Get Fishing is the Angling Trust’s campaign to get more people fishing more often. Each year we run hundreds of events for all ages and abilities. They are funded by the Environment Agency from fishing licence income.
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Thank you to the team at Haddon Estate in Derbyshire for all their support for our Anglers Against Pollution campaign and getting out on the riverbank to pick litter. We spoke to Jan Hobbot, Riverkeeper at the Haddon Estate about their motivations for taking part in the campaign.
“HaddonEstate owns and manages roughly 20 miles of river over 4 rivers, on the Derwent, Wye, Lathkill and Bradford. We run a catch and release wild trout fishery, with no stocking taking place since 2003. Emphasis is always placed on conservation project for wild trout, but extends to the buffer strips and catchment. The fishery is open the club members and occasional day tickets. Historically, the estate has always had riverkeepers and estate staff to help manage the rivers.
Since 2018, I have noticed an increase in litter on our rivers. With increased traffic and visitors to the Peak District, it was bound to happen. Prior to 2018, we would walk the rivers every year and collect litter. We always seemed to keep it to a maintenance level. Fast forward to 2021.
After increased publicity regarding Anglers Against Pollution, many of my club members wanted to help out more and take pride in the rivers HaddonEstate manage. I organised 2 litter picking working parties for our members to attend in March, before the start of the fishing season, and before any birds were nesting along the river. Both days were extremely well attended, with over 30 members per day. The members were superb, and all kept to the socially distancing guidelines regarding Covid.
We were all shocked as to what we found littered in the river and along the banks. Traffic cones, car tyres, sanitary towels, plastic of every type, polystyrene, noticeable chip trays and plastic forks, plastic bottles… It was awful! However, after 2 long days of hard works, the rivers were relieved of 40 plus bags of rubbish.
All members do well to collect rubbish whilst they are fishing. If at the end of the summer I deem it necessary to do a litter pick, I will be organising more picking days. Failing that, we have now firmly cemented our litter picking days for February or March after the winter floods.
It is important that everyone signs the Anglers Against Pollution Petition to raise awareness of the problem our river ecosystems are facing, and how everyone needs to know where their rubbish is going.
An ongoing battle, but united anglers will be the litter one day!”
Want to be featured on our Supporter Spotlight? Tag us in your posts on social media and use the hashtag #anglersagainstpollution. You can also email our campaigns officer Hannah Rudd at h[email protected] with a brief description of your work and high resolution photographs of the event.