Angling charity Get Hooked on Fishing is set for its biggest year ever in 2015 with the introduction of six new centres of excellence.
The Environment Agency-backed scheme, whose aim is to introduce thousands of youngsters into the sport, is opening up the extra angling locations in a bid to provide more opportunities to first-time anglers across the UK.
New centres of excellence will be established at Clywd, Buckinghamshire, North and South Yorkshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire to give the project a nationwide presence as well as helping staff to increase the amount of coaching sessions they can hold.
Sarah Collins, Chief Executive for the charity, said: “My aim is to get GHoF on every street corner in the UK as we believe kids from all backgrounds can benefit from it and in turn this will benefit angling.
“We now have events planned for Scotland and Wales this year, which we never had before, including our popular family fishing days where mums and dads as well as kids can have a go at sea, coarse or game fishing for the first time.”
The charity will also be running more than double the amount of events this year after joining forces with the Angling Trust, with both bodies set to co-host more than 30 coaching days to help get more kids into fishing.
The events will see dozens of top anglers providing one-to one instruction to beginners, including matchman Darren Cox, predator angler Sam Edmonds and Shimano backed carper Iain Macmillan. Each of the sessions, some of which will take place at top UK fisheries, will also allow visitors to sign up to the Angling Trust, buy a rod licence, join an angling club or book further coaching sessions as a way of encouraging them to stay in the sport once hooked.
With the increasing demand, Sarah is now appealing to the public for more help. “You don’t have to be a fully licensed coach or top angler to come and help out at the family days,” she said. “The kids will always have their guardian on site so this removes the need for accredited coaches which makes it easier for people to volunteer” she said.
World feeder champion Steve Ringer is also supporting the scheme and believes it is vital to the future of angling. “There are not many avenues into the sport for kids these days, particularly in match fishing, so we need schemes like this otherwise the sport won’t have a future,” he said. “GHoF is a simple and effective way of getting kids interested in fishing and enjoying the outdoors and I encourage people to come and take part.”
Four steps to becoming a fully-fledged angler at a GHoF Family Fun Day…
Step 1: Have-a-go sessions. Simple instruction to help people catch their first fish
Step 2: Have-a-go yourself. Overseen by a Level 1 coach, with anglers left independently to catch fish on their own.
Step 3: Top tips. Expert advice to existing anglers to further improve their abilities.
Step 4: Opportunities. Further coaching and events as well as club opportunities to encourage them to stay in angling.
Want to take part?
18, 11am-4pm. Family Fishing Day, Walthamstow Angling Trust, Walthamstow Reservoir, London N17 9NH
19, 11am-4pm. Family Fishing Day, GHoF Ealing, West London UB5 6UR
27, 10am-3pm. Family Fishing Day, West Midlands Angling Trust, Kingsbury Water Park, WarwickshireB76 0DY
30, 11am-4pm. Family Fishing Day, Peterborough, Orton Pond, Orton Waterville, Peterborough PE2 5UU
28, 10am-3pm. Family Fishing Day, East Midlands Angling Trust, Barnwell Country Park, Oundle PE8 5PB
3-5, Scottish Game Fair, Scone Castle, Scone, Perth PH2 6PL
18-19, 10am-4.30pm. Fish O’Mania Final Weekend, Cudmore Fishery, Staffordshire ST5 5HW
24, 11am-4pm. Family Fishing Day, Alders Farm Fishery, Milton Keynes MK17 9AH
25, 11am-4pm. Family Fishing Day, Bradshaw Hall Fishery, Bolton BL2 4JW
26, Hillingdon Fun Day, Little Britain Lake, Cowley, London UB8 2JH
28,11am-4pm. Family Fishing Day, Tyneside Angling Trust Sea Angling at the National Glass Centre, Sunderland SR6 0GL
31, CLA Game Fair, Harewood House, Leeds LS17 9LG
8, 11am-4pm. Family Fishing Day, North East Angling Trust, Leazes Park Lake, Richardson Road, Newcastle NE2 4BJ
9, Hillingdon Fun Day, Little Britain Lake, Cowley, London UB8 2JH
15, 10am-4pm. North West Angling Trust, Fir Tree Fishery, Wigan WN6 9JB
16, 10am-4.30pm. Family Fishing Day, South West Angling Trust, Bitterwell Lake, Bristol BS36 2UF
22, 10am-4pm. Family Fishing Day, East Angling Trust, Suffolk Water Park, Ipswich IP8 4JS
26, 10am-4pn. Family Fishing Day, South East Angling Trust, North Lake, South Hill Park, Berkshire RG12 7PA
30, 11am-4pm. Family Fishing Day, GHoF Ealing, West London UB5 6UR
31, 11am-4pm. Family Fishing Day, Bedfordshire Angling Trust, Swiss Garden, Old Warden, Biggleswade SG18 9EP
20, Tidefest, Thames Estuary, London
25- 27, Glasgow Angling Centre Open Weekend, Glasgow Angling Centre, Glasgow G22 5HT
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