Anglers show app-titude to forge new friendships

Wildsociety supremo Vittoria Conti (far right) with just a few of the day's workers on the River Aire clean-up at Thwaites Mill.
Wildsociety supremo Vittoria Conti (far right) with just a few of the day's workers on the River Aire clean-up at Thwaites Mill.
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Mustering volunteers or members to take part in work parties can be a soul-destroying job for organisers trying to put bodies on the banks, usually to do the dirtiest of jobs.

But Leeds & District, along with its new-found best friend the Wildsociety, made the task look easy, using the amazing mobile angling app to reach out to its community and provide the get-up-and-go for a day clearing rubbish from the city’s River Aire.

It’s hard for me to take in that technology is now playing a major part in something so simple as a day out fishing, but with over 6,000 members throughout the UK and Europe providing up-to-the-minute information from all the best venues regarding catches, weather conditions or river levels at the touch of a keypad, I have to give it a massive thumbs up.

The clean-up, held on the banks of Thwaites Mill and Knostrop, was a huge success and attracted over 30 River Aire enthusiasts who removed an estimated half-a-ton of rubbish.

New fishing platforms were established and the twigs and branches removed were used by the youngest volunteers to create bug hotels and extra wildlife habitat.

A special thanks should go to fishery head bailiff, Krzyszof Kaszuba, and Wildsociety boss, Vittorio Jeff Conti, for their planning in seeing the job that benefits all river users through to the end. Meanwhile, rod averages increased dramatically last week as rising water temperatures encouraged the Washburn Valley’s trout to go on a mini feeding spree.

Buzzers have stayed the best method for weeks now, though the warmer winds and calm evenings will, no doubt, see more and more fish falling to drys. Best fish of the week fell to Mr John Peck with a black-buzzer-caught 4-02 rainbow.

Other visiting rods are taking rainbows up to 3lb from the same Fewston Water, and Thruscross returns are averaging over four browns per angler.

The coarse fishing on the Swinsty Reserve is still hard work with roach and skimmers staying in deeper water.

Groundbait feeders or bomb and a ball are the top methods to reach the distance the shoals are laying at, and catches are averaging around 15lb.

Following some staggering cold-water bream catches from the Aire & Calder Canal around Great Heck, anglers have been disappointed at the poor weights needed to win recent spring-league events from the same venue, with one match needing only 2lb to make the prize list and pleasure anglers fishing the best pegs struggling for a single bite.

As this weekend’s temperatures soared, dismal catches were forgotten as the canal burst back into warm-water life as hundreds of bream decided they were hungry.

Leeds star, Neil Millstead, made the most of a good peg, taking over 35 bream and skimmers for a whopping and winning 93-10.

All of his fish fell to far-bank feeder tactics with dendra or red worm hookbaits. Though a brilliant weight on any venue, the winner wasn’t alone as Castleford’s Gary Mathews pushed him all the way with over 88lb of bream taken on fishmeal feeder and worm.

Results

JT Rodgers Round 19, Lindholme Loco: 1, A Jackson 63-03; 2, T Biggins 52-01; 3, S Phelan 47-09.

Aire Calder Canal, Saturday League: 1, K Weatherhill 6-04; 2, T Tarff 4-14; 3, P Austin 4-10; 4, A Anderson 3-12; 5, M Highe 2-02.

Mirfield AA, Aire & Calder Canal: 1, A Beech 10-09; 2, N Millstead 7-13; 3, M Highe 5-11; 4, C Burton 4-14; 5, S Haigh 4-11.

Park Piscatorials, Winfield Lake: 1, I Gray 90-06; 2, A Roze 86-01; 3, C Broadley 79-06.

White Horse AC, Sykehouse: 1, J Jones 46-03; 2, G Greenhall 37-00; 3, T Wainwright 30-02; 4, D Hurley 30-00.

Kippax Park, Tuesday open, Lapwing: 1, Paul Carter 90-01; 2, Tony Hewson 86-04; 3, Andy Rymer 65-08; 4, Adrian Broomhead 63-15.

