Windermere, Ambleside and District Angling Association (WADAA) has become the fifth angling club to receive the coveted Sport England Clubmark. At a recent event Sir John Harman, the Chairman of the Environment Agency, was on hand to present Neil Birkinshaw, WADAA, with their certificate. NFA’s representative Frank Lythgoe was also there to congratulate them on this latest achievement.

The club which was founded in 1955 and now has 1,000 members has seen rapid growth recently as a result of ambitious management and continuing improvement to its fisheries. Much of the impetus for improvement has resulted from the work the club has undertaken to achieve the Sport England Clubmark Award. 

The scheme is administered by Sport England and implemented through the National Federation of Anglers and supported by the Environment Agency. WADAA is now one of only five angling clubs in the country to have reached the required standards set for club management, coaching and the provision of safe and structured opportunities for youngsters to become involved in the sport.

As Neil Birkinshaw manager of WADAA states,

“Working towards Clubmark provided the initiative for WADAA to launch its South Cumbria Kingfishers project which is already attracting new junior members to fishing from all over the region. Prior to Clubmark being implemented in the club and the launch of South Cumbria Kingfishers we had just 18 junior members, however numbers have now risen to 96 youngsters and rising.

Our aim is simply to provide absolutely first class fishing for our members and visitors alike. Over the last couple of years we have adopted a much more progressive and forward thinking approach to running the club, it’s very encouraging to see that the benefits in terms of increased membership and better fishing are now beginning to feed through.”

The ADB’s Club Development Officer, Julian Taylor believes that “Clubmark is an essential part of any Angling clubs desire to establish itself as a safe and successful club within the community. Windemere, Ambleside and District A.A has achieved Clubmark status and done exceptionally well, showing a high degree of dedication to gain their accreditation and deserve the success Clubmark will ultimately bring them. This club used Clubmark to drive the development of their club forward. They have recently doubled their coaching workforce and as a result are now able to run a structured coaching programme throughout the whole of this summer. This has already helped them attract new junior members to their club.”

In order to become a Clubmark club you need to visit the NFA’s website, which has a comprehensive breakdown on what’s involved and complete the online enquiry form which will go straight through to our Clubmark representative who will help you on the road to your accreditation.