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News from our Waters
BROOM LAKE TRACK OPEN
 
Week ending 19th Nov 2017

As autumn draws to an end the more hardy Shefford & District AA members are preparing for their winter campaigns.  The key to success during the colder months will be being in the right place at the right time to locate the fish that are willing to feed.  Danny Wright has been squeezing in short two hour trips to Broom Lake after work.  Danny’s latest trip produced common carp of 23lb and 12lb 8oz, whilst his previous session resulted in a 21lb 8oz common. 
The silver fish are now tightly shoaled on many venues and bumper catches will still be possible throughout the winter if the feeding shoals are located.  Where there are shoals of silver fish the predators will not be far away.  To prove this point Kevin Wilkins had a bumper catch of twelve pike from a small area of an undisclosed SDAA venue on Sunday. 
Shefford & District AA is again offer ‘half-year’ membership this season that will be valid from 1st December 2017 through to 15th June 2018 (prices: Full £40, Concessions £30, Partners £25, Juniors £10).  Full details can be found on the membership section of the SDAA website. 
Recently a SDAA bailiff summoned the police to deal with individuals who were found on a club water without membership books.  The police escorted them off the fishery for fishing without permission,  which is a criminal offence under the Theft Act.  The club is working with local police forces under ‘Operation Traverse’ to deal with illegal fishing and fish theft across both Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire.   
Members should also be aware that Environment Agency enforcement officers actively visit our waters and unfortunately several members have been prosecuted by the EA in recent years and received hefty fines.  The most common offences have been fishing with 3 rods with a rod licence that only covers the use of 2 rods and fishing with multiple rods where the butts of the outer rods were more than 3m apart.  Please make sure you are familiar with all the EA bylaws and a link to these can be found on the SDAA website. 
Finally, the Angling Trust have asked us to make it clear that the club’s public liability insurance only covers SDAA members when they are engaged in activities connected with the club.  Therefore, members are usually only covered whilst fishing or carrying out volunteer work on SDAA and IPA waters.  The policy wording also states members are also only covered whilst conforming to the club’s rules and by-laws.  Individual membership of the Angling Trust can  provide public liability insurance for all your other angling activities worldwide.



Week ending 12th Nov 2017

The Shefford & District AA committee have agreed to again offer ‘half-year’ membership this season that will be valid from 1st December 2017 through to 15th June 2018 (prices: Full £40, Concessions £30, Partners £25, Juniors £10).  ‘Half-year’ membership books will be available from our usual outlets towards the end of November.  The membership section of the SDAA website will also be updated with details of the ‘half-year’ membership fees and a ‘half-year’ application form for those wanting to submit a postal application.  Please note that night fishing at The Airman, Broom Lake and Willington Lake requires optional Night Permits (there is no part year discount on these Night Permits). 
Following work done by IPA appointed contractors, the Sandy New Road fisheries on the River Ivel are again accessible and fishable. The paths have been strimmed and some 25 swim access points created.  Some of the swims still have marginal reeds and weed in front of them, so an extending landing net handle would be useful.  Historically these stretches produced fine chub catches as well as other species during the winter months.  We encourage members to go and try this welcome return to the fishable river portfolio and look forward to receiving reports from those who do. 
More locally the EA will be carrying out maintenance on Broom sluice (Jordans Mill) for up to 8 weeks from late November and the club has been assured these works will have no significant impact on the water levels on Broom River. 
Please note the highly invasive Floating Pennywort is present on most sections of the Great Ouse downstream of Bedford.  The river at Willington is currently the worst affected SDAA water but is also present at Little Barford and Little Paxton.  Members should adhere to the ‘Check, Clean and Dry’ procedures for all tackle, nets, boots, etc to ensure this non-native species is not spread to other rivers or stillwaters. 

Week ending 5th Nov 2017

The second leg of the Shefford & District AA Ltd pike series attracted 9 members to Willington Lake and 14 pike were caught in total.  Tony Archer landed five pike to 8lb 3oz for a total weight of 25lb 14oz to win the match.  Alex Mortimer was second with three pike for 14lb 3oz and junior member Alfie Archer third with 3 pike for 10lb 9oz.  Jack Lancaster had two pike for 4lb 3oz and Hos Graham a single pike of 4lb 2oz.  The third match in the series will be held on Saturday 25th November at The Airman and further details can be obtained from Bryan Lancaster (07810 454819). 
 
Michael Webb managed to net three good perch from an undisclosed club venue with perch of 2lb 9oz, 2lb 14oz and a cracking 3lb 11oz specimen.

Week ending 22nd Oct 2017

Firstly, a reminder about Shefford & District AA Ltd matches for the rest of the season.  The standard monthly matches usually held on the last Sunday of the month have been cancelled for the rest of the season; therefore, the match planned for 29th October at Willington Lake will not take place and the whole venue is available for members.  The pike series will continue as advertised in the membership with the next round being held on Sunday 5th November at Willington Lake and further details can be obtained from Bryan Lancaster (07810 454819).   
The path leading from the designated car park and along the allotment bank at Little Paxton has been recently strimmed to allow members easier access to the swims in the weir pool.  Similarly, the brambles have been cut back along the footpath leading off Alington Road to the club’s new stretch at Little Barford.  Please note the Environment Agency have been informed of the highly invasive non-native Floating Pennywort that is present at both of these venues, in common with many parts of the Ouse in this area.  If any member spots Floating Pennywort at any other club venue please inform a member of the committee immediately. 
Broom Lake has continued to fish well for carp during the week with Jay Plume managing to tempt a 21lb 8oz common carp on his latest session.  There are plans to install an additional gate at the bottom of the access track leading to both Broom Lake and the adjacent syndicate lake in order to deter members of the public straying off the new public footpath.  Existing keys will fit the SDAA lock and the syndicate will have their own lock.  Several work parties are being planned at Broom Lake and advanced notice will be given as they will involve closure of the lake.

Week ending 15th Oct 2017

The first round of the Shefford & District AA Ltd pike series was fished in unseasonably warm and bright conditions at Broom Lake.  Although none of the larger pike put in an appearance, several anglers managed to catch.  First place was taken by junior member Alfie Archer with pike of 3lb 2oz and 5lb 5oz  for a total weight of 8lb 7oz.  Second place was taken by Bryan Lancaster with pike of 3lb 10oz and 3lb 5oz for a total weight of 6lb 15oz.  Third place was taken by Tony Archer with pike of 3lb 2oz and 3lb 3oz for a total weight of 6lb 5oz.  The next round of the pike series will be held on Sunday 5th November at Willington Lake, a venue that has produced some excellent pike catches in recent seasons (further details can be obtained from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819).  Due to poor attendances the standard monthly matches have been cancelled for the rest of the season and therefore the match planned for 29th October at Willington Lake will not now take place.
 Darren Brown fished a recent 24h session at The Airman and was rewarded with  a single run just before he packed up that resulted in a 25lb 4oz mirror carp, one of the older residents of the lake.  Broom Lake has seen plenty of carp being caught and Jay Plume tempted an 18lb common carp from only a few rod lengths out as darkness fell and the high winds caused by Hurricane Ophelia began to abate.  Earlier in the week David Hawkes was pleased to catch a mid double common carp on his ‘sleeper rod’ whilst concentrating on fishing for silver fish on his other rod.  Venue regular Andy Richwood landed several carp in a single session choosing to fish on the windward bank, which is often the most productive area on a windy day.  Although the grapevine is full of tales of good captures from both lake and river venues it would appear there is a growing trend amongst members who are unwilling to publicise their catches. 

Week ending 8th Oct 2017

It is worth reminding Shefford & District AA Ltd members that there are only 5 months to go until the end of the river season.  The weed on most river venues has now started to die back giving members the opportunity to explore the many miles of the club’s flowing water fisheries.  Mick Burr has kicked off his annual campaign on Broom River with a 3lb 3oz perch, a venue where Mick has an excellent record of perch over 4lb in recent seasons.  Other anglers have also reported some good roach turning up in catches along this length.  
The first pike match of the season will be held at Broom Lake on Saturday 14th October with the lake closed to anglers not taking part in the pike match (further details can be obtained from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819).   Broom Lake has continued to produce a number of carp to just over 20lb, with several anglers enjoying multiple catches when fishing in open water, rather than tight to the islands.  Please note that the use of bait boats is banned on all club waters. 
Although The Airman is often associated with larger species, several members have been enjoying good catches of roach on both float and ledger tactics.  With little or no colour in the water the roach tend to be tightly shoaled.  Catches regularly feature redfins over the pound mark and there is always the chance of catching one of the sought after 2lb specimens.

Week ending 24th Sept 2017

With water temperatures dropping, autumn is often the most productive time of the year for many species on Shefford & District AA Ltd waters.  Regular carp anglers at Willington Lake are often reluctant to share information about their captures, so we thank Richard Hodges for reporting his 28lb 4oz mirror caught on a recent trip to the venue.  Pleasure anglers are still enjoying good mixed nets of roach, rudd and bream on both float and feeder tactics. 
Sport on river venues should start to improve once some colour gets back into the water and the weed starts to die off.  Our new venue at Little Barford has already produced some good mixed bags of predominantly roach with dace, chub, perch, bream and tench also featuring in catches.  Large carp have been spotted over the summer months, but there are no reports of any being caught.  Like all SDAA waters, this venue is strictly members only and day tickets are not available. 
Many traditionalists view 1st October as the start of the pike fishing and SDAA offer plenty of suitable waters for pike anglers to target.  Despite their ferocious appearance, pike are very fragile fish and need to be handled with great care and anyone fishing for this species should do so with appropriate tackle.  The Pike Anglers Club of Great Britain website provides some excellent advice about how to fish for pike.  Please note that at The Airman the use of double and treble hooks is banned until the end of October as the catfish are still active.  The club runs a series of pike matches from October through to March.  The first pike match is being held at Broom Lake on 14th October and further details can be obtained from Bryan Lancaster (07810 454819).  Members wanting to fish for zander will find this species in our Great Ouse venues at Little Barford and Little Paxton. 

Week ending 3rd Sept 2017

One of our club members enjoyed a very productive few hours fishing on the river Ouse  behind Willington Lake and managed a great mixed bag of half a dozen chub and perch and a small Ruffe on the float. This club member reported his success through the clubs facebook page. This is a good medium for other club members who can appreciate where the fishing is best and is encouraged for and by all. It doesn’t matter if you catch a specimen or a narly old tiddler,report it in and let club members enjoy your success.
The dive planned for the 16th September has been cancelled therefore the Airman will not be closed on that day. The cancellation is unavoidable, due to illness, however Bedford Sub-aqua are still keen to re-visit the Airman and assist with the removal of the obstructions when they are in a position to do so. The committee will advise when re arranged. 
Anyone visiting the Airman and seeing the dive notice still displayed on the gate please feel free to remove it, thanks. 
It was pleasing to see 15 anglers turn up to the cat match. what a shame the fish didn’t show up in numbers ! However those that caught,caught!!
 
1st Richard Mcglory. 1 cat of 44lb 6oz
2nd James "jammy" Turvey. 1 cat of 16lb 13oz.
 
Ron Holmes & Mark Elek Palmer had a kitten each but did not get them witnessed so one of them missed out on 40 pounds for second in the pool that meant Richard walked away with all the prizes. 
Lez Reed managed a carp, 8 bream & a Tench. Most of the anglers, as expected had tales of  lost fish & dropped runs and what might have happened if… 
The committee and particularly, the Match Secretary Nigel gilbert would like to congratulate James as his second place wins him the night series. This was a hard fought series which did come down to the last match where Nigel had to finish (at worst) 2 places behind James to win but with so much pressure on the last match could only manage to blank. 
On other matters looking after the husbandry of the club several of the committee members have been out in recent days clearing up various venues. Thanks to Nigel for strimming some of the swims at the Airman to reduce the encroachment of nettles. Many thanks to club member, Martin Sharpe for being Banksman. 
New speed limit signs have been placed around Broom Lake and the deeper holes around the track have been filled.Memebers are requested to keep to the speed limits and keep to the track to avoid new holes appearing and the edges of the track becomes a mud bath. 
Again a thanks to a new member Dave ? who handed a reel he had found in peg 2. To one of our Bailiffs. It is a Shakespeare xk 3000. 
if anyone reports it missing please get in touch with a member of the committee 
Unfortunately some club members continue to infringe the rules and make life difficult for others and I would like to bring to everyone’s attention two incidents: 
A club member left a carrier bag full of rubbish in “the bay”. It contained 3 large empty pellet bags, pizza boxes, coke bottles a hemp tin & an empty packet of b&h dual. Can club members remember to take their rubbish home with them and leave the swim clear for the next occupants use. Every page in your membership book states “Strictly no alcohol OR LITTER 
I have reported on incidents such as this before however another “death rig” was found as Andrew Riley was clearing lost tackle from the islands at Broom Lake.The line was an excessive breaking strain around 50lb I have mentioned the clubs coaching team and all members have access to them and they will be delighted to show any club member how to fix competent rigs which are fish friendly. Details of who to contact are at the back of your membership books. 

Week ending 27th August 2017

Good conditions saw our anglers returning to the waters in numbers and one, James Turvey was rewarded with a specimen bream of9lb 1oz a weight some of our carp anglers would be proud of which he took from Willington.
I have attached a picture of the 9lb 1oz Bream that he caught from Willington on the 19th August 2017.
Willington also proved fruitful for last week's match with all anglers catching mixed bags of silverfish. Pike were problematic nipping off the smaller fish (one being feisty enough to nip at Nigel's hand and draw blood! One up to the fish I think) Nigel if you need any help with handling Pike the club has a full coaching team who would be delighted to help)
Results were;
 
1st david baker 5lb 6oz  mixed silvers on the waggler
2nd john salmon 5lb 2oz mixed silvers on the pole
3rd nigel gilbert 4oz  on the waggler. (2 roach in the last 5 minutes) 
 
A reminder for the next catfish match to be held at the Airman, whilst you can turn up on the day the pegs are limited to 18 and 12 anglers have already subscribed. If you are looking to take part it is recommended you apply through the club website or speak directly to the match organiser, Nigel whose telephone number is on your club books. You can text or e mail him.

Week ending 20th August 2017

As the summer weather remains temperate the fish are continuing to feed and from reports being received of good catches across all our fisheries it seems dads are heading back to the waters after a long summer break to get some down time away from the kids!! Dads ;the club encourages our next generation of members and with the fisheries being so productive at the moment now is a great opportunity to get your kids back to nature, bond with them and set them up with a fulfilling lifelong hobby. The likely hood is they will catch a whacker and be hooked for life like the rest of us. We would expect reports of large perch being caught from the Broom river and from behind Jordan's mill as the summer fades and there is nothing simpler than a bit of stalking fish with a link ledger set up and a lobworm on a size ten. There has been a 4pounder out of those rivers in the past, imagine a young anglers face if they caught one like that!One angler reported a good mixed bag from Willington earlier in the week on the float.  He fed positively to retain the fish in his swim.  His catch consisted mainly of roach up to a pound with a few bream and a decent perch.  He bumped off a couple of larger fish that were probably tench. Asking for further information , the angler, who doesn’t use a keepnet  said he had over 30lb of fish.  The bream were in the 2lb bracket so relatively young fish.  He only joined this year but is a very experienced ex-match angler.  He has had a number of good catches, but believes he is still only scratching the surface of what the lake is capable of producing.
One of our lakes gave up a lovely 20plus ghostie to one of our members, Tony who does not wish to disclose where he caught such a prize specimen, the capture was witnessed by one of the committee.
The exploratory dive which was scheduled for the 19th August was postponed due to ill health of one of the divers but this does give members the opportunity to report any snags at the Airman which may need to be removed so that , when the dive is rearranged we can send them down to see if such snags can be removed.

Week ending 13th August 2017

Broom lake proved just how well it has been fishing recently at last weekend’s 24 hour match which was attended by 7 anglers in a keenly fought competition, all anglers caught fish in a variety of species:
 
1st nigel gilbert 53lb 1 1/2 oz made up of 10 bream  bream to 6lb 3oz & a few silvers.
2nd james turvey 44lb 4oz. 4 bream to 4lb 4oz, 2 carp at 15lb 2oz & 11lb 3oz & some silvers.
3rd alan harrison 35 lb 14oz. 2 carp at 17b 12oz & 12lb 4oz, a 3lb 14oz tench & some silvers
4th andy riley 29lb 4oz. 2 carp at 19lb 10oz & 9lb 10oz.
5th matt simcock 24lb 15oz. a 9lb 10oz carp & beautiful looking ghostie of 15lb 5oz.
6th barry cook with a single 14lb common.
7th kevin wilkins 13lb 2oz. 4 bream with the biggest at 5lb 12oz.
 
The next match is scheduled for 27th August at Willington with the draw commencing at 08.30 a.m, details in the club book and on the websiteSheffordDAA.org.uk
Meanwhile one of the clubs respected specimen hunters, Alan Lawrence found himself at Willington Lake where he had an exceptionally productive session on block end feeder and two maggots on the hook. Alan took a haul of 8 quality fish being. 4 tench from 5lb 11oz to a classic looking tench of 8lb 5oz and 3 good roach about the 1lb mark.
The club is looking to recruit bailiffs to join an already established team, any club member wishing to learn more about the role and responsibilities please contact Kevin Williams on 07921 517683 who will be delighted to talk you through.
After several months of negotiations, Tarmac have agreed to put a gate on the car park by Jordans mill. Whilst no date has been finalised this will be a welcome to anglers using the river by the disused lock and behind the Jordans factory.
It has been highlighted that divers have been invited to the Airman to conduct searches for snags which will be subsequently removed. If any club member has knowledge of swims which may contain substantial snags then the committee would appreciate you making us aware so that the divers can be directed to them.

Week ending 6th August 2017

The rivers are now beginning to show their true summer colours with reports of barbel being regular visitors to the bank at Little Paxton together with the attendant chub. The smaller shoal fish such as roach and dace are featuring regularly so for those hardy enough to be caught by the rivers in between showers there is a good chance of a high quality mixed bag with the opportunity of a specimen. Earlier in the year a plus 13lb barbel was taken so the chances are high.
Those fishing broom Lake are saying that the bream are on the feed and it is likely those taking the more relaxed approach can bag up on skimmers to slabs, method or feeder being the chosen approach.
The recent 24 hour match at the Airman last weekend confirms that fish from all species are feeding well  
1st Nigel Gilbert 63 lb 10 oz consisting of 8 bream from 4lb 1oz-5lb 15oz. 2 cats 5lb 4oz & 14lb 6oz & 4lb 4 1/2  oz of silvers.  Nigel also lost 3 other cats through the course of the match.
2nd James Turvey 20lb 14 oz. a cat of 18lb 4oz & a tench of 2lb 10oz.
3rd David Baker 4lb 7oz of silvers
4th Kevin Wilkins 2lb 10oz silvers but would have had more if it wasn’t for pike taking many of his roach. 
Things are certainly looking promising for the 24 hour catfish match scheduled for 1st September. 
The next match is to be held at Broom Lake and this is another 24 hour event 12 and 13th August. Details are in your club books or on the website.  
A reminder to members is that work is to commence shortly at the Airman to clear some of the snags which have been causing problems with lost tackle and this will commence with a test dive which will show exactly what can be removed. After discussions with Bedford Sub-Aqua club the test dive has been scheduled for Saturday 19th August. This will not involve closure of the lake however swims at the far end of the lake will not be available during the dive. It is hoped the test dive will identify snags in the lake and enable plans to be made for their removal during the 16th September dive. 
Finally whilst the waters are being so productive there is always the opportunity to land a specimen and win one of the annual club trophies. Several entries have been received and claims remain open until the 18th of March 2018 when they must be in the hands of the club secretary.

Week ending 30th July 2017

There was a disappointing turnout for the latest Shefford & District AA Ltd monthly match fished at The Airman.  Dave Baker won the match with a repectable 8lb 6oz net of roach caught on waggler and maggot, second was Nigel Gilbert with 6lb of roach and a single skimmer bream using waggler and sweetcorn, with John Harrison third with 9oz of roach.   The next two matches form part of the 24 h series contested at The Airman on 5th/6th August and Broom Lake on 12th/13th August.  Night permits are not required to fish these overnight matches and the venue will be closed to anglers not fishing the 24h matches from midnight on the evening prior to the match, please contact  Nigel Gilbert (07931 215778 evenings & weekends only) for further details.
 
SDAA are pleased to welcome back Bedford Sub-Aqua Club to The Airman to investigate the removal of snags from within the water. They will be attending on Saturday 19th August to carry out test dives to identify areas requiring attention. This will not require closure of the lake but will restrict swim availability and cause some disruption during the test dives, especially at the northern end of the water.  They will then return on Saturday 16th September to try and remove some of the snags, during which time no angling will be permitted. Further information will follow and notices will be posted at the venue.
 Contractors have started cropping the cricket bat willows behind Broom Lake and this work could take several weeks.  Please take extra care when driving around the lake and respect all notices, as the contractors will be using the track for access and removing the timbers and some of the trees being cropped are close to the track and the path leading up to the river. 

