The Angling Trust’s coarse angling 2014/15 England Talent Pathway programme reached its conclusion over the weekend as 25 of the most promising young match anglers in the country gathered at Bartson Lakes for a two day event culminating in a match between Northern, Midlands and Southern Squads. Anglers had been building up to this event since entering the programme in June 2014.

The anglers were joined at Barston by some of the world’s top match anglers such as Des Shipp, Matt Godfrey, Callum Dicks, Joe Roberts, Tom Scholey, Frankie Gianoncelli and Sensas U18 manager Steve Sanders. Day one of the event was all about learning international style tactics and techniques as anglings’ equivalents to Wayne Rooney, Steven Gerrard and the like delivered a series of workshops and masterclasses in the morning covering pole and waggler fishing, feeding styles and presentation, bloodworm and joker fishing as well as terminal tackle and preparation required to compete at international level. The afternoon saw the anglers take to the water and put into practice all they had learned during the morning session.

Day one prepared anglers for Sundays match, North v Midlands v South and with temperatures dampened by a cold East wind, the fishing was expected to be tough. Despite the inclement weather anglers caught an impressive 191lb 13oz. Skimmers and roach made up the majority of the anglers weights, along with the odd F1 and tench. Barston Lakes proved to be the perfect venue for both anglers and parents. 

Team Midlands prevailed and won the match with 14 points with Team South and Team North finishing with 17 points apiece, Team South nudging into second with a combined weight of 59lb 12oz against Team North’s weight of 58lb 0oz. Midlands angler Samuel Claydon took individual honours with a weight of 18lb 3oz followed by Team North’s Lewis Burrows bagging 14lb 2oz and team mate Kristian Jones finishing third with a net of 12lb 6oz.

England’s Sensas U18 Manager Steve Sanders and Drennan U23 Manager Mark Downes attended to run the rule over the talent on show in advance of U18 trial to select the squad to compete in Serbia at the World Championships in August this year. Fourteen anglers from the Talent Pathway programme have since been invited to attend the trial and they will be joined by two anglers previous pathway anglers including 2013/14 graduate Jacob McNeil, who helped England to a silver medal at the 2014 World Championships. 80% of the anglers to be considered for an England squad place in 2015 have engaged in the England Talent Pathway and given the quality, commitment and dedication shown by the Trust’s team of the talent coaches and international anglers, it’s not hard to see why.

Angling Trust’s Competitions & Talent Officer Frankie Gianoncelli said;

“The progression of the Talent Pathway over the past couple of years has been incredible. This programme offers a young match angler a fantastic opportunity to develop their skills and learn from the very best in the sport! If you are a young match angler and dream of fishing for England or want to become the best angler you can be then I’d highly recommend this programme. The Talent Pathway WILL make you a better angler and improve your ability no end!

On behalf of the Angling Trust I’d like thank our team of talent coaches and the elite anglers for their unwavering support and dedication to the programme. They all give up their time for free to support the next generation of our angling superstars and we are extremely fortunate to have such a strong team. The programme would not be as strong or successful as it is today without their invaluable efforts.”

With the 2014/15 coarse angling programme now coming to a close, the Angling Trust is now planning the next instalment of the programme. Nine regional selection events will begin in June 2015 followed by a series of coaching sessions from late summer through to spring 2016.

For young game and sea anglers, the Angling Trust also run a programme covering loch style angling and shore fishing. To find out more about the programme and how to get involved, contact the Angling Trust by email at or visit the website