Sidings Lane

Dear Members

The Association is aware that for Sidings Lane is currently not fishing very well, and the water appears to be stagnant looking. We have arranged for the Environment Agency to carry out sample water testing analysis on the venue, and have requested a date for the water to be netted by the Environment Agency in order to carry out health checks on the resident fish, and to give us an indication into the stocking levels of the water. Once we are in receipt of this information, we will then work with the Environment Agency to decide on a way forward .


St Helens AA



Volunteers Required for Working Parties

St Helens Angling Association is looking to carry out a series of work parties on a voluntary basis, on Tuesday Evenings throughout the Summer to continually improve our waters. The first of these will be on Tuesday the 6th of June, where we a looking to reduce the amount of Hornwort Weed on the Basin at Blackbrook,(Behind the Ship Inn Pub) which is currently blocking up most of the pegs.

All members are invited to come along at 5.00pm  and assist. Any help, even if only for a short period of time is more than welcome.

Please bring along a rake if you have one available


The Committee.


Update from Canal and Rivers Regarding the Proposed works at Carr Mill Dam

Dear Members

Please read the e mail below reference the proposed works at Carr Mill Dam. This is the first official communication we have received from Canal and Rivers Trust regarding the works, and as you will all see the position/dates are as yet unknown. Any further correspondence or updates will be posted on the Website to keep all our members informed as much as possible.


The Commitee


Firstly, I’d like to apologies for the time it’s taken to get a response to yourself about the works planned at Carr Mill Dam. As we have previously discussed this maintenance project is in the very early days of being planned, and we are yet to appoint a Project Manager, who would do normally this type of stakeholder liaison. In the meantime, I have put together some points for you to share with your membership.

The Canal & River Trust owns Carr Mill Dam and is ultimately responsible for ensuring the structural integrity of the structures associated with the reservoir. Large reservoirs are subject to stringent statutory control under the Reservoirs Act 1975 (as amended by the Flood and Water Management Act, 2010), this is there to assure the safety of the public below dams. The Environment Agency is the enforcement authority for reservoirs in England.

Unfortunately one of the twin draw-off valves has failed and is inoperable.  Emergency drawdown would be by means of the single remaining valve (rather than two) which has a lesser capacity, but it be can be aided by auxiliary pumps.  However the Supervising Engineer is content with the management of the risk in the short term, but it needs to be fully operable before the next inspection. The intention is to replace both valves at the same time, as it is only a matter of time before the second one also becomes unusable.

The current plan is to drain down the reservoir to provide safe access to replace the valves. The use of divers has been discounted on safety grounds. A fish rescue will be needed along with a plan on where to hold the fish and subsequent restocking. The Project Manager normally considers other opportunities to carry out other work which may benefit the reservoir. I would advise you to write down any suggestions, and when the Project Manager is appointed then you can discuss it with them.

I hope that this helps.