Week ending 23rd July 2017

There are plenty of catch reports from Shefford & District AA Ltd waters this week from both river and Stillwater venues.  On the rivers Julian Peacock tackled the river Flit after some recent rain and landed a new PB dace of 11oz 8dr, not the biggest fish reported this week but a very notable dace and this species appears to be flourishing in several sections of this tiny river.  Come the back end of the river season the Flit could produce a dace over a pound, which is a very rare sight on any river.  Alan Lawrence paid a visit to the Ouse at Pavenham were he tempted 4 chub of 3lb 9oz,  4lb 11oz,  5lb 14oz  and a pristine looking specimen of 6lb 2oz, all taken using a one swan shot link ledger with a paste bait wrapped around a 14mm cork ball. 
Prior to his river trip, Alan Lawrence had visited The Airman where he had no fewer than 10 tench during a day session, the best going 8lb 1oz taken just on dark, plus two bream around 6lb each.  All Alan’s fish were caught  using maggots as bait in conjunction with a block end feeder.  Jay Plume also reported a nice tench on ‘the method’ feeder with a cut down boilie as bait.  Other anglers have enjoyed good nets of roach with an abundance of redfins in the 4-6oz bracket, these fish often being caught relatively close in on the pole.  Carp and catfish are being caught but the captors are reluctant to publicise their details. 
A reminder that cropping of the cricket bat willows behind Broom Lake was due to start on 24th July.  Last Thursday a committee member reported tench up to 4.5lb were being caught along the farmer’s field side.  One of the captors, Michael Ward, commented he had been enjoying some good night sessions, including one catch of 9 bream, 2 carp and a tench.  Thomas Parker had caught  a 19lb common and an 8lb mirror and reported that, apart from the previous couple of weeks, he been catching regularly with his best fish a common carp over 25lb.  Sandie Cornell had only one bream to report on the day, but she had recently landed her PB carp of 23lb 3oz, which was a common.  She had also enjoyed  5 fish and 6 fish carp hauls recently during her regular day sessions.  Martin Reynolds was catching bream, perch and a crucian over 3lb, whilst venue regular John Wigg was catching plenty of roach up to 8oz.  Jay Plume fished the pole with 6mm pellets and included a 3lb 8oz tench.  Ian Palmer landed 4 carp in two hours on Friday night, between 10pm and midnight, comprising of commons of 11lb, 17lb and 22lb, and a mirror of 12lb.  Ian reported that the smallest common was trailing another rig in its mouth with poorly tied knots and the hook length attached to a length of line in excess of 20lb breaking strain, also as the bait was a fake pellet bait it would be a permanently fishing rig that could be repeatedly picked up by other fish.  Fortunately Ian was able to remove the offending rig and the fish swam away strongly.  Unfortunately we have also had reports of several vehicles speeding along the track around the lake.  Not only is this potentially dangerous to other anglers present it also causes damage to the track, especially when the track is damp, which will ultimately lead to the track being closed.   
Anglers are still enjoying good catches of silver fish from Willington Lake on a variety of tactics, although sport is often interrupted when pike are attracted to the feeding activity.  Andy Garner managed to tempt pike using lures, but members should remember that despite their fearsome reputation pike need to be handled with great care, especially during the summer months, and may need to be held in the water for several minutes before release to ensure the pike has fully recovered.
 A number of matches are coming up in the next few weeks and all matches are free for members to enter with an optional pools, please contact  Nigel Gilbert (07931 215778 evenings & weekends only) for further details.  The Airman will host the next monthly match on Sunday 30th July with pegs 2-12 reserved for the match.  The 24 h series is then contested at The Airman on 5th/6th August and Broom Lake on 12th/13th August, please note night permits are not required to fish these overnight matches and the lake will be closed to anglers not fishing the 24h matches







Week ending 16th July 2017

Catch reports from SDAA waters are few and far between this week, but The Airman produced a 49lb 12oz catfish for Martin Sharpe whilst peter Gill tempted a 26lb 8oz carp on a surface bait.  Some members have again commented that anglers appear to arrive at The Airman with the intent of using it as a land fill site and proceed to fire out several kilos of bait irrespective of whether the fish are feeding or not.  The committee would recommend that anglers feed in moderation and not attempt to feed every fish in the lake.  The Airman is only 4 acres in size and there is a finite limit to how much bait the fish can feed on. 
Despite a lack of reports on carp captures, Willington Lake continues to produce some excellent nets of silver fish.  Nigel Gilbert targeted one of the swims along the track and took a procession of roach to just over the pound mark using sweetcorn as bait on float tactics.  Most fish were in the 4-6oz rand and a switch to method feeder resulted in a similar stamp of fish. 
The club held a fishing tackle auction and sold several items which had been collected by the club and held in a library raising £172 that has been donated back to Club Funds.  SDAA has also supported the Leiston Youth and Community Angling Society, a small fishing club in Suffolk, by donating a range of tackle to support their efforts to support juniors taking up angling.   Leiston Youth & Community Angling Society (LYCAS) are currently teaching 32 children between the ages of 6 and 14 how to fish, which is a really worthwhile venture, especially as there has been a dramatic fall in national junior rod licence sales in recent years. 
With the continued hot and dry weather it has been decided, that for the benefit of the fish in Stanford Pit, that fishing be suspended with immediate effect until further notice.  Water levels continue to fall and any members walking past the pit who see fish in distress are asked to contact any of the committee so that the committee can decide upon next actions. 
Whilst on the subject of fish welfare, several dead fish have been reported across SDAA waters.  Dead carp may be the result of stress due to spawning whilst dead  pike may simply be due to the stress of being caught and hand handled during hot weather.  The SDAA committee recommend that all fish are returned to the water as quickly as possible during the summer months.   This includes those targeting smaller species and  anglers are asked to consider whether they need to retain fish in keepnets. This is entirely voluntary and if keepnets are used can members ensure they are pegged out fully and not overfilled. 
We have a team of bailiffs who regularly patrol our waters, their main  objective  is to ensure that members enjoy the facilities of the club and the rules are respected.  Another part of the role is to report back to the committee the health of our fisheries and to do this they are charged with speaking to anglers about catches made and obtain a general picture of how productive our waters are.  There is no compulsion on any club member to give specific details of the swim occupied, the baits or tactics used but the club would appreciate direct feedback from members either via the bailiff team , directly through Facebook or to the club publicity officer, so that members can keep updated with the quality of the fish being caught across all our waters. 
Specimen trophies including The Tookey Trophy, for best overall capture are still up for grabs and several entries have been received. The overall winner also receives free SDAA membership for next season. Details of how to claim a specimen capture are in your club book. 
We have been given notice that tree work is scheduled at Broom Lake during the period 24th July to 30th September as some of the cricket bat willows will be felled.  Whilst it is understood that there will be some disruption to anglers it is not expected that the lake will have to close.  Please respect any notices posted at the fishery.  Also a reminder that only 2 rods can be used at Broom Lake by all members until 1st October .

Week ending 9th July 2017

Sparkling sunshine, sparkling waters and great fish to the Bank.
Best of the bunch this week being  to Colin Pirie who had a 25lb 10oz common visit him when he had an overnighter on Broom lake. The beauty raised him from sleep at 1.30 in the morning by rudely setting both his alarms and reels screaming. She was safely in the net after a short sharp tussle.
Our rivers are now picking up the pace with good tench still predominating in the Barford Area with fish being landed in the 5 to 7 lb stamp.
Some quality roach are being reported from the Flit behind Shefford where it was good to see 3 roach around the 10 to 14oz mark being taken on caster over hemp underneath the swing bridge then later upon meeting the same angler again a large roach of just under a Lb on the same tactics where the river bends.
For up to date pictures take a look on our  Facebook site, which continues to be developed and is a great place to see the quality of the fish regularly caught from across our waters. 
As a reminder Books are still for sale and a membership runs all the way until 15/06/18 a full membership being £70.00. Optional night permits are available to fish overnight on the Airman, Broom and Willington Lakes.

On a social matter, the club were delighted to host a fund raising event. On Saturday 8th July the club gave the Royal British Legion use of Broom Lake for a fund raising event that raised £262 for the RBL.  Some 25 people took part in the event with half the attendees being angling novices who received tuition organised by Head Coach David Baker, assisted by other members of the committee.  The warm and sunny conditions meant the carp were unwilling to feed and spent the day slowly cruising in the surface layers.  However, simple float tactics using 4m whips and maggot as bait saw all the novices steadily catch roach, rudd and perch throughout the day.  The photo shows Andy Fievez (Chairman, Stotfold and Arlesey RBL Branch) thanking Richard Bell (SDAA Ltd) for hosting the event.The committee would like to take this opportunity to thank Paul Brogden for organising the RBL event and Paul Watts for providing a constant stream of burgers throughout the day.. 

Week ending 2nd July 2017

Both Shefford & District AA stillwaters and rivers have been producing some good fish in recent weeks.  Relatively few anglers fish the rivers during the summer months and Peter Gill found he had Little Paxton to himself when he was delighted to land a 13lb 5oz barbel.    A little further upstream a few members have now tried the new stretch of the Ouse next to the power station at Little Barford with the most notable fish reported so far being river tench to over 5lb, including a 6lb tench landed by Paul Summers.  The narrow sections of the River Flit around Shefford continue to produce some good roach and dace with the odd small barbel also showing up in catches.  Members should note that the EA have started their weed cutting campaign along the Ivel and Broom River appears to have been  one of the first stretches to be cut. 
The first match of the season saw a disappointing turn out of only four anglers turn up at Willington Lake.  Alan Andrews fished pellet and method feeder to lead the field with 20lb 10oz of mainly roach and skimmer bream and also a tench of 6lb 10oz, plus a carp estimated at 10lb; however, carp over 2lb only count as 2lb in the monthly match series.  Nigel Gilbert was second with 6lb 10oz of roach on waggler and sweetcorn, Malcolm Gibbs used similar tactics for third with 3lb 10oz whilst Alan Harrison weighed in 1lb 14oz of roach, rudd and perch taken on maggot.  The next match is part of the 24h series being fished at Willington Lake on 15th/16th July.  Night permits are not required to take part in the 24h matches and further details can be obtained from Nigel Gilbert (07931 215778 evenings & weekends only).  Members should note that Broom Lake will be closed to members from 08.00-18.00 on Saturday 8th July as the venue will be hosting a charity event in support of the Royal British Legion. 
Alan Lawrence had an excellent tench session on an undisclosed SDAA water in recent weeks.  Alan used flavoured bread paste float fished in the margins over a sprinkling of ground bait to tempt a total of nine tench to 7lb 7oz.  Fortunately Alan’s tackle was sufficiently robust to land a 28lb 5oz mirror carp that decided to gate crashed the party.  
Broom Lake is a popular venue thanks to being able to park behind your peg at the moment.  However, swim choice and time of day are critical for those targeting the carp.  Andy Richwood recently landed carp of 23lb and 18lb within 30 minutes of setting up but then the action stopped and remained biteless for the rest of the day.  Other anglers have been enjoying plenty of carp action as the light fades and during the first few hours of darkness with Andy Riley managing 6 carp during a recent overnight trip.  Bream and tench have been accounting for most activity on carp rods during the day with the carp cruising in the upper layers during the heat of the day. 
Some of the smaller The Airman catfish have been feeding, but none of the larger fish have been reported in recent weeks.  Carp fishing has been a little hit and miss recently and it is the bream and tench that again have been the most reliable feeders.  Unfortunately a few dead fish have been found in recent weeks, which is likely to be caused by the stress of spawning.  However, it is worth reminding members to handle all fish with great care and return them to the water as quickly and safely as possible. 
Carp anglers are still reluctant to talk about their endeavours at Willington Lake, but those targeting tench and other smaller species are enjoying success.  Some areas of the lake are proving more productive than others and those choosing the right areas are again finding a bold approach to feeding and bait selection are reaping the biggest rewards.  Whilst maggots might produce bites all day long in some swims it also tends to draw in the smaller fish, whereas baits such as sweetcorn and pellet mean fewer bites but a much better stamp of fish.





Week ending 18th June 2017

Well the anticipated start of the season sparkled into life with all our river venues reporting good captures of barbel,chub on method and pellet and bream on cage feeder and chopped worm together with the occasional specimen perch. The waters were running clean and clear and with the bright sun and high temperatures not the ideal fishing conditions.
Even the Flit behind Shefford showed its value with a haul of 3 pristine roach coming in at between 10Oz and a pound on trotted red maggot with a bonus 3lb chub reaching the net in a short 2 hour session of river roving.
Just when you think everyone has turned their back on the stillwaters, the catch of the week is special.  
it's a 3lb 5oz crucian from Broom Lake caught by Sandie Cornell on a boilie.
PS - lateral line count of 32, anal ray count of 6 and classic crucian dorsal. An oldish looking fish which was impressive in the flesh!

Week ending 11th June 2017

IPA Blunham water 
The IPA do not currently have an agreement in place for the fishing rights on this water  (IPA water 13, p37 of the SDAA membership book 2017-18). 
In light of this and with the river fishing season due to start on Friday, June 16th, SDAA members MUST NOT fish or access this water until further notice.  We will update these instructions as soon as the situation changes.

The Airman once again shows its nature as a premium fishery with Edward Allen and his son netting a  Moggie caught on a single halibut pellet over a golf ball bag of mixed goodies in a PVA
Colin Pirie, in a two night session bagged himself carp to 26lb and his first cat of 28lb.
There have been reports of cats up to 40lb during the week and a7 fish haul of bream in the 6 to 9lb range together with a tench all on the slider method again.
The slider has been highly effective in the past few weeks, if you fancy giving it a go and you are not sure how to set up an effective rig why not speak to a member of our coaching team.
Meanwhile at Willington, hair rigged double corn provided good sport for a new member  targeting tench but ending up with 10 pristine quality large roach.
The pike are certainly on the move with all venues reporting interruptions due to their being attracted to the-feeding shoals. 
The river season opens later this week and it will be very interesting to see chub and barbel , monster perch and dace gracing the banks once more. The club would appreciate reports and pictures of the first captures from all our rivers but in particular Little Barford.  
Members and non members should be aware the club does not operate any day tickets on any of its waters. Members must be in possession of their club book and valid ea licence. Guests can accompany members and tickets cost £10. If a guest subsequently becomes a member of the club within the same season then the £10 is discounted against the cost of membership.On another note great to see the response from the members to the "great bait debate" thanks for your input, vital for the good health of the club.

Week ending 4th June 2017

Once again the Airman Pit, our flagship venue shows itself to be a prolific water for quality fish.
 
In a 12 hour Sunday session, one of our members(not wishing to be named) had a fantastic days sport. Fishing from peg 3, just over the ledge alternating  float and maggot feeder, using only red maggot caught 6 quality tench ranging from 2lb 7oz to just over 5 and a half pound. 
Members are gearing up for the river season and anticipating good fishing on all our stretches of water as large shoals of dace, roach, chub and bream have been seen patrolling.  
Our barbel anglers are gearing up ready to move onto the Ivel on the lookout for a double.
 Whilst we are all able to enjoy our sport at a time and date of our choosing, others seek to take away our way of life and our hearts go out to all those touched and affected by both the Manchester and London atrocities. The committee sincerely hope none of our members were caught up in either event.

Week ending 28th May 2017

Not much fishing action to report on this week more a message to keep vigilant: 
No major captures to report this week although all waters were fishing well for the major species, Carp, Tench and bream. 
The club has been advised by our colleagues from one of the local angling clubs, Ampthill of illegal activity concerning the removal of 5 dead carp by 2  men who both had valid club books. A reminder to all our members and anyone who has an interest in angling that removal of fish is theft and any such activity should be reported to a member of the committee immediately. 
The rivers open soon and we are looking forward to reports of catches from the clubs latest acquisition, a 350 yard stretch of the River Ouse at Little Barford. Details can be found on the club website www.SheffordDAA.org.uk and new membership books which are on sale now. Can our members note that the closed season does not end until the 16th of June and you should not use the rivers until such date. Unfortunately we have had reports of anglers (not club members) fishing on the river Flit in Shefford during last week. There has been EA activity on our waters recently so to use the rivers before the opening day of the season could lead to fines and bringing your club into disrepute. 
Hopefully we will be back into the big fish reporting next week.

Week ending 21st May 2017

Without doubt there is one story dominating the headlines of this week’s captures. I have been mentioning the clubs traditional tench waters, Willington and Broom Lakes only to be astonished by a capture of an 11lb 9oz monster from the Airman Pit by Peter Swallow. Peter was not lying in wait behind three rods for any of the many specimen carp known to inhabit the Airman, instead he chose to use a traditional method on a sliding float. Having rung the angling press Peter was delighted to be told that this fish is one of the largest ever caught by this method. The club are delighted for Peter.
Anyone capturing a specimen fish, whether gudgeon or carp, may have chance to win one of the clubs awards and to be eligible  is asked to have their book signed by a witness who must be a club member and if possible provide a picture including details of where caught and weight upon capture. All entries to Steve baker, publicity officer please.
Also the committee would like to mention the honest fisherman who found an item of angling tackle and had it returned to its owner. Many thanks.

Week ending 14th May 2017

There is still a month to go before the 16th June when anglers can return to fish the rivers.  Shefford & District AA Ltd are pleased to confirm that they have now secured the fishing rights for a 400m stretch of the Ouse next to the power station at Little Barford.  Details of the venue can be found in the new club books for the 2017/18 season.  This stretch is noted for many species including good numbers of carp and tench on top of the more usual river species of bream, chub, pike, perch, roach and dace.  Access is via a footpath running from the end of Alington Road and the stretch overlooks the golf course on the opposite bank.  Like all SDAA waters this will be for members only and day tickets will not be available.  Members should also note that they should not try to access the stretch at Little Paxton during the close season as keys do not currently open the club lock at the entrance to the allotments.  The Head Bailiff is looking to expand the bailiff team next season and anyone interested in becoming a bailiff can contact Kevin Williams on 07921 517683.  Kevin is particularly looking to strengthen our bailiff team in the St Neots area to help patrol these two waters. 
The Airman catfish, carp, bream and tench have been feeding in numbers although precise details of catches have been hard to track down.  Dennis Thompson managed a 14lb 4oz mirror and then landed a 6lb 2oz bream on his carp gear.  However, the bream was trailing a rig comprising of 3 feet of leadcore that still had a 2oz lead attached.  All members should note that leadcore has been banned on all SDAA waters following a vote by members at an AGM.  The 2oz lead was still attached as the ‘tail rubber’ had been jammed on so tightly it would not budge.  Unfortunately this was not a one off incident and James Turvey recovered another rig from a catfish which comprised of 6 feet of leadcore and again the 2.5oz lead was still attached.  The relevant rule states: “All terminal rigs must be constructed so as to prevent leads and excessive lengths of line remaining attached to fish in the event of a line breakage. The use of leadcore is not permitted”.  Fortunately these fish survived towing around a potential ‘death rig’, other fish have not been so fortunate in the past. 
Carp continue to feature in catches at Broom Lake along with good numbers of bream, with tench also finally putting in an appearance.  Several anglers have enjoyed multiple bags of carp and increasingly more now top the 20lb mark, with Mervyn Saville managed to with a hard fighting 20lb 3oz common and Jake Kitching landing a 20lb common during an overnight session. 



Week ending 23rd April 2017

Club members faced difficult conditions last week demanding a level of skill and tenacity. Several concurrent cold nights with temperatures hovering just above freezing being followed by bright sunny days do not make for easy fishing.   For those who ventured out onto any of the 40 acres of stillwater under the clubs control the efforts were worthwhile with good catches being reported across all waters. 
Silver fish predominated, roach, rudd and even a bleak turning up at Willington! 
A weekend session at Broom lake for Dave Baker provided the highlight of catches reported with 6 bream over 4lb and the largest a hefty lump of  7lb.  Dave went on to bank 6 carp including commons of 11-4, 15-7, 17-6 & 19-7 and a pristine mirror of 22-8.   
With little rain falling in the past month Stanford Pit water levels have dropped around an inch this last week and it is recommended that, to reduce stress on the fish they are not held in keep nets for the present. There is still plenty of activity from the local carp and they are concentrating on the northern (Green Man PH) side of the pit in the relatively shallow water there. Shoals of small rudd have been seen breaking the surface of the water. 
Members are being asked to keep their eyes open eyes open for Floating Pennywort as things warm up.  It was spotted by members on our stretches at Willington and Little Paxton last year before dying back for the winter.  No doubt it will reappear this summer.  The EA will try and deal with any lying in the main channel, but it is likely the club will have to deal with any infestation in a lake. As such it is important that any sightings should be reported to any member of the committee. Photos and precise locations are invaluable.  Useful information has been posted on the website so members can identify this very invasive weed.
Finally, new membership books will be distributed to tackle shops next week and now is a good time to introduce fellow anglers to our waters. Remember day tickets are available to anglers accompanying club members and the price of the ticket is discounted from the subsequent purchase of a book.

Week ending 16th April 2017

SDAA membership cards for the 2017/18 season will be available from early May and will be valid from date of purchase through to 15th June 2018.  All prices will be the same as last season.  Full details about membership, night permits and application forms will appear on the membership section of the SDAA website towards the end of April 
Membership of the SDAA provides you with quality fishing with exclusive access to several excellent lakes and premier stretches of the rivers Great Ouse, Ivel and its tributaries in and around Bedfordshire. SDAA membership also gains access to all Ivel Protection Association (IPA) waters. 
Whether you are a specimen hunter or pleasure angler, SDAA waters can cater for virtually all your angling needs with all major species available. 
The club has an active match programme with around 30 events already scheduled covering all aspects of fishing including specialist pike matches.  
Around the Fisheries 
Broom Lake 
The carp certainly came awake in style on Broom lake last week.  
Anglers enjoying the sunny weather took advantage with Mick Burr, 12lb carp; Daniel Howett, carp of 20lbs and 15lbs as well as 3 bream up to 6lbs; Mark Brigginshaw, carp of 13lbs; Andy Richwood, carp of 18lbs 3ozs. 
Jack Lancaster who was on a day session carping had a brace of  commons of 17lb 8oz and a stunning looking 23lb 12oz fish. 
The Airman 
Anglers are reporting good bags of silver fish including roach , skimmers and rudd and perch. The pike are very active at the moment and anglers targeting these fish are seeing good sport. 
Stanford Pit 
Recently re opened and producing numbers of tench with the occasional bonus carp. This is an ideal fishery for beginners to practice their skills before heading to the larger waters. 
Willington Lake  
Whilst there are no reports this week, The lake is well known for producing carp to over 40Lbs. It boasts a large population of tench,  making multiple bags possible throughout the summer. Bream into double figures feature regularly and there are significant numbers of silver fish so a good mixed bag is only a rod length away.
 
The club would be delighted to hear about your success and you can report your catches and upload pictures to our facebook page.

Week ending 9th April 2017

The recent mild spell has seen water temperatures rise across Shefford & District AA Ltd stillwaters and members can expect to see many species spawning earlier than usual this year.  This was illustrated by the carp spawning at Stanford Pit following the warm weekend weather.  Water levels have risen slightly at Stanford Pit during the spring and the committee have decided to reopen the venue for fishing, but all fish must be returned immediately to the water to avoid unnecessary stress and the use of keepnets at this venue is banned.  The committee will continue to monitor the venue and may well have to reintroduce a fishing ban if water levels start to drop later in the year. 
The Airman catfish have been quite active and the biggest specimen caught last week was a 47lb 5oz catfish caught by Dave Hedges.  The carp have often been seen basking in small gaps in the emerging reed beds as the water temperatures rise, but we urge anglers not to try and catch carp from the reeds as it is almost impossible to land fish from these areas without causing damage to the fish or leaving them tethered.  Members are also reminded that fishing is from the marked swims only at both The Airman and Broom Lake.   
The track at Broom Lake has been repaired and is now open to cars and small vans.  Large vans, heavy vehicles and any vehicle over 2m tall must be left in the car park and not driven around the lake.  Please take care driving round and ensure you stay on the Type 1 and not drive on the grass, which is the main reason for causing the damage that leads to the track’s closure.
 
Two members were recently banned from the club for night fishing without a night permit.  Members are reminded to carry their documents at all times whilst on club waters and they can expect to be bailiffed at any time of the day or night.  The Head Bailiff is looking to expand the bailiff team next season and anyone interested in becoming a bailiff can contact Kevin Williams on 07921 517683.  Kevin is particularly looking to strengthen our bailiff team in the St Neots area.

Week ending 2nd April 2017

The Shefford & District AA Ltd AGM was held last week and members were kept informed of key developments within the club as well as voting to adopt two special resolutions proposed by the committee.  The club has invested in major improvements at The Airman and the finances remain in good shape, meaning there will be no increase in subscriptions for the 2017/18 season.  Membership books for next season will be available from local tackle dealers in early May and will be valid through to 15th June 2018.  Please check the club’s website towards the end of April for full details about membership for next season.  Following the formal AGM, trophies were presented by life member Pete Allen to the winners of the specimen and match competitions.  John Dickman secured the Tookey Trophy for the best overall specimen for his 60lb 13oz catfish.  Malcolm Gibbs was the winner of the monthly match series trophy and James Turvey winner of the pike series shield.  David Hawkes was awarded the Centenary Cup for his wide ranging and major contributions to the management of the Club since joining the Committee in 2008.  David's influence has extended well beyond his roles as Club Secretary and Membership Secretary.  
The Airman has been a popular venue for members in recent weeks, but members are reminded to ensure the gate is left closed and locked after entering or exiting the venue.  A number of catfish have been caught during the last week  including a 35lb 2oz specimen reported by Martin Sharpe, which is a sure sign that water temperatures have been rising.  Bream and tench have also started to show in catches. 
Members have also been enjoying more success at Broom Lake.  Mick Baldwin enjoyed a great catch of ten bream to 7lb during a day session.  On the same day Barry Cook landed carp of 23lb and 19lb, plus two bream of 7lb and 6lb whilst Andy Richwood managed a 15lb carp.  Students from Shuttleworth college have repaired several swims and will hopefully return in May/June to carry out further maintenance work.





Week ending 26th March 2017

Shefford & District AA river venues are now subject to the close season and cannot be fished until 16th June.  A few days before the close season came into force James Turvey visited the Ouse at Pavenham and adopted a roving style fishing several swims during the day.  James was rewarded with two magnificent chub of 6lb and 7lb caught within an hour of each other. 
With water temperatures rising the catfish at The Airman have started to become more active and at least one 40lber was caught during the last week.  Carp are also featuring in catches with Peter Thurgood landing a 25lb 12oz mirror. 
Carp have also started to feed at Broom Lake with several doubles caught during the week, with several large bream also picking up baits intended for the carp.  Winter tree work at the venue is now complete, but students from Shuttleworth college will be visiting the lake on some Fridays to carry out swim repairs and other maintenance work, and members must take heed of any notices regarding swim closures and access restrictions during their visits.  The track around the lake will remain closed until the damaged areas have dried out sufficiently so that they can be repaired.
 
Plenty of anglers have been visiting Willington Lake but catches usually go unreported, other than the odd VS Fisheries stockie carp from last year have been landed.  Members visiting Willington Lake should note that Barford Road is still closed through to 7th April.  Access to the fishery is still available from the Great Barford end of the road.   Although there are signs indicating the road is closed at the Great Barford bridge traffic lights, the actual road closure is well after the entrance to the lake further towards Willington village.





