Chairman's Report 2009

Malcolm TheakstoneA warm welcome to all members both new and existing.
Another season for our Association and once again I hope you will have a successful season and you enjoy fishing our venues. Some of you have reported great catches, a new Tench record of 10lb 0oz from Lake 1 by Gordon Randall tops the list that included Pike to 26lb, Bream to 9lb and 3 Carp over 30lb including numerous fish in the twenties.

Pride and place is our fishery at Poppy Hill and is a venue we spend a lot of time and money in making the site one of the nicest places to fish.
I have said over many years, this doesn't just happen and volunteers have worked hundreds of hours during the year to make Poppy Hill the beautiful place it is and to enhance the surroundings. Work parties every Saturday started in December to reduce the number of trees on the site which were causing so much leaf litter in the lakes, but I will leave the details for the Fisheries Manager. Besides those volunteers, there are members of the fisheries management team, who can be relied upon to be on site whenever the need arises. Please give Len your support; we need you to help us. 30 acres of land and water takes a lot of looking after. Too many of you are willing to leave the work to a few volunteers and for the member that considers this work should be done by the committee, feel free to join another angling club where you may find it is compulsory to attend work parties or face a fine.

The bridleway saga continues into its 12th year of negotiations, consultations and meetings. Delay after delay seems to be the order of the day. Bedfordshire is now to become a unitary council which will once again slow the progress of resolving this long standing issue. Beds CC were quick off the mark to add footpath no.25 to our haul road. This means that the track to our car park is now a public footpath (we had previously designated this as a permissive path, so that we had the ability to remove our consent should the need arise). LGCAA do not have this facility anymore; PLEASE do not park outside the gate as you will be obstructing a public right of way.

Possibly the greatest change for fishermen is the formation of a new single organisation, the Angling Trust, to represent all game, course and sea anglers in England. Individual anglers can join for a fee of £20 which will give you many advantages including free £5 million public liability insurance.

Finally I must thank the members of the General Purposes Committee and the Fisheries Management Committee for all their hard work throughout the year, especially our webmaster for a fantastic website where you can get much more information on the association and of course to John Dalrymple and his team of bailiffs who make sure that our rules are complied with a well as looking after our waters on a daily basis.

Malcolm Theakstone - Chairman

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