Kind regards,


Paul Breslin

Fisheries and Angling Officer

  • North Wales & Border
  • Manchester & Pennine
  • North West
  • North East

St Helens Angling Association joins Angling Trust and Fish Legal

Dear Members
St Helens Angling Association has now renewed its Angling Trust Membership, and has for the first time joined Fish Legal. This will give us opportunities to discuss our concerns/ issues with National Governing Bodies, who are representing Angling as a whole, as well as giving us access to expert Legal Advice should this be required. In response to our current invasion of comorants, we have recently been visited by a member of the Angling Trust and assured us that everything we are doing to prevent this problem is well  within our Legal Boundaries, and advised us to continue as normal.
Can I request that the committee be informed immediately of any incidents of anti social, aggressive, abusive or disruptive  behaviour, to enable us to inform the proper authorities.
Please see below the latest publication from the Angling Trust in relation to Cormorant Control
The Commitee
After a three year Angling Trust campaign to persuade the government to take action to tackle unsustainable avian predation, three Fishery Management Advisors (FMAs) were appointed in 2014 to cover the whole of England.  There are currently two FMAs employed by the Angling Trust who have helped hundreds of fishery managers on both rivers and lakes not only with licence applications, but with practical advice about techniques to protect fish using innovative techniques, such as the use of lasers and lifelike mannequins to deter birds, as well as exclusion tactics and fish refuge.
In April 2016 the Environment Minister Rory Stewart concluded that the pilot project had been successful and that the initiative should continue as it had been successful in providing advice and practical support to angling clubs and fisheries over the past two years about how to protect fish from cormorants and goosanders.
The Minister also confirmed that where appropriate the new area-based approach to issuing licences for lethal control will continue, rather than requiring every individual fishery to submit an individual application. The Minister noted that the system has worked well and that it benefits fisheries, which are an important part of the rural economy.
The FMA posts are funded from rod licence income from the Environment Agency, which has confirmed funding for another year. The scheme has been managed by the Angling Trust under the guidance of a Project Board which includes representatives from DEFRA, the RSPB, Natural England, Environment Agency, CEFAS independent fisheries scientists and the Angling Trust.
The expert advisors have also provided invaluable help with the paperwork required to carry out lethal control safely and responsibly either on an individual basis or via an area based licence, which helps with co-ordination of control throughout a catchment.
Jake Davoile explains:
“There are currently 16 area-based licences in operation across England and all have seen the benefit of working together, and sharing knowledge. These include stretches of rivers, stillwaters, and fish farms, bringing fishery managers together for the greater good – Some have even expanded across whole catchments.

Collating knowledge on the cormorant population is vital, as we get a clear understanding of the feeding patterns of birds, and can develop bespoke strategies to deal with predation. By working as one and utilising the cormorant’s incredible vision in flight, we can maximise the impacts of a shooting strategy if one is required.

“By coordinating shooting, we aim to condition birds in the most efficient manner not to predate on our valuable fish stocks. We have also seen great success using lifelike mannequins, which mimic the river keeper. These are completely weatherproof, easy to move, and by shooting from behind them, birds are conditioned to fear them, thus further protecting your fishery.”
Richard Bamforth added:
“Some area licences extend along 92km of river and include multiple stillwaters. Alongside the clear benefits of a coordinated approach, this strategy also provides us with robust data to take forward to Defra. Remember, if the combined need for lethal control exceeds the current national limit, the limit will be reviewed.”

cormorants in tree

On Going Work Parties

We currently have a party of Volunteers, run by Ste Rimmer (Head Of Maintenance) who are working every Tuesday on various projects on our waters. Current work includes repairing the steps on Carr Mill on pegs 155 to 160, attempting to sort out a walking area on the drop from pegs 79 to 60, along with finishing the Dig Pit and general clear ups on all our waters.

If any member wishes to come along and volunteer some free time to assist in these projects, their help would be greatly appreciated.

Please contact either myself on 07812 095236 or Ste Rimmer Direct on 07756 265000



These are the  latest addition to the fish stocks of Carr Mill Dam, which have been ordered and carefully selected by the Carp Fishing Fanatics of the Association. 5 Fish ranging from 20 to 23 lb.

Could we ask our members that if they are lucky enough to catch one of these specimens, please advise the committee or Chris Owen our local Bailiff.2017-02-17-PHOTO-00000025 2017-02-17-PHOTO-00000021 2017-02-17-PHOTO-00000019 2017-02-17-PHOTO-00000015 2017-02-17-PHOTO-00000009 2017-02-17-PHOTO-00000002


Fish Stocking for Dig Pit and Leg O Mutton Dam

Dear Members

St Helen`s Angling Association has stocked 450lb of Roach averaging 6 oz., but with numerous fish over the 1lb barrier into the Dig Pit and Leg O Mutton Dam to improve sport for our members. Further stockings of Crucian Carp into the Basin at Blackbrook, and skimmers into Carr Mill, Leg O Mutton, Basin and Dig Pit are expected to arrive by the end of January 2017. In Total £15,000 has been allocated to improving fish stocks in our waters for the 2017 season.

Tight Lines

The Committee