Week ending 19th March 2017

Michael Webb was one of several Shefford & District AA members who headed for the river venues on the 14th March, which was the last day of the river season with rivers now closed to fishing until 16th June.  Michael chose the narrow river Flit (also known as the Ivel Navigation) and landed chub of 3lb 12oz and 4lb 3oz, as well as a brown trout around the 5lb mark.  Further upstream in Shefford, anglers have been enjoying some good catches of roach and dace during the last few weeks of the season, with some of the roach well over the pound mark.  Anyone found fishing the river venues during the close season will face prosecution by the Environment Agency, as well as disciplinary action from the club.  Anglers aged 12 and over will also need to renew their Environment Agency rod licences that expire at the end of March.  The junior rod licence will be free from 1st April, but junior anglers are still required to obtain one.  A new 3 rod licence is also available from 1st April, which will be 50% dearer than the standard 2 rod licence. 
A work party is  being held at Broom Lake on Saturday 25th March and volunteers are welcome to attend, during the work party the track and swims 1-19 will be closed.  Students from Shuttleworth college will be visiting the lake on Fridays for the next few weeks to carry out swim repairs and other maintenance work, and members must take heed of any notices regarding swim closures and access restrictions during their visits.
 
The Shefford & District AA AGM is being held at 8pm on Wednesday 29th March 2017 at Shefford Town Memorial Association Hall, 10 Hitchin Road, Shefford SG17 5JA.  The bar will be open from 7.30pm.  Further details of the AGM are available on the home page of the club’s website.  Entry and voting will be by card only so please remember to bring your membership book.



Week ending 12th March 2017

With the close season on rivers in force from 15th March through to 15th June, Shefford & District AA members are now restricted to the club’s stillwater venues.  Milder conditions have seen a distinct increase in fish activity with both pike and perch likely to go through spawning in the next few weeks.  Members have also reported bream already sporting their spawning tubercles, which is a sure sign that water temperatures have risen and that other species may well spawn earlier than usual this season.  Willington Lake continues to fish well for silver fish and pike, with young 6 year old Aiden Graham setting another PB with a pike of 13lb 4oz.  Carp, tench and bream can now be expected to feature in catches.  Please note that due to planned road closures until the end of March, access to Willington Lake is limited to the Great Barford end of Barford Road. 
The Airman continues to fish well for roach with plenty of skimmer bream also showing up in catches.  Colin Smith managed a short session  using swimfeeder tactics and landed four roach and three skimmers all over a pound, with his best roach weighing 1lb 5oz.  With roach to just under 2lb and plenty of fish over the pound mark some anglers have been putting together roach catches to well over 20lb.   
Tree work on the islands at Broom Lake has been completed.   The track around the lake has now been closed to prevent further damage and will reopen when the ground has dried out and damaged areas have been repaired.  A work party is  being held on Saturday 25th March and volunteers are welcome to attend, during the work party the track and swims 1-19 will be closed.  Students from Shuttleworth college will be visiting the lake on Fridays for the next few weeks to carry out swim repairs and other maintenance work, and members must take heed of any notices regarding swim closures and access restrictions during their visits.

Week ending 5th March 2017

The final round of the Shefford & District AA pike series produced another good result at Willington Lake with several members enjoying multiple pike captures.  The wet and windy conditions appeared to put some members off as only four entered the match, but despite the conditions the pike were on the feed.  Pike match organiser Bryan Lancaster won the match with five pike to 10lb 13oz for a total weight of 34lb 8oz.  Kevin Wilkins landed 8 pike to 4lb 7oz totalling 19lb for second place, with Tony Archer’s 4 pike to 8lb 12oz totalling 17lb 1oz in third.  James Turvey had a single pike of 12lb 12oz, which was the biggest caught on the day.  The pike series has been a resounding success this year with some excellent catches.  James Turvey was the overall series winner with 11 points with Kevin Wilkins second on 6 points.  James also landed the biggest pike of the series with a fish of 13lb 12oz, which was part of his amazing 24 pike haul during the February match. 
Continuing on the pike theme, Richard Crockford landed a fine specimen pike at The Airman just as the light was fading, which tipped the scales round to 25lb 4oz.  Young Dexter Allen was reeling in a small roach when a decent pike grabbed hold and despite only fishing with a size 20 hook Dexter was able to safely land the pike.  Carp have also been more active with Andy Furr catching mirrors of 20lb 10oz and 19lb 2oz during his latest session.   Neil Bygrave and Nigel Gilbert had set off on Sunday morning with the intention of fishing the river Ouse at Pavenham but found the river high and coloured and after a biteless hour decided a move was required.  The river at Willington was also unfishable, so they finally ended up at The Airman after lunch.    Adopting simple maggot feeder approach Neil had his first bite after an hour that resulted in a 1lb 14oz roach.  Three more roach followed in successive casts, the first two over the 1lb mark with the third was again similar to his first at just under 2lb. Then all went quiet for a couple of hours before they started to feed again as dusk approached and Neil landed a further two 1lb+ roach, along with a skimmer bream and a couple of smaller roach.  Nigel also managed a couple of 1lb+ roach later in the session along with some smaller roach. 
There will be a number of closures at Broom Lake in the next few weeks whilst tree surgeons are working.  The whole lake will be closed on Friday 10th March & Saturday 11th March.  A work party is also being held on Saturday 25th March and volunteers are welcome to attend, during the work party the track and swims 1-19 will be closed.  Members will still be able to access the river on these dates but must be mindful of any tree works.  The track around the lake has now been closed to prevent further damage and will reopen when the ground has dried out and damaged areas have been repaired. 
A reminder that the river close season starts after 14th March and the closing date for specimen fish claims is 16th March so that trophies can be engraved ahead of the AGM on 29th March.






Week ending 26th Feb 2017

The changeable weather offered some extra challenges for Shefford & District AA members during the last week, especially for those who chose to try and fish during the gale force winds.  The final round of the match series was fished under blustery conditions at Willington Lake with a disappointing turnout of only three anglers.  Despite the wind causing problems with presentation, John Salmon put together a very respectable 10lb 10oz of roach, bleak and rudd on the pole to secure first place.  Malcolm Gibbs opted to fish the waggler and weighed in 4lb 14oz for second place.  Nigel Gilbert went all out for the bream on the feeder but only managed a few roach.  Malcolm Gibbs had already secured overall victory in the match series that has been fished across the club's stillwaters. The final round in the pike series will take place on Sunday 5th March at Willington Lake (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details).  
David Hawkes returned to Broom River and managed to land another good perch of 3lb 4oz perch on lobworm and also lost good pike that snapped up his lobworm bait.  David fished double red maggot and a small feeder on his second rod and managed to catch 15 good sized roach, several being 'netters'.
There will be a number of closures at Broom Lake in the next few weeks whilst tree surgeons are working.  The whole lake will be closed on Friday 3rd March & Saturday 4th March and again on Friday 10th March & Saturday 11th March.  A work party is also being held on Saturday 25th March and volunteers are welcome to attend, during the work party the track and swims 1-19 will be closed.  Members will still be able to access the river on these dates but must park in the car park and be mindful of any tree works. Apologies for the relatively short notice for these closures, but the dates were dependent upon the tree surgeons availability and no more tree works are planned until next winter.
The Shefford & District AA AGM is being held on Wednesday 29th March 2017 and members should keep an eye on the club's website for further details of the AGM that will appear in the next two weeks.

Week ending 19th Feb 2017

The latest round of the Shefford & District AA pike series saw James Turvey enjoy a truly magnificent catch at Willington Lake.  James was one of ten anglers taking part in the pike match and managed to land an amazing 24 (yes twenty four!) pike ranging from 1lb 7oz to 13lb 2oz for an incredible total weight of 100lb 8oz.  James’s catch of 24 pike in a single session is one that few anglers will ever achieve and with one match still remaining this latest win has given him unassailable lead in the pike series.  Second place was taken by Kevin Wilkins with 3 fish up to 10lb 9oz for a total weight of 18lb 12oz and third place taken by Dennis Thompson with 3 fish for a total weight of 10lb 13oz.  Nine anglers weighed in a total of 38 pike for a total weight of 157lb 12oz.  The final round in the pike series will take place on Sunday 5th March at Willington Lake (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details).  The final monthly match will be held at Willington Lake on Sunday 26th February (contact  Nigel Gilbert 07931 215778 evenings & weekends only for further details). The river close season starts after 14th March and once again several members have been out on the rivers.  David Hawkes went in pursuit of the big perch from Broom River and was delighted to land a 3lb 5oz perch on double red maggot and then lost a large pike that also took a liking to red maggots.   Further upstream John Hollands landed a 4lb 5oz chub from the Langford area. 

The Shefford & District AA AGM is being held on Wednesday 29th March 2017.  If you want to take a more active role in running the club there are vacancies for both committee and officer positions, and nominations for these positions must be received by 28th February.  Members must also advise the Club Secretary in writing of any business to be moved at the AGM before 28th February. 
Week ending 12th Feb 2017

Shefford & District AA are pleased to report that work to upgrade the entrance and car park at The Airman is now complete and the venue is again open to members.  Vehicles must not exceed 5mph whilst on site, must not be parked anywhere on the tarmac entrance and must not be driven over the kerbs (including the dropped kerbs behind pegs 1-4).    Despite flurries of snow at the weekend, anglers were catching plenty of roach and a few small pike. 
With the river venues facing the close season after 14th March, several members are concentrating on our flowing waters.  Mick Burr has a knack of catching big perch from the Ivel but his latest visit produced a pike of over 15lb that took a liking to a lobworm intended for the perch.  Fortunately the pike was hooked in the lip in front of its sharp teeth and it tested Mick’s tackle to the full before being safely landed.  Michael Webb did manage a decent perch from the Ivel and followed this up with a trout just under 3lb on his next visit to one the tributaries. 
The track around Broom Lake is starting to cut up due to vehicles being driven at speed and/or veering off the solid MOT Type 1 surface.  The state of the track is being closely monitored and will be closed without notice if the damage gets any worse.  Anglers targeting the silver fish have been enjoying some good catches, but with the fish tightly shoaled it pays to look for signs of fish activity before choosing where to fish. 
Members visiting Willington Lake should note that Barford Road is closed for several weeks through to early April.  Access to the fishery will still be available during any road closures from the Great Barford end of the road.   Although there are likely to be signs indicating the road is closed at the Great Barford bridge traffic lights, the actual road closure is well after the entrance to the lake further towards Willington village.  Anglers fishing the river behind the lake have been enjoying some good nets of silver fish with roach making up the bulk of catches.  The penultimate round in the pike series takes place on Saturday 18th February at Willington Lake (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details).  The final monthly match will be held at Willington Lake on Sunday 26th February (contact  Nigel Gilbert 07931 215778 evenings & weekends only for further details). 
 
The Shefford & District AA AGM is being held on Wednesday 29th March 2017.  There are vacancies for both committee and officer positions and nominations for these positions must be received by 28th February.  Members must also advise the Club Secretary in writing of any business to be moved at the AGM before 28th February.  The committee has banned the use of drones on all club waters.




Week ending 29th Jan 2017

Even though ice was covering the lakes for most of the week some hardy Shefford & District AA members managed to track down a few fish, despite having to break through the ice.  John Wigg fished Broom Lake during the week and having first cleared a gap in the ice John went on to catch roach up to 8oz fishing the pole.   The track around the lake is still useable but members are asked to only drive around at walking pace and carefully stick to the line of the track in order to avoid further damage to the adjacent soft ground. 
The latest monthly match was fished at The Airman with the five contestants having to break the ice to fish. Malcolm Gibbs was the runaway winner with 5lb 7oz of roach on the long whip from peg 2, whilst John Wigg managed 12oz on the pole from peg 3 for second place, with both anglers plagued by the attention of pike.  No one else weighed, but John Salmon did hook a decent fish on his only bite of the day, but John’s tackle was totally under gunned for the suspected tench, which he failed to land.  With the best eight results from the series counting, Malcolm Gibbs on 29 points cannot be overhauled, with John Wigg, John Salmon and Nigel Gilbert all tied for second with 23 points.  The final monthly match will be held at Willington Lake on Sunday 26th January (contact  Nigel Gilbert 07931 215778 evenings & weekends only for further details).  The penultimate round in the pike series takes place on Saturday 18th February at Willington Lake (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details). 
Work is now underway to upgrading the entrance and car park at The Airman.   The Airman will remain closed until the work has been completed and this is likely to take until Monday 13th February at the earliest.  Bad weather may cause some delays in the work schedule, so we will provide updates on progress as they become available. 
Members visiting Willington Lake should note that Barford Road is due to close for several weeks from the end of January through to the end of March.  We have been assured that access to the fishery will still be available during any road closures from the Great Barford end of the road.   Although there are likely to be signs indicating the road is closed at the Great Barford bridge traffic lights, the actual road closure is well after the entrance to the lake further towards Willington village. 
Finally, an early reminder that the Shefford & District AA AGM will be held on Wednesday 29th March 2017.  There are vacancies for both committee and officer positions for any member wanting to take an active role in managing the club, with committee meetings taking place on the second Tuesday evening of each month.  Nomination for these positions must be received by 28th February and seconded by another member.  Members must also advise the Club Secretary in writing of any business to be moved at the AGM before 28th February.

Week ending 22nd Jan 2017

The winter weather certainly took hold across Shefford & District AA waters during the last week.  Members arriving at the lakes found them frozen over after several hard overnight frosts, which also led to the cancellation of the latest pike match.  The Ouse was also running high and coloured for much of the week as rain water from the previous weekend slowly passed through the system.  The Ivel system remained fishable through most of the week as levels quickly started to drop back to normal, but relatively few members were tempted to wet a line although some were rewarded with the odd chub that were still willing to feed despite the cold conditions. 
Provided the lakes thaw, the next monthly match is scheduled for The Airman on Sunday 29th January (contact  Nigel Gilbert 07931 215778 evenings & weekends only for further details).  The penultimate round in the pike series takes place on Saturday 18th February at Willington Lake (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details). 
Shefford & District AA is about to start work on upgrading the entrance and car park at The Airman.  These works will require the complete closure of The Airman to all members from 17.15 on Sunday 29th January and it is hoped that work will be completed by Monday 13th February.  Obviously any bad weather may cause some delays in the work schedule, so we will provide updates on progress as they become available. There will be no access at all for members during the works.  Broom Lake, Willington Lake and all our river venues will remain open during this time. 
Another reminder that members visiting Willington Lake should note that Barford Road will be closed for several weeks from January through to the end of March to replace a bridge towards the Willington end of the road.  We have been assured that access to the fishery will still be available during any road closures from the Great Barford end of the road.   Although there are likely to be signs indicating the road is closed at the Great Barford bridge traffic lights the actual closure is well after the entrance to the lake.

Week ending 15th Jan 2017

With the first real taste of winter only a few hardy Shefford & District AA members have been visiting the waters during the last week.  Although no large carp have been reported, a few double figure carp have been caught by determined anglers.  Pike and roach are currently the most reliable feeders on the lakes, but with the water now gin clear the fish are tightly shoaled and are often only inclined to feed in short bursts.  Richard Knight elected to fish a session after carp at The Airman where the lake appeared lifeless and ice had started to form in the margins before his alarm finally sounded.  After a brief tussle with the line cutting through the thin ice, Richard landed a 12lb 4oz mirror carp.  At Broom Lake odd carp are still being caught with late afternoon often being the best time to coincide with the carp’s feeding spells.  Colin Smith witnessed a beautifully scaled mirror carp being caught in mid afternoon on a bottom bait.  Chris Donovan also had recent success catching a common carp on a zig-rig in late afternoon, after several hours of fishing bottom baits with no success.  
The club would like to thank the 18 students from Shuttleworth College who carried out an afternoon of work experience at The Airman during the week cutting back vegetation and applying wood chip to the swims.  A work party is being held at The Airman from 9am on Saturday 21st January. The work will involve finishing tidying up the car park and applying wood chip to swims. All volunteers are welcome to attend.  The lake will be closed to fishing whilst the work party is in progress and anyone already fishing will be expected to reel in their rods to help with the work party.  Members should keep an eye out for notices regarding closures of The Airman for further work parties and maintenance work.  
The next round in the pike series takes place on Sunday 22nd January at The Airman (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details), and the next monthly match will also be fished at The Airman on Sunday 29th January (contact  Nigel Gilbert 07931 215778 evenings & weekends only for further details).   
Members visiting Willington Lake or the adjacent stretch of river should note that Barford Road will be closed for several weeks from January through to the end of March to replace a bridge towards the Willington end of the road.  We have been assured that access to the fishery will still be available during any road closures from the Great Barford end of the road.   Although there are likely to be signs indicating the road is closed at the Great Barford bridge traffic lights the actual closure is well after the entrance to the lake.

Week ending 8th Jan 2017

With the lakes now gin clear Shefford & District AA members are finding the larger species are often lying dormant and reluctant to feed, with the exception of the pike.  However, the rivers are still producing some good catches as the fish still have to burn up energy by swimming.  Alan Lawrence has recently enjoyed some excellent chub catches from two separate SDAA waters.  A trip to the Ivel resulted in three chub of 4lb 9oz, 5lb 11oz and 6lb 13oz, with the largest fish taken just on dusk.  Alan followed this up with an even more productive session on the Ouse with four chub of 5lb 5oz, 5lb 9oz, 6lb 1oz and a pristine looking specimen of 7lb 3oz.  All the fish were taken using a light link ledger, and homemade paste as bait.  Elsewhere most river sections have been producing catches of roach and dace on float tactics although it is best to adopt a mobile approach to locate the fish that are often tightly shoaled at this time of year. 
The next round in the pike series takes place on Sunday 22nd January at The Airman (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details), and the next monthly match will also be fished at The Airman on Sunday 29th January (contact  Nigel Gilbert 07931 215778 evenings & weekends only for further details).  Members should keep an eye out for notices regarding closures of The Airman for work parties and maintenance work.  Members planning a trip to Willington should note that Barford Road will be closed for several weeks from January through to the end of March apparently to replace a bridge.  We anticipate that access to the fishery should still be available during any road closures via the Great Barford end of the road.



Week ending 1st Jan 2017

With a period of cold weather putting many species off the feed, Shefford & District AA members have found pike and chub the most reliable feeders.  Mick Burr visited the River Ivel after a heavy overnight frost along with a few other hardy members.  Whilst the others gave up after a few hours without a bite, Mick decided to stick it out until darkness fell as this is often the most productive time of the day.  Mick’s persistence was rewarded with a single bite that resulted in a beautifully conditioned chub of 6lb 12oz, which was also a new PB.  Peter Biernis also tackled the River Ivel on a couple of occasions and managed chub to just under 5lb. 
Young Associate Junior member Aidan Graham returned to Willington Lake hoping to catch more pike and was rewarded with a new PB of 10lb 12oz.  Peter Biernis visited the same venue in pursuit of pike and managed to land three pike and lose another two during a hectic morning session. 
The next round in the pike series takes place on Sunday 22nd January at The Airman (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details), and the next monthly match will also be fished at The Airman on Sunday 29th January (contact  Nigel Gilbert 07931 215778 evenings & weekends only for further details).  Members should keep an eye out for notices regarding closures of The Airman for maintenance work.  There will be at least two work parties during January to cut back vegetation and finish applying wood chip to the swims.



Week ending 18th Dec 2016

Silver fish and predators have been giving the most consistent sport for Shefford & District AA members on both stillwater and river venues.  Local rivers have been receiving more attention in recent weeks with Michael Webb making a return visit to the Ivel Navigation where he recently caught a decent brown trout and proved this was no fluke by landing another two brown trout of 4lb and 6lb.  Peter Biernis visited the Broom River section of the Ivel and fished a small maggot feeder with two red maggots on a size 16 hook to land 15-20 roach up to the pound mark, with most in the 6-10oz bracket.  Michael Webb also found this section to be very productive landing 30-40 roach and dace on his first visit, and returning later in the week with Barry Goode they enjoyed another productive session with ‘umpteen’ roach and dace, and a pair of 3lb perch. 
The latest monthly match was held at Broom Lake with all anglers catching small roach and even smaller perch.  None of the bigger roach put in an appearance, but the top two anglers had their weights boosted by a few skimmer bream up to 6oz.  Nigel Gilbert weighed in 4lb 14oz taken on the pole for first place with Alex Davies securing second spot with 4lb 6oz caught on the whip.  Malcolm Gibbs weighed 2lb 15oz for third, John Wigg 2lb 4oz for fourth and John Salmon 1lb 10oz for fifth.  With three matches left, the competition to be overall series champion is extremely tight with Malcolm Gibbs and Nigel Gilbert currently tied on 24 points, John Wigg on 23 points and John Salmon on 20 points.  The next monthly match will be fished at The Airman on Sunday 29th January (contact  Nigel Gilbert 07931 215778 evenings & weekends only for further details).  
Young Associate Junior member Aidan Graham managed to land a nice pike who during a trip to Willington Lake.  Associate Junior membership of SDAA is FREE for any child under the age of 17, but they must be supervised by a member aged 18 or over in the same swim whilst fishing.  From April 2017 junior EA rod licences will also be FREE, so members should make full use of Associate Junior membership to help encourage youngsters to take up angling.  Nationally junior EA rod licence sales have halved in the last seven years. 
The next round in the pike series takes place on Sunday 22nd January at The Airman (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details).   There will be at least two work parties at The Airman during January to cut back vegetation and finish applying wood chip to the swims, and the dates will be advertised in the near future.

Weekending 11th Dec 2016

As we have now moved into winter, the Shefford & District AA members who are enjoying most success are those choosing to target the fish that are reliable feeders during the colder months.  The latest round of the pike series fished at Willington Lake attracted eight anglers and each angler caught at least two pike, with a total of 27 pike landed for a total weight of 129lb 4oz.  First place was taken by James Turvey with 4 pike to 8lb 5oz for a total weight of 23lb 3oz, just a few ounces ahead of Bryan Lancaster with 4 pike to 8lb 12oz for 22lb 8oz.  Third place was taken by Kevin Wilkins with 4 pike to 8lb 8oz for 21lb 14oz.  Tony Archer caught 3 pike for 19lb 6oz,  Jack Lancaster 4 pike for 11lb 7oz, Dave Baker 3 pike for 10lb 14oz, Alfie Archer 2 pike for 10lb 5oz and Dennis Thompson 3 pike for 9lb 11oz.  After 4 matches James Turvey leads the series with 2 wins and a second place for a total of 8 points.  The next round in the pike series takes place on Sunday 22nd January at Willington Lake (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details).   The last monthly match of 2016 will be held on Sunday 18th December at Broom Lake (contact  Nigel Gilbert 07931 215778 evenings & weekends only for further details). 
SDAA waters on the Flit/Ivel Navigation received an early Christmas present in the shape of 1,500 barbel from the Environment Agency’s Calverton fish farm. Clifton Road Bridge, the Horsebridge and North Bridge in Shefford all received 500 barbel that are two summers old. The hope is these fish will spread out along the river and create a breeding population in the longer term. Previously the EA has concentrated stocking barbel at the Horsebridge. We urge members to report any barbel caught between Jordans Mill and Shefford so that we can help the EA monitor how far the barbel population has spread.  Tony Hickmott recently targeted the Ivel Navigation below Stanford Lock and although no barbel showed up in his net, he found it was fishing well for roach and small chub. 
‘Half year’ Shefford & District AA books are available from our usual outlets and remain valid through to 15th June 2017 (prices: Full £40, Concessions £30, Partners £25, Juniors £10).  Please note that night fishing at The Airman, Broom Lake and Willington Lake requires optional Night Permits (there is no part year discount on these Night Permits).

EA BARBEL STOCKING
 
SDAA waters on the Flit/Ivel Navigation received an early Christmas present in the shape of 1,500 barbel from the Environment Agency’s Calverton fish farm.  Clifton Road Bridge, the Horsebridge and North Bridge in Shefford all received 500 barbel that are two summers old.  The hope is these fish will spread out along the river and create a breeding population in the longer term.  Previously the EA has concentrated stocking barbel at the Horsebridge.  We urge members to report any barbel caught between Jordans Mill and Shefford so that we can help the EA monitor how far the barbel population has spread.
 During their visit the EA team also stocked 500 barbel at Biggleswade, 2,000 chub in Langford and 500 barbel at Henlow along the Ivel.

