accessible. For more information on day tickets and membership contact Mr Burnett on 603794.