Two weeks into the ACA’s 60th Anniversary Auction the bids are now starting to roll in. Please take a moment to have a look at some of the wonderful lots and use the simple on-line form if you want to make a bid yourself. The more money we can raise the more we can do to fight those who harm our fishing. As in previous messages, we would be grateful if you let as many people as you can know about it – http://www.a-c-a.org/2008fa.html – even if they might bid higher than you!
The insurers of a Powys farmer have agreed to pay compensation to two angling clubs for polluting a stretch of the River Camlad in June 2005. Despite a previous warning from the Environment Agency, slurry from Lynwood Farm near Churchstoke was released into the Caebitra Brook, itself an important spawning and nursery stream for trout, before making its way into the River Camlad. The pollution caused a fish kill of trout, grayling and bullheads, as well as wiping out invertebrate populations – a crucial source of food for the surviving fish. The civil case was brought against the farmer by the ACA on behalf of two angling clubs whose waters were affected, the Pheasant Tail Flyfishers and the Camlad Fly Fishers. According to the EA, it is likely that fish numbers in this once healthy river will take several years to recover. Despite this, the Agency failed to bring a criminal prosecution for the pollution.
Progress has also been made on the River Derwent in Derbyshire, where a mine- tailings lagoon containing waste contaminated with heavy metals burst in January 2007. An EA fisheries scientist produced a report soon after the event suggesting that action was needed to minimise the damage caused and that there should be proper investigation and monitoring of the heavy metals in the sediment deposited in the river. Despite this, the EA has carried out very few of the recommendations of its own report. The limited and flawed sampling that has taken place has forced the ACA to instruct its own expert on behalf of the member clubs affected. Initial results demonstrate that the levels of heavy metals in inverabrate samples – particularly lead – are high. We are awaiting the trial remediation work, which is probably going to take place in June – almost 18 months after the pollution.
Elsewhere, following pressure from the ACA and the Pickering Fishery Association, the EA has confirmed that funding has been secured to carry out a 12 month programme of continuous water quality monitoring to assess the impact of Costa and Willowdene fish farms and Pickering sewage treatment works on Costa Beck in North Yorkshire.
Finally on the legal front, representatives from the ACA, WWF and RSPB met this week to discuss the potential for using legal tools to press for proper implementation of the Water Framework Directive. Please watch this space….
Annual Report Misprint
The latest Annual Report should have arrived with members this week. We would, however, like to point out an error on the ‘Your Membership’ section on page 51, which states that there is a proxy voting form enclosed regarding a proposed amendment to the rules of the ACA. This paragraph was printed in error: there will be no proposed amendment to the rules at the AGM and any such changes will be proposed in the autumn when more detailed information about angling unity will be available. Our apologies for any confusion this may have caused.
Our work is only possible because of the support and generosity of our members. Thank you to all those who support us – please encourage all your friends to join up now!
With best wishes from everyone at the ACA.