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The Freshwater Fish Preservation League

A meeting was held at the Swan Hotel, Fountain St, Manchester on the 11th November 1908 between committee members of The Salford Friendly Anglers Society, The County Palatine Angling Association and the Moss Side Social Angling Club with the remit of setting up a group of local angling associations dedicated to improving our sport by

1. Observing the close seasons.

2. To stop the taking of undersized fish for the table

3. To halt the practice of killing all fish before the weigh in at angling competitions.

4. To encourage all anglers to become “good sportsmen”

Long before the days when catch and release was the norm – most fish caught ended up as someones dinner.

At the turn of the 19th century it was common practice for match nets to be weighed in dead, and the fish sold by the fishing club match organising committee.

Obviously some enlightened anglers were wise to the fact that practices such as this were damaging our sport and decided to take appropriate action.

The meeting resulted in the formation of the Freshwater Fish Preservation League – who continued as an active organisation until the late 1950s. Indeed “The League” even formed their own match team who were recorded competing in post 2nd World War 1st Division National Matches.

Please click on these two documents below to see them in full size and have a read of what was decided upon one November evening in 1908

Minutes of the first meeting of the Freshwater Fish Preservation League

Minutes of the first meeting of the Freshwater Fish Preservation League

 

Hand Written Minutes Of The First Meeting Of The Freshwater Fish Preservation League

Hand Written Minutes Of The First Meeting Of The Freshwater Fish Preservation League

Over course of the next few weeks we will be adding more documents to our archive – and will create more links to documents and information about this organisation

The Angler Magazine 1948 Fish Prints

Stashed away in an old faded manila envelope we found these amazing fish prints – they are the complete set that was given away in “The Angler” magazine in 1948.

Pike - The Angler Magazine 1948

Pike – The Angler Magazine 1948

Ruffe And Miller's Thumb - The Angler 1948

Ruffe And Miller’s Thumb – The Angler 1948

Sharp Nosed Eel, Broad Nosed Eel - The Angler Magazine 1948

Sharp Nosed Eel, Broad Nosed Eel – The Angler Magazine 1948

Chub - The Angler Magazine 1948

Chub – The Angler Magazine 1948

Carp - The Angler Magazine 1948

Carp – The Angler Magazine 1948

Rainbow Trout - The Angler Magazine 1948

Rainbow Trout – The Angler Magazine 1948

Loch Leven Trout - The Angler Magazine 1948

Loch Leven Trout – The Angler Magazine 1948

Great Lake Trout - The Angler Magazine 1948

Great Lake Trout – The Angler Magazine 1948

Gillaroo Trout - The Angler Magazine 1948

Gillaroo Trout – The Angler Magazine 1948

Gudgeon and Barbel - The Angler Magazine 1948

Gudgeon and Barbel – The Angler Magazine 1948

Graining and Dace - The Angler Magazine 1948

Graining and Dace – The Angler Magazine 1948

Galway Sea Trout - The Angler Magazine 1948

Galway Sea Trout – The Angler Magazine 1948

Black Finned Trout - The Angler Magazine 1948

Black Finned Trout – The Angler Magazine 1948

Salmon Trout - The Angler Magazine 1948

Salmon Trout – The Angler Magazine 1948

Golden Tench - The Angler Magazine 1948

Golden Tench – The Angler Magazine 1948

Sturgeon - The Angler Magazine 1948

Sturgeon – The Angler Magazine 1948

Short Headed Salmon and Silver Headed Salmon - The Angler Magazine 1948

Short Headed Salmon and Silver Headed Salmon – The Angler Magazine 1948

Salmon male - The Angler Magazine 1948

Salmon male – The Angler Magazine 1948

Grilse or young Salmon - The Angler Magazine 1948

Grilse or young Salmon – The Angler Magazine 1948

Lamprey and Lampern - The Angler Magazine 1948

Lamprey and Lampern – The Angler Magazine 1948

Pollan and Powan - The Angler Magazine 1948

Pollan and Powan – The Angler Magazine 1948

Pomeranian Bream and White Bream - The Angler Magazine 1948

Pomeranian Bream and White Bream – The Angler Magazine 1948

Golden and Bronze Carp - The Angler Magazine 1948

Golden and Bronze Carp – The Angler Magazine 1948

Azurine, Double, Rudd - The Angler Magazine 1948

Azurine, Double, Rudd – The Angler Magazine 1948

Vendace, Gwyniad, Grayling - The Angler Magazine 1948

Vendace, Gwyniad, Grayling – The Angler Magazine 1948

Spined Loach, Minnow, Loach, Bleak - The Angler Magazine 1948

Spined Loach, Minnow, Loach, Bleak – The Angler Magazine 1948

Grey's Charr , Cole's Charr, Alpine Charr - The Angler Magazine 1948

Grey’s Charr , Cole’s Charr, Alpine Charr – The Angler Magazine 1948

Sticklebacks - The Angler Magazine 1948

Sticklebacks – The Angler Magazine 1948

Crucian Carp, Prussian Carp - The Angler Magazine 1948

Crucian Carp, Prussian Carp – The Angler Magazine 1948

Torgoch and Alpine Charr - The Angler Magazine 1948

Torgoch and Alpine Charr – The Angler Magazine 1948

Loch Killen Charr - The Angler Magazine 1948

Loch Killen Charr – The Angler Magazine 1948

Roach - The Angler Magazine 1948

Roach – The Angler Magazine 1948

salmon trout var - The Angler Magazine 1948

salmon trout var – The Angler Magazine 1948

Bull Trout - The Angler Magazine 1948

Bull Trout – The Angler Magazine 1948

Tench - The Angler Magazine 1948

Tench – The Angler Magazine 1948

Burbot - The Angler Magazine 1948

Burbot – The Angler Magazine 1948

Common Bream - The Angler Magazine 1948

Common Bream – The Angler Magazine 1948

 

