Wednesday, August 30, 2006

New look Pikelines - sneak preview

Pikelines editors Steve Ormrod and Neville Fickling tonight revealed a sneak preview of what the new-look mag will contain when it hits PAC members' doorsteps in a few days' time.

More pages means more of the articles, features, news and views from anglers from all walks of the sport which have made the magazine the favourite read of in-the-know predator hunters.

But Steve's promising a few changes between the covers - on top of a fresh new design.

"We've made some advances news-wise," he said. "The club is moving on with changes in communications technology and to reflect this we now have NewsFeed pages, which feed off online improvements like the PAC's new newsblog set up by Dave Lumb and Chris Bishop.

"More ideas are in the pipeline and as ever we welcome any suggestions for content from members, because it's their magazine."

The forthcoming Pikelines includes Rob Shallcroft on keeping it natural, an intriguing piece by Mick Brown on some of his regrets, an Irish adventure with Steve Rogowski and the British Pike Squad throwing a wobbler on a training session in the depths of the Fens.

Pagination has been upped from 64 to 68 pages and there are hopes changes in postage costs brought in by the Royal Mail mean we'll be able to provide pikers with an even bigger quarterly read.

"But this depends on receiving enough contributions to fill it," Steve said. "No material equals no Pikelines, so we want to hear from anyone who's got an idea for an article, or even something they'd like us to pursue.

"We welcome ideas from anyone from the junior or novice member, to seasoned veterans. It's your magazine, after all, and we want you to use it."

Pikelines should be on the presses over the next couple of days and hitting members' doormats shortly afterwards.

Ayrshire region meetings announced

Ayrshire RO Scott "Gus" Guthrie has announced three meetings in the Region known as 52.

And anyone's welcome, whether they're a member of the PAC or they just want to come along and sample what the club has to offer up there.

On Tuesday, September 12; they're staging a general meeting, including discussion on forthcoming events/outings.

On Tuesday, October 10; the PAC's Scottish LO Scott Davidson will be doing a talk/slideshow.

Both meetings will be at the St Andrews Hotel, in Prestwick Road, Ayr, from 7.30pm. Admission is free.

On Friday, November 24; they are staging a Presentation Night, which features a talk by Dave McLachlan, at the Burnbank Hotel, Maybole Road, Ayr, again from 7.30pm.

Tickets for this cost £8 and include a buffet.Tickets are available in advance from Gus on 01292 286581, or 07901861807.

Boys from Badlands launch blog

Uh oh. Those boys from the Badlands, aka Andy "Kosh" Kershaw and his anarchic band have launched a blog. Check it here or have a look on their website for more of their antics.

Selby PAC Region joins the blogosphere

Yet another PAC region has created its own blog to publicise it's meetings. This time it's Region 40, Selby in Yorkshire who's blog can be found at

Rumour has it there are more Regional PAC blogs on their way!

Esthwaite Event Postponed

The PAC event due to be held on Esthwaite Water on September 17 has had to be postponed owing to unforseen delays in the production of Pikelines.

This delay would have resulted in there being to little time for processing applications between delivery of the magazine to members and the event.

As soon as a new date has been arranged we will let you all know. Watch this space.

Mark Skinner, PAC special events organiser.

Lincoln hosts Bill Palmer to kick off their season

Bill Palmer is going to be the first speaker to take the stage as the PAC's Lincoln region kicks off its winter programme on Monday, September 4.

In a season he called a golden one, the Dimples to Wrinkles author nailed 30 twenties, mainly on his forays into Norfolk, while the local lads were struggling.

As you may have guessed from the weather, it's autumn again and the Lincs lot are kicking off a series of monthly meetings at the Turk's Head in Newport, Lincoln.

RO Chico Winterton said: "We encourage everyone to arrive early, especially new faces so we can chat about what we have all been up to.

"PAC membership is encouraged but not a prerequisite, we are here to talk pike and generally be social."

All are welcome from 7pm to have a beer and a banter before the speaker kicks off at 8pm.

There's a small charge for admission on the door, more details on the Lincoln region's forthcoming events and how to find the venue on the Lincoln PAC Blog.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Abberton public enquiry "likely" - DEFRA

A public enquiry into a massive water transfer scheme, which the PAC fears could harm historically-important pike fisheries in the Fens, is "likely" to be ordered, it emerged tonight.