Week ending 4th Dec 2016

The cold and frosty conditions saw sport on Shefford & District AA stillwaters slow down with river venues offering the best option to find feeding fish.  Whilst the carp fishing on Willington Lake appeared to have ground to a halt, it was a very different situation for those who venture onto the short section of the Ouse behind the lake.  Brian Barrett decided to fish a maggot feeder and started to get plenty of bites from the off, but became increasingly frustrated as he just could not connect with any fish despite the maggots on his hook being crushed.  As the bites were usually ‘on the drop’, Brian added a piece of rig foam on the hooklength to keep the bait suspended off the bottom and this resulted in a bite virtually every cast and eventually roach between 4 and 8oz graced his net.  Dave Baker visited the stretch a few days later for a short pike session, casting out a deadbait on one rod and setting up a small maggot feeder to catch a live bait.  Dave’s problem was he could not catch a fish small enough to use as live bait as it was a ‘bite a chuck’ on the feeder landing a succession of good sized roach, dace and small chub.  His deadbait did result in one pike of 8lb, which was attacked by an even bigger pike on its way to the landing net.  All the club’s stretches of the Ouse have been fishing well this year for silver fish and are well worth a visit. 
The next round in the pike series takes place on Sunday 11th December at Willington Lake (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details) an the next monthly match will be held on Sunday 18th December at Broom Lake (contact  Nigel Gilbert 07931 215778 evenings & weekends only for further details). 
Last week was a busy week for work parties and it was pleasing to see a number of new volunteers in attendance.  3 tonnes of Siltex was applied to The Airman with the aid of a boat, whilst wood chippings were spread across several swims.  A tree surgeon dealt with a number of dangerous trees around Broom Lake over two days, whilst volunteers dealt with the fallen timbers.  The track around the lake remains open for the time being, but members should take extra care to keep to the stone tracks and not stray onto the grass, which has started to rut in a few places. 
‘Half year’ Shefford & District AA books are available from our usual outlets and remain valid through to 15th June 2017 (prices: Full £40, Concessions £30, Partners £25, Juniors £10).  Please note that night fishing at The Airman, Broom Lake and Willington Lake requires optional Night Permits (there is no part year discount on these Night Permits).

Week ending 27th Nov 2016

Relatively few Shefford & District AA members have been seen on the banks this week, but results from the weekend matches suggest the stillwaters are still fishing well.  The Airman hosted the latest round of the pike series and attracted 10 participants, but as with the roach fishing during the week, the 13 pike caught during the match prove to be very localised.  James Turvey was the runaway winner with no fewer than 7 pike to 10lb 4oz and a total weight of 35lb 10oz.  Tony Archer secured second place with two pike to 9lb 1oz for a total weight of 14lb.  Kevin Wilkins was third with two pike for 11lb 11oz, whilst Dave Baker’s two pike for 4lb 15oz took fourth place.  The remaining six participants all blanked.   The next round in the pike series takes place on Sunday 11th December at Willington Lake (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details). 
The latest monthly match was fished at Willington Lake and despite the cold conditions all the participants weighed in good nets of roach and rudd.  Malcolm Gibbs ran out the winner with 10lb 4oz caught on both long whip and waggler tactics, followed by John Salmon with 7lb 12oz on long pole.  Alec Davies weighed  7lb 1oz on waggler for third, John Wigg 5lb 6oz on pole for fourth and Nigel Gilbert 3lb 4oz on waggler for fifth.  The next monthly match will be held on Sunday 18th December at Broom Lake (contact  Nigel Gilbert 07931 215778 evenings & weekends only for further details), where the silver fish are now more tightly shoaled and good bags of roach are possible if fishing the right areas of the lake. 
A combination of heavy rain and frosts has helped clear the weed from many river venues, making them easier to fish.  Michael Webb fished one of the smaller local river venues and was rewarded with a chub around 4lb and a surprise brown trout over 3lb. 
‘Half year’ Shefford & District AA books are available from our usual outlets and remain valid through to 15th June 2017 (prices: Full £40, Concessions £30, Partners £25, Juniors £10).  Please note that night fishing at The Airman, Broom Lake and Willington Lake requires optional Night Permits (there is no part year discount on these Night Permits).

Week ending 20th Nov 2016

Once again few reports have been received by Shefford & District AA members but a change to milder, wetter and windier conditions should hopefully improve catches on both rivers and stillwaters.  Tony Hickmott decided to give The Airman a try with silver fish being his intended quarry.  Tony was greeted by blue skies in the morning following a mild and wet conditions the previous day, and from the off carp could be seen cruising the top layers of the water, and willing to take loose fed floating casters.  Tony fished two maggots (left over from the previous week’s fishing trip) mounted on a size 16 hook and fished hard on the bottom.  Tony soon saw the first of what turned out to be four mirror carp come to the net, all weighing between 11lb and 12lb, and all taken on double maggot, before a very heavy rain shower started a return to cooler weather.  Tony’s  only roach came immediately after changed to a larger size 10 hook, but then no more carp.  The Airman will be closed on Saturday 26th November for the third round of the pike series (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details).  The lake is closed again on Tuesday 29th November to apply 3 tonnes of Siltex to the lake and all volunteers are welcome to attend to help move the Siltex bags to the boat and finish applying wood chip to the swims.  
The next monthly match will be held at Willington Lake on Sunday 27th November (contact  Nigel Gilbert 07931 215778 evenings & weekends only for further details).  Broom Lake will be closed on Friday 2nd and Saturday 3rd December whilst a tree surgeon carries out tree work around the lake and volunteers will be required to deal with the felled timbers. 
The committee has been made aware of several recent incidents of rule breaking, which members need to be aware of.  Firstly, several members have failed to produce their rod licences when requested by bailiffs.  It is a club rule that membership cards and rod licences must be carried at all times whilst fishing, and must be produced when requested by a bailiff.  Members unable to produce any of these documents to bailiffs will be asked to pack up and leave, so make sure you have your rod licence with you.  
With the undergrowth now dying back, it has revealed a clear problem with litter at The Airman and most upsetting was the numerous empty cans and bottles of alcohol found.  The top of every page in the club book carries the wording ‘strictly no alcohol or litter’ and anyone found breaking these rules can expect a ban from the club. 
Most worryingly we have discovered damage to banks on some of our river venues where people have taken it upon themselves to dig out sections of bank with a spade to make a flat area to fish from, as well as damaging and breaking off numerous branches from trees.  This is totally unacceptable behaviour and may result in the club losing the fishing rights on these venues.  Again it is clearly written in the rules that anyone found causing damage to fisheries is likely to receive a ban.
 
‘Half-year’ membership of SDAA will be available again this season and will be valid from 1st December 2016 through to 15th June 2017.  ‘Half-year’ membership books will be available from our usual outlets towards the end of November.  The membership section of the SDAA website will be updated in the next few days with details of the ‘half-year’ membership fees and a ‘half-year’ application form for those wanting to submit a postal application.

Week ending 13th Nov 2016

A number of Shefford & District AA members have been out on the bank but no specific catches have been reported.   Anglers fishing The Airman reported catching catfish, carp and bream ahead of the work party on Sunday.  The club would like to thank Bedford Sub Aqua Club for helping to identify and remove several snags. Due to the recent heavy rain the visibility had reduced to only about 3 foot, which made the dive a bit more difficult than anticipated.  Snags identified by the divers include big water tanks, tyres, broken down metal drums, wire fencing, metal frames and metal crates that are all now coated in zebra mussels.  These items were probably dumped in the lake well over 50 years ago when it was used as a tip, and well before it became a fishery.  Some of the smaller snags were removed by hand, with those that were too bulky/heavy to be removed filmed so they will be easy to locate in the future.  One of the unmovable square water tanks was home to a catfish which the divers managed to film before the silt was stirred up.  We are hoping to arrange another day in the spring to try and remove a few more of these snags.  We would also like to thank several volunteers that turned up and applied wood chip to the swims around the lake whilst the lake was closed for the divers. 
The Airman will be closed on Saturday 26th November for the third round of the pike series (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details) and the next monthly match will be held at Willington Lake on Sunday 27th November (contact  Nigel Gilbert 07931 215778 evenings & weekends only for further details). 
The Airman will be closed on Tuesday 29th November to apply 3 tonnes of Siltex to the lake and all volunteers are welcome to attend to help move the Siltex bags to the boat and finish applying wood chip to the swims.  Broom Lake will be closed on Friday 2nd and Saturday 3rd December whilst a tree surgeon carries out tree work around the lake and volunteers will be required to deal with the felled timbers. 
The SDAA committee have recently agreed to offer ‘half-year’ membership this season.  ‘Half-year’ membership will be valid from 1st December 2016 through to 15th June 2017.  ‘Half-year’ membership books will be available from our usual outlets towards the end of November.  The membership section of the SDAA website will be updated in mid-November with details of the ‘half-year’ membership fees and a ‘half-year’ application form for those wanting to submit a postal application.

Week ending 6th Nov 2016

The sudden change to cold weather has seen far fewer Shefford & District AA members on the bank.   The second round of the pike series held at Willington Lake saw 9 anglers land a total of 19 pike ranging from a few ounces to double figures, for a total weight in excess of 77lb.  Stuart Lancaster had managed to catch pike on his two previous trips to the venue and Stuart ran out the winner of the match with two pike to 13lb 9oz for a total of 18lb 2oz.  James Turvey was just a few ounces behind in second place with three pike to 9lb 13oz and a total weight of 17lb 13oz.  Dave Baker landed four pike to 8lb 7oz and a total weight of 15lb 3oz to secure third place with four other anglers weighing in pike. 
River anglers have been enjoying some good catches of silver fish from all the club’s stretches along the Ouse with quality roach featuring in many catches. 
The Airman will be closed on Sunday 13th November from 9am to allow divers to investigate several underwater snags and a work party will also be held at the same time to apply woodchip to the swims.  All volunteers are welcome to attend the work party and please bring a wheelbarrow if you can.  The Airman will be closed on Tuesday 29th November to apply 3 tonnes of Siltex to the lake and again volunteers are welcome to attend.  Finally, advanced warning that Broom Lake will be closed on Friday 2nd and Saturday 3rd December whilst a tree surgeon carries out tree work around the lake and volunteers will be required to deal with the felled timbers. 
The Airman will be closed on Saturday 26th November for the third round of the pike series (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details) and the next monthly match will be held at Willington Lake on Sunday 27th November (contact  Nigel Gilbert 07931 215778 evenings & weekends only for further details).

 

The islands at Broom Lake have once again been cleared of end tackle and line.  The volunteers removed 2kg of leads all attached to rigs (some with bait on), 5 spombs, 3 method feeders, 3 surface floats, 1 spod and enough line to fill an 18 litre bucket.  The haul included 3 rigs that included leadcore, the use of which has banned on all SDAA waters for several years.   Most worrying is the poor design of several rigs with one an outright ‘death rig’ where the components were clearly prevented from sliding off the leader material (see photos).  Fortunately this rig was found up a tree and not attached to a dead carp.
To avoid leaving tackle up the trees anglers should learn how to use the line clip on their reels to ensure their tackle stops short of the islands on the cast and then place a marker on the line.  Unclip after casting to avoid problems when you get a run.  It is then just a case of clipping up to the same mark before recasting.  Make sure you always stand in the same spot when recasting and cast to the same spot.  It is best to practice without a hooklink attached until you are confident that you can avoid casting into the trees.  A quick search of the internet will produce plenty of articles and videos explaining how to do this. 

Week endind 30th Oct 2016

The relatively mild and dry conditions have seen plenty of Shefford & District AA members visiting the stillwater venues with most species still on the feed. Dave Hedges found the catfish in an obliging mood during a recent midweek session at The Airman managing to land 5 catfish weighing 24lb 12oz, 27 lb, 34lb 4oz, 44lb and 46lb 9oz.  Dave’s session also produced 7 bream, 2 roach and a 21lb 4oz common carp.  The roach fishing has been a little inconsistent in recent weeks, but at least everyone caught fish in the latest monthly match that was won by John Salmon with 5lb 11oz of roach using pole tactics.  Malcolm Gibbs opted to fish the waggler and took second spot with 5lb 1oz 8dr of roach, whilst John Wigg secured third place with 4lb 2oz of roach on the pole.  The Airman will be closed on Sunday 13th November from 9am to allow divers to investigate several underwater snags and a work party will also be held to apply woodchip to the swims.  All volunteers are welcome to attend the work party and please bring a wheelbarrow if you can. 
Willington Lake will be closed on Sunday 6th November for the second round of the pike series (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details).  Carp are still being caught, but many anglers fishing the lake are targeting the silver fish and enjoying some bumper catches.  Small roach can be caught from virtually every swim, but the key to big catches is a bold feeding approach and the use of selective baits to pick out the bigger fish.  One midweek angler reported taking a string of good roach to just over the pound mark using double sweetcorn as hookbait. 
Another batch of top quality mirror carp from VS Fisheries has been stocked into both The Airman (10 carp) and Willington Lake (15 carp).  These C4 carp (4 summers old) averaged around the 9lb mark and have a variety of scale patterns and body shapes.  We would appreciate members accurately weighing and sending photos of any ‘stockies’ so that we can follow their progress in future years.  Some of the VS Fisheries C4 carp from previous stockings into Willington Lake are now in excess of 30lb, and still growing. 
The highly invasive non-native species  Floating Pennywort is now established in several areas of the Ouse downstream of Bedford.  The presence of Floating Pennywort has been confirmed on our stretches of river at both Willington and Little Paxton, so anglers must take great care to follow the Check, Clean, Dry biosecurity  procedures to prevent accidentally transferring this invasive species to other water bodies.  If you spot this species on any club water (other than the Ouse) please report it to a member of the committee ASAP.



Week ending 23rd Oct 2016

Once again few reports of catches have been received from Shefford & District AA members this week. The carp fishing at Broom Lake has been quite consistent in recent weeks with several anglers enjoying multiple catches with a number of 20s being landed.  Sandie Cornell enjoyed another successful daytime session tempting four carp using boilies as bait, topped by a common carp of 20lb 10oz.  With water temperatures cooling the silver fish are starting to shoal up more tightly so it is worth moving swims if you are struggling for bites. 
Reports on social media suggest both catfish and carp have been feeding at The Airman during the last week.  The venue will host the next round of the monthly match series on Sunday 30th October with pegs 2-12 (inclusive) reserved for the match (for further information contact  Nigel Gilbert on 07931 215778 - evenings & weekends only).  The Airman will be closed on Sunday 13th November from 9am to allow divers to investigate several underwater snags and a work party will also be held to apply woodchip to the swims.  All volunteers are welcome to attend the work party and please bring a wheelbarrow if you can. 
Willington Lake will be closed on Sunday 6th November for the second round of the pike series (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details). 
Several fisheries already contain invasive non-native species of plants (e.g. Himalayan Balsam) and animals (e.g. signal crayfish) and anglers should make themselves aware of the Check, Clean, Dry biosecurity procedures to help prevent the spread of non-native species, as well as reducing the risk of spreading any fish diseases.  Floating Pennywort is now established in several areas of the Ouse downstream of Bedford through to Brampton, so anglers need to take care not to accidentally transfer this invasive species to other water bodies.  Floating Pennywort is easily identified by its shiny, kidney-shaped leaves with crinkled edge, which are frequently broader than long.  Please report to a member of the committee if you spot this species on any club water (other than the Ouse).

Check, Clean, Dry    Floating Pennywort

 

Week ending 16th Oct 2016

Once again few reports of catches have been received from Shefford & District AA members this week.  Broom Lake has continued to produce some decent carp catches and whilst most are carp are mid doubles there a good number of 20s also showing, exemplified by the 24lb common landed by Tony Parsons during a recent overnight session.  The fist pike match of the year was held on the venue last weekend and it turned out to be a very disappointing affair with none of the five participants managing to catch. 
The next round of the monthly match series will be fished at The Airman on Sunday 30th October with pegs 2-12 (inclusive) reserved for the match.  These matches are also open to all members and anyone wanting further information can contact  Nigel Gilbert 07931 215778 (evenings & weekends only).   
Anglers are still enjoying good bags of silver fish at Willington Lake on both float and feeder tactics although sport can often be interrupted by the unwanted attentions of pike homing in on the feeding fish.  Willington Lake will be closed on Sunday 6th November for the second round of the pike series (contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819 for further details).
 
Several stillwater venues are currently suffering from low water levels so it pays to think about how you can safely land and return large fish to the water before starting to fish.  At Willington Lake anglers will need a decent set of waterproof boots or waders to land and return fish in areas of the lake where the margins are currently shallow in several areas.  Water levels at Stanford Pit are still extremely low and the fishery remains closed to angling.   
The Environment Agency have completed their weed cutting campaign on the River Ivel but our Broom River section has not been cut this year, so it may take longer than usual for all the weed to die back and make all swims fishable. 

Week ending 9th Oct 2016

Although the weather has been fairly settled, few reports of catches have been received from Shefford & District AA members.  Sandie Cornell reported a new PB common carp from Broom Lake a couple of weeks ago.  Sandie returned to the venue and a boilie fished at 50 yards range resulted in another PB in the shape of a 22lb 10oz mirror carp.  Broom Lake will be closed on Saturday 15th October for the first round of the pike matches.  These matches are open to all members and anyone wanting further information regarding the pike matches can contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819. 
Mark Tomlin recently fished the Ouse at Little Paxton and landed a 14lb 7oz barbel.  Hopefully the river sections will become even more productive as flows begin to pick up and the weed starts to die back. 
Finally, advanced warning that pegs 2-12 (inclusive) will be unavailable at The Airman on Sunday 30th October due to the next round of the monthly match series.  These matches are also open to all members and anyone wanting further information can contact  Nigel Gilbert 07931 215778 (evenings & weekends only).

Week ending 2nd Oct 2016

The arrival of autumn has seen fishing improve across all Shefford & District AA venues with the river sections also now running into form.  Head bailiff Kevin Williams enjoyed a successful weekend session on the Ouse at Pavenham landing a range of species.  Fishing maggot during the day saw Kevin land a succession of small fish including a number of good roach, but a switch to bigger baits as dusk approached and through the night produced some much bigger fish.  Kevin landed five chub over 4lb topped by a specimen of 7lb 2oz, as well as two barbel of 9lb and 11lb 3oz.  
Dave Hedges continued his run of success at The Airman landing five catfish during his latest four night session weighing 7lb 2oz, 16lb 6oz, 20lb 6oz, 38lb 2oz and 42lb 4 oz.  Carp have also been feeding with Fred Parker landing one of the lake’s old warriors in the shape of a 20lb 5oz common.  Roach anglers have also been enjoying success using both float and feeder tactics, but the common problem is keeping in touch with the roach shoals when they attract the attentions of the predators.  Colin Smith soon had decent roach feeding on his waggler and pellet approach and it wasn’t long before he had 20 good redfins in the net, but the unmistakable strike of a large catfish in the middle of the feeding area soon dispersed the shoal with Colin left struggling for any bites.
 Broom Lake continues to fish well with plenty of carp to low 20s reported.  Robert Symonds landed four common carp during a recent overnight session topped by a plump 23lb fish.  Alec Davies has been fishing caster using a whip and landed several good bags of roach and skimmer bream during the week.  Broom Lake will be closed on Saturday 15th October for the first round of the pike matches.  These matches are open to all members and anyone wanting further information regarding the pike matches can contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819






Week ending 25th Sept 2016

There has been plenty of action across all Shefford & District AA stillwaters as the larger species have started to pack on extra weight ahead of the winter.   Plenty of catfish and carp have been landed at The Airman in recent weeks with Dave Hedges managing seven catfish to 42lb 2oz and two common carp to 19lb 6oz over a four night session.  Junior Dexter Allen has landed a number of different species from the venue this season and managed to tempt a 14lb 2oz catfish on his latest trip.  Please note The Airman will be closed to fishing for a work party on Saturday 1st October from 9am through to 5pm.  The work will include improving some of the swims and managing some of the reed beds, and all members are welcome to attend. 
Broom Lake recently hosted an interclub match against Ampthill DAC, which was won by SDAA member Alec Davies with 13lb 7oz of bream.  Ampthill anglers took the next two positions with Stuart Kitley putting together a 10lb 6oz mixed bag of skimmers, perch and roach for second and  Martin Ward 5lb 8oz 8dr for third.  Carp anglers have been enjoying plenty of action with plenty of fish to low 20s reported.  Sandie Cornell is a venue regular and she managed four carp during a day session with all the carp caught on boilies fished at 40 yards, including a new PB common carp of 20lb 4oz. 
Willington Lake has been receiving a lot of attention from carp anglers in recent weeks but none appear willing to report their captures.  Anglers fishing for the smaller species are still enjoying good catches from several different areas of the lake and the abundance of small fish bodes well for the pike fishing over the winter months.  The club will be hosting a series of 7 pike matches from mid-October through to March with dates and venues listed in the membership book, but anyone wanting further information regarding the pike matches can contact  Bryan Lancaster on 07810 454819.





Week ending 11th Sept 2016

Plenty of Shefford & District AA members have been enjoying the recent spell of fairly settled weather with several good catches reported.  As the nights draw in and water temperatures start to drop anglers can expect the larger species to feed more actively as they pack on extra weight for the winter.   The annual catfish match was held at The Airman last weekend with eleven anglers taking part hoping the match coincided with a spell of heavy feeding by the catfish that now run to over 60lb.  Unfortunately the catfish proved somewhat difficult to tempt with Paul Williams winning the match with a single catfish of 31lb 2oz.  Second place was secured by Edd Allen with a catfish of 25lb 4oz and Mick Abbot was third with a fish of 19lb 1oz.  Sunday saw young junior Dexter Allen land a tench of 6lb 6oz on a float ledgered lobworm and Adrian Fehr land a mirror carp of 28lb 15oz.  The lake has also been fishing well for silver fish in recent weeks with several anglers reporting good nets of roach.
 
Broom Lake has been a popular venue but the carp have been feeding in fits and starts.  Andy Riley caught the venue just right when cooler temperatures switched the carp on the feed and he managed twelve carp to low 20s in just a few hours on his first night, before sport slowed down picking up just a few more fish during his midweek session.  Anglers have reported plenty of commons to low 20s in recent weeks and Matt Rayner tempted a fully scaled 23lb mirror last weekend.  Relatively few anglers have been fishing for the silver fish recently, but plenty of bream have been caught on baits intended for the carp.  The whole lake is closed on Sunday 18th September for an interclub match against Ampthill DAC.  All members are welcome to take part in this match and further details can be obtained from David Baker (07784 537047).  The last interclub match fished on the venue against Letchworth GCAA at the end of August was won with over 12lb of fish, with two thirds of the contestants weighing in over 4lb. 
Carp anglers continue to remain tight lipped about their captures at Willington Lake.  Feedback suggests the larger specimens have been largely preoccupied on naturals although a few have been tempted by anglers baits.  The more recent ‘stockies’ have proven far more reliable feeders in recent weeks. The lake has also seen plenty of anglers targeting other species with tench anglers reporting a healthy number of smaller tench showing up alongside the larger specimens.  There are plenty of skimmer bream also showing in catches from certain areas of the lake.  Anglers targeting the better roach, which now run to well over the pound mark, are currently experiencing large shoals of smaller roach moving into baited areas requiring the use of larger selective baits to tempt the larger specimens. 
Members should note that Stanford Pit is closed to fishing until further notice due to low water levels combined with prolific weed growth resulting in low oxygen levels, especially during periods of hot weather.  The situation will be reviewed once water temperatures fall and the weed begins to die off. 
Many parts of the Ivel and its tributaries are still heavily weeded and many areas are proving difficult to fish.  Weed is less of a problem on the club’s stretches on the Ouse and members should note that Pavenham will be closed during the weekend 24th and 25th September as members of the SDAA bailiff team will be enjoying a weekend ‘fish in’.


