Waveney Valley: Bumper bags in Beccles

It has still been good fishing with bags of all sized fish in a sitting, and sometimes all of a one-size shoal.

Maltings engineer Martin Buckenham for example had a busy day with a double-figures catch of roach to 6' by the road bridge on the float and red maggot. The next day Peter Wall had as many fish but they easily cleared the 20lb barrier for his bag.

Opposite the moored holiday homes a few really good bags of skimmers came out on the feeder but only really fed for two hours on a crucial point of the tide they opted for. Plenty of groundbait was required to hold them but as the pike harassment built up they moved on. Seeing the constant 'takes' on the way in, Ivan Jolly of Lowestoft edged in with his slowly worked dead baits and landed five alongside from 5lb to 12lb. With low tide around noon this Sunday, expect your last Sunday on the river to be high midday.

The upper river too has been in fine form with the Fleece Waters around Bungay showing well for both roach and quality dace. Chub of 4lb are quite the norm these days from shallower runs at the far end of the common but the biggest have been coming from the steep wooded opposite bank at Target.

With its darkened aspect and overhanging Alders it is pristine peaceful stuff available on a day ticket for £5 purchased from the nearby Caravan site, tackle shops or Crossways at Ellingham.


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Perhaps the saddest note this week is the further decline of match popularity at club level, as this time it is the Bungay Cherry Tree AC who are ridding themselves of their freshwater trophies following on from the salt water disposals of last year.

With hardly anyone wanting to compete for, collect, return, or clean them, engraving which cost well over £150 to complete each year, it is the end of the road for a facility which has run since 1946 for some cups. Unfortunately this was a very realistic, modernising, financial decision for their excellent committee.

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The match fee revenue entry from six or seven contestants cannot support trophy expenses and the club's attentions will be diverted to that of the majority of the members' wishes to further develop the increasingly popular Earsham Lay-by Lake, and hang on to the rivers for pleasure fishing.

Commercials have made a day out, albeit with some very good 70lb winning weights comprising hard-fighting 10lb plus fish, but generally poor 3-6lb weights for the rest of the field have often been the case where silver fish stocks are low, with blanks too.

To this end a second Cherry Tree AC Lay-by Pit 2013 stocking has taken place, this time with the purchase of some fantastic rudd in excellent condition, and Crucian Carp to come, both via Tom Harbinson.

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