Welcome to Bembridge Angling Club

The club’s AGM was held last October with a difficult situation of the previous season’s moorings officer, competition secretary & membership secretary all being unwilling to continue due to pressure of personal commitments & an apparent lack of willing volunteers to fill all three positions. It had been hoped that, given his significant assistance rendered to the outgoing moorings officer, Dave Gawn would take on the moorings role but he decided against. John Rackett had previously indicated a willingness to take on the role of membership secretary but a last minute offer from Dave Geddes to take on that role led to John being able to be persuaded to take on the moorings role as no one else was prepared to do so. Bob Cowley remains President & Peter Knight remains vice chairman, both positions being not subject to annual election.

Officers elected were:-

Chairman: Ross Staplehurst. Vice Chairman: Matt Porter. Sec & Publicity Officer: Alan Deeming, Treasurer: Barry Burnand. Mooring Officer: John Rackett. Assistant Mooring Officer: Ian Mann, Competition Secretary: Matt Porter, Assistant Comp Sec: Greg Skinner, Bosun: No volunteers, Web admin: Antony Stanyon,

Ordinary Committee members: Stuart Newnham, Marcus Gawn, Dave Gawn, Cyril Gregory, Bill Smith.

A small number of members had expressed a willingness to take on some roles but were unable to attend committee meetings. It has been subsequently agreed by the committee that, due to a lack of any other volunteers, the kind offers from these members would be accepted & a new class of committee member would be created called non-executive whereby the status of such members would be officially recognised but they would not have voting rights in ordinary committee decisions.

Non-executive committee members co-opted are:- Derek Ohren for Social; John Davies for club cleaning,

John Attrill for club maintenance (Electrical), Dave & Rob Grimaldi for joint cup custodians.

Ross Staplehurst accepted responsibility for obtaining kitchen provisions & cleaning supplies.

Dates for your diary in 2017:-

3rd March:          Fitting out Supper at BHYC: Posters in club: Book with Peter Knight

1st April:              Mooring holders : harbour dues to be paid.

13th May:            Special Bream comp: Great prize table: Entry £10 members. Guests extra (TBD)

29th October :    Open Cod Comp: See advance details on BAC website Notice Board page.

24th October :  AGM in clubhouse

1st November : BAC Membership & mooring fees due

8th December : Prize Giving in the clubhouse.

With the high cost of fuel plus 5lb boxes of squid apparently costing around £20, you have to have been keen to keep chasing what few Cod seemed to be around inshore this season. The long period of clear water inshore has once again highlighted the benefit of fishing after dark for those hardy members prepared to put in the effort. Derek Ohren & Harry Hayward have certainly put in the effort this winter & Harry has been rewarded with a magnificent 27 ½ lb Cod. Other good fish caught include a Bass of 11 lbs 13 ozs by Nick Challen .

A well timed weather window resulted in an excellent entry of 92 for our postponed annual open Cod competition which was again in receipt of major sponsorship from Sydenhams, Pascal Atkeys & Nick Challen Building Renovations plus, this time, Bob Cowley. Unfortunately the cod did not play ball & very few were brought to the scales. A full report can be found on the club’s web site. Despite everyone who weighed in receiving a good prize, we had a significant quantity of good prizes left over including vouchers for boat lift out & bottom scrub each valued at over £100. It has been decided to hold a special Bream competition just for these prizes with no cash prizes involved. Entry just for this comp will be £10 for members. Any guests wishing to fish it will be charged extra.

Having failed to see any improvement in entries for competitions last year, a couple of different approaches are being tried this season. The first is (after some initial confusion as to the exact wishes of competitors) that competitors will be allowed to use 2 rods but only one must be nominated in advance as counting for the competition. There are several possible complications associated with applying this rule & the committee recognises that it is virtually impossible to police. In response to separate feedback from competitors, we are departing from previous convention & have introduced a few (not all) competitions on Saturdays.

Unfortunately we anglers have ended up with the same Bass restrictions as applied to us in 2016. That is a total ban on retention up to June 30th followed by a one fish per day per person limit through to December 31st. The only upside is that the commercial netting sector has had a significantly greater restriction placed on it by only being allowed a small amount as unavoidable bycatch. As predicted, the commercial sector (all EU states) talked down the total ban across all sectors that was proposed by the scientists. Don’t forget that, despite the numbers of Bass currently evident, there is predicted to be a catastrophic fall in numbers when the failed year classes get to maturity in a few years time.

