What would you do if you were allowed just thirty maggots to fish a match with? That’s the dilemma facing competitors in a new type of event at two Yorkshire fisheries, Aston Park in Sheffield and Woodhouse Mill in Huddersfield. The ‘Thirty Maggot Challenge’ consists of a one, two or three hour sprint to score points, with different species of fish worth various points.
The initiative has been launched in a bid to increase angling participation and organisers eventually hope to roll it out nationally across the UK and culminate in a grand final. Piloted by Steve Kelly and his Learn2Fish project at Woodhouse Mill, the matches have already proved a hit with anglers of all ages and abilities.
He said: “Our match record is 78 fish on 18 maggots and you also get points for every maggot you return at the end. When one of our older anglers dropped a maggot the air turned blue! It puts the fun back into fishing as matches are taken far too seriously these days. We’ve seen it encourage pleasure anglers who would never have considered competitive fishing before give it a go. We don’t allow keepnets to encourage those who might not own one to take part. Each one caught is logged by our volunteers on the bank,” he explained.
Every match features a 30 minute pre-baiting period in which an unlimited amount of bait can be introduced, but once the whistle goes only 30 maggots can be used. Steve said that this has really forced anglers to re-think their matches, with the volume of bait put in before the ‘all-in’ having to last for hours. Some even put it in a couple of different places. The concept was also introduced to Aston Park fishery last week by Angling Trust Talent and Competitions Officer Frankie Gianoncelli. The next events take place there on August 31 and September 3 and 6.
For more info contact Frankie on 07800 855709 or Steve on 07811 314365. Both are looking for new fisheries to start the challenge.
Click here for more angling news...