‘The situation regarding salmon offers a glimmer of hope as does the gravel replacement data. It seems that trout fry numbers are increasing in selected areas of the upper Avon particularly at Badworthy Stream, Bala Brook, Goosepool Copse and Badworthy. This can only be attributed to the success of the gravel replacement scheme. Salmon fry numbers are also increasing and are at good and excellent levels below Lydia Bridge and South Brent Island.
Most disappointing of all were the numbers of Brown Trout (485) and while the numbers are low they are not wholly unusual: since 2004 there have been four years when the catches were lower. In 2006, 359 were caught, in 2007, 1007 were caught.I hope that this season sees an improvement in our fishing and I wish you all tighter lines in 2020’.
Welcome to the Old School, South Brent and to this evening’s meeting.
Thanks to all of you who have come out this evening to support the meeting. The AGM is an important event in the association’s year and particularly this year when we will be discussing an important rule change and the impact of new EA by-laws.
Firstly I would like to thank the committee for all of their hard work throughout the year.
My thanks, as always to Chris Peach for his support and advice, both of which are most appreciated.
I am indebted to Mike Cooper for his work in maintaining good relationships with our riparian owners.
Our finances are in very good shape, thanks to our treasurer Patrick Bromley
I am most grateful to Dave Brooks and Dennis Dawes for organising work on the river. And to Dave for his work in building the fence on the lower water.
One of the prerequisites of a well run association is to have a good secretary! I am most grateful to Brian Dent for all of his work on my behalf for the work he does on behalf of the Association.
One of the social highlights of the year is our annual dinner which is greatly enjoyed by members and riparian owners alike. Thanks to Paul Edginton for organising this event.
I am grateful to the advice and encouragement of Paul Kenyon on all matters regarding the AFA. He has been very busy this year organising a system for online recording of catch returns. It has been trialled and found to very successful. He has also been trialling a system using catch per unit effort on which he will talk later.
Brown Trout: Numbers caught were above average at 757, 20 percent of these were 8 inches or more. Reports suggest that late June and early July evenings produced spectacularly good fishing.
Sea Trout : 25 fish were caught, the biggest being27 ins. Fishing was difficult to say the least with many anglers fishing without even hearing a fish.
Salmon : The most disappointing year for a long time. Salmon were seen moving at Lydia bridge, salmon were turned over and salmon hooked and lost. In any event only two were caught and landed
Overall a disappointing year with the tend of low numbers of migratory fish being shared with many rivers in the South West. While I am not against taking fish I would urge anglers to return as many migratory fish as possible in these difficult days.
The Presidents Prize (Donated by Sir William Peek) Goes to Adrian Cross with a total of 141 brown trout
The Bob Sadler trophy for the largest brown goes to Adrian Cross with a fish of 16 ins
The Silveridge Conservation award goes to Adrian Cross for releasing 3 Sea Trout and 140 brown trout.
Ticket sales Loddiswell Post Office £ 548.00 less £55.00 commission leaving net sales of £494.00
The annual AFA dinner at the Avon Mill continued the success of the event in previous years. There were lots of positive comments. I feel it is a shame that more members do not avail themselves of this event; it is a marvellous opportunity to meet the committee, riparian owners and guests. My thanks to Paul Edginton for organising it. The Avon Dam Jolly was not held in 2018. It will be reinstated this year.
Some work was carried out on the lower water and at Kerry Downs. It has been decided to survey water which will improve the trout holding capacity of water for which we own fishing rights. To this end we will use the offices of Toby Russell to survey likely areas and to use outside labour to complete the work. I have spoken with Toby and plan to survey sites on the weekend of 9-10 February.
DAG: The Devon Avon Group which is composed of several bodies has now stopped its annual meeting. Issues affecting the Avon will now be dealt with by the ACA. Mike Cooper attends these meetings and will speak for the AFA and keep the committee informed.
Last year I expressed some hope that there might be an improvement in the status of Salmon and Sea Trout on the river. Sadly, that has turned out not to be the case. The number of salmon caught this year has been the lowest for many years. In his statistical analysis Paul shows that 15 members fished for salmon over 66 days.