Kippax Park, Saturday, Osprey: 1, Steve Holmes 129-04; 2, Steve Raper 96-13; 3, Tony Hewson 90-07; 4, Paul Cromie 88-08.

Moor Monkton Pools, Wednesday Rover: 1, Matt Gallagher 71-03; 2, Paul Gallagher 50-10; 3, Dave Wright 49-10; 4, Stan Jeffreys 49-00.

Angel Lakes, Open Lookout Sunday: 1, Derek Fox 94-10; 2, John Dryden 89-10; 3, John Foster 77-01.

Viking Saturday Open (Deer): 1, R Green 65-05; 2, N Taylor 61-10; 3, R Scott 59-00; 4, S Gibbins 57-11.

Rodley Barge (Viking Deer): 1, S Dobson 117-08; 2, D North 95-08; 3, D Hargreaves 90-06; 4, D Lawson 65-10.

Roland Road AC (Viking Fox): 1, R Goodall 80-03; 2, G Thornton 75-15; 3, N Brown 69-09; 4, J Hagan 63-04.

Glasshoughton AC (Viking Hawk): 1, S Brown 92-00; 2, M Yates 63-08; 3, S Jones 50-09; 4, J Campsall 50-12.

Armley AC, Oaks Sessay Cedar Lake: 1, T Caroll 55-04; 2, C Greenwood 53-00; 3, M Cooper 48-12.

Match Diary

Saturday

Kippax Park: Saturday Open, Lapwing or Osprey, contact 07967000746.

Poppleton: Saturday Open, pools £15, draw cafe 10am, contact Roger 01904737279.

Birkwood Farm Fisheries: Emily’s or Oscar’s, draw 8.30am, contact 01924 892251.

Woodlands: 72 pegs, tickets £18, contact 01845 520110.

Oaks at Sessay: 50 pegs, tickets £17, contact 01845 501321.

Langwith Lakes: 60 pegs, tickets £16, contact 01904 431874.

Moorfields Farm: 54 pegs, tickets £16, contact 07710817150.

Fleets Dam: 50 pegs, tickets £15, contact 01226 292579.

Birkwood Farm: 60 pegs, tickets £16, contact 01132 80609.

Viking: Saturday Open, Hawk Pond, 30 pegs, £16, contact 01405 785206.

Tollerton Ponds: open match all ages, (Kingfisher 20 pegs, Coot 18 pegs, Heron 32pegs), contact 01347 838115.

Sunday

Leeds & Liverpool: Kirkstall, contact Roger Movley 01132 772215.

Listerhills: Leeds & Liverpool Canal, contact Eddie Harrison 07518721051.

Woodlands: 72 pegs, tickets £18, contact 01845 520110.

Oaks at Sessay: 50 pegs, tickets £17, contact 01845 501321.

Langwith Lakes: 60 pegs, tickets £16, contact 01904 431874.

Oak Tree Leisure: 50 pegs, tickets £15, contact 01347 810686.

Poppleton: Sunday Open, 50 pegs, draw 11am Cafe, contact 07425 146677.

Monday

Woodlands: over-50s, 30 pegs, tickets £15, contact 01845 520110.

Langwith Lakes: over-60s, 30 pegs, tickets £10, contact 01904 431874.

Tollerton Ponds: over-50s, tickets £16, contact 01347 838115.

Tuesday

Kippax Park: over-50s, draw 10am, tickets £10, contact 07967000746.

Wednesday

Leeds & District: Moor Monkton Pools, draw 10am, contact 07967000746.

Birkwood Farm Fisheries: Emily’s or Oscar’s, draw 8.30am, contact 01924 892251.

Woodlands: 72 pegs, tickets £18, contact 01845 520110.

Fleets Dam: 50 pegs, tickets £15, contact 01226 292579.

Tollerton Ponds: open match, all ages, contact 01347 838115.

Thursday

Poppleton Lakes: Thursday, draw car park, 5pm, pools £11, contact Roger 01904 737279.