 




Week ending 21st August 2016

Recent results on Shefford & District AA waters have often been governed by the weather with overcast or windy conditions proving much more productive than calm and sunny conditions.  Whilst most members concentrate on still waters, Head Bailiff Kevin Williams has been concentrating his efforts on the rivers and in particular the Ouse at Little Paxton in search of barbel.  Kevin's persistence finally paid off with the capture of an excellent 14lb 6oz specimen with a smaller barbel of 7lb during the same session.  Members are again reminded that vehicles must not exceed 5mph whilst travelling through the Little Paxton allotments and vehicles can only be parked in the designated car park described in the club book. 
Broom Lake has seen several anglers enjoy multiple captures of carp with most fish being double figure commons. Jake Kitching landed commons upto 19lb 7oz on his first overnight session on the venue.  Mark Lumley reported catching three commons of 13lb,18lb and 19lb during a recent daytime session.  Pegs 1-5 and 30-42 will be unavailable on Sunday 28th August for an interclub match against Letchworth GCAA. Further details about the interclub matches can be obtained from David Baker (07784 537047). 
Willington Lake has continued to fish well for tench, bream and roach particularly when a strong breeze is blowing.  A significant number of smaller tench up to 4lb have been featuring in catches as well as the bigger specimens up to 8 lb, which are often caught on carp tactics.
Plenty of roach to well over the pound mark have been landed, but more selective baits are often required to avoid the smaller fish in order to catch the better stamp of roach. 
The recent warm weather has seen water levels at Stanford Pit fall quite rapidly and the fish are now concentrated in the deeper areas of the lake. With the fish under stress the lake has been closed to fishing until further notice.

Week ending 7th August 2016

Plenty of Shefford & District AA members have been spending time on the banks enjoying the summer weather and whilst many of the smaller species have been happy to feed during the heat of the day, those in search of the larger fish have often found dusk through to early morning to be the most productive periods.  The recent monthly match held at The Airman again demonstrated that there are plenty of fish to be caught in addition to the catfish and carp.  John Salmon ran out the clear winner with 22lb 9oz comprising of mainly roach and perch but boosted by two tench of 5lb and 6lb 9oz all caught on the pole.  Malcolm Gibbs was second with 14lb of mainly roach caught on the long whip, with Nigel Gilbert third with 7lb 6oz of mainly roach plus a few skimmers and perch on the pole.
John Wigg was fourth with 6lb 7oz and Neil Bygrave fifth with 4lb 1oz.  
Darren Brown found Broom Lake to be unresponsive until the sun started to set and then went on to catch five bream and three carp during his overnight session.  Darren’s two biggest carp were commons of 17lb and 18lb 14oz.   Mervyn Saville also reported a nice common of 18lb 1oz.  When the carp are reluctant to feed there are plenty of other species to target with new member Paul Carr landing a 6lb 6oz bream during his first evening session on the venue.  Members should note that the lake will be closed from midnight on Friday 19th August through to 11am on Sunday 21st August for the Dean Johnson memorial match, which is an invitation only event.  Pegs 1-5 and 30-42 will also be unavailable on Sunday 28th August for an interclub match against Letchworth GCAA.  An interclub match is also being held against Ampthill DAC on Sunday 21st August at their Marston Pit.  Further details about the interclub matches can be obtained from David Baker (07784 537047). 
The smaller carp continue to feature in catches at Willington Lake with the tench also featuring in daytime catches.  The smaller species continue to be reliable feeders with Paul Carr catching roach on his first trip to the water.  Paul also found that once the silver fish are feeding the pike are also attracted to the swim and attempt to intercept hooked fish.  A change to a bigger hook resulted in Paul managing to land one of the culprits in the shape of a 9lb 2oz pike, but at the expense of a broken landing net handle. 
The Ouse at Little Paxton is proving a popular river venue and whilst many anglers are targeting the double figure barbel it is other species that are currently dominating catches.  Bream and eels are falling to ledger tactics, whilst mixed bags of roach, perch and chub are being caught on the float.  This is a members only water and day tickets are not available.  Members parking vehicles within the allotments are reminded a club key is now required for access, vehicles must not exceed 5mph and must only be parked in the designated car park.



Week ending 31st July 2016

The recent settled weather has seen increased numbers of Shefford & District AA members on the bank with some good fish being reported.  The catfish at The Airman were back on the feed with several members landing catfish up to 46lb.  Members should note that this venue contains zebra mussels that can easily damage main line that lead to unexpected breakages, so it is worth regularly checking your mainline for any damage.   Anglers fishing for the smaller species have continued to enjoy good mixed bags of roach, perch and skimmer bream often including roach to well over the pound mark. 
Many carp anglers fishing Willington Lake are reluctant to disclose their catches, but those who are more open report that the weed is far less prolific this year allowing baits to be more easily presented.  However, the larger carp appear to be more preoccupied with abundance of natural food at the moment with the recent stockies showing most interest in anglers baits.  Plenty of tench are still being caught on both boilies and more traditional baits.  Anglers targeting the smaller species are enjoying mixed success with catches depending very much on the direction and strength of the wind with most anglers struggling under flat and calm conditions. 
Plenty of carp continue to be caught at Broom Lake and whilst most fish reported are mid double commons several of the more recently stocked mirror carp have been landed, including some fully scaled mirrors.  Tench have been featuring in catches, but the most notable capture was a 10lb 7oz bream landed by Liam Prout, which was not only a new PB for Liam but also a new lake record for this species.

Week ending 24th July 2016

The recent hot spell has seen many Shefford & District AA members struggling to catch the larger species during the heat of the day, whilst those targeting the smaller fish have carried on catching.  One exception was Richard Draycott who managed to land a large catfish at The Airman that picked up his bait during a daytime session.  Unfortunately Richard’s scales only went to 40lb, which the fish bottomed out.  Measuring 57 inches from head to tail the catfish probably weighed somewhere around the 45lb mark.   Anglers fishing for the smaller species have enjoyed good mixed bags of roach, perch and skimmer bream with the odd bonus tench and larger bream also featuring in catches.  The next monthly match is being fished at the venue on Sunday 31st July (contact Nigel Gilbert on 07931 215778 for details).  This match will use pegs 2-10, which need to be vacated by midnight on the eve of the match. 
The undergrowth along the track at Willington Lake has been cut down to allow anglers to park behind most of the pegs along the track.  Anglers targeting the carp are often finding the tench to be more willing feeders with several tincas in the 7-8lb bracket being reported.  The weed is not as prolific this year and those targeting the smaller species are usually able to find plenty of clear spots to fish.  When a strong breeze blows anglers are finding the feeder outscores the float as it allows a static bait to be presented.  Colin Smith decided to feeder fish along the track and had a nice roach on his first cast using red maggot as bait.  He carried on steadily catching roach and skimmer bream along with the odd perch and rudd for the next few hours. 
The carp at Broom Lake have been very visible on the hottest days basking in the surface layers with early morning and sunset often the best feeding times for the carp.  Once again it is the members fishing for the smaller species that have enjoyed most success during the day.  Whilst maggots are almost guaranteed to bring plenty of bites they often attract a lot of small roach and perch into the swim.  Those anglers who persevere with more selective baits are enjoying a much better stamp of roach. 
Although relatively few reports from the rivers, Kevin Williams landed a nice chub of exactly 6lb from the Ouse at Little Paxton during a night time session.

Week ending 10th July 2016

The reasonably settled conditions during last week saw Shefford & District AA members enjoying considerable success.  New member Nik Taylor started the week with an overnight session at The Airman and managed to land three mirror carp the smallest being 14lb 5oz and a 22lb 13oz common.  Although Nik was targeting the carp he also reported landing a huge 10lb 10oz tench, which was witnessed by another member.   Several decent catfish were also caught during the week including one caught by Dave Hedges.   Anglers targeting the smaller species continue to enjoy mixed nets of bream, tench, roach and perch, which bodes well for the next match to be fished at the venue using pegs 2-10 on Sunday 31st July (contact Nigel Gilbert on 07931 215778 for details).  Eight year old Associate Junior member Allana Fehr accompanied her father Adrian on a recent trip and was happy catching roach until a pike decided to intercept some of the fish being landed, but she eventually hooked and landed the pike.  However, Allana’s greatest achievement was to land a 2lb roach, a target many far more experienced anglers would love to achieve. 
The milder weather, added to the ability to park behind your peg, has seen significantly more anglers fishing Broom Lake.  After success elsewhere early in the week, Nik Taylor paid this venue a visit towards the end of the week and was not disappointed.  During his session Nik caught a total of 11 carp including a 19lb 11oz mirror and 5 commons over the 20lb mark (20lb 12oz, 24lb, 24lb 4oz, 26lb 8oz and 28lb 1oz).  Richard Knight fished an overnight session and landed 3 carp that included two doubles topped by a 21lb 8oz mirror, plus a tench and a bream. 
A reminder that Mick Parkinson is running some coaching sessions at Willington Lake as part of the Angling Trust’s ‘Get Back Into Angling’ initiative.   Sessions will run from 09.00-13.00 and 14.00-18.00 on the 24th, 26th and 28th July (to book contact Mick on 07914 530185).  Anglers should take extreme care when exiting the venue as (in common with many local country roads) the verges are heavily overgrown and blocking the view of oncoming traffic.  
The interclub match fished on LGCAA waters at Poppy Hill saw the local anglers making full use of home advantage.  Of the 18 anglers taking part, seven weighed in over 10lb with a top weight of 35lb of mainly carp.  Dave Baker was the only SDAA angler to break 10lb, with his 15lb 1oz taking fifth place.







Week ending 3rd July 2016

With warm and settled conditions forecast Shefford & District AA members should be prepared to see some species (especially the carp) go through the spawning process again.  The Airman catfish came back on the feed with Kevin Payne landing a new PB of 47lb 5oz along with two other catfish of 43lb 7oz and 17lb 8oz during a recent 48h session.  Many anglers still believe catfish are only nocturnal feeders, but Edd Allen also managed to top the 40lb mark with a catfish of 45lb caught during daylight hours.  Anglers targeting the smaller species have been enjoying mixed nets of bream, tench, roach and perch with the shallower margin areas often proving the most productive. 
Mick Parkinson is running some coaching sessions at Willington Lake as part of the Angling Trust’s ‘Get Back Into Angling’ initiative.  Mick is a qualified Level 2 angling coach and these sessions are designed to give individuals the skills and confidence to get back into angling.  Sessions will run from 09.00-13.00 and 14.00-18.00 on the 24th, 26th and 28th July.  To book a place please contact Mick on 07914 530185.  The venue continues to fish well for silver fish, with tench and bream also showing up in catches.  On the carp front the more recent stockies are proving far easier to tempt with anglers baits than the larger residents. 
There have been few reports from the rivers since the start of the season.  Kevin Williams fished the IPA’s Back Meadows stretch of the Ivel and was delighted to catch a number of decent roach to 1lb 9oz using 8mm pellets on ledger tactics. 
A reminder that the next match will be an interclub affair fished on LGCAA waters at Poppy Hill on Sunday 10th July and members wanting to take part should contact Dave Baker (07784 537047).




Week ending 26th June 2016

With changeable conditions throughout the week Shefford & District AA members have experienced mixed fortunes, with the larger species often only feeding for short spells.  The Airman has seen  only the odd catfish caught whilst anglers targeting the silver fish have continued to experience consistent sport.  Darren Brown had been struggling to get anything to show interest in his baits, but following heavy rain during Saturday night the fish appeared to be triggered into feeding and Darren went on to land five bream to 8lb and three carp to 17lb 2oz over the next few hours. 
Most anglers have been targeting the carp at Broom Lake in recent weeks, but the first match of the season confirmed the lake contains a healthy population of silver fish.  The eight anglers taking part in the match were faced with overcast conditions with a light breeze and most chose to float fish using either pole or rod and reel.  John Salmon opted to fish the pole and put together a good net of roach and perch, boosted by a bonus bream of 3lb 8oz, to return the winning weight of 11lb 12oz.  Second place was taken by Neil Bygrave with 9lb 2oz of mainly roach with a few perch caught on the waggler followed in third place by Malcolm Gibbs with 8lb 9oz of roach also on the waggler.  Match organiser Nigel Gilbert used the whip for mainly roach and perch boosted by a bonus 3lb 9oz tench for a total of 6lb 10oz for fourth place, and John Wigg fished the pole to finish fifth with a mixed bag weighing 5lb 6oz.  The next match will be an interclub affair fished on LGCAA waters at Poppy Hill on Sunday 10th July and members wanting to take part should contact Dave Baker (07784 537047).



Week ending 19th June 2016

With rivers running high and coloured at the start of the river season most Shefford & District AA members elected to fish the stillwaters.  One exception was Kevin Williams who had been prebaiting a swim at Little Paxton ahead of the river season in the hope of catching an early season barbel.  Kevin cast out on the stroke of midnight and within five minutes he had a bite resulting in a 5lb bream, another species noted for feeding well when the rivers are coloured.  Kevin’s prebaiting had clearly attracted a large shoal of bream as he proceeded to land one bream after another on his pellet bait with his best fish weighing just over 9lb.  Apart from the bream, Kevin also landed a decent chub of 5lb. 
Several anglers have enjoyed multiple captures of carp from Broom Lake in recent weeks.  Andrew Riley managed 10 carp to 18lb 6oz plus two bream and a small tench during a 48h session, whilst new member Matt Simcock landed 6 carp to 15lb and two tench.  Mat Rayner managed one of the best fish reported in recent weeks with a common carp of 22lb 4oz.  Dave Hedges had a successful first session on the lake landing a total of 10 carp during his 3 night stay, consisting of nine commons to 19lb 10oz and a mirror of 19lb 6oz.  Broom Lake will hold the first match of the season on Sunday  26th June with pegs 1-5 and 30-42 reserved for the match.  The matches are open to all SDAA members with the draw at 8am with fishing from 9am to 3pm, and further details can be obtained from Nigel Gilbert (07931 215778). 
There have been few reports from The Airman this week with the odd double figure carp and bream landed during the week.  Members should be aware that there will be some emergency tree work undertaken during the next week to deal with a dead willow tree by peg 2 that is in danger of falling into the lake and to pollard some of the willows along the roadside bank.  
Several carp have been landed at Willington Lake where a mobile approach has often been the key to success.  Several carp have been intercepted whilst patrolling the margins, whilst when conditions are right a few have been tempted on surface baits.  Several of the most recently stocked carp have been landed and are showing excellent growth rates thanks to the abundance of natural food in the lake.





Week ending 12th June 2016

Recent catches have been as unpredictable as the weather across Shefford & District AA waters during the last week, and those members approaching waters with an open mind about target species have enjoyed most success.  Life member Pete Allen has enjoyed great success with the large roach at The Airman this year, but with small roach intercepting his float fished baits Pete adopted a more positive approach fishing over depth in the margins.  These tactics resulted in a string of good tench and bream, with some of the bream approaching double figures.  
Anglers targeting the carp at Willington Lake are keeping tight lipped about their captures, although one revealed the accidental capture of an 8lb 10oz tench.  Several anglers have enjoyed some good bags of roach and skimmers on float tactics.  Pete Biernis fished for the tench but was delighted to catch a roach just under the 2lb mark.  Tony Hickmott was surprised to land a sizeable terrapin that took a liking to his float fished maggot-sweet corn cocktail, and anglers should take care to handle them with extreme care as they carry a very strong bite. 
Several anglers have managed to catch double figure carp from Broom Lake, but with many carp still carrying spawn they should be returned to the water as quickly as possible.  Mat Rayner landed commons of 14lb and 8lb, plus a 5lb tench.  Michael Webb’s ledger rod had been motionless, so he decided to set up a 4 metre whip with no elastic using 4lb line and a size 16 hook.  In the next two hours, using a single grain of sweetcorn as bait, Michael had landed a 7lb 1oz tench, 4lb bream and numerous roach whilst his ledger rod still remained motionless. 
The river season restarts on 16th June and the recent rain (with more unsettled weather forecast) is likely to result in the rivers being well above normal levels and highly coloured.

Week ending 5th June 2016

Hopefully the recent spell of warm weather has finally triggered the carp into spawning across all Shefford & District AA waters.  Members should avoid casting into any areas where carp (or other species) are obviously spawning and any carp caught should be handled with extreme care whilst they recover from the stress of spawning.  The Airman has continued to produce good catches for several anglers with a range of species reported during the last week.  Venue regular John Dickman spent a fruitless day in pursuit of the catfish, but just as he was packing up one of his baits was picked up and resulted in a new PB pike of 26lb.  Darren Seeney and Moray McLeod both enjoyed a very successful overnight session.  Moray landed his first ever catfish of 32lb just after darkness, plus a mirror carp of 15lb and a common carp of 19lb during the night. Moray also caught over a dozen roach between 1lb 3oz and 2lb 2oz, with the majority around the 2lb mark, all falling to 10mm bloodworm boilies.  Meanwhile Darren landed a hard fighting 17lb 2oz mirror carp within 20 minutes of casting out and then caught a number of tench to 4lb 5oz during the night.  Edd Allen has been teaching his young son Dexter how to fish the pole.  Dexter seemed to master the technique fairly quickly landing 20 roach, two perch and a small jack pike that took a liking to a worm. 
A reminder that the close season still applies on rivers, which reopen for fishing on 16th June.  A work party is being held at Little Paxton on Wednesday 15th June to strim the footpath and make the swims fishable along the allotment bank.  All volunteers are welcome to attend, meeting around 9am in the club car park within the allotments.





Week ending 29th May 2016

Most species have now been through spawning on Shefford & District AA waters with the exception of the carp, which will no doubt become preoccupied with spawning as soon as we have a few days of warmer weather.   Steve Braham had hoped to tempt some catfish on his latest trip to The Airman, but whilst Steve’s catfish rods remained motionless his carp rod produced five carp topped by an 18lb mirror. 
Paul Burton is a regular visitor to  Broom Lake and landed a 20lb 2oz common carp on his latest overnight session.  The venue has been fishing well for bream and tench in recent weeks, with Peter Rose catching a new PB tench of 7lb 7oz whilst his dad managed a tench of 5lb 6oz.   
 The tench have also been feeding well at Willington Lake with Mick Parkinson landing a nice specimen of 7lb 14oz on robin red pellet fished over a bed of skretting pellet at close range, fishing just 2 rod lengths out in 8ft of water







Week ending 22nd May 2016

The cooler temperatures have seen the carp showing a greater interest in anglers baits across Shefford & District AA waters, but members should be aware that the next hot spell is likely to trigger the carp into frantic spawning activity.   Glen Mills paid his first visit to Willington Lake and was rewarded with a superbly conditioned common carp just over 20lb and two tench, including a new PB of 7lb. 
With the track around  Broom Lake now open to cars and small vans the venue has seen an increased number of anglers on the bank.  Earlier in the week Mervyn Saville set his stall out for tench but latched into a hard fighting common carp of 17lb 2oz that tested his light tench tackle to the limit, and also accounted for a tench of 6lb 10oz.  Mervyn returned at the weekend and managed a couple of mid double commons before landing a common carp of 21lb 1oz.
The new 2016/17 membership books contain a couple of errors regarding telephone numbers.  Head Bailiff Kevin Williams should be contacted on 07921 517683 and the new number for The Tackle Shed is 01582 966920.  Anyone who is interested in becoming a club bailiff should contact Kevin to discuss what is involved.  Members are reminded that the river season does not start until 16th June and we hope to hold a work party at Little Paxton over the next few weeks to ensure the swims along the allotment bank are accessible and fishable




Week ending 15th May 2016

Despite the short spell of cold weather, there are obvious signs of some species spawning across Shefford & District AA waters so members should handle all fish with extreme care over the next few weeks.  Fisheries Officer James Turvey was hoping for a quiet night at The Airman to catch up on some sleep following the recent birth of his first child.  However, James was kept awake by a series of catfish homing in on his bait, landing five catfish to 26lb during his short overnight session.  James reported other anglers had enjoyed some good bags of bream and tench, whilst it has been hit and miss for anglers targeting the roach as they have been spawning in the reed beds.  Daniel Munnery reported landing a 23lb mirror carp early one morning. 
The track around  Broom Lake has been repaired and is now open for use by cars and small vans.  The track is unsuitable for long wheelbase and/or heavy vehicles.  Tench and bream continue to fall to baits intended for the carp at Broom Lake, as well as falling to those anglers float fishing for the roach and rudd.  Alec Davies fished the tip at Willington Lake and put together a good net of roach and skimmers  up to the pound mark, plus a bonus tench of 5lb. 
SDAA membership cards for the 2016/17 season are now available from all our local outlets.  Membership will be valid from date of purchase through to 15th June 2017.  Full details about membership, night permits and application forms can be found on the membership section of the SDAA website.  Please note that night permits and associate junior membership are only available by postal application to the Registrar, so please allow a few days for these to be processed.

Week ending 8th May 2016

As anticipated the sudden rise in temperatures saw sport generally improve across Shefford & District AA waters for most species.  The catfish were back on the feed at The Airman with Richard Knight landing 3 catfish all between 43 and 44lb during his latest session.  His first fish was landed in darkness during the early hours, whilst the other two were caught during the middle of the afternoon.  Steve Braham reported landing a catfish of 45lb, whilst several other anglers managed to tempt some of the smaller mid double ‘kittens’.  Tom Farren had spent the winter trying to locate one of the lake’s 20lb+ pike, so it was rather ironic that when he switched his attention to the catfish a screaming run resulted in a 25lb pike that took a liking to a chunk of mackerel fished on a size 1/0 hook.  The soaring temperatures saw the carp showing great interest in one another, but very little interest in angler’s baits.  Members targeting the smaller species were still enjoying good sport with roach, perch, bream and tench featuring in catches. 
Repairs to the track around  Broom Lake were due to be undertaken on 11th and 12th May and the track should then be open for use by cars and small vans.  The hot weather saw the carp swimming around in the upper layers with carp baits fished on the bottom picking up some good tench and bream, rather than the target species.  Alan Sefton landed a very nice 8lb tench whilst fishing on the feeder. 
SDAA membership cards for the 2016/17 season are now available from all our local outlets.  Membership will be valid from date of purchase through to 15th June 2017.  Full details about membership, night permits and application forms can be found on the membership section of the SDAA website.  Please note that night permits and associate junior membership are only available by postal application to the Registrar, so please allow a few days for these to be processed.



Week ending 1st May 2016

Hopefully the forecast of a warm and settled start to May will see water temperatures rising and sport picking up across Shefford & District AA waters.  Whilst the larger species such as carp and catfish have recently been in a fairly unresponsive mood, members targeting the smaller species have been enjoying success.  Mick Baldwin has been enjoying some excellent catches of roach at The Airman with a couple of fish topping the 2lb mark.  Mick likes fishing a slider float to cope with the depth of water rather than use the feeder tactics adopted by many anglers.  Mick’s latest trip saw him land five good bream around the 5lb mark, plus a couple of smaller skimmers before the roach moved into his swim.  Edd Allen also adopted the slider float and tempted a 4lb 12oz tench on a 12mm halibut pellet. 
Willington Lake has also witnessed an improvement in the roach fishing with some anglers managing to catch fish well over the pound mark using selective baits to avoid the smaller fish.  John Wigg’s latest trip saw him net 16 decent roach all between 8-12oz along with three roach/bream hybrids around the pound mark.  John’s catch would have been even better if he hadn’t been pestered by pike dispersing the silver fish.  Jaqui Nash landed a nice 7lb 9oz bream from Broom Lake otherwise there have been few reports from the venue.
 SDAA membership cards for the 2016/17 season should be available from all our local outlets by the 9th May.  Membership will be valid from date of purchase through to 15th June 2017.  Full details about membership, night permits and application forms can now be found on the membership section of the SDAA website. The new ‘A10’ key is being introduced for next season so gates will carry both ‘A9’ and ‘A10’ locks for a few weeks from early May until 16th June.  Members should take care to interlock the two locks so that holders of either key can open the gates.