That's the response from the government's Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) to concerns the club has raised about the plan.

Essex & Suffolk Water (ESW) wants to increase the size of Abberton Reservoir, near Colchester, to safeguard water supplies to drought-hit Essex.

But it needs to increase abstraction from the Ely Ouse at Denver, Norfolk, to supply the water.

The PAC is calling for a public enquiry into the plan, because it fears reduced flows in the tidal Ouse could harm internationally-important nature reserves and increase the risk of saline incursion into the lower reaches of the Delph, Old Bedford River and Well Creek.


What you can do:

Write to David Miliband, the Environment Secretary, urging him to call a public enquiry when ESW applies to increase its abstraction licence to enlarge Abberton.

Letters should be sent to:

The Rt Hon David Miliband MP
Secretary of State for the Environment Food and Rural Affairs
Nobel House
17 Smith Square
London SW1P 3JR

More information on the scheme and it's possible impact on the Fens are on ESW's website Abberton Expansion Scheme.

The preliminary environmental studies can be viewed and downloaded here:

ESW Presentation

Consultants Report

EA Presentation


Our letter to the Minister:
The Rt Hon David Miliband MP
Secretary of State for the Environment Food and Rural Affairs
Nobel House
17 Smith Square
London SW1P 3JR

August 13, 2006

Dear Secretary of State,

We are writing to urge you to order a full public enquiry into Essex and Suffolk Water's proposals to enlargen Abberton Reservoir and the impacts such a scheme might have on the ecology of the Fens.

We enclose preliminary environmental assessments, which show that the increased abstraction of water from the River Ouse, which is part and parcel of the scheme, could reduce flows in the tidal river, increase salt encroachment and threaten both historic coarse fisheries and internationally-important bird reserves.

We fear this scheme could alter the entire ecology of parts of the Fens, heighten risks to endangered species and threaten populations of coarse fish and birds which are already at grave threat from climate change.

Both fish and birds play a vital role in the tourism economy of the area. Along with the thousands of anglers who travel from all over the country to fish the Fens, tens of thousands visit the Ouse Washes and Wildfowl and Wetland Trust reserves.

The Abberton Expansion Scheme has potential to create controversy on both a national and international scale, since the Ouse Washes, which would be placed at increased risk of becoming saline, are a Ramsar site.

We would request you give this matter your urgent consideration and hope that you will action this enquiry as soon as the relevant applications to increase abstraction from the Ouse and extend Abberton Reservoir have been placed on file.

As the club which represents Britain's pike anglers and campaigns for the preservation of their quarry, we would request you include us in the list of parties from whom evidence would be taken at the enquiry.

Yours Sincerely,

Mark Barrett, General Secretary,
The Pike Anglers Club of Great Britain

Monday, August 28, 2006

Eric Edwards makes a date with Selby PAC

The PAC is up and running again in Selby, East Yorks, with north west-based big water specialist Eric Edwards signed up for a slide show.

Eric will be doing the honours at Ricalll Regeneration Centre from 8pm on Thursday, October 5.

As well as the biggest-ever brace of pike landed in a day by one angler, Eric is widely acknowleged for his expertise at fishing big waters afloat with both baits and lures.

New RO John Dinnewell is keen to get RA40 buzzing again. If you're in that part of the world, why not make a note in your diary about the meeting. Or drop John an e-mail at:

PAC membership tops 2000 at Fenland Fair

Membership of the PAC smashed through the 2,000 mark over the Bank Holiday weekend, membership secretary John Cahill said tonight.

Anglers signing up at the Fenland Fair, held yesterday and today in Cambridgeshire, gave an extra boost to the club's ongoing membership drive.

"This builds on the efforts of the previous committee and ourselves," John said. "We're now getting up to 20 members a week."

PAC president Phil Wakeford said: "I'm pleased some of our strategies and renewed energy are being acknowleged by people."

Thousands flocked to the fair at Stow-cum-Quy, near Cambridge. The PAC stall was manned by secretary Mark Barrett and products manager Mick Hastings, with help from East Anglian LO Dennis Moules and Cambridge ROs Richard Wesley and Andy Blazey.

"It was really busy," said Mark. "There were times when our tent was heaving with people."

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Smile - you're on Kosh TV

Kosh TV, yet another arm of the anarchic outfit better known as Region 88 - from deepest Derbyshire - are going to be filming the PAC Convention in Leeds, on September 23.

