Exclusive by Steve Martin


PLANS to reinstate a small stretch of Surrey’s River Wandle in Croyden could be overshadowed as removal of fish stocks by illegal anglers could render the venue devoid of fish in less than two years.

Over the last 10 years numbers of volunteers, including many coarse and game anglers, have given up their time to turn the nine-mile tributary of the Thames from a polluted drain to the magical water it is today.
Sport has seen a rapid improvement over the last two years and Southern Angler has learnt that the river produced a stunning 15lb 8oz barbel last summer.

We understand plans are now in the pipeline to reinstate another small stretch of the rivers course across Wandle Park to connect the water to a 500-yard upstream section that is being created as part of a new housing and small industrial development.

However Alan Sottie, who is heavily involved in the Wandle regeneration project fears that ‘uneducated foreign nationals’, who are openly taking fish and cooking them in bankside parties, are destroying all the hard work.

“The trouble with these people is they are not aware of the rules in the UK regarding removing fish from our rivers,” said Alan. “The police don’t seem to be interested, as they have more important issues to deal with and the Environment Agency says it doesn’t have the staff.”


For the full story see February’s issue of Southern Angler, out second Wednesday of Jan