Week ending 24th April 2016

The recent cold daytime temperatures have seen fewer Shefford & District AA members on the bank with many struggling to tempt any fish, which was in stark contrast to the warmer conditions at the beginning of the week when the fish were still feeding well.  Rob Prutton landed a 23lb ghost carp from Broom Lake during an overnight session, whilst Andrew Harris tempted a 12lb mirror carp.  The track around the lake will remain closed until contractors have carried out repairs to several damaged and/or waterlogged areas.  The repair work will take two days, but we have to wait for the contractors to finish their current job; therefore, we can give a firm date for the reopening of the track at the moment. 
There have been no reports of catfish from The Airman this week, but anglers targeting smaller species have been enjoying success.  David Hawkes fished float fish maggot and was catching the odd fish during the afternoon before the fish suddenly switched on and it was a bite every cast.  David included several perch to 2lb in a net of predominantly roach up to the pound mark.  Kevin Wilkins managed to tempt a couple of early season tench at Willington Lake with his biggest fish weighing 6lb 6oz. 
The Shefford & District AA committee are pleased to announce that Steve Poplett has been awarded life membership of the club.  Steve had been selling club books from his tackle shop in Stevenage since the 1970s and hopefully he will now have more time to go fishing following his recent retirement.  The tackle shop is now trading as JL Fishing Tackle Ltd who will continue to be an outlet for club books. 
We hope to have SDAA membership cards for the 2016/17 season available from our local outlets by the end of the first week in May.  Membership will be valid from date of purchase through to 15th June 2017. All prices will be the same as last season. Full details about membership, night permits and application forms will appear on the membership section of the SDAA website by the end of April. Please note a new ‘A10’ key is being introduced next season so the gates will carry both ‘A9’ and ‘A10’ locks for a few weeks from early May until 16th June.  Finally, a reminder that EA rod licences expired at the end of March, so anyone over the age of 12 should ensure they have a new EA rod licence (two EA rod licences are required if you use three rods).





Week ending 17th April 2016

The fishing continues to improve across Shefford & District AA stillwaters as water temperatures continue to nudge higher, despite some sharp overnight frosts.  The Airman has been in stunning form for the catfish that fed hard during the week.  For the second week in a row John Dickman broke the 50lb barrier, but this time by over 10lb by setting a new personal best with a catfish of 60lb 13oz.  Ricky Crane also set a new personal best early in the week with a catfish of 44lb, with Steven Duroe catching a 44lb catfish and Tom Gaby a 36lb catfish later in the week.  Other species have also been feeding well with Geoff Knowles using float fished double red maggot in the margins to tempt five tench,  four of which were all between 5lb 4oz and 5lb 14oz, and a bream of 5lb 14oz.  Plenty of good sized roach have also been caught on both float and feeder tactics.  
Although many anglers have remained tight lipped about their exploits at Willington Lake we have reports of several carp to 26lb being caught, including several of the more recent stockies that have adapted well to their new surroundings and are starting to pack on weight.  Tench have now started to feed whilst roach to over a pound have also featured in catches.  James Turvey decided to fish for the eels using small fish baits but he was plagued by a succession of small pike before a 15lb pike took a liking to his bait. 
The track around Broom Lake remains closed as a few small areas remain damaged and/or waterlogged.  A contractor has been engaged to carry out the repairs but they are unable to carry out the work for several weeks.  The carp fishing has proved unpredictable but fish have become more active and  visible in the upper layers on warmer days.  Jason Burgoyne had been struggling to catch recently but during a recent mid week session tempted a leather carp of 15lb and a similar sized common. 
SDAA membership cards for the 2016/17 season are currently being printed and will be available from local outlets from early May.  Membership will be valid from date of purchase through to 15th June 2017. All prices will be the same as last season. Full details about membership, night permits and application forms will appear on the membership section of the SDAA website towards the end of April.






Week ending 10th April 2016

Despite the changeable weather conditions Shefford & District AA members have been enjoying some excellent catches during the last week.  The Airman remains the venue on form with several species showing in good numbers.  Several anglers have been targeting the catfish and Philip White followed up his success from the previous weekend with another specimen of 33lb, whilst John Dickman managed the biggest catfish reported so far in 2016 with a 52lb 6oz specimen.  Carp have also been on the feed with Steve Braham landing a 26lb 6oz mirror carp plus commons of 14lb 8oz and 12lb during an overnight session, whilst Darren Brown managed an 18lb 2oz common carp.  Edd Allen and his young son Dexter enjoyed some excellent roach fishing with several fish well over the pound mark caught on sweetcorn, with the best roach weighing 1lb 14oz.





Week ending 3rd April 2016

The Shefford & District AA AGM included several new faces amongst the members attending the meeting.  Members were informed that membership numbers and the club’s finances were both in good shape.  Consequently there will be no increase in membership subscriptions with membership books for the 2016/17 season available from early May.  The club is looking for more members to volunteer to help running the club as committee members, bailiffs and work party attendees.   Richard Knight was awarded the Centenary Cup for his major contributions over many years as Head Bailiff, an active member of the committee and his commitment to work parties.  Trophies for the specimen fish were presented by club President John Leath, with Carl Nancarrow securing the Tookey Trophy for the best overall specimen for his 2lb 12oz roach.  John Wigg was the winner of the monthly match series trophy and Bryan Lancaster winner of the pike series shield. 
The catfish have continued feeding at The Airman with Philip White landing two specimens of 43lb 8oz and 35lb over the weekend, whilst Darren Brown managed a 12lb catfish during a short day session.   Steve Braham reported landing mirror carp of 24lb 3oz and 20lb 6oz.  Edd Allen opted to try out his new rod fishing maggot feeder using a size 18 hook and managed a good net of roach to the pound mark, plus a bonus perch of 1lb 15oz and a decent pike. 
The silver fish at Broom Lake have come back on the feed with John Wigg landing a good net of 28 roach and a bonus 6lb bream.







Week ending 27th March 2016

Strong winds and heavy rain kept many Shefford & District AA members away from the lakes over the bank holiday weekend.  However, a sure indication that we are in spring has been the first signs of catfish feeding at The Airman.  Martin Sharpe set a new personal best with a 45lb 12oz catfish, whilst Dave Hedges landed a 21lb catfish and Mark Norman a ‘mid-20’.  Members are reminded that to safeguard catfish the use of double hooks, treble hooks or uncoated wire traces is banned at The Airman between 1st April - 31st October.  To safeguard both pike and catfish, a coated wire hooklink material (e.g. Catfish Pro Pikesafe or AFW Surflon Micro Supreme) must be used by catfish anglers when using fish live or deadbaits.
 
Anglers heading for Willington Lake should remain wary of the potential of the adjacent river to flood several days after heavy rain has fallen further upstream.  Members should avoid parking near the kissing gate where the ground remains very soft. 

Weekending 20th March 2016

A final reminder that the Shefford & District AA AGM is being held on Wednesday 30th March 2016 at Shefford Town Memorial Hall.  All members are encouraged to attend the to hear about the latest news and future developments of the club. Entry and voting will be by membership card only.  The meeting starts at 8.00pm with a licensed bar open from 7.30pm. 
Catch reports have been thin on the ground this week.  Despite the clear water at The Airman Glenn Mills managed to tempt four carp to 20lb fishing  just a rod length out.  Roach continue to be caught with many anglers reporting fish over the pound mark with a few specimens breaking the 2lb barrier, although feeding spells are often relatively brief. 
The club is looking for a supply of wood chippings to use in swims at The Airman and Broom Lake.  Please contact a member of the committee if you know anyone who can supply wood chippings on a regular basis.

Week ending 13th March 2016

With many Shefford & District AA members hoping to fish the rivers before the close of the river season, torrential midweek rain meant the river Ouse was flooded right up to 14th March whilst venues on the Ivel did recover just in time for the last few days of the season.  James Turvey fished the Ouse at Pavenham prior to the flooding and was rewarded with a superb chub of 6lb 12oz, which beat his previous PB by 10oz.  David Hawkes chose the Stanford Canal for the last day of the river season and managed just one chub on his second cast followed by several hours of inactivity.  David walked back along Broom River where Mick Burr had managed a 2lb 13oz perch and John Dickman a chub around 5lb, with John adding he had landed a 15lb pike two days before that had taken his meat bait intended for chub.  Before the midweek rain Mick Burr had managed a couple of short trips to Broom River and landed a perch of 3lb 5oz and a couple of chub to 5lb. 
With the Ouse in flood water levels at Willington Lake quickly rose with the river briefly joined to the lake over the weekend.   Assuming the river now remains within its banks it will take a week or so for the lake to drop back to normal levels and members should be careful not to park where the ground is very soft by the kissing gate.  Another consequence of all the recent flooding in the Ouse and Nene valleys has been a sudden increase in the number of cormorants foraging the lakes.  Members are asked to try and scare any feeding cormorants off club waters to protect the fish stocks.  Simply clapping or waving your arms in the air is often enough to persuade the cormorants to move on. 
John Wigg had a sudden change of fortune at Broom Lake where he has been struggling to catch silver fish in recent visits.  John was the only angler targeting the silver fish and he put together a good net of roach.  Meanwhile Richie Brown managed three common carp during his weekend session with fish of 21lb 2oz, 14lb 4oz and 12lb 10oz with all his fish landed during the hours of darkness.  There have been relatively few reports from The Airman but Gary Pitman did recently land a 20lb mirror carp. 
The Shefford & District AA AGM is being held on Wednesday 30th March 2016 at Shefford Town Memorial Hall.  All members are encouraged to attend the to hear about the latest news and future developments of the club. Entry and voting will be by membership card only.





Week ending 6th March

Mother’s Day meant fewer Shefford & District AA members fishing on Sunday, but it also saw the pike series draw to a dramatic conclusion.  The final pike match was fished at Willington Lake and leading into the match James Turvey was just ahead of Bryan Lancaster on points.  These two anglers were the only anglers to catch in the latest match with James landing a 7lb 8oz pike that secured second place and two series points.  However, Bryan managed to land two pike of 6lb 6oz and 2lb 14oz to edge ahead of James, with another pike of 5lb 14oz caught just five minutes before the final whistle boosting Bryan’s winning weight to 15lb 2oz and three series points.  This result meant James and Bryan were tied on nine points each, so the series winner had to be decided on overall weight across the series.   Bryan’s pike in the dying minutes of the match proved to be the winning fish, lifting his series total to 73lb 4oz just ahead of James on 69lb 12oz.  The pike series has seem some excellent catches with Dave Baker landing the biggest pike of the series at 12lb 15oz, as well as recording the best winning weight of 52lb and biggest aggregate weight of 83lb 12oz, finishing in third place overall with 5 points.  
Members are reminded that the rivers will be closed to fishing from 15th March to 15th June inclusive, so there are just a few days left to wet a line on flowing water.  The closing date for specimen fish claims is 16th March with the specimen fish and match trophies being presented at the Shefford & District AA AGM being held on Wednesday 30th March 2016.

Week ending 28th Feb 2016

Overnight frosts and a switch to a cold easterly wind saw fewer Shefford & District AA venturing onto the fisheries, but several anglers who braved the elements were rewarded for their efforts.  The pike at Willington Lake were back on the feed this week, with several anglers enjoying multiple captures albeit with most of the pike generally on the small side.  Hopefully the pike will still be active for the final round of the pike series being fished at Willington Lake on Sunday 6th March (further details available from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819). 
The final round of the monthly match series was held at The Airman and despite the venue producing some excellent bags of roach in recent weeks the turnout was poor with only three entrants.  John Wigg had already secured enough points to be the overall winner of the match series and John started to catch from the start putting together a respectable mixed net for 5lb 5oz.  Meanwhile Malcolm Gibbs sat without a bite for several hours, but knowing the bigger roach often only feed for short spells.  Malcolm had his first bite at 2pm and in the last hour caught several good roach for a top weight of 5lb 14.5oz.  Nigel Gilbert’s first and only bite came just before the whistle resulting in a 6oz roach. 
Members fishing Broom Lake will find that the overhanging foliage has been heavily reduced on two of the islands.  Worryingly numerous amounts of leads, hooks, line and other tackle items were recovered from the islands, many of which were capable of snagging fish or other wildlife.  Most of this tackle was relatively new as the islands had been cleared of tackle last November.  All modern reels have line clips that can be used to avoid overcastting onto the islands.  Several carp were caught from the lake over the weekend, with Jason Burgoyne landing his first carp of 2016 in the shape of a common carp just under the 20lb mark. 
The closing date for specimen fish claims is 16th March with the specimen fish and match trophies being presented at the Shefford & District AA AGM being held on Wednesday 30th March 2016.

Week ending 21st Feb 2016

The changeable conditions saw ice forming on some  Shefford & District AA waters during overnight frosts with air temperatures in mid-teens the next day, which appeared to have had a negative impact on catches.  The pike at Willington Lake were few and far between this week, not helped when strong winds whipped up waves on the exposed areas of the lake.  Anglers fishing in the lee of the island found some shelter where small baits were eagerly accepted by small roach that inevitably attracted the attention of the pike.  This venue hosts the final round of the pike series on Sunday 6th March (further details available from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819).  
The final round of the monthly match series will be held at The Airman on Sunday 28th February where large roach continue to be caught.  Broom Lake has been a struggle in recent weeks for those targeting the silver fish, but Hayden Coplestone managed three mid-teen carp during a midweek overnight session.  Tree surgeons will be reducing the amount of overhanging foliage on two of the islands at Broom Lake on Friday 26th and Saturday 27th February, and swims 35-42 and 1-17 will be closed during this maintenance work. 
The rivers have also been in a fickle mood with the Great Ouse running high and coloured for most of the week despite little recent rainfall.  The club’s stretches of the Ivel have also seen many anglers struggling to locate feeding fish but Mick Burr managed to add yet another perch over the 4lb mark to his impressive list of specimens, albeit only half an ounce over 4lb.  Mick also added perch of 2lb and 12oz during an afternoon session. 
Members in the Luton area should note that our outlet Shaden has recently moved to 325 Hitchin Road, Luton, LU2 7SW (www.shaden-fishing.com
The Shefford & District AA AGM will be held on Wednesday 30th March 2016.  A final reminder that nomination for committee and officer positions must be received by 29th February and seconded by another member.  Members must also advise the Club Secretary in writing of any business to be moved at the AGM before 29th February.

Week ending 14th Feb 2016

Despite the changeable weather there have been some excellent catches from  Shefford & District AA waters with pike and roach being the most reliable species on the stillwaters.  Pike fed well during the week at Willington Lake with several anglers enjoying multiple captures.  John Wigg soon had plenty of small roach feeding on pole fished maggot, with a switch to caster as bait reducing the number of bites but resulting in a much better stamp of roach.  Odd bream were also showing to ledger tactics.  Saturday saw the five entrants enduring a cold easterly wind that also carried drizzle for much of the day.  However, this did not stop the pike from feeding with James Turvey landing 6 pike to 7lb 11oz for a total weight of 32lb 1oz to win the match.  Only 5oz behind the winner, Dave Baker also landed 6 pike for a total weight of 31lb 12oz including a pike of 12lb 15oz, which is the biggest caught during the series so far.  Bryan Lancaster was third with two pike of 8lb 1oz and 7lb 3oz for a total of 15lb 4oz, ahead of Tony Archer with a single pike of 7lb 12 oz.  The same venue hosts the final round of the pike series on Sunday 6th March with James (7 points), Bryan (6 points) and (Dave 5 points) all still in the running as overall series winner (further details available from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819).   
The roach have been grabbing the headlines at The Airman with several anglers topping the magic 2lb barrier in recent weeks, but with the big roach usually only feeding for brief periods during low light conditions.  Life member Pete Allen managed a roach of 2lb 5oz on his latest trip to the venue, but his previous trip produced an outstanding net of 18 quality roach.  Only one roach was below the pound mark with eleven roach weighing over 1lb 8oz.  Whilst many anglers have been adopting scaled down carp tactics to tempt the larger roach, Pete has stuck to more traditional roach tackle and red maggots as bait.  The final round of the monthly match series will be held at The Airman on Sunday 28th February. 
Tree surgeons will be reducing the amount of overhanging foliage on two of the islands at Broom Lake in the next few weeks.   The work has been provisionally scheduled for Friday 26th and Saturday 27th February and notices will be posted to highlight the swims that will be closed during this maintenance work. 
The Shefford & District AA AGM will be held on Wednesday 30th March 2016.  There are vacancies for both committee and officer positions for any member wanting to take an active role in managing the club, with committee meetings taking place on the second Tuesday evening of each month.  Nomination for these positions must be received by 29th February and seconded by another member.  Members must also advise the Club Secretary in writing of any business to be moved at the AGM before 29th February.

Week ending 7th Feb 2016

All members are encouraged to attend the Shefford & District AA AGM will be held on Wednesday 30th March 2016 where members will be informed of the latest news and future developments of the club.  All cups and trophies need to be returned by 20th February and the deadline for specimen fish claims is 16th March.  Members must advise the Club Secretary in writing of any business to be moved at the AGM before 29th February, which is also the closing date for nominations for committee and officer positions.  There are several vacancies on the committee for anyone wanting to take an active role in managing the club, with committee meetings taking place on the second Tuesday of each month. 
Blustery conditions hampered bait presentation at Willington Lake but the pike were on the feed with one angler landing three good pike from the same swim during a morning session on float fished deadbaits, and missing another three takes.  The venue hosts the next round of the pike series on Saturday 13th February (further details available from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819). 
Paul Burton started his session on an exposed swim at Broom Lake, but the wet and windy conditions prompted a move to a more sheltered swim that resulted in a 15lb 7oz common carp. 

Week ending 31st Jan 2016

The weather has again impacted on Shefford & District AA catches, with many members preferring to stay at home rather than venture out during the very strong winds.  Although most of Willington Lake was often windswept several anglers managed to locate fish in some of the more sheltered areas.  The best pike of the week was a fish of 14lb 2oz fish reported by Martin Sharpe, whilst most anglers had to be content with single figure pike including young Dexter Allen.  Silver fish continued to feed although pole fishing often proved a challenge during the strongest winds.  The venue will host the next round of the pike series on Saturday 13th February (further details available from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819). 
There were relatively few report from The Airman but Glenn Mills managed to finally tempt a 19lb mirror carp to take his bait as the light began to fade after watching it feeding on free offerings of sweetcorn during the day. 
Regulars at Broom Lake had reported the silver fish had become very finicky feeders during the last week or so and this proved to be the case in the latest monthly match.  Malcolm Gibbs only required 2lb 7oz to secure the winners spot whilst John Wigg was second with 1lb 9oz and Nigel Gilbert third with a mere 2oz.




Week ending 24th Jan 2016

The rapidly fluctuating temperatures during the week had a negative impact on catches on most Shefford & District AA waters.  The exception being The Airman where the deep water helps to keep water temperatures fairly constant.  Carp to over 20lb were being caught at the beginning of the week when most other lakes were frozen over and a 20lb catfish was caught towards the end of the week as air temperatures rose.  Anglers targeting the silver fish have been enjoying mixed bags of roach, perch and bream.  The ten volunteers who attend the work party on Saturday deserve a special mention as they managed to repair the front of the Mudflats and replace the broken steps on several other swims.  Vegetation was cut back from around the footpath and several swims, and several bags of litter were collected from around the lake. 
Competitors for the latest pike match held at Broom Lake were greeted by seemingly good conditions, but the match proved to be a struggle with a small 3lb 2oz pike landed by junior member Alfie Archer being the only fish caught.  The venue will host the next monthly match on Sunday 31st January (further details available from Nigel Gilbert 07467 171637).

Week ending 17th Jan 2016

No fishing report this week, but please take note of the following dates:
Saturday 23rd January – Work Party at The Airman from 9am to 4pm all volunteers welcome (aim to remove over hanging branches from the swims & pathway, litter pick, repair the front to the Mudflats)
Sunday 24th January – Pike match Broom Lake (further details available from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819)
Sunday 31st January – Monthly match Broom Lake (further details available from Nigel Gilbert 07467 171637)

Week ending 10th Jan 2016

With most river venues unfishable due to recent heavy rain, Shefford & District AA members were limited to stillwater venues during the last week.  Pike continue to be reliable feeders at Willington Lake with fish to 15lb featuring in catches.   The silver fish are shoaled up in some areas of the lake and John Wigg soon had the fish feeding on his favoured pole tactics, putting together a good mixed bag of mainly roach plus the odd skimmer bream.  John’s main problem was trying to avoid the hoards of bleak that intercept the baited hook dropping through the upper layers before it  has chance to get to the bottom where the better quality fish can be found. 
John Wigg has also enjoyed some good bags of silver fish at Broom Lake.  Small roach are shoaled up in their usual winter quarters with the pike in close attendance.  However, it is worth exploring other areas of the lake that have been producing some good nets of quality roach and skimmer bream.  Broom Lake will host the next leg of the pike series on Sunday 24th January (further details available from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819).  The venue will then host the next monthly match on Sunday 31st January (further details available from Nigel Gilbert 07467 171637). 
A number of work parties will be held over the coming months to maintain the fisheries and any volunteers wanting to help out will be welcome to attend.  Members should keep an eye out for notices as some work parties will require fisheries to be closed whilst the work is carried out.  With the ground now saturated members should be wary of slippery banks and the potential for the rivers to rapidly rise and flood the surrounding land and nearby lakes.

Week ending 3rd Jan 2016

Several Shefford & District AA members took the opportunity to spend some time fishing over the extended holiday period and once again The Airman proved its credentials as a reliable winter stillwater venue with a string of good specimens reported.  Darren Seeney started his end of year session targeting the carp under very windy conditions and was delighted when he landed a 28lb mirror carp that was in excellent condition.  Darren’s bait was then picked up by a 2lb 4oz roach, which was a new PB for Darren and prompted a change in tactics.  Darren scaled down his tackle to specifically target the roach and used 10mm bloodworm boilies as bait that resulted in another four specimen roach all over the magical 2lb mark gracing his net.  Five 2lb roach in a single session is a tremendous achievement for any venue in the UK, especially as Darren also managed the 28lb carp at the start of his session.  Other anglers also enjoyed action from the carp with some managing several fish in a session to just over 20lb.  Lee Gray decided to target the perch and managed a few small fish before something much larger picked up his bait.  Lee skilfully managed to land the fish that surprisingly turned out to be a large catfish and the first catfish reported in 2016.  The fish bottomed out Lee’s 33lb scales and photos suggest it was probably  approaching the 40lb mark. 
Pike continued to feed at Willington Lake with the biggest reported a 15lb pike caught by Stephen Burbidge on a deadbait.  However, the biggest smile went to five year old Aiden Graham who has been accompanying his father and was delighted to land his first ever pike on New Year’s day. 
Broom Lake will host the next leg of the pike series on Sunday 24th January (further details available from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819).  The venue will then host the next monthly match on Sunday 31st January (further details available from Nigel Gilbert 07467 171637). 
Kevin Williams once again fished the Lammas Meadow section of the Ouse at St Neots and his feeder tactics accounted for four good bream along with a few roach and perch. 
‘Half year’ Shefford & District AA books are available from our usual outlets and remain valid through to 15th June 2016 (prices: Full £40, Concessions £30, Partners £25, Juniors £10).  Please note that night fishing at The Airman, Broom Lake and Willington Lake requires optional Night Permits (there is no part year discount on these Night Permits).








Week ending 27th Dec 2015

A few Shefford & District AA members managed to get out on the banks over the festive period and found the mild conditions were keeping the fish on the feed.  The best catch reported was a haul of five pike landed during a morning session at Willington Lake by Bryan Lancaster with his best pike weighing 13lb 5oz.  The previous day the venue hosted the latest round of the match series that saw a disappointing turnout of only three anglers with the match fished in almost continuous rain.  Johnn Wigg won the match with a 6lb 12oz mixed net of roach, skimmer bream, perch and bleak with Malcolm Gibbs taking second with a similar mixed bag of fish weighing 5lb 12oz.  John Wigg has already secured top spot for the overall match series with two matches still left to be fished. 
Venue regular Andy Richwood has been catching carp at Broom Lake consistently through the last few months with the key to his success being location and little or no free offerings.  Dave Albon joined Andy on a recent trip and presented a small pineapple pop-up boilie in the hope of tempting a carp.  Dave struck at a single beep on his alarm and found himself connected to a hard fighting pike of 16lb 12oz that was in excellent condition.
 
As reported last week, Shefford & District AA Director and Life Member Alan Thomas died suddenly on Sunday 20th December aged 68.  Alan’s funeral service will held be at Bedford Crematorium at 2.30pm on Friday 8th January 2016.  Only family flowers please, but donations can be made to the Royal National Lifeboat Institute (Biggleswade Branch).

