It has been quite a long time since I wrote my last blog entry here. It’s not because there has been nothing to write about! It is because writing is not my best skill and I have to organise good few hours free of any disturbance to get my thoughts together and key it into my computer.
My work activities are concentrated closely around the needs of angling clubs who took part of the Angling Trust survey we circulated last year. Thankfully I have managed to work with almost all the clubs who requested our support with migrant angler problems, but there are still few more clubs, which are waiting for my contact and I should be able to do it in the next few weeks. Alongside them I had few requests from the local authorities to take part in the fishing events and ask local migrant communities to get engaged. It looks like summer will be a very busy period with a lot
Last few months has seen a massive movement and a lot of activities around Polish Angling Community in the UK. The Polish Anglers Association has proved to be a very successful and is leading the way for others to form many similar Polish angling clubs all around England. I can think of at least 4 or 5 established in the last few months. Some of them are regional and others have members from whole country. What is most important they all promote responsible fishing practices. It is quite easy to identify the members as most the guys (including myself) wear a club badge and they do it with the pride. Many local angling clubs have realised that the commitment and passion for fishing from some of the migrant anglers is priceless and many are now getting involved with working parties and baliffing. We can also talk about the financial benefit to local clubs as almost all of us are members of clubs or syndicates or at the very least buy day tickets.
Members and founders of the groups are also fed up with the fishing law-breakers and poachers. It can be hard to be a migrant angler who always fishes by the rules but get tarred by the same brush as others who continue to poach. Some of us work with local EA officers and provide them with evidence of poaching which could be impossible to find if you are not part of the community. This gives us a satisfaction of being a part of the bigger society and chance to get involved in order to protect the future of fishing.
The establishment of many groups doesn’t necessary means that we are divided. We might have different opinions of how we run our individual organisations but we all have the same common interest – fishing and enjoyment! At the beginning of the year three of the groups decided to connect their resources and organise an event opened for all polish anglers in the UK. This is how the idea of Polish Lure Fishing Championship has been created and developed. With qualifiers in few different places (Including Scotland and Northern Ireland) there are already around 200 anglers entered on the list. Big final is going to take a place in August when we are going to crown a winner.
On this stage we would like to say thank you for all the clubs who provided the venue for our qualifiers – so far we held two – one on Peterborough Angling Association waters and other on waters own by Northampton and Nene Angling Association. In May we will be fishing on Pike Anglers Club waters and Pitsford Reservouir.
Polish carp anglers are also getting their act together and we already have couple of clubs in the UK representing carp fishing for sport. Carp fishing events are being organised and recognised by angling press in the UK. You are more than welcome to take part in some of them if you are interested:
Polish Anglers Association has also some good stories to share as we finally managed to join the first local fishing association as a club. During the AGM all members voted in favour and club officially become a part of something bigger and greater than on its own. Part of the UK fishing community.
You can see a very good summary of the activities on the film which was produced and broadcasted by Sky Sport TV:
During the last few months I have come across many migrant anglers who are willing to help. There are a number of volunteers ready to work with local angling clubs, get engaged in bailiffing activities, events organisation and working parties. Some of them are getting trained to become angling coaches so we can start with young generation of anglers. The only thing we need is wiliness from the local clubs and a bit of a trust but we can definitely make things change for better.
As you can see there is a lot going on around the Polish community which is fantastic news. On other side we are struggling to get engagement from other nationalities and the main objectives of my work will be to establish better communication with Lithuanian anglers. In order to get some help myself and Dilip Sarkar (Angling Trust National Enforcement Manager) visited The House of Commons to speak to Daniel Kawczynski MP who is the Prime Ministers East European Envoy. We also contacted the Lithuanian Embassy. We are planning our visit to Lithuania as we speak and we have some Lithuanian volunteers on board but there is a long way in the front of us to achieve what we want to achieve.
You can read more about our visit here:
And finally as new close season has started I would like to remind you about the signage which is available from the Angling Trust – get it displayed around you fishery and keep reporting incidents – this way we can integrate , educate and punish the ones which do not care about our efforts!