Thursday, 25 October 2012

Mersey Sea Trout

A Sea Trout from the River Mersey - if you catch anything that you might think is a Sea Trout or Salmon on the River Irwell - please please please take a scale sample and contact us at so that we can arrange to collect it.
The EA will not accept photos as evidence that migratory fish are returning to the Irwell system - scale samples or dead fish are the only acceptable proof. (please dont kill them!!!)
Heres another slimmer Mersey Sea Trout

Saturday, 20 October 2012

Great News - Irwell Chub Restocking

Great news - last week the EA stocked 3,000 little chub into the Irwell in Salford and Bury. I went down to the river with Albert Morris (of Northern Anglers and Salford Inter Clubs) to help Ian Hayes of the EA continue his ambitious long term re-stocking programme.

Last November 500 barbel were restocked, this year we can look forwards to a total of over 10,000 roach, chub and dace - with further restocking of the river planned in 2013,14 and 15.

Here's a couple of photos of some chub being introduced to their new home.
The Irwell - a river which was neglected for so long is now firmly in the sights of the government (via DEFRA), the EA and United Utilities and we can look forwards to many more improvements and restockings in the coming years.

Since anglers took the government to a judicial review - via the and the Irwell featuring heavily in the Our Rivers Campaign there is now a group called the Irwell Pilot which meets on a monthly basis with the sole remit of improving the River Irwell Catchment. There are some big hitters sitting round this table with the ability and budgets to get things done. Improvements to sewage infrastructure have already been seen (see previous post), and the group now has its sights firmly set on a reduction in the number of invasive river bank species, improving accessibility as well as other water quality improvements. The EA have already embarked on a project of weir removal to improve connectivity within the river, this will have the benefit of allowing fish to migrate to the most suitable spawning habitiats. Flood defence upgrades will be taking place in Salford over the next two years, once these have finished we will be looking at a programme of rannunculus planting in the river, as this water plant holds so much invertebrate life and provides much better habitat for fish than the ribbon weed we have at the moment. Lots and lots of small improvements - together make for big changes. In 2012 I've had reports of double figure barbel, 10lb brownies, 6lb+ chub, 9lb bream, tench and carp near Bury so lets see what 2013 brings.

Were going to hold an Irwell Festival in September 2013 - fly fishing on a Friday evening, a coarse match on Saturday followed by an evening in the pub for prize giving, tale telling. Hope to see you get involved.

I'm off to Hampton Springs Fish Farm near Chester this week to put in an order for the restocking of the Old River in Irlam and for Crucian Carp for Drinkwater Park lake. It wouldnt have been possible to get the money together for the purchase of these fish without our members and supporters turning out for our restocking fund matches - many many thanks for your support.
It looks like fishing is on the up in North Manchester

Monday, 15 October 2012

Irwell clean-up in the pipeline for Radcliffe

A £7.5 million scheme to improve the River Irwell has started in Radcliffe.

United Utilities is upgrading sewers in the town to help prevent pollution overflowing into the river following heavy rainfall.

Work began in April and engineers are currently constructing a new underground sewer overflow chamber at Harper Fold Road in land next to Cams Lane Primary School.
A second new overflow chamber is being constructed underground in Stand Lane Car Park and a new sewer pipe will be laid into the River Irwell.
This is the first stage of a four year programme of sewer improvements around the town. United Utilities are spending £3.6bn between 2010 and 2015 in their capital phase called AMP5.

Salford Friendly Anglers have been asked by United Utilities to compile a list of  any pipes/overflows etc which we consider to have a negative effect on the river so that they can be taken into consideration for the AMP6 period 2016 - 2020. Please contact us at give us the location of your least favourite Irwell grot spot.

Friday, 12 October 2012

Our next meeting is this coming Wednesday the 17th Oct, 7.30pm at the Kings Arms, Bloom St, Salford, M3 6AN
Good fishing chat, good company and decent real ales.
If you have caught a decent fish from the Irwell recently please send in a photo for our fish of the month competition
If you know of a really bad grot spot on the Irwell for fly tipping, sewage waste on the bank, or a where a particularly nasty sewage overflow enters the river, please bring information to the meeting, as United Utilities are looking for our input to help with the development of their next phase of capital expenditure. If you cant make it to the meeting please email the information to us here at

Mtg Agenda
* Finance Report
* Irwell Pollution / United Utilities AMP 6 Request
* Re-stocking Fund
* Old River Work Parties
* Salford Quays - do we want the lease????
* Junior Coaching
* Fish Of The Month

Hope to see you on Wednesday evening