There may also be a DVD of proceedings on offer afterwards, depending whether we can make the technology work.

We're also going to see if video clips can be added to the PAC website.

RA 88 RO Andy "Kosh" Kershaw and PAC press officer Chris Bishop are currently geeking out over it.

"The future is obviously enabling people to download video clips from the website, whether it's a short piece on how to unhook a fish or set a rig up, to more ambitious content like virtual slide shows," said Chris.

"Kosh has offered to take the first steps by videoing the Convention and seeing what we can do with the material. I'm really excited about the possibilities."

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Time for a brew, says products man Mick

An unbreakable stainless steel thermal mug, complete with lid and engraved with the PAC logo, is the latest addition to the club's growing range of merchandise.

Yours for just £5.50, inc postage, they're just the job when you fancy a bankside brew.

Most of our range will be on sale at Piking 2006, the PAC's annual convention which is being held at Leeds Royal Armouries on Saturday, September 23.

Don't worry if you're not going to the show, there'll also be an order form in the next issue of Pikelines, which is going to press over the next few days.

For information on this and other PAC merchandise or to order, contact products manager Mick Hastings:

Friday, August 25, 2006

TV chef says sorry to pikers

TV chef Rick Stein has apologised for telling viewers they should eat more pike.

The PAC hit out when the Cornwall-based seafish guru featured a pike recipe in his programme Rick Stein's French Odyssey.

The show featured no warning about conserving the species and the PAC feared it could encourage more people to kill pike for the table after Mr Stein questioned why pike were not eaten more regularly in England.

In a brief e-mail earlier today from his base in Padstow, Cornwall, Mr Stein apologised for the commentary accompanying the item.

"Sorry about the mention of eating more pike," he said. "I will be more careful in future."

A PAC spokesman said: "While we can't stop people taking the occasional fish for the table, we are pleased to see a high-profile TV chef like Rick Stein promise to be more careful when it comes to encouraging more people to do so.

"After pike anglers have campaigned against the wholesale slaughter of pike for the table in Ireland and won restrictions on the size and number of fish which may be taken, we believe any call for pike to be more widely eaten should be balanced with the case for sustainable fishing, particularly not removing larger fish, which can damage the whole ecology of waters."

New look for P&P website

There's a new look to - the website of Pike & Predators magazine and its sister publications Coarse Angling Today and Carp Talk.

The site is the latest to employ RSS technology, which offers several ways to subscribe to content from your favourite sites.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

PAC hits out at TV chef Rick Stein

The Pike Anglers Club hit out at TV chef Rick Stein tonight, after he featured a pike recipe in his programme.

Kitchen legend Stein cooked an 8lb fish caught on a French river for the cameras in Rick Stein's French Odyssey, in which he travels the country by barge sampling fish and seafood cuisine.

But the show featured no warning about conserving the species. And the PAC fears it could encourage more people to kill pike for the table, after Stein questioned why pike are not eaten more regularly.

The repeat screening of the show comes as the Environment Agency steps up patrols across East Anglia in a bid to prevent eastern European migrants taking coarse fish from drains and rivers for food.

"While we can't stop people taking the occasional fish for the table, we believe it was irresponsible for a high-profile TV chef like Rick Stein to promote the killing of pike for food without highlighting the need to conserve the species," a spokesman said.

"Rick Stein asked why we don't eat more pike, like they do in France. The PAC has campaigned for pike conservation for three decades because the species plays a vital role in the ecology of the waters it inhabits.

"Indiscriminate killing of fish has decimated pike stocks across Europe, while European anglers' impact on pike populations in Ireland have promoted authorities there to impose a maximum size limit of 50cms and a limit of one fish a day to be taken."

The club is now writing to Rick Stein at his restaurant in Padstow, Cornwall, to highlight its concerns.

Anyone who shares them can write to:

Rick Stein
The Seafood Restaurant
PL28 8BY


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Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Wakefield joins the blog set

Up in the deepest Yorkshire, Region 96 - better known as Wakefield PAC to thee and me - have become the latest to set up their own blog.

It features details of meetings and speakers, in a programme which kicks off on September 10.

ROs Peter Green and Mick Culpan will be updating it as the season progresses and more events are arranged in their part of the world.

You can check it out here

Snap up a bargain at Piking 2006

Got any old tackle lying around you no longer use..?

