West & Fens Fishing: Twenty Foot offers little in the way of co-operation

Efforts to foster better relations between Eastern European anglers and those of us who grew up steeped in this country's angling culture took another step forward over the weekend.

Some 46 anglers from five nations descended on the wind-swept Twenty Foot, for the latest in a series of Building Bridges events organised under the banner of the Angling Trust and Polish Anglers Association.

The drain was ripping through, with a foot of snow-melt rendering it all but unfishable. I gave up after two hours watching the flow drag shark floats and five ounces of lead along, lines covered in weed and debris.

I could have told you that would happen before I even dropped a bait in, yet the Poles, Lithuanians, Russians and Romanians shrugged it off and carried on with a smile and plenty of banter.

Not one fish was caught. But organisers Radoslaw Papiewski and Pawel Nycz said the event was the best yet in terms of attendance, as we tucked into a sausage barbecue afterwards.

An incredible story reaches me from Hunstanton Tackle, where a customer who'd purchased some of the rubber lures which are currently the 'in thing' on the pike fishing scene decided to give them a few dunks in the sea off the town's beach and caught a 5lb cod.

He took it in to show shop boss Mick Cornell, before introducing it to some chips and peas. Quite when anyone last caught a cod off the Prom is anyone's guess.

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Rivers and drains are going to be hard work this weekend, as that extra water's going to take days if not weeks to clear. Behind the scenes there are serious calls for a fresh look at river management and a revamp of the catchment plan covering the Ouse Washes and one or two other areas of the system.

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