Week ending 20th Dec 2015

It was with great sadness that we heard Shefford & District AA Director and Life Member Alan Thomas had died suddenly on Sunday 20th December aged 68.  Alan was a true stalwart of the club having held a variety of officer positions as well as being both a Life Member and Director.  He was always willing to devote time to promoting the club and to play an active role in maintaining the fisheries.  Alan was passionate about angling and he will be greatly missed by all those who knew him. 
The mild conditions have continued to produce some excellent catches with The Airman in excellent form.  The pike have been very active resulting in the roach being tightly shoaled.  Some pegs have produced an abundance of smaller roach to both float and feeder tactics whilst some anglers have also enjoyed multiple pike catches. Steven Horncastle had an epic battle with a large predator that was safely netted resulting in a personal best pike at 25lb 15oz.  Peter Rose adopted a roving approach to locate the fish and his third swim produced a run on a deadbait that resulted in a new PB pike of exactly 26lb.  Kevin Wilkins landed a 5lb 5oz bream, 3lb 15oz tench and a brace of 1lb 13oz roach, whilst his fishing companion James Turvey managed two perch of 1lb 7oz and 2lb2oz and several roach to 15oz, as well as an 11lb 15oz pike.  Simon Locke also reported a pike of 12lb 6oz with other pike anglers landing up to four fish in a session once the feeding fish have been located. 
The mild weather has seen tench feeding at Willington Lake with one angler landing three during the night on baits intended for the carp, whilst silver fish continue to be caught on float tactics.  Willington Lake hosts the next monthly match on Sunday 27th December (further details available from Nigel Gilbert 07467 171637). 
Kevin Williams returned to the Lammas Meadow section of the Ouse at St Neots and again found the roach (rather than the bream) on the feed and ended up with an excellent net of redfins on feeder tactics.





Week ending 13th Dec 2015

The mild but largely overcast conditions have continued to produce some good catches across  Shefford & District AA waters.  The latest round in the pike series was fished at Willington Lake and attended by eight hardy anglers.  Although conditions were somewhat  unpleasant for the anglers with rain and  drizzle persisting all day, the light easterly breeze combined with low pressure and low light levels raised pre-match expectations that the pike fishing would be good.  In the event the results were excellent with five of the eight competitors catching pike for a total weight of 105lb 8oz.  Craig  Lancaster securing first place with 7 pike to 8lb 8oz for a total weight of 46lb.  Second place was taken by Bryan Lancaster with 3  fish weighing 7lb 11oz, 8lb 14oz and 9lb 2oz  giving a total weight of 25lb 11oz whilst John Dickman came third with pike of  9lb 8oz and 7lb 12oz for a total weight of 17lb 4oz.  James Turvey caught pike of 4lb 5oz and 4lb 3oz and Alfie Archer caught one pike of 8lb 1oz.  Earlier in the week Colin Smith swapped his pike gear for a waggler rod and managed a good mixed bag of silver fish on maggot made up predominantly of roach to 7oz plus skimmer bream, roach/bream hybrids, perch and bleak.  Alan Thomas managed two pike on deadbaits but was unable to attract any interest whilst lure fishing.  Willington Lake hosts the next monthly match on Sunday 27th December (further details available from Nigel Gilbert 07467 171637). 
Carp are still being caught at The Airman and once again some of the fish stocked last winter have featured in catches and are showing good growth rates.  We urge members to weigh and photograph any carp that look like a recent stockie at all our lakes, so that we can monitor their progress and this will help define our future stocking policy. 
Kevin Williams fished feeder tactics on the Lammas Meadow section of the Ouse at St Neots hoping to track down one of the huge bream shoals.  Kevin was pleasantly surprised to find the roach were eager to feed and they formed the bulk of his catch along with three small bream around the 3lb mark and an 8oz perch.  The bulk of his catch came during the morning with bites coming to an abrupt halt at 1pm.

Week ending 6th Dec 2015

The mild conditions and lack of frosts have proved very productive for several  Shefford & District AA members on both stillwater and river venues.  James Turvey managed two sessions at The Airman that resulted in three tench to 6lb and numerous roach to just under a pound, plus a perch of 1lb 8oz.  James also set one rod up for predators and managed to land four good pike between 8 and 14lb.  Dave Baker landed a 21lbs 10oz common carp and lost another during a short day session using a squid ‘wafter’ hookbait fished over a small scattering of boilies. 
Colin Smith spent his first pike fishing trip of the season at Willington Lake and managed to tempt four pike to 13lb 14oz.  Hopefully the venue’s pike will oblige during the next leg of the pike series to be fished on Sunday 13th December (further details available from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819). 
Reece Newton tackled Broom River with lamprey bait fished on a paternoster rig to tempt three double figure pike.  A reminder that the Perchfishers will be enjoying a ‘fish-in’ in pursuit of the specimen perch along Broom River and the Stanford Canal on Saturday 12th December as guests of the club, but the venues remain open to members.  Kevin Williams fished the Ouse at Pavenham using a simple maggot feeder rig and bronze maggots and put together an excellent bag of silver fish weighing 22lb 8oz, mainly comprising of small chub to 8oz plus three good roach to 1lb 8oz.





Week ending 29th Nov 2015

The mild conditions have seen many species continuing to feed on  Shefford & District AA waters, but anglers have had to contend with heavy rain and strong winds.  Away from the banks the SDAA committee are delighted to announce that Brian Barrett has been awarded Life Membership of the club in recognition of his many years of dedicated bailiffing and maintenance work at Willington.  Brian is in the process of relocating to Wales, but hopes to wet a line at Willington when visiting the area in future years. 
Several carp have been caught from The Airman including some smaller carp around the 12lb mark that are fish stocked in recent years, which have adapted well to their new surroundings.  The large roach are currently proving very elusive with the shoals of smaller roach also tightly packed but somewhat reluctant to feed.  This has allowed the bream shoals to settle in on beds of bait and feature more prominently in catches.  This was  illustrated in the latest match fished at The Airman by seven hardy souls who braved the strong winds.  Match Secretary Nigel Gilbert had sat without a bite for several hours but kept bait steadily going into his swim using a groundbait feeder.  His first bite around 12.30 resulted in a good bream and he then caught steadily throughout the afternoon to become the runaway winner of the match with 33lb 11oz of bream, comprising of six good bream to 6lb 10oz and a few smaller skimmers.   Alec Davies managed to locate 4lb 5oz of roach for second place, whilst Kevin Donovan secured second place with a single perch of exactly two pounds.  Two other anglers managed just over  a pound of roach, whilst the other two competitors sat without a single bite during  the whole match. 
Elsewhere pike have been on the feed with Liam Prout landing a 16lb 6oz pike from Broom Lake.  Steven Bell caught three pike whilst spinning at Willington Lake, but the best pike of the day was caught by his 11 year old son Mickey Bell that probably weighed over 10lb, but was returned unweighed as their set of scales were playing up.  Willington Lake will host the next leg of the pike series on Sunday 13th December (further details available from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819). 
Members of the Perchfishers will be enjoying a ‘fish-in’ in pursuit of the specimen perch along Broom River and the Stanford Canal on Saturday 12th December as guests of the club.  Both venues will remain open to members on the day. 
‘Half year’ Shefford & District AA books are available from our usual outlets and remain valid through to 15th June 2016 (prices: Full £40, Concessions £30, Partners £25, Juniors £10).  Please note that night fishing at The Airman, Broom Lake and Willington Lake requires optional Night Permits (there is no part year discount on these Night Permits).





Week ending 22nd Nov 2015

Wet and windy conditions followed by a dusting of snow and plummeting temperatures deterred many  Shefford & District AA members from venturing outside.  John Dickman managed a late season catfish of 46lb 10oz from The Airman on a bunch of worms and also landed a good pike of 18lb tempted by a deadbait.  The latest round in the pike series saw the nine hardy anglers confronted by early snow and sleet, with a very strong cold north wind that persisted all day.  First place was taken by Bryan Lancaster with pike of 4lb 8oz and 12lb 11oz giving a total weight of 17lb 3oz.  James Turvey landed pike of 4lb 2oz and 7lb 5oz for a total weight of 11lb 7oz to secure second place, whilst the rest of the competitors failed to catch.  Roach and skimmer bream have been falling to feeder tactics, but the shoals appear very localised.  A group of volunteers applied three tonnes of Siltex to The Airman and the water may appear ‘milky’ for a few days before it all settles out.  The venue hosts the next monthly match on Sunday 29th November with pegs 2-12 reserved for the match (further details available from Nigel Gilbert 07467 171637). 
A reminder that a work party is being held at 9am on Saturday 28th November at Broom Lake to deal with overhanging and fallen trees.    Pegs 1-5 and 27-42 will remain open, although pegs 13-23 will be open there could be some disturbance.  Access to and from the lake will also be temporarily blocked whilst a ‘hung up’ branch is dealt with along the track.  All volunteers are welcome. 
Frosts and heavier flows are helping to clear the weed from the rivers making them easier to fish.  Broom River has been producing roach when the river is carrying extra colour and one member reportedly managed to land a 15lb carp on a stick float set up whilst fishing for roach.  David Hawkes went in search of the perch and managed a good perch of 2lb 10oz on lobworm with another around the pound mark on maggot. 
‘Half year’ Shefford & District AA books are available from our usual outlets and are valid from 1st December 2015 through to 15th June 2016 (prices: Full £40, Concessions £30, Partners £25, Juniors £10).  Please note that night fishing at The Airman, Broom Lake and Willington Lake requires optional Night Permits (there is no part year discount on these Night Permits).

Week ending 15th Nov 2015

No catch reports were received this week.  Unacceptable levels of litter are still being left by anglers across SDAA fisheries, with some individuals still thinking it is acceptable to foul the banks.  Anyone caught leaving litter or fouling the banks can expect a ban.  Recent work parties have also recovered a number of poorly constructed rigs where the lead is unable to be released in the event of a breakage.  Some rigs also incorporated lead core, which is banned on all SDAA waters. 
Please take note of the following dates: 
The Airman
Saturday 21st November – closed for pike match (further details available from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819).
Monday 23rd November - closed for Siltex to be applied to the lake and all volunteers are welcome.
Sunday 29th November – monthly match will use pegs 2-12 inclusive (further details available from Nigel Gilbert 07467 171637). 
Broom Lake
Saturday 28th November – Work Party to assist tree surgeon.  Pegs 1-5 and 27-42 will remain open, pegs 13-23 will be open but there could be some disturbance.  Access to and from the lake will also be temporarily blocked whilst a ‘hung up’ branch is dealt with along the track.  All volunteers are welcome. 
‘Half year’ SDAA books will soon be available from our usual outlets. They will be valid from 1st December 2015 through to 15th June 2016 (prices: Full £40, Concessions £30, Spouses £25, Juniors £10).  Please note that night fishing at The Airman, Broom Lake and Willington Lake requires optional Night Permits (there is no part year discount on these Night Permits).

Week ending 8th Nov 2015

The wet conditions appear to have put off many  Shefford & District AA members from venturing out this week.  The roach are currently tightly shoaled up at The Airman with some anglers struggling for a bite, whilst others enjoy reasonable catches although the large roach are not showing at the moment. This has also resulted in the pike becoming very localised, so it is best to adopt a mobile approach to locate the fish.  The odd decent perch continue to show up in catches with Steve Braham managing one of 2lb 8oz.  Carp continue to be caught with Glenn Mills recently landing mirrors of 21lb 14oz and 17lb.  The Airman will host the next leg of the pike series on Saturday 21st November (further details available from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819).  The Airman will be closed on Monday 23rd November for Siltex to be applied to the lake and all volunteers are welcome.  The venue will then host the next monthly match on Sunday 29th November (further details available from Nigel Gilbert 07467 171637). 
The silver fish are beginning to shoal up at Broom Lake as they move to their usual winter haunts, with the pike in close proximity.  Despite the mild weather the carp have not been feeding heavily with only the odd double figure carp reported.  The track around the lake will now remain closed over the winter to prevent further damage.  Siltex has been applied to the lake and it might retain a milky appearance for a few days.  Whilst the boat was on the water the opportunity was taken to remove as much line, leads and rigs as possible that were hanging from the island trees.

 
Week ending 1st Nov 2015

Pike fishing has stolen the headlines on  Shefford & District AA waters this week.  John Dickman reported the biggest pike caught so far this season with a pike of 25lb 2oz from The Airman.  This venue then hosted the latest round of the pike series attended by nine anglers.   Dave Baker was the runaway winner with an excellent catch of six pike for a total of 52lb, topped by fish of 12lb 8oz and 11lb 8oz.  Second place went to James Turvey with 3 pike to 5lb 12oz for 10lb 4oz, whilst the rest of the field failed to catch.  The Airman will host the next leg of the pike series on Saturday 21st November (further details available from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819).  The Airman will be closed on Monday 23rd November for Siltex to be applied to the lake and all volunteers are welcome.  The venue will then host the next monthly match on Sunday 29th November (further details available from Nigel Gilbert 07467 171637). 
The pike at Willington Lake have also been on the feed with Edd Allen and his young son Dexter enjoying a six fish haul.  After two fruitless hours fishing their first swim they spotted roach topping in a nearby swim, which prompted a move.  During the next three hours young Dexter managed to land four pike on a roving float, whilst dad Edd landed two on a float paternoster rig. 
Good bags of silver fish have continued to be taken on Broom Lake with skimmers falling to feeder tactics, whilst roach predominate on the float.  Unfortunately the track around the lake is now closed due to several areas becoming waterlogged.  Members should note that Broom Lake will be closed on Monday 9th and Tuesday 10th November for a work party to apply Siltex to the lake and all volunteers are welcome. 
Following the recent rain the local rivers have started to produce some decent nets of silver fish, with good bags of roach reported from Broom River whilst it was carrying extra water and colour.



Week ending 25th Oct 2015

Despite relatively mild conditions  Shefford & District AA waters have remained relatively quiet.  After landing catfish of 43lb and 34lb from The Airman on his previous visit Richard Knight returned for a midweek session to see if he could tempt an even bigger specimen.  After two nights without any catfish activity, Richard saw a carp surface in his swim so immediately cast a bait to the spot.  Within 10 minutes his alarm sounded and a 21lb mirror carp was landed.  With the catfish activity now slowing down, Mark Norman is happy for us to reveal that he and his wife Janet both landed several catfish over 30lb during their first season with the club, topped by a fish that broke both Mark’s own UK PB and the club’s catfish record with an impressive specimen of 60lb 10oz caught during the summer.  The Airman will host the next two legs of the pike series on Sunday 1st November and Saturday 21st November (further details available from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819).  The Airman will be closed on Monday 23rd November for Siltex to be applied to the lake and all volunteers are welcome.  The venue will then host the next monthly match on Sunday 29th November (further details available from Nigel Gilbert 07467 171637).
 
The carp have continued to feed at Broom Lake with several carp to upper doubles reported during the week.  The latest monthly match saw the fish in a finicky mood with several anglers experiencing delicate bites that proved impossible to hit.   Malcolm Gibbs ran out the winner with a weight of 6lb 6oz of mainly skimmer bream.  John Wigg was second with 4lb 11oz with Neil Bygrave third weighing in 1lb 11oz.  After 5 matches in the series, John Wigg leads the standings on 20 points, with Neil Bygrave on 16 points and Malcolm Gibbs 10 points.  Broom Lake will be closed on Monday 9th and Tuesday 10th November for a work party to apply Siltex to the lake and all volunteers are welcome.



Week ending 18th Oct 2015

The next few weeks will be a busy period for some Shefford & District AA waters with a number of matches and work parties planned and members should take note of these dates, and any notices posted at the fisheries.  The first pike match of the season was held at Broom Lake and attended by eight hopeful participants.  However, despite their best efforts the only pike caught was one of 8lb 5oz landed by Paul Burton.  Young Dexter Allen has only recently started fishing and dug some worms from his uncle’s garden for bait, which was taken by a late season tench of 3lb 8oz that Dexter managed to land on a whip.  The next monthly match is being fished at Broom Lake on Sunday 25th October with pegs 1-5 and 30-42 being used for the match (further details available from Nigel Gilbert 07467 171637).  Broom Lake will then be closed on Monday 9th and Tuesday 10th November for a work party to apply Siltex to the lake and all volunteers are welcome. 
The Airman will host the next two legs of the pike series on Sunday 1st November and Saturday 21st November (further details available from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819).  The Airman will be closed on Monday 23rd November for Siltex to be applied to the lake and again all volunteers are welcome. 
Venue bailiff Brian Barrett has reported that a number of carp have been landed at Willington Lake in recent weeks, but the captors have been reluctant for the details to be published.  The river behind the lake is also fishing well with good numbers of roach and small chub being caught. 
Odd barbel into double figures continue to be caught from the weir pool and pegs further downstream at Little Paxton.  Plenty of perch and eels are also being caught.  Members should note that a club key will now be required to gain access to the allotments and a reminder that whilst within Rowley’s Allotments, vehicles must not exceed 5mph and parking is only permitted within the gravelled parking area, located at the end of the third track on the right.

Week ending 11th Oct 2015

Sport was rather patchy across Shefford & District AA waters but some anglers managed to time their visits to fit in with fish feeding spells.  Venue regulars know that October is one of the best months for catfish at The Airman as they feed hard to pack on weight before the onset of winter.  Steve Braham found the fish feeding well at the beginning of the week but sport tailed off as the weekend approached.  Steve managed to land six catfish with two weighing 45lb each, with another good catfish of 34lb.  Steve also managed to land five mirror carp to 22lb 9oz.  Andrew Bangert managed a 32lb catfish during a short afternoon session.   
Andy Richwood has reported an improvement in his carp catches at Broom Lake in recent weeks often enjoying multiple catches of double figure carp, although he does still suffer the occasional blank when the carp refuse to feed.  The biggest carp recorded in recent weeks was a 24lb common.   This venue hosts the first match of the pike series on Saturday 17th October (further details available from Bryan Lancaster 07810 454819), followed by the next monthly match on Sunday 25th October (further details available from Nigel Gilbert 07467 171637).

Week ending 4th Oct 2015

The calm and sunny conditions coupled with high pressure were not ideal for Shefford & District AA members trying to locate carp last week.  Most of the carp activity at Broom Lake took place at night with Nathan Riley managing 3 carp to upper doubles during an overnight session, whilst Stephen Riley and Andrew Riley both managed a carp and bream during the same night.  Anglers fishing the pole or waggler have been enjoying some good bags of roach and skimmer bream.  Unfortunately we have received several complaints about the amount of litter (including lengths of line) being left around the lake.  There is no excuse for leaving litter of any description at the fisheries and anyone found doing so will receive a ban.
 
Mick Burr kicked off his river season with an excellent perch of exactly 4lb from Broom River and added another good perch of 2lb 12oz. 
On the match scene, Shefford & District AA  members have been invited to take part in a match on the ‘canal lake’ on Letchworth GCAA’s Poppy Hill complex on Sunday 11th October with the draw at 8.30am with fishing from 10am until 3pm (details from Nigel Gilbert (07467 171637).  The pike series will start with the first match at Broom Lake on Saturday 17th October with further details available from Bryan Lancaster (07810 454819).   The next monthly match will also be at Broom Lake on Sunday 25th October with further details available from Nigel Gilbert (07467 171637).

Week ending 27th Sept 2015

With the onset of autumn many of the larger species will be feeding hard to build up reserves for the winter and Shefford & District AA members should be making the most of the next few weeks sport.  The catfish at The Airman can be expected to keep feeding right through October and members are reminded that to safeguard catfish, use of double hooks, treble hooks or uncoated wire traces is banned on this venue between 1st April - 31st October.  To safeguard both pike and catfish, a coated wire hooklink material (e.g. Catfish Pro Pikesafe or AFW Surflon Micro Supreme) must be used by catfish anglers when using fish live or deadbaits.  Just after the boat being used on the work party passed through his swim,  Paul Williams had a screaming run and a spirited fight ensued before a 42lb catfish was safely landed.  A quick overnight session produced a 19lb 8oz mirror carp and a 21lb catfish for Tom Gaby. 
Pleasure anglers at Willington Lake have continued to enjoy good bags of roach and skimmer bream using sweetcorn fished close in, whilst baits such as maggots and worms have resulted in and endless procession of small perch.  Weights were lower than expected for the seven anglers taking part in the latest match at the venue with Neil Bygrave taking top spot with a 5lb 10oz mixed bag of silver fish taken on the whip and waggler.  John Wigg was second with 4lb 13oz taken on the pole and Dave Baker third with 2lb 5oz 8dr. 
The pike series will start with the first match at Broom Lake on Saturday 17th October with further details available from Bryan Lancaster (07810 454819).   The draw for the match will be held at 8.15am with fishing from 9am until 5pm, with the lake closed to members not fishing the match from midnight until 7pm. 
Finally, a reminder that from 1st October to 31st March, members (but not juniors) are permitted to use three rods at The Airman, Broom Lake and Willington Lake, provided they have the appropriate number of EA licences and tackle is not cast in such a way as to interfere with any adjacent swims.

Week endind 20th Sept 2015

Although September is often one of the most productive months of the year only a few catches have been reported by  Shefford & District AA members.  The carp at Broom Lake remained in a responsive mood with several anglers enjoying some good catches.  Junior member Shane Pepper upped his carp PB for the third time is as many weeks landing a 22lb 6oz mirror, which was tempted on a pop-up bait.  Several anglers including  Gary Pitman landed mid double common carp, whilst Luke Martin landed a 14lb 9oz mirror carp. 
There will be a work parties at The Airman on Friday 25th September and Willington Lake on Saturday 26th September and all volunteers are welcome to attend.  At The Airman swims 5-10 will be closed whilst the reeds are cut back with the aid of a boat,  which will then be used to remove sunken branches and other snags from other swims around the lake, so anglers fishing may experience some disturbance.  At Willington Lake the plan is to replace the rotten posts and wire fencing in the water that stop the cattle wading around the ends of the fences. 
The next match on Sunday 27th September will be fished at Willington Lake with the draw at 8am and fishing from 9am-3pm and further details can be obtained from Nigel Gilbert (07467 171637 or sdaamatch@gmail.com). 



Week ending 13th Sept 2015

With the water temperatures starting to fall and the days rapidly shortening the fish on Shefford & District AA stillwaters have started to feed more consistently as they build up reserves before the onset of winter.  The carp at Broom Lake have been far more responsive with several anglers enjoying multiple catches, albeit with catches dominated by the common carp with the mirror carp proving more elusive.  Paul Burton’s last 20 carp from the venue have all been commons, including the three doubles he caught last weekend to 17lb 4oz.  Darren Brown managed two commons of 16lb 2oz and 14lb during an overnight session, whilst junior Shane Pepper upped his PB again with a 19lb 4oz common tempted on a pop-up bait.  The silver fish have also been feeding well with Alec Davies having a cracking day on the waggler with a double figure bag of roach on maggot and caster, and a bonus 7lb tench. 
Disappointingly there were a number of ‘no shows’ from anglers who had booked a place in the catfish match held at The Airman, which left eight angler to contest the match held over two nights.  Martin Sharp had only ever caught one catfish in his life and that had been accidentally foul hooked, but crucially Martin managed to land three catfish during the match weighing 25lb, 14lb 6oz and 13lb 8oz for a total of 52lb 14oz to run out the winner.   Second place went to Steve Braham with a single catfish of 34lb, which was the only other catfish caught with Ed Allen landing two pike and Paul Williams landing another pike on baits intended for the catfish.  In a desperate attempt to tempt a catfish match organiser Nigel Gilbert hair rigged a sweet & sour chicken ball left over from his Chinese meal and tossed his rig out with 90 minutes of the match remaining and started to pack away his gear.  With 15 minutes left to go Nigel’s alarm sounded and a strike was met with the solid resistance of a large fish that slowly powered away.  After a long fight the fish was finally landed only to find the catfish had been foul hooked in the pectoral fin so Nigel decided it could not count in the match, which was a pity because the fish weighed 42lb 11oz and would have earned second place and would have also easily smashed Nigel’s PB of 26lb.  There will be a work party at The Airman on Friday 25th September and swims 5-10 will be closed whilst the reeds are cut back with the aid of a boat.  Whilst the boat is on the water attempts will be made to remove sunken branches and other snags from other swims around the lake so anglers fishing may experience some disturbance.  Any member willing to help is welcome to turn up on the day. 
The next match on Sunday 27th September will be fished at Willington Lake with the draw at 8am and fishing from 9am-3pm and further details can be obtained from Nigel Gilbert (07467 171637 or sdaamatch@gmail.com).  A work party is being held at the venue on Saturday 26th September to replace the posts and wire fencing in the water that stop the cattle wading around the ends of the fences, again all volunteers are welcome to attend. 
Shefford & District AA is looking for volunteers who would like to give up some of their time to help in the running of the club.  If you want to help in the development of Shefford & District AA there are a variety of volunteer opportunities ranging from becoming a committee member, bailiffing our waters or helping to maintain and improve our fisheries through work parties.  If you feel you have something to offer or would just like to find out more about volunteering opportunities please contact any of the officers listed on the front of your membership book.







