IT has been 48 years since re-joining member John Greenall fished Grey Mist Mere.

He says he hardly recognises the place with all the trees there now.

He still has a photo of his last visit all those years ago with his son on his knee in addition to an 8lbs carp!

This veteran, 78-years-young angler (as he insists sounds much better than ‘old’) float-fished feeding hemp and ground bait with caster on the hook.

He sat for three hours without a bite, noting that two other anglers nearby outgunned him rod-wise four to one but had fared no better.

That alone didn’t make him more optimistic, but a change to double red maggot did in the shape of a personal-best tench that was just knocking on 5lbs.

Eric J Smith, a regular contributor to this column, told me this week that his old partner in crime – and one of my favourite angling characters – ‘Fishless’ Fletcher, is back on the scene.

Fishless, who is recovering from surgery on his neck, has renewed his association membership and put in an appearance on the bank at Woodshaw Reservoir last weekend.

Contrary to his nickname, he caught a hybrid of around 2.5lbs – the first fish he has caught since last September when he managed to land a couple of roach from the Mount.

Eric commented that it was really good to have him back on the bank with the proviso that at least he makes a good brew.

Anyway, I wish him a speedy recovery to full fitness and look forward to reporting his angling exploits.

Neil Plunkett managed another pass from ‘she who must be obeyed’ on Sunday so a trip to Cicely Mill Pool was planned, but on arrival at 7.30am the car park was full, no doubt due to members taking full advantage of the good weather.

However, he found a tasty-looking swim on the right bank and by mid-afternoon, he ended up with nine large bream, four crucians, and a solitary roach taken on feeder tactics fished tight against the far bank.

The local volunteers have been hard at work for some time at Rixton Claypits and have cleared a fair number of pegs so there is plenty of room for everyone.

Our bailiffs removed four poachers over the weekend, who clearly thought that our club membership did not apply to them. They were told in no uncertain terms that if it happened again, they would be liable to prosecution for ‘theft of fishing rights’.

I really do love this bit of legislation that has added some real teeth to our armoury.

Our disabled and over 60s match on Monday was fished this week at our Woodshaw Reservoir fishery in Wigan.

Local rod John Garry made full use of his knowledge of the water, using meat on the hook to take a comfortable win with a net of crucian carp and a brace of bream for a combined weight of 9lbs 2ozs 0dr.

Committee member Graham Belton was second with 5-12-0, made up of a couple of small bream plus roach using pole and caster. I am still urgently looking for a member who is a surveyor and is willing to help our club by producing a couple of drawings relating to an access dispute on our stretch of the River Wye.

Anybody out there, please get in touch.

Our association headquarters at 52 Parker Street are open as usual every Friday, between 7pm and 9pm, for memberships, subscriptions, night-permit renewals and any queries.

Please email catch details to or give me a call on 01928 716238.


Disabled and over 60s: 1, John Garry 9-2-0; 2, Graham Belton 5-12-0; 3, Jimmy Byrne 4-12-0; 4, Alan Brown 4-0-0.


Monday, disabled and over 60s: Draw 10am at Bridgewater Canal, Delph Lane peg 101.