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In 2018 the SFCA will again host a qualification round for the Angling Trust and Canals and Rivers Trust UK Canal Pairs Championship, the biggest canal angling competition in the UK.

Organised by the charity, the Canal & River Trust in partnership with the Angling Trust, the Championship’s regional qualifying heats are being held in Wales, Scotland and Ireland as well as thirteen heats across England.

Competitors will score points based on the weight of fish they catch with up to six pairs in each heat – dependent on entries per heat – going through to the grand final on Saturday 20 October 2018. The final will be held at Stafford with pegs on both the Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal and Trent & Mersey Canal.

The potential grand final prize pot is £16,000, dependent on all sixteen heats selling out – with the prize money split between the top four pairs.

John Ellis, national fisheries and angling manager for the Canal & River Trust said: “Our canals offer fantastic angling, even in the most urban areas. They’re packed with fish, freely accessible and a great place to unwind and clear your mind so we want to inspire more people to give them a go. These championships are a really good way of doing just that and are growing in popularity each year. The 2018 event promises to be an exciting one, with anglers across the UK and Ireland invited to show us what they can do. We hope to see lots of entries but, if match fishing isn’t your thing, then your local canal still has plenty to offer.”

David Kent, Chair of Angling Trust Competitions said; “This competition goes from strength-to-strength and I think a key reason for this is that new venues are introduced every year thus keeping the event fresh.”

James Lewis, Competitions Development Manager of the Angling Trust commented “It’s great to see canal fishing coming back to the top of the match fishing calendar. We’ve worked carefully with the Canal & River Trust and local clubs to identify and organise new matches on sections of canal that are going to produce plenty of bites and exceptional matches.”

The Grand Final will be combined with the National Junior Canal Championship and will take place on Saturday 20 October 2018 on the Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal and Trent & Mersey Canal

Full details of the Scottish Qualifier are as follows:

1)      Date and venue of qualifier:  Saturday 14th July 2018, Forth & Clyde Canal, Stables Public House, Kirkintilloch

2)      Headquarters: JB Angling Centre, 37 Eastside, Kirkintilloch, Glasgow G66 1QA

3)      Draw time: 09:00am

4)      Fishing Times: 11:30-am – 4:30pm

5)      Overview of match length: The Forth and Clyde Canal connects the River Forth Estuary at Grangemouth to the River Clyde Estuary at Bowling west of Glasgow.  It averages 20mtrs wide and 7-8 ft deep down the track.  It is a relatively clear canal with few lochs and low levels of boat traffic, although this has increased in recent years.  The match length will run either side of the road bridge at the Stables Public House (where the A803 crosses the canal).  Parking is in the layby on the opposite side of the road from the Stables Public House.  The pub car park is not to be used.  The stretch holds a good head of small roach, perch, pike as well as tench, eels and a few rudd, although the tench are seldom caught during the day.  Eels are a protected species in Scotland under EU legislation and it is illegal to place them in keepnets.  Any eels caught must be released immediately.  Pike do not count.

6)      Organiser Name: Gus Brindle

7)      Organiser contact number (For tickets and email address for tickets): 07812 241816

8)       Entry Fees:  £40 per Pair payable on booking in.  All entrants will receive free Annual Membership of the Scottish Federation for Coarse Angling (valid from 1st Apr 18 to 31st Mar 19) which includes FREE fishing on the Forth & Clyde and Union Canal.   There are thus no additional ticket fees for practice sessions.  Entrants will receive an email from requesting address details so that membership cards and fishery rules can be sent out to them.  Anyone who is already an individual member of the SFCA will have their individual membership fee refunded on payment of entry fee.  Optional Pools will be run on the day.

9)      Entry method:  Individuals can enter by post by sending a cheque or postal order for £40 per pair, made payable to ‘SFCA’, to the following address:

SFCA, The Cottage, 6 The Pleasance, HALBEATH, Fife  KY12 0TT

Please remember to include the full names and addresses of both individuals.  This will allow the SFCA to refund individual membership fees where applicable.

Alternatively pairs can book in and pay on line through the Angling Trust by clicking the link below:

10)    Rules:  Copy of the rules for fishing on the canals will be sent out with the SFCA Membership Cards. Eels are a protected species in Scotland under EU legislation and it is illegal to place them in keepnets.  Any eels caught must be released immediately.  Pike do not count.  No Bloodworm and Joker.

Dates, venues and host clubs for all of the AT & CRT Canal Pairs qualifiers are listed below:

Saturday 23 June – Shropshire Union Canal, Soudley, Hodnet Angling Club

Sunday 24 June – Gloucester & Sharpness Canal

Saturday 14 July – Forth & Clyde Canal

Sunday 15th July – Edenderry Grand Canal, Offely

Sunday 22nd July – Grand Union Canal, Blaby, Glen Parva & South Wigston Wigston AS – NEW

Saturday 28 July – Shropshire Union Canal, Shebdon, Hodnet Angling Club – NEW

Saturday 4 August – Rochdale Canal, Todmorden, Todmorden Angling Society

Sunday 5 August – Grand Union Canal, Luton Angling Club and The Tring Anglers – NEW

Sunday 12 August – Grand Union Canal, Foxton, Wellingborough and District Nene Angling Club – NEW

Sunday 2 September – Grand Union Canal, Loughborough, Quorn Angling Society

Sunday 9 September – Leeds Liverpool Canal, Wigan, Wigan District Angling Association

Saturday 22 September – Trent & Mersey Canal, Rugeley, Coors Angling Club

Sunday 23 September – Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal, Penkridge, Wolverhampton Angling Association

Saturday 29 September – Llangollen Canal, Whixall, Hodnet Angling Club

Saturday 29th September – Kennet & Avon Canal, Devizes, Devizes Angling Club

Sunday 30th September – Aire & Calder, Altofts, Mirfield Angling Club – NEW

Tight Lines,

Gus Brindle, Chairman SFCA


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