Week ending 30th August 2015

The unseasonal weather kept many Shefford & District AA members away from the bank, but the upcoming autumn months can often prove the most productive period on stillwaters.  The latest match was fished at Willington Lake under far from ideal conditions but all seven participants caught with the lowest weight being 5lb 8oz.  John Wigg ran out the winner with one tench and silver fish caught on the pole for 8lb 9oz 8dr just ahead of Neil Bygrave’s 8lb 7oz 8dr net of silver fish caught on the whip.  Cyril Davies opted to fish on the tip and managed one tench and a few skimmer bream to take third with 7lb 13oz, followed by Alec Davies with 7lb 3oz in fourth.  John Wigg now leads the series with 12 points, Neil Bygrave second on 8 points and Alec Davies third on 5 points. 
Please note Broom Lake will be closed from midnight on Friday 4th September through to 11am on Sunday 6th September for a Memorial Match in memory of Dean Johnson, which is by invitation only.  There have been some signs of the carp feeding more consistently with several carp mainly mid doubles being caught, plus a ghost carp over 20lb was reported.  The cold and damp conditions have made the roach more difficult to tempt and extra care should be taken when using the track around the lake following the recent rain.  A reminder that the current rod limit at Broom Lake is two rods and anyone found fishing with three or more rods will be endorsed.  The use of three rods at Broom Lake is only permitted during the period between 1st October and 31st March. 
There have been few reports from The Airman, but Richard Draycott was delighted to land a 44lb 15oz catfish after a titanic 25 minute fight.  The fish was caught on luncheon meat and it took two people to lift out of the water, with Richard commenting it was the biggest fish he had ever seen let alone caught.

Week ending 23rd August 2015

Once again there have been relatively few catch reports from Shefford & District AA members, but a common theme has been excellent bags of silver fish from stillwater venues. Colin Smith returned to The Airman and fished a completely different area of the lake to his previous visit, but again put together an excellent bag of roach.  Colin fished small pellets using a waggler and his loose feed soon had the roach lined up and whilst most were in the 3-5oz bracket, he included several 'netters' to just over the pound mark for a bag of roach in excess of 20lb.  The odd carp to 21lb and catfish have also been reported but the roach have been providing the most consistent sport from all areas of the lake.  
The next match is being held on Sunday 30th August at Willington Lake with the draw at 8am and fishing from 9am-3pm and further details can be obtained from Nigel Gilbert (07467 171637 or sdaamatch@gmail.com).  The venue is fishing well for silver fish with several good bags of quality roach being caught from pegs along the track.  Dave Baker fished a session in the 'Bomb Shelter' peg and managed five tench over 5lb up to 5lb 12oz and a 19lb 10oz common carp.  He then decided to try a few hours fishing the waggler and was soon catching quality roach as well as a couple of tench, including a male that was clearly full of milt suggesting that they were once again involved in spawning activity.  Venue bailiff Brian Barrett had a true mixed bag of fish landing bream, roach, rudd, tench, perch and dace mainly caught on sweetcorn.  Brian's silver fish ranged in size up to 8oz and totaled about 15lb plus a 4lb tench, but Brian felt that he should have doubled his weight having missed numerous bites before changing to a much larger hook and fishing two grains of corn.  Brian was also troubled by pike and managed to land one jack of 5lb that snatched a rudd whilst being landed.
During the week the carp at Broom Lake were proving elusive with only the odd fish being caught, but Andrew Riley caught the carp in a feeding mood with 8 fish to 18lb 4oz during one morning.  Like the other lakes it is the roach that are the most consistent feeders with anglers using more selective baits such as sweetcorn or stewed wheat picking out the larger fish.  Tench are still appearing in catches with the odd smaller fish around the pound mark being reported, which are probably from the stocking made last winter.  Please note Broom Lake will be closed from midnight on Friday 4th September through to 11am on Sunday 6th September for a Memorial Match in memory of Dean Johnson, which is by invitation only.

The EA will be weed cutting from Langford Garden Centre to Jordans Mill towards the end of this week. They hope to start on Wednesday and expect to finish on Friday. The start day is a bit variable as they are currently doing Jordans to Biggleswade, which is choked with in-stream rushes which take longer to cut

 
Week ending 16th August 2015

With the holiday season in full swing there have been plenty of Shefford & District AA members fishing club venues but very few have reported their catches.  Louis Hart managed three carp from The Airman to 14lb and a specimen 2lb 2oz roach also took a liking to his homemade boilies.  Good nets of roach are being caught from all around the lake on both feeder tactics or float fished in conjunction with pole or rod and reel.  Colin Smith decided to try fishing small pellets using a waggler with his loose feed soon attracted the attentions of the roach and from then on it was a ‘bite a chuck’.  Colin failed to attract any of the bigger roach with all his fish in the 3-5oz bracket, but with 81 roach caught in just a few hours Colin was delighted with his 20lb bag of redfins.  A few swims away Dean Carr was enjoying his first success of catching catfish in the UK and ended his session with 6 catfish topped by an impressive specimen of 45lb 6oz. 
A reminder that the venue for the next match on Sunday 30th August has been switched to Willington Lake with the draw at 8am and fishing from 9am-3pm and further details can be obtained from Nigel Gilbert (07467 171637 or sdaamatch@gmail.com). 
For those anglers planning to visit the Ivel please be aware that the EA will be cutting the weed over the next week or so.  The EA weed cutting team will work upstream with the river around Sandy being completed before moving on to the IPA sections around Biggleswade.  Weed cutting along the SDAA controlled sections from Langford Garden Centre down to Jordans Mill is planned for next week, but progress will depend upon the weather and how much weed they encounter. 
Despite the rules printed in membership books and constant reminders there is still a minority of members who appear to think it is acceptable to foul the banks of the fisheries and leave litter.  These thoughtless members can expect to be banned if caught.  We would also like to remind members that they need to be in possession of the appropriate number and type of EA rod licences when fishing.  The EA enforcement officers do visit SDAA and other local waters and will prosecute those anglers not in possession of rod licences or breaking EA bylaws.  Visit the Angling Trust website for a list of anglers recently prosecuted by the EA who have had to pay a total of almost £40k in fines, including several local anglers.



Week ending 9th August 2015

The settled weather has seen plenty of Shefford & District AA members on the bank and those anglers targeting the silver fish have again seen much more consistent action than those targeting the larger specimens.  Barry Cook managed a couple of mid-double carp during an overnight session at Broom Lake with most of the carp just cruising around on the surface during the daytime.  However, the previous week Barry managed eight carp during the day when conditions were overcast and cooler.  Roach and rudd are being caught from most areas of the lake on waggler and pole tactics with sweetcorn and stewed wheat picking out the better fish.
 
Willington Lake is still producing good bags of silver fish from several areas of the lake with the biggest catches coming to those who adopt a bold feeding pattern from the start.  Nets of roach in excess of 20lbs are not uncommon with some roach over the pound, the largest being a 1lb 10oz roach reported by James Turvey, who also landed a bream of 7lb 10oz.  Bleak are usually associated with rivers but they are still showing in good numbers with James Turvey weighed one ‘specimen’ at 3oz.  With the British record for bleak standing at only 4oz 9dr it might pay other anglers to weigh any large bleak they catch.  Please note that the venue for the next match on Sunday 30th August has been switched to Willington Lake with the draw at 8am and fishing from 9am-3pm and further details can be obtained from Nigel Gilbert (07467 171637 or sdaamatch@gmail.com). 
Only the odd carp and catfish has been reported from The Airman.  Glenn Mills recently managed a 21lb mirror carp on his first cast and first trip to the venue.  Members targeting the roach have enjoyed some good catches on pole, waggler and feeder tactics.  Although none of the larger 2lb fish have been reported, good nets with roach to a pound are common place with some good sized perch also putting in an appearance.  There will be a another work party at The Airman on Friday 14th August starting at 9.30am to complete the renovation of swim 18 (Stumps).  The work will involve fitting the last board, back filling and levelling off the swim.



Week ending 2nd August 2015

With the holiday season in full swing there have been plenty of Shefford & District AA members on the bank, but few reports of catches have been received.  Although the carp at Broom Lake were often spotted cruising in the surface layers, several fish were caught on bottom baits with Dave Clarke landing two carp to 19lb during a morning session.  Dave has recovered two lots of sinking braid from the same swim both in the water and around 50 yards long, one still having a lead, lead clip, hook length and hook attached.  Extra care should be taken when using braid as main line to avoid break offs and rig tubing should be incorporated to avoid the braid damaging hooked fish.  Sandie Cornell landed a small carp of 3lb 6oz that was returned to the water without taking a photo, but she later realised that the small carp was in fact one of the lake’s large crucian carp and a new PB.  On her return visit Sandie landed a succession of bream before her reel screamed off and she was hooked into something much more substantial.  After a spirited fight the fish was finally netted and proved to be another PB in the shape of a 18lb 11oz common carp. 
Please note that the venue for the next match on Sunday 30th August has been switched to Willington Lake and contrary to last week’s report the following match on  Sunday 27th September will also be held at the same venue.  The lake is still producing good bags of silver fish from several areas with roach over the pound mark appearing in catches as well as plenty of good sized skimmer bream.  There have been a number of anglers targeting the carp but most have been keeping tight lipped about any captures, apart from Cyril Davies who reported landing an 18lb common carp. 
Anglers targeting the carp and catfish at The Airman have been struggling with only the odd one or two coming out.  Richard Knight fished a 72h session and had managed only a small 13lb catfish and 5lb bream before a 26lb 8oz mirror carp picked up his bait during his last night.  However, members targeting the roach are having better luck with a few double figure nets reported from various swims with sweetcorn often picking out the bigger roach.  Tench are also being caught from several swims around the lake.  There will be a another work party at The Airman on Friday 7th August to complete the renovation of swim 18 (Stumps), which will cause some disturbance to anglers fishing nearby and it is hoped the swim will be reopened late afternoon. 



Week ending 26th July 2015

The sudden switch to cooler weather kept many Shefford & District AA members away from the banks last weekend, especially during the periods of torrential rain.  Despite the forecast of rain, nine members turned up for the latest match held at Broom Lake hoping the silver fish would continue to feed.  However, most anglers struggled in the very wet and windy conditions with weights much lower than anticipated based on midweek catches.  David Batcheldor ran out winner with a weight of 4lb 1oz; with the other points winners being Lez Reed second with 3lb 6oz, Neil Bygrave third (2lb 12oz), John Wigg fourth (2lb 7oz 8dr) and Malcolm Gibbs fifth (1lb 5oz).  Please note that the venues for the next two matches in this series have been swapped around with the match on Sunday 30th August now being held at Willington Lake and the following match on  Sunday 27th September at The Airman. 
Despite the cooler conditions  The Airman produced a 44lb catfish for Paul Williams.  There will be a work party at The Airman on Friday 31st July starting around 10am for the first phase of renovating swim 18 (Stumps), which will cause some disturbance to anglers fishing nearby . It is hoped the swim will be reopened later in the afternoon but a second work party will be required to complete rebuilding the front of the swim in a week or two.  
Kevin Wilkins had no action on his tench rods at Willington Lake but his third rod targeting the carp tempted a lean common carp of 13lb 4oz and one of the recently stocked VS Fisheries mirrors at 11lb 6oz.  Fishing companion James Turvey also struggled to get any action from the tench, suspecting they were preoccupied by another bout of spawning with a solitary bream being his only fish of the day. 
Reports from the Ouse at Little Paxton have shown several barbel to double figures being caught in recent weeks.  Members should note that gate at the entrance to the allotments will be fitted with locks in the next few weeks to improve security, so any member wanting to access the car park within the allotments will need the standard SDAA ‘A9’ key once the locks have been fitted.  Members are also reminded not to dig the banks to create or modify swims.  Permission from the EA and the land owner is required for any alterations to the bank, and recent unauthorised modifications have created safety and access issues for other members.





Week ending 19th July 2015

There have been numerous good catches reported from Shefford & District AA waters this week, with a range of species caught on a variety of different methods.  The Airman has been the pick of the venues with many species turning up in catches.  The most impressive fish was a beautiful 2lb 12oz roach caught by Carl Nancarrow using a white chocolate mini boilie fished just a few rod lengths out.  Andrew Wood landed a 44lb 4oz catfish on meat and added two more catfish of 36lb and 11lb during his session.  Junior member Braiden Hart enjoyed a productive overnight session landing three carp including a 17lb mirror and 16lb common.  Venue regular Phillip White snatched a short 2 hour visit and fishing with surface baits tempted an 18lb common and two mid-double mirrors.
 
Andrew Riley’s midweek trip to Broom Lake resulted in four carp and two tench, with Andrew’s biggest carp being a 16lb 13oz common taken off the surface.   Gary Barnes fished a weekend session and amassed 7 bream to 8lb 8oz, 5 carp topped by a 19lb mirror and a ‘keep net full’ of roach, rudd and perch.  A match is being held at Broom Lake this Sunday the 26th July with the draw at 8am and fishing from 9am-3pm and further details can be obtained from Nigel Gilbert (07467 171637 or sdaamatch@gmail.com).  The match will use pegs 1-5 & 30-42 and these pegs must be vacated by midnight prior to the match, whilst pegs 6-29 remain open to members.
 
The carp at Willington Lake are spending most of their time in the most heavily weeded areas of the lake apparently happy to feed on the abundant natural food.  However, tench and bream continue to feature in catches.  Venue bailiff Brian Barrett fished his favourite swim with a small method feeder and netted 15 skimmer bream up to 2lb as well as a solitary tench of 7lb.  Lee Jackson started his day with a small tench of 3lb 7oz , before landing a much bigger fish of 7lb 12oz followed by a third tench of 5lb 2oz.  James and Faye Turvey found the tench somewhat unresponsive on their latest visit with Faye managing a single tench of 4lb 4oz, whilst James landed two bream of 7lb 6oz and 5lb 13oz.  Anyone planning a trip to Willington Lake should take a pair of boots or waders as the falling water level means the margins are quite shallow in several areas and anglers may need to wade out to safely land and return larger fish in a suitable depth of water.  However, anglers need to take care whilst wading as some of the margins are quite soft and you can sink several inches into the silt.
 
Earlier in the week Faye and James Turvey visited the Ouse at Little Paxton.  This was Faye’s first trip of the season and she decided to target the barbel and she was delighted when a barbel of 5lb 14oz picked up her bait.  Meanwhile James targeted the perch and managed over a dozen around  the 1lb mark, two jack pike and a surprise chub of 4lb 9oz. Pete Allen managed to find a clear spot amongst the weed along Broom River and managed some nice roach with his best fish weighing 1lb 12oz.









Week ending 12th July 2015

A common theme across Shefford & District AA waters has been the amount of litter left by thoughtless and irresponsible anglers.  There is no excuse for leaving litter and anyone found doing so can expect to receive a ban from the club.  On a more positive note members are enjoying some good catches on the lakes with tench remaining a reliable species during the hot weather. 
James Turvey has again been targeting the tincas at Willington Lake and managed three tench on his first visit weighing 7lb 8oz, 4lb 12oz and 6lb 3oz. Meanwhile his fishing partner Kevin Wilkins managed to land a 5lb tench and an 8lb 2oz bream.   Returning later in the week James caught five more tench (biggest 6lb 14oz), a 5lb 14oz bream and a 1lb roach, as well as losing a large tench that shed the hook just as it came to the landing net. 
Early in the week the carp at Broom Lake were basking in the surface layers, but the cooler conditions over the weekend triggered several fish to feed, with an unconfirmed report of a 29lb carp being landed.  New member Julie Shadbolt tempted a pristine 14lb common.  Whilst the bream were proving elusive, plenty of tench were caught during the week with John Wigg taking three good tench in 4 ‘put-ins’ on the pole.  Good bags of roach were being caught from most areas of the lake with sweetcorn and stewed wheat the favourite baits for picking out the better quality fish.  The second match of the season is being held at Broom Lake on Sunday the 26th July with the draw at 8am and fishing from 9am-3pm and further details can be obtained from Nigel Gilbert (07467 171637 or sdaamatch@gmail.com).  The match will use pegs 1-5 & 30-42 and these pegs must be vacated by midnight prior to the match, whilst pegs 6-29 remain open to members. 
There are relatively few members fishing the river venues at the moment with several areas of the Ivel and its tributaries heavily weeded.  There are only a few swims currently fishable along Broom River with weed and lilies often stretching from bank to bank and a large willow has recently fallen across the path and river upstream of the S-bend, which will restrict access until it is removed.

Week ending 5th July 2015

With temperatures rarely below 20C the carp were often reluctant to feed across Shefford & District AA stillwaters, but were often very visible just under the surface.  The catfish at The Airman were the target for several members and Tom Gaby managed two catfish to 36lb early in his session during sultry daytime conditions prior to a violent overnight thunderstorm.  It is hoped to cut back some of the reeds over the next few weeks to open up some of the swims, which may cause some minor disturbance for those fishing in adjacent swims. 
There have been relatively few anglers fishing Willington Lake and although several areas are heavily weeded there are still plenty of areas that remain fishable and weed free.  Tench remain the most reliable feeders with James Turvey managing four tench on his most recent visit with the best fish weighing 5lb 13oz.  Thomas Farren reported a 6lb 7oz tench taken later in the week.  The margins are teeming with small fry suggesting that this has again been a very successful year for spawning. 
With the carp at Broom Lake often happy just to bask in the sunshine, those fishing for silver fish have enjoyed most of the action with roach and skimmer bream being the most reliable species with the roach often feeding well up in the water.  The second match of the season is being held at Broom Lake on Sunday the 26th July with the draw at 8am and fishing from 9am-3pm and further details can be obtained from Nigel Gilbert (07467 171637 or sdaamatch@gmail.com).  The match will use pegs 1-5 & 30-42 and these pegs must be vacated by midnight prior to the match, whilst pegs 6-29 remain open to members



Week ending 28th June 2015

With water temperatures continuing to rise the carp are still engaged in spawning activity across Shefford & District AA stillwaters, but other species are offering reliable sport for members.  The catfish at The Airman were back on the feed with two fish over 40lb reported.   Colin Warne elected to move swims after a lack of activity overnight and within a few hours of moving connected with a powerful 43lb catfish during the afternoon.  Later that night Daniel Munnery set a new PB when he landed a 43lb 4oz catfish.  Earlier in the week Mark Austin tempted a good tench that weighed exactly 7lb. 
Willington Lake hosted the first match of the season and some of the eight anglers taking part were confronted by floating weed that made presentation difficult and the outcome could have been a lot different if all the better quality fish that were hooked had been landed.   Most catches were made up of mixed bags of silver fish that included a number of skimmer bream and a surprising number of bleak that have been stranded in the lake after it last flooded some 18 months ago.  John Wigg also included a tench in his bag of fish to win with a weight of 7lb 11oz with Dave Baker second with 6lb 4oz, just ahead of Alec Davies with 5lb 15oz in third.  The other point scorers were Malcolm Gibbs fourth with 4lb 7oz and Neil Bygrave fifth with 4lb 6oz.  During the week the tench had been the most reliable feeders often picking up baits intended for the carp.  James Turvey specifically targeted the tench and tempted a new PB male tench of 7lb 10oz, adding another smaller tench of 4lb 10oz. 
The carp at Broom Lake have spent most of the sunny days just cruising around under the surface showing little interest in anglers baits; however, a number of fish to upper doubles have been tempted to feed during the hours of darkness or the first few hours of daylight.  Currently one of the most reliable methods is to fish tight to the near margins over just a few free offerings.  Several tench mainly in the 4-6lb bracket have been caught during the week with none of the larger specimens reported.  The silver fish offer reliable sport to anglers float fishing the margins using either pole or waggler tactics.  Maggot is almost guaranteed to bring instant bites but will also attract shoals of small roach and perch into the swim, and anglers persevering with more selective baits such as sweetcorn are enjoying good bags better quality roach and skimmer bream.  Pike are never far from the shoals of silver fish and new member Del Pilsbury managed two pike on his first trip to the venue. 
Reports from the rivers have been sparse but anglers have been reporting healthy numbers of smaller fish across all river venues.  James Turvey landed a succession of small chub on his first trip to the Ouse at Pavenham this season, but also noted an increase in the signal crayfish population.  Meanwhile Dave Baker decided to explore the section of the Ivel Navigation upstream of Stanford Lock armed with just a simple stick float set up and centrepin reel.  Despite the overgrown banks Dave managed to find a couple of spots to fish and enjoyed plenty of action from small chub, roach and dace caught on maggot.  Dave’s catch also including three small barbel presumably from the stockings made by the Environment Agency in recent years at the Horsebridge further upstream.







Week ending 21st June 2015

It was with great sadness that we heard Shefford & District AA life member Tony Gray had died suddenly on Friday 12th June aged 69.  Tony was a long serving and active member of the Committee prior to being made a life member in 2005.  Tony’s funeral will be held at 12.30 on Monday 6th July at Harwood Park Crematorium in Stevenage. 
Former Chairman, Pete Allen made an excellent start to the new river season from an undisclosed venue.  Pete began by landing two chub well over 5lb that were rather ‘hollow’ following spawning, but followed this up with an excellent early season specimen of 7lb 6oz that is likely to weigh significantly more come the winter months.  The weir pool at Little Paxton was a popular venue for the first few days of the river season with most members hoping to catch a double figure barbel, but bream and eels proved to be the most reliable feeders with the odd chub also reported.  Liam Prout decided to fish Broom River and his maggot bait tempted Liam’s first ever river tench, a species that is reasonably prevalent along this relatively slow stretch of the Ivel. 
A series of nine matches is being held on the last Sunday of each month, using our three main lakes as the venues.  The first match of the season is being held at Willington Lake this Sunday 28th June with the draw at 8am and fishing from 9am-3pm (further details can be obtained from Nigel Gilbert on 07467 171637 or sdaamatch@gmail.com).  The south and west banks of the lake (from the kissing gate up to the wooded area at the western end of the lake) are reserved for the match and must be vacated by midnight prior to the match.  During the week the undergrowth along the track has been cut back to make it easier to park off the track and allow farm vehicles access to the fields.  The carp were very visible during the week cruising around just under the surface and were obviously getting ready to spawn.  Tench continue to be the most reliable feeders with some anglers enjoying multiple captures with fish to just over 7lb.  Unfortunately, we have received reports of a minority of carp anglers mistreating tench and bream by not using a landing net for these species and trying to shake the hooks out in the margins, which is causing mouth damage to these fish.  Landing nets should be used to help land all species that are hooked (apart from those weighing just a few ounces) and hooks carefully removed, before returning all fish safely to the water. 
The carp fishing at Broom Lake is still unpredictable with the fish yet to finish spawning and locating any feeding fish is often proving difficult.  A strong wind always triggers the carp into feeding and this was the case when Paul Bray enjoyed a memorable session recently after finding the carp crashing all over one corner of the lake.  Paul’s bite indicators were rarely silent as a procession of carp picked up his baits, topped by two carp over the 20lb mark and he went home thoroughly exhausted.  Paul caught all his fish on single hook baits with no free offerings, which is perhaps a lesson for those anglers who insist on piling in several kilos of bait at the start of their sessions. 
There have been relatively few reports from The Airman with just the odd carp and tench reported during the week.  The floating dead reeds have been removed from several swims along the road side to make them easier to fish and lilies have been planted to the sides of swims 8 and 9, so please try not to disturb these.