Why not bring it along if you're coming to the PAC Convention at Leeds Royal Armouries on Saturday, September 23.

Once again, the club will be running a bring and buy stall where members can sell off unwanted tackle like rods, reels and sundries.

Buyers can decide on price, while the PAC keeps just 10% commission from the proceeds of any sale.

Books, videos and just about anything pike-related can also be put on sale. Why not see if your garage or tackle room could use a clear-out.

There'll also be more tackle stalls than you can shake a pike rod at, with some of the latest "this season" gear on show.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Piking 2006 - PAC confirms programme

The programme for Piking 2006, the PAC’s Annual Convention, was confirmed today.

The event is being held on Saturday, September 23 at the Royal Armouries, Leeds.

Doors open at 9.00am and there will be the chance to have a coffee or browse some of the many trade and tackle stalls before proceedings get under way.

From then on, the programme will be as follows:

10.00: Welcome address by PAC president Phil Wakeford.

10.15: Menteith Draw – places for the privileged access dates on the Lake of Menteith will be drawn live by special events organiser Mark Skinner.

10.30: Our first guest speaker, Pete Climo, looks back to the glory days of Llandegfedd and his more recent experiences fly fishing on Chew Reservoir.

11.15: Coffee Break.

11.30: Ian Forde, our second speaker, takes a look at some of the important developments which have happened in Ireland recently – where pike are now legally protected.

12.15: Scott Davidson speaks on his experiences with the big pike of some of Scotland’s wild lochs, including the Lake of Dreams, Menteith.

13.00: Lunch.

14.00: PAC Vision – Phil Wakeford outlines the committee’s vision for the future of the club and some of its plans for the immediate future.

14.30: Our final guest speaker, Bill Palmer, shares a golden season in which he caught 30 twenties.

15.30: Tea Break.

15.45: A Piking Panel, featuring Neville Fickling and guests.

16.30: Presentations and Speeches, including Pike Angler of the Year and RO of the Year, compered by PAC chairman Colin Goodge.

16.45: Any more for any more..? See if your number’s come up in advertising and promotions manager Mike Kelly’s Mega Raffle.

17.00: Close.

All times approximate.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

New gallery added to PAC website

The PAC website now features a new gallery for members' pictures designed and built by webmaster Dave Lumb.

Check it out here

If you'd like to share your picture with the piking world, whether it's your first double, a new pb or just an attractively or unusually-marked fish, e-mail the picture to Dave at

Friday, August 18, 2006

Save £1 on your PAC Convention tickets

You can save £1 on the cost of admission to the PAC Convention buy buying your tickets in advance.

Members pay £7.50 on the door for admission to the event, which is being staged on Saturday, September 23 at the Royal Armouries, Leeds.

Send off now and you can get in for just £6.50.

All you have to do is send a cheque for the amount you require payable to the Pike Anglers Club, together with your name, address and PAC membership number, to:

Mike Kelly, PAC Advertising and Promotions Manager, 47 Yew Tree Road, Tunbridge Wells, Kent TN4 0BG.

Please enclose an SAE and allow a week for delivery. Closing date for receipt is therefore Saturday, September 16.

The event is open to all pike anglers - you don't have to be a PAC member to attend.

Other attractions include a mega raffle, tackle stalls, and second-hand gear - as well as the chance to renew aquaintances and meet pike anglers from all over the UK and further afield.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Esthwaite access date postponed a week

The PAC's privileged access day on Esthwaite Water, Cumbria, has been postponed a week due to reasons beyond our control.

Originally arranged for Sunday, September 10, the event has now been put back until Sunday, September 17.

Ten boats are available, priced £26 per person. The event is for PAC members only and only lures may be used.

To apply send your cheque made payable to the PAC to:

PAC Special Events, 41 Brook Street, Polegate, East Sussex, BN26 6BH

Please note you must enclose your membership card with your application - this will be returned with your ticket.

We are promoting this event now to give people time to apply, because of an unforseen delay in the publication of Pikelines.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Sussex region goes online

Region 70, down in deepest Sussex, has become the second the second branch of the Pike Anglers Club to launch an online blog to publicise its meetings and other activities.

You can check it out here

Monday, August 14, 2006

Get blogging, PAC regions urged

PAC webmaster Dave Lumb has been working on a way for regions to promote their meetings and keep people in touch with what's going on.