Manchester Monsters Of The Deep

Looking at old photos of the canal in the city centre of Manchester, the industry, the grime, the sheer Dickensian background,  you’d never think that it would have the potential to produce the fish of a lifetime for a local angler -a  huge beautiful leviathan of the aquatic world, a 5 foot long sleek powerful predator – the apex predator of the waterways.

Old Castlefield Dukes

Indeed – when sections of our local canals get drained down to allow for repairs to take place, you’d scarcely believe that anything could live among the filth and debris that us humans throw into their murky waters.

Dirty Manchester Canal

Despite its outwardly looking murky grey appearance, the shopping trollies, traffic cones, chairs, bikes and umbrellas, the source of the waters for our local canals comes from high up on the hills and moors above Littleborough and Saddleworth – and is some of the cleanest water in the country. Untainted by the pollution of our cities, industries and the poor agricultural practices of our nations farmers – it flows like a clean bright ribbon through the centre of our city.

Anglers have known this for years, and are aware that our local canals, the Rochdale, the Ashton , and the Bridgewater are fantastic fisheries, stuffed with species of fish such as Roach, Perch, Rudd, Tench, Bream, Gudgeon and Carp…. an angling mecca.

These clean water corridors also act as nature superhighways through our suburbs and city centres.  They’re  ribbons of high quality habitat allowing nature such as Kingfishers, Otters, Herons, Water Voles and Dippers to make their homes and thrive in the most unlikely urban locations.

At the top of the food chain in this watery sometimes murky ecosystem is a super apex predator Esox Lucius – commonly known as the Pike.

Huge numbers of small jack pike live in our canals – in many areas comprising over 10% of the canals biomass.

Rarely exceeding a couple of feet in length they are greedy customers for anglers worms and lures its not too difficult to catch up to a dozen in an afternoons fishing if you know what your about and the conditions are right… However catching the bigger, wiser older Pike who prey on the jack pike is an altogether different task.

Huge, cunning old pike can grow up to 5 feet long and reach nearly 50lbs in weight. Our local canals in Greater Manchester have been known to produce the very occasional exceptional Pike of up to 30lbs

A 20lb Pike from a Greater Manchester canal is a real specimen,,,, the fish of a lifetime. The vast majority of our regions thousands of anglers have never seen a 20lb pike let alone caught one.

One or two might be lucky or sufficiently skilled to tempt one of these huge underwater leviathans – most probably from a larger river or lake where the Pike have the space to grow large… but catching one from a canal is the challenge of a lifetime, and a serious undertaking in terms of time and planning.

Catching two of these supersized fish is a special achievement – something that garners the respects of your angling peers.

Catching three is something most anglers could ever dream about..

But catching four – then you quite rightly achieve an inconic status and are revered, acclaimed and envied by anglers on a national basis.

This leads us to young Kaden McCarthy – a 14 year old boy from an inner city estate in Salford.

Kaden sent me this photo today – of yet another remarkable pike he has caught in the canal that runs through city centre Manchester.

Kaden Fish Of The Year 2017 v1

A fantastic specimen fish – the Pike of a lifetime for mere mortal anglers.

However young Kaden has developed into a special angler, with ability and instinct far beyond his 14 years.

He has a developed a special aptitude for catching big fish from Manchester waterways.

Heres a picture (below) of another monster Pike he caught last year in Manchester City Centre – which gave him the accolade of being the youngest angler to win the prestigious Salford Friendly Anglers “Fish Of The Year” award in 2016.

Kaden Fish Of The Year 2016

And then sandwiched between the capture of these two huge pike – he has managed to catch two more – taking his total of 20lb+ pike  to the mystical 4 – A remarkable achievement for someone so young.

Kaden Pike YMCA Kaden Key103

 

But the story regarding this young anglers abilities is still far from completely told…..

In addition to the capture of these amazing Pike,,,, young Kaden is proving himself to be an all round angler – catching great fish of all species…

Like this bream, again a great fish from an urban canal, and this carp from the River Irwell.

Kaden Bream Kaden Carp

The exploits of this excellent young fisherman are now coming to be recognised on a national basis,,,,, a firm friendship has developed between Kaden and local fishing legend Ant Glascoe Jnr…….. and the UKs most famous angler Matt Hayes name checks Kaden on his Facebook posts on a regular basis…

I think we can confidently say – A Star Is Born – he comes from the Salford Friendly – and we are all very proud that he’s one of us.