AT long last, the National Federation of Anglers (NFA) has landed a dream headquarters office at the National Water Sports Centre at Holme Pierrepont, Nottingham – the home of several important governing bodies.
“When Conference elected me, I promised the delegates at Wakefield, that I would make radical changes to propel the NFA back to the top in angling matters,” said new President Terry Fell adding: “We wanted a National Angling Centre at Holme Pierrepont in 1997 but our plans were rejected. Seven years on, information technology, has resulted in the NFA being a slimmer operation; we no longer need a huge office set in two-acres of ground in the Derbyshire countryside. We beat two other governing bodies in a race to secure our new premises that overlook the 2000m international rowing course. The decision to move was supported by my vice-president, John Mitchell, the National Executive and Trustees.”
Vice President John Mitchell is upbeat about the move. “Nottingham is in the centre of England and Sport England control the Water Sports Centre. There may be opportunity for expansion if we need to and the on-site facilities are fantastic. This will be seen as a positive move by our members and government and the location should help us in our promotional drive for new members,” commented Mr Mitchell.
George Akins, the Sport England client manager at the National Watersports Centre, is delighted the NFA has decided to relocate to Holme Pierrepont. “The move has obvious benefits for us all and I know the NFA will be happy here. We are surrounded by water and the centre has ideal facilities for coaching and holding seminars. The NFA is acknowledged as one of the top International medal winning organisations in the country and the teaching facilities here will help angling to maintain that high standard.” said Mr Akins.
President Terry Fell says: “This is an inspired move that coincides with the Environment Agency (EA) launch last week on our Nations’ Rivers. Government has at last recognised what we told them in our October 2000 News Bulletin, that angling is the sport capable of taking children off the streets and away from the temptation of crime and drugs. Sport England would like to see the international rowing course brim full of fish again and I hope that day is close, but we must not be diverted from our main objective, which is to play a pivotal role in angling. There have been plenty of false dawns but this is an historic opportunity for the NFA to stake a claim as the entry point into coarse angling.”
The NFA owns its Egginton Junction headquarters which has been put up for sale at £350,000 – £400,000, but this money will not be directed towards revenue expenditure, but be ring fenced in a capital reserve account for future investment. The move to Holme Pierrepont will be gradual but there is a compelling reason for an early move to the 270-acres of country park on the outskirts of Nottingham, which boasts more than 90-acres of lakes; summer beckons and the NFA is keen to introduce a raft of new ideas to attract anglers into the governing body.