"The intenet's become an important way of communicating as more and more people get online," he said.

"But not everyone has the know-how to build and run a website for their region. But there's now an easy way for anyone who wants a place in cyberspace to publicise meetings and events and keep people informed - it's called a blog."

Blogs require little more than basic word processing skills to set up and manage. And the PAC is now offering to help regional organisers set their own up.

If you take a look at Chico Winterton’s Lincoln blog you can see what is possible.

Chico said: "The blogspot is a great tool for keeping everyone informed of local info and can be linked directly to PAC matters as ours is, I hope more regions take it up, much easier than a webpage."

Any RO wanting to start a blog of their own should first go to and follow the simple instructions there.

Dave said: "They will have to use one of the Blogspot templates to start off with, or to give an individual look to their blog, but if they would like to use the PAC house style (like Lincoln have) once their blog is set up and integrate into the PAC on-line pressence they can contact me at and I will send them a template to copy and paste.

"I will also be on hand to offer advice if anyone is struggling with setting up or running the blog in anyway.

"If that still seems too daunting ROs can always send details of their events to me and I will put them on line for them on the PAC website."

Sunday, August 13, 2006

PAC Blog - stay on top of the news

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You can sign up to receive updates by clicking on the newsfeed on the top right hand side of our homepage.

But you need to reply to a confirmation e-mail to activate your newsfeed, or cut and paste it into your browser window.

If you've tried to subscribe and you're not receiving an e-mail each time this blog is updated, please try subscribing again.

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Marie Curie Predator Cup returns to the Ouse

The Cambridge Region of the PAC will again be helping out with the running of the Marie Curie Predator Cup, which is being staged on the Ely Ouse on Sunday, November 26, for the sixth year running.

Since it was first fished, in 2000, the event has raised more than £10,000 for the work of the cancer charity, which provides nurses and palliative care to those suffering the disease.

Once again the Ouse between Queen Adelaide, on the outskirts of Ely, and Littleport, will be the venue.
Both pike and zander are present in this stretch of the river and both will count in the match.

The draw will be at the Ely Beet Sports and Social Club, in Ely, from 7.30am onwards.

Fishing will be from 9am until 3pm and only deadbaits and lures may be used.

Two rods only to be fished at any time.

The cost will be £15.00 per person, plus an optional pool.

Tickets can be obtained from Karen Chesney, Marie Curie Cancer Care, Unit U, The Paddocks, 347 Cherry Hinton Road, Cambridge CB1 8DH. Tel: 01223 416405 or e-mail:

As well as the competition itself there will also be a bumper raffle.

Event organiser Dick Culpin said: "I look forward to seeing familiar and new faces alike on what I am sure will be an enjoyable and very worthwhile day."

For further information, give Dick a call on 01279 813588, evenings after 7pm.

Mystery fish kill claims Lancs res pike

Dead pike have been removed "by the barrowload" after a mystery fish kill on a northern reservoir.

Fish to over 20lbs have been found washed up on the 97-acre Foulridge Reservoir near Colne, Lancs.

A note on the fishery website says:

"Today 7th August 2006 ...5 barrow loads of dead pike have been removed from the res ranging in size from 10 inches to 22lb, the pike a have a virus, they are still popping up dead around the res.

"No other fish seem to be affected. The Environment Agency has been informed."

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Abberton - the fightback begins

The Pike Anglers Club is calling for a public enquiry into a massive water abstraction scheme it fears could damage historic pike fisheries and internationally-important nature reserves.

It has written to Environment Secretary David Miliband, urging him to insist on a full investigation into the envionmental consequences of Essex and Suffolk Water's Abberton Expansion Scheme.

ESW wants to raise levels at Abberton to see the drought-hit South-east through dry summers.

It says it will need to increase the amount of water it abstracts from the Great Ouse at Denver, near Downham Market, to make the reservoir 60 per cent larger.

But environmental assessments show if the scheme gets the go-ahead, it could damage vital habitats, by increasing saline encroachment in the tidal Ouse, which could in turn lead to parts of the Old Bedford River, Delph and Well Creek becoming saline.

"We began investigating this when members were warned that fishing at Abberton Reservoir, in Essex, would be stopped," said PAC secretary Mark Barrett.

