Get Fishing is the Angling Trust’s campaign to get more people fishing more often. Get into fishing at hundreds of events for all ages and abilities. They are funded by the Environment Agency from fishing licence income
Why we do love to be beside the seaside! Taking beginners sea angling
By Graham Mabey, Regional Angling Development Officer, London and Southeast England
The Get Fishing team is highly motivated to introduce families and individuals to all kinds of angling, and of course this includes sea fishing. I have personally found my way into this discipline of the sport when my family and I recently moved to the southeast coast. I love everything that sea angling has to offer including the shorter sessions which fit perfectly around my family life, The beautiful scenery and the sea air seem to really improve my positive mental health, not forgetting the fantastic fishing on offer as well!
With the help of some additional funding this year from our Exclusive Retail Partner Angling Direct the Participation Team has supported loads of sea angling club beginner events right across the country from Torquay to Liverpool and Sunderland to Worthing! We’ve also got involved in larger sea angling trade events that have pulled in huge crowds. The Sea Angling Classic in Portsmouth for example, where we had 100 people trying fishing. Just recently our Get Fishing delivery at the Reel Masters, saw over 60 newcomers introduced to Weymouth’s sea fishing potential via busy, coach-led ‘have a go’ sessions – it was full-on but great fun!
A busy day ahead looked likely!
We realise it’s not just about offering the chance to try fishing at events though, it’s just as important to look for sustainable next-steps plans for newcomers so that they can easily go fishing again on their own. That exit-strategy might be joining a local club, taking part in weekend coaching sessions or being able to find somewhere to go fishing close to home. If people have a good time at an event, they need to easily continue on their fishing journey. Here’s an example.
In summer we supported a fishing event at Worthing Pier which has always been an iconic fishing spot. The free fishing, right in the heart of the bustling seaside town, and a variety of different species that live round the structure mean it’s the perfect place for people to come and try sea fishing for the first time. Not only that, right at the start of Worthing Pier pier you can find Prime Angling, where the friendly and welcoming staff offer advice to visiting anglers. For me, when it comes to planning beginner sessions during the summer holidays, this killer combination pretty much makes for a ‘Dream Venue’!
Worthing Pier is a brilliant place to show beginners how to fish
With families assigned one of the licensed Level 2 Angling Coaches, and a group of local volunteers with a good knowledge of the Pier to support them an array of fish were caught, many fishy questions were quickly answered, and family photos taken. You just know when people you coach are likely to ‘get the fishing bug’ and these three, one-hour Get Fishing Awards sessions provided the perfect framework for all who attended to build a fishing filled future!
Tom now fishes for England after starting his angling journey in this very spot!
One of the volunteers I met on the day was a young chap called Tom. It turned out that Tom started his own angling journey on that very Pier and now fishes for England, in fact he is ranked World Number 1 for his age class! A Dream Come True in fact. This was wonderful for the many young anglers present, who were clearly impressed, had someone to look up to and aspire to be like. A brilliant role-model.
The end result is a love of nature and fishing
Over the course of the three sessions every single person from all of the 22 families that attended caught a fish (…some as many as 10!) I honestly believe that everybody left with a newfound love of the sport and an understanding of how to care for the fish, equipment and each other while out on the Pier, as well as the places and people to go fishing with next time.
Seeing these up-close and personal made their day!
We can’t wait to support more Get Fishing Award events at Worthing Pier in the near future and for info on when they are happening subscribe to Get Fishing newsletters at www.anglingtrust.net/getfishing.
Thanks to all the volunteers on hand, a great time was had by all
The Angling Trust were here with information how to join and support all the work we do for the marine environment
On the other hand, if you would like to discuss running or helping out at a similar Get Fishing project in your area, please contact your Regional Angling Development Officer – we really do want to run more sea fishing events and rely on the support of the sea angling community, as you have read here.
The Get Fishing campaign to get more people fishing more often is funded by the Environment Agency from fishing licence income as part of the National Angling Strategic Services contract with the Angling Trust, and Sport England. Children under 13 do not need a licence, and licences for children aged between 13 and 16 are free but you still need to register and receive a licence in order to go fishing. You can get a licence for the full year, for 8 days (ideal for holidays!) or just a day’s fishing.
NOTE: Although young children who are under 13 year old do not need a licence to fish, the person supervising them needs the proper fishing licence to take hold of the rod or to help the child fish with it.
The Angling Trust’s ‘Get Fishing’ campaign is proudly supported by
Shakespeare, Exclusive Tackle Partner and Angling Direct, Exclusive Retail Partner
as we all work towards getting more people fishing, more often.
Sport England recognise the Angling Trust as the national governing body in England.
It funds the work we do to promote active lifestyles and to maintain a regular participation habit through the sport of angling
and in partnership with other organisations to deliver the National Angling Strategy.