Coaching and angling clubs are key to the future of fishing


MR Admin
Staff member
Oct 24, 2008
Full Name
Paul Longshaw
A LEADING fisheries chief has said the UK needs strong angling clubs and well trained coaches to save the sport.

Coaching - more than quicker taster sessions - is key to getting more people properly hooked, says a leading angling figure.

Coaching to get people properly immersed in angling has been picked out as one key solution to turning around a slump in participation.

Rod licence sales are down 39.4 per cent since 2011 and the steep decline has led to the Environment Agency to start a National Angling Strategy.

This involves an extensive national survey of the views of both anglers and non-anglers.

It is taking place alongside the EA’s review of angling byelaws that the Angler’s Mail exclusively revealed, as well as the review of the Close Season.

John Ellis, head of fisheries at the Canal and Rivers Trust, presented a detailed paper to a recent Future Angling Conference run by the Angling Trust, in which he outlined his vision.

John told Angler’s Mail: “Basically we all need to do more to encourage youngsters to take up the sport, and delegates were very supportive of the approach we at CRT are using.

“There is little point in giving kids ten-minute taster sessions where they are actually taught little.

“The quality of coaching needs to be improved and time spent showing them how to fish properly in open sessions.

“Really we need to get back to basics and teach them a broad range of angling skills and show that fishing is more than just sitting under a bivvy waiting for carp.

“We ran 147 free taster sessions last year with 3,400 attendees and 95 per cent caught a fish within 30 minutes.

“Like other sports, it is important to get parents involved and encourage children to be part of a team and compete which they enjoy.

“The club structure is vital with active junior sections encouraging and supporting youngsters in a variety of ways.

“The angling trade also has a big role to play and we are all in this together.

“I would encourage all anglers to take part in the national survey as it is vitally important we get things right if the sport isn’t going to continue to decline,” John added.

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Likes: Warren peaty


Oct 17, 2008
Full Name
Chris Royle
I am very fortunate to have 2 Angling coaches in The Chinaman and Poolfodder...... trouble is I take no notice:eek::eek::confused:

Bernie H

Full Member
Nov 21, 2010
High Ongar, Essex
Two years ago I put a huge amount of time and effort into trying to get things organised to get more youngsters and families involved in my club and to try and lower the average membership age from about 101!

I coordinated LGFF days with the AT, even helped out at a commercial with their LGFF day. I also secured free coaching courses from the AT so that club members could help with coaching kids on open days.

I booked time off, a hotel etc for my level 2 course, which was subsequently cancelled. None of the members I got FREE level 1 courses for could be arsed to attend and none of the alternative L2 courses fitted n with my arrangements. I wasn’t going to make the mistake of booking leave and a hotel again!

In addition, I was promised expenses for doing the LGFF day at a commercial, which would have gone to my club, but the AT rep never replied to my emails.

Now this isn’t just a cathartic offload, and I know that the AT had their staffing cut, and they were decent enough to provide some basic gear. However, the whole experience involving lack of support from the club members, real difficulties in getting in touch with the AT and the fact that promised money never materialised made me totally lose interest. Please understand that getting money was not the purpose, but the fact it was offered and then never given tends to make you feel slightly mugged off.

I would still encourage people to get involved but go in with a realistic expectation of how much support you’ll get, from all quarters. The AT organisation went from being very good to pretty crap after their cuts.

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