"We have since learned that historically-important pike fisheries are also in jeopardy, along with the biodiversity of the Great Ouse catchment - not to mention its estuary, The Wash.

"A threatened fish species, the spined loach, is also under threat. We are therefore calling for a public enquiry not only to safeguard our members' fishing, but the unique and vital habitats whose future is now in doubt."

In its letter to Mr Miliband, the PAC says:

"We enclose preliminary environmental assessments, which show that the increased abstraction of water from the River Ouse, which is part and parcel of the scheme, could reduce flows in the tidal river, increase salt encroachment and threaten both historic coarse fisheries and internationally-important bird reserves.

"We fear this scheme could alter the entire ecology of parts of the Fens, heighten risks to endangered species and threaten populations of coarse fish and birds which are already at grave threat from climate change.

"Both fish and birds play a vital role in the tourism economy of the area. Along with the thousands of anglers who travel from all over the country to fish the Fens, tens of thousands of people visit the Ouse Washes and Wildfowl and Wetland Trust reserves.

"The Abberton Expansion Scheme has potential to create controversy on both a national and international scale, since the Ouse Washes, which would be placed at increased risk of becoming saline, are a Ramsar site."

The RSPB has said the ecology of the internationally-important Ouse Washes, which are a Ramsar site for over-wintering birds, could be at risk. See

The Pike Anglers Club fears it will also heighten threats to coarse fish populations and the biodiversity of the entire Great Ouse catchment, where fisheries scientists are already on record as saying changes in river management practices have led to whole year classes of fish being lost.

The Great Ouse Boaters Association fears increased abstraction at Denver could reduce flows in the tidal Ouse.

This in turn would increase siltation around sluices, which would mean water being let out to sea via the Relief Channel, whose fish populations have been devastated by harsh winter run-offs.

"We are a conservation group which campaigns to preserve both the pike and pike fishing," Mark Barrett said.

"We are therefore calling for a public enquiry into this scheme and the opportunity to put our case that riverine environments will be at risk if it is given the go-ahead in its present form."

The PAC is writing to MPs and conservation groups such as the RSPB, Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust, along with angling clubs across the Fens to call for their support.

What you can do:

Write to David Miliband, the Environment Secretary, urging him to call a public enquiry when ESW applies to increase its abstraction licence to enlarge Abberton.

Letters should be sent to:

The Rt Hon David Miliband MP
Secretary of State for the Environment Food and Rural Affairs
Nobel House
17 Smith Square
London SW1P 3JR

More information on the scheme and it's possible impact on the Fens are on ESW's website - the preliminary environmental studies can be viewed and downloaded here:

ESW Presentation

Consultants Report

EA Presentation

Roving vest added to PAC clothing

A sleeveless gilet (waistcoat) with enough pockets for all those essential bits and pieces is the latest addition to the PAC's growing range of clothing.

They're just the job for the roving piker, boat or lure angler, with six exterior and two interior pockets.

Available from stock now, priced £25 including P&P, they're made from heavy twill cotton and come complete with the PAC's logo embroidered on them.

Sizes range from small (38") to XXL (50"). While green is the standard colour, we can also order them in camel and navy, and embroidery can be personalised with a name for a small extra charge.

There's more information about the PAC's product range, including an order form you can print off here.

E-mail Mick at with any queries.

Friday, August 11, 2006

John 'Watto' Watson rejoins the PAC

John Watson, better know throughout the piking world as Watto, has rejoined the Pike Anglers Club.

Both current and previous committees believed it was time to invite John to return to the fold and discussions have been taking place for some time.

PAC president Phil Wakeford said tonight: "We are very pleased to announce that John Watson has rejoined us after almost 20 years.

"John was one of the original general secretaries of the PAC and put a huge amount of personal time and effort into making the club successful.

"In the intervening period John has continued to fight for all of the things important to pike and pike fishing through his guiding services, the local and national press, angling publications and TV. He is one of the best known pike anglers in the country."

In a letter to the club, Norfolk-based John said: "It is good to know that the committee have unanimously extended their hand and hopefully I'll be able to contribute to the club in the near future."

John Watson's return reflects the committee's desire to welcome members who have parted company with the PAC over the years back into the club.

It is part of a concerted push to unify pike anglers under one banner, so strengthening the voice of our sport.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

PAC forums recruit their 100th member

The PAC's new members' forums are going from strength to strength, recruiting their 100th member in just a fortnight tonight.