Members were awarded a total of 13 specimen awards by the Angling Trust for fish caught in 2016:-

Gold: Bob Cowley, Conger 70 lbs.

Silver: Joe filipe, Red Gurnard 1 lb 10½ ozs; Bob Smith, Conger 55 lbs; Ross Staplehurst, Undulate Ray 19½ lbs.

Bronze: Alan Deeming, Bass 10 lbs 4 ozs, Undulate 17 lbs; Martin Dye, Pollack 16 lbs 6 ozs &17lbs 5 ozs; David Gawn, Bream 3 lbs 9½ ozs ; Carl Gaylor, Blonde Ray 25½ lbs ; Colin Hicks, Smoothound 16lbs 12 ozs ; Debbie Skoludek, Undulate 17 lbs 4 ozs ; Carl Skoludek, Bass 10 lbs.

You may be aware that the IW Council has tightened up the rules regarding disposal of rubbish. BAC is not entitled to free rubbish collections & we are no longer able to get away with the alternative free disposal arrangements we had in place. In consequence we are now having to pay to have the rubbish specifically generated within the club house taken away by a licensed operator. By order of the committee, members are therefore instructed that they must take away their own personal rubbish (particularly bait wrappers & other items of rubbish arising from trips) for disposal elsewhere. This also applies to rubbish, materials etc associated with the current series of annual boat maintenance periods. Failure to comply will be taken very seriously.

Peter Knight has kindly arranged a “Fitting Out Supper” at Brading Haven Yacht Club on Friday 3rd March. Tickets are £18.50 from Peter in advance. XXXXXXXXXX. There are posters up in the club house showing menu choices that need to be advised in advance.

Just for those previous members who have not yet renewed, according to our new membership secretary, I have enclosed a membership renewal form for your convenience. Whilst it may be a pain to complete, it assists greatly in maintaining our membership data base enabling us to keep in touch with you. As valued members, we hope you will maintain your membership for 2017. Don’t forget that we can only consider specimen fish claims after receiving your membership renewal payment.

Most of you will probably have heard the sad news that Scotties has been forced to cease trading. The club is grateful for the support we have received over the years from the current & past owners. BAC tackle vouchers given out at the 2016 prize giving were in a new format & can still be redeemed at East Cowes Tackle & UK Hooks plus the owner of East Cowes Tackle has confirmed that they will be accepted at his new tackle shop opening soon next to Odessa boatyard, Little London, Newport Harbour. Old style vouchers specifically just for Scotties will not be redeemable at all once Scotties close at the end of January.

Myself, Ross Staplehurst & Dave Gawn recently had an amicable meeting with the sailing commodore of Brading Haven Yacht Club as a result of concerns raised regarding damage to our moored boats caused by sailing dinghies apparently from BHYC. It was confirmed that all their boats were obliged to have appropriate third party insurance. They requested that the sail number or any alternative identification of any boat seen to collide with ours should be reported to them. Their chief instructor Jerry Summers is an appropriate contact. XXXXXXXXXXXX. They also offered us emergency assistance (towing etc) if it is ever required.

John Rackett has taken over the position of moorings officer & he does not have the same level of other commitments that unavoidably prevented Paul Hunter from being available as much as he had hoped in 2016.

John would prefer to be contacted, in the first instance, for moorings issues on his land line number as advised in personal copies of this newsletter. Having historically served for some years as our moorings officer, John has considerable in depth knowledge of our moorings.

As has been advised in previous newsletters, it is important that all mooring holders check as much of the mooring hardware as they are able to with a view to identifying any components that are getting to a point that they should be replaced shortly. This exercise should be carried out at least every two weeks and any problems reported immediately to the moorings officer (reporting forms are available in the clubhouse).

Would all members please ensure that the club has your current address, especially if you move house mid season, any change of email address, where applicable, and also that we have up to date emergency phone contact details for mooring holders & any change of boat name/ownership.

The club is indebted to Nick Challen & his secretary Jill for kindly agreeing to do printing for the club.

It just remains for me to wish you all good catching during 2017.    Alan Deeming

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