ULSTER is well represented at the 33rd World Shore Angling Championships on Ireland’s south west coast.
The Irish Federation of Sea Anglers welcomed 18 countries to the Wexford sands for the event which began yesterday. Some 250 competitors and 100 team officials, 12 ladies’ teams and 20 men’s teams are participating taking on the autumn surf and the slippery sand as well as the other anglers. For the first time Ireland has fielded a ladies’ team and the beach girls are expected to give a good account of themselves. The team includes Janet Snoddy, Glengormley and District SAC (Antrim); Lisa Gormley, Glengormley and District SAC (Antrim) and Margaret Truesdale, Carrickfergus Beach and Rockers SAC (Antrim). Manager Jim Snoddy is husband of Janet and Lisa is their daughter. The Irish men’s team includes the experienced Harry McKee Jnr from Bangor who is a member of East Antrim Surfcasters SAC. The World Shore Angling Championships operate a catch and release policy and competitors expect to catch a wide variety of species including whiting, codling, flounder, turbot and dogfish but there is always the chance of a stray tope or bass which often patrol the magnificent strands in the area.
The championship will close with dinner and a prizegiving on Friday in Clayton Whites Hotel overlooking Wexford harbour.
Meanwhile the annual Waterways Ireland Schools Coarse Fishing competition was held on October 23 at Mid Ulster District Council’s coarse angling facility on the Bann in Portglenone. Organiser John Taggart said,
“Weights were excellent and well up from last year with almost all the anglers catching fish. Roach, gudgeon, perch and a couple of small hybrids were weighed in and hopefully catching a fish or two might encourage the angling bug in a few more junior competitors.’’
In first place was Erne Integrated College, Enniskillen. The school received a silver plate. Second was Coleraine Grammar School and third Dromore High School. The top individual was Paul Cunningham, Coleraine Grammar, with a bag of 8.580kg. The 2017 competition will take place on Saturday October 21 and registration opens in May. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call John Taggart on 07891 516677.