If you're a member and you haven't joined yet, why not register.

The PAC Message Board has topics on all aspects of pike fishing, as well as forums where you can have your say on the running of the club or the issues facing pike fishing, or ask committee members questions.

You can find it at

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Irish pike protection laws ammended

Ireland's fisheries authorities have ammended bye laws designed to increase the legal protection given to pike and other coarse fish.

While it remains an offence to kill more than one pike, of more than 50cms in length in a day, a clause concerning the number of baits anglers may carry has been changed.

The 12-bait limit applies to coarse fish, so extra quantities of sea baits may be carried as well.

The ammendments also halve the amount of pike flesh which may be legally possessed to 0.75kg, to prevent larger fish being killed and filleted to circumvent the size limits.

The full bye law can be seen below:




I, John Browne, Minister of State at the Department of Communications, Marine and Natural Resources, in exercise of the powers conferred on me by section 9 (as amended by section 3 of the Fisheries (Amendment) Act 1962 (No. 31 of 1962)) of the Fisheries (Consolidation) Act 1959 (No. 14 of 1959), section 33 of the Fisheries (Amendment) Act 1962, the Fisheries (Transfer of Departmental Administration and Ministerial Functions) Order 1977 (S.I. No. 30 of 1977) (as adapted by the Marine and Natural Resources (Alteration of Name of Department and Title of Minister) Order 2002 (S.I. No. 307 of 2002)) and the Marine (Delegation of Ministerial Functions) Order 2006 (S.I. No. 82 of 2006), hereby make the following Bye-law:

1. This Bye-law may be cited as the Conservation of Pike Bye-law No. 809, 2006.

2. This Bye-law comes into operation on the day of its making.

3. Subject to Article 4, it is prohibited for any person to take or kill more than one pike on any one day.

4. It is prohibited for a person to take or kill any pike greater than 50 cm in length measured in a straight line from the tip of the snout to the fork of the tail.

5. It is prohibited for a person, other than in the circumstances referred to in Article 7, to have in his or her possession or control -

(a) more than one whole pike less than 50 cm in length measured in a straight line from the tip of the snout to the fork of the tail, or

(b) more than 0.75 kgs of pike flesh or parts whether as fillets, steaks, cutlets, sides or in any other form whatsoever.

6. Any pike taken inadvertently in contravention of this Bye-law must be handled carefully and returned without avoidable injury to the waters from which they have been taken.

7. Article 5 does not apply to a person storing pike or pike parts for another in excess of that permitted under that Article in a premises or vehicle, where -

(a) the premises or vehicle is registered with the regional board for the fisheries region in which it is situated,

(b) the premises or vehicle is owned or leased by the person, and

(c) any whole pike or pike part so stored are separated and labelled as to clearly identify the fish or fish parts belonging to the person for whom they are being stored.

8. (1) It is prohibited for a person to have in his or her possession more than 12 coarse fish for use as bait in fishing for pike.

(2) Where a person has more than 4 coarse fish in his or her possession for use as bait in fishing for pike, the person, in respect of fish in excess of that number and subject to paragraph (1), must have -

(a) obtained the fish from a fish tackle dealer or fish bait supplier registered with the regional board in whose fisheries region the dealer or supplier carries on business, and

(b) obtained and retained a receipt of their purchase.

(3) In this Article “coarse fish” means any fresh water fish other than pike, salmon, trout, eels or minnow.

9. The Conservation of Pike Bye-law No. 805 of 2006 is revoked .

GIVEN under my hand,

3 August 2006.

John Browne

John Browne

Minister of State at the Department of Communications,

Marine and Natural Resources.

This Bye-law provides for the following conservation measures:

  • a bag limit of 1 Pike in any one day,

  • prohibits the killing of any pike greater than 50 cm in length,

  • prohibits the possession by any person of more than 1 whole pike less than 50 cm or more than 0.75 kgs of pike flesh, this provision does not apply to a person storing pike or pike parts subject to conditions,

  • prohibits the possession by any person of more than 12 coarse fish for use as bait subject to conditions.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Cambridge Region unveils winter programme

A rare talk by jerkbait king Derek Macdonald is one of the highlights of the Cambridge Region's programme of talks and slide shows this season.

Newly-appointed ROs Richard Wesley and Andrew Blazey say both members and non-members are welcome at their meetings, which are being held at Bottisham British Legion Club in Downing Close, Bottisham, on the first Wednesday of every month.

More information on the branch is contained on the Cambridge PAC Website.

Meeting details:

Wednesday, September 6 - Mike Green

Mike is a Midlands based angler who has had a fair amount of success jerkbaiting and fly fishing for pike on the reservoirs, pits and rivers of East Anglia.

Wednesday, October 4 - Andy Lush

Andy needs no introduction as proprietor of tackle shop The Friendly Fisherman. He'll be talking about fishing for barbel and catfish in continental waters and reservoir fishing for pike in England.

Wednesday, November 1 - Gary Knowles

Gary is a Cheshire-based all-rounder angler well known to readers of Pike and Predators. One of his claims to fame is landing Eric Edwards' record brace of pike from Blithfield.

Wednesday, December 6 - Eric Edwards

A welcome return for Eric, who went down a storm on his last visit to the Fens. he's coming back to share some more of his experiences of big water pike fishing - and big pike.

Wednesday, January 3 - David Wesley and Andrew Blazey

One of the region's newest members, David talks about the learning curve he has faced during the first two seasons spent fishing for ‘old esox, while Andrew entertains us by reliving his 2006 sea fishing holiday over on the West coast of Ireland.

Wednesday, February 7 - Nigel Savage

Nigel is a Rutland water warden and has been having a lot of success fly fishing for predators. Come and see how he has gone about catching pike and zander on the fly.

Wednesday, March 7 - Joint Cambridge and Ely Fenland meeting with the PAC Committee

A PAC panel including president Phil Wakeford, chairman Colin Goodge, secretary Mark Barrett, PR man Chris Bishop and sales goods supremo Mick Hastings will be on hand. It's your chance to speak to the committee in person, raise any ideas you have and listen to how their first year as a new committee has gone.

Wednesday, April 4 - Derek Macdonald

Derek is one of the more mysterious figures in the Pike fishing world, keeping his catches to himself and close friends. He now begins to reveal some of his closely guarded secrets in a show entitled I did it my way. It is not often that Derek will do a slideshow, so take the opportunity to hear one of the most successful pike anglers in the country.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

PAC Privileged Access events update

The draw for the PAC's callender of Privileged Access events will be carried out live at Piking 2006, the club's eagerly-awaited annual convention, which is being held in Leeds on Saturday, September 23.

The one exception to this is the lure-only day we have secured on Esthwaite Water, in Cumbria, on Sunday, September 10.

Application forms will be enclosed in Pikelines, which is due out at the end of August.

More on this season's events here .

Special events organiser Mark Skinner is currently in talks with a number of other waters and more events are likely to be added as soon as details are confirmed.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Deadline extended for Convention tickets

The deadline for applying for advance tickets for this year's PAC Convention has been extended to September 14.

Piking 2006 is being held at Leeds, on Saturday, September 23.

Admission is £7.50 but you can save a pound by booking in advance.

More here

Regions get set for winter programme

PAC regions up and down the country are now finalising their programmes of meetings and other events for the coming winter.

It's worth checking here from time to time, to see what's going on in your area.

If nothing's happening in your part of the world or you're new to the PAC get in touch or join the Message Board on our web forum.

If there isn't a branch in your part of the world we may be able to put you in touch with other pikers, or even help you start one.

All change for the PAC in Lincoln

A new team have taken over the running of the PAC's Lincoln Region and they've launched their own blog to keep members up to date with what's going on.
Chico Winterton is the new RO, ably assisted by Andrew Starsmore and Richard Straw.
From September they'll be meeting at the Turk's Head in Newport, Lincoln, from 7pm onwards on the first Monday of every month.
Speakers confirmed so far include Bill Palmer, Sept 4; Bill Winship, Oct 2; Lee Norbury, Nov 6; and Mark Barrett, Dec 4.

See their blog for more, at The Lincoln PAC Blog

PAC privileged access update

Please note our access day on Loch Fitty is on Sunday, March 11.

This follows our final day on Lake of Menteith for the 2006/07 season, on Saturday, March 10.

Loch Fitty is three miles north-east of Dunfermline, Fife. It's a 170-acre shallow, fertile, naturally-formed loch, containing most coarse fish and pike.

See Pikelines, due out shortly, for full details of this and other privileged access events for PAC members.
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