THINGS are looking good for sea anglers over the Christmas period – with plenty of whiting and codling being caught, along with a few coalfish and flounders.
The codling have been moving in to feed as soon as there has been a bit of movement on the sea and, with the tides picking up next week, I think there should be some good fish taken over the holidays.
To the south, Seaham and Easington beaches have fished well for codling, with Easington angler Dennis Haliday catching a 9½lb cod.
Seaham Hall beach is giving up good bags of whiting as well as one or two codling up to 7lb. Marks at Ryhope up to Hendon Prom have also fished well with good bags of codling coming from The Target.
The south end of Hendon Prom has given up whiting and codling up to 5lb.
The River Wear estuary and Roker Pier are still doing well for whiting, with bags of up to 20 fish being caught from the pier. The best marks in the Wear at the moment are Rat House Corner and the Glass Centre.
The rock marks at Whitburn continue to produce codling (even in flat seas).
Chris Hossack and Richie Carr fished there last Friday and took seven codling up to 5lb. South Shields Pier has fished well on certain tides with bags of codling up to 6lb, as well as lots of whiting.
Eastenders fished their open last Wednesday night with four out of nine anglers weighing in.
Top rod proved to be Ernie Hunter, with a codling (5lb) taken from the Glass Centre. Second place went to Phil Wright, who fished Marsden to take a codling (2lb 13oz), while Chris Hossack chose Roker Pier for his codling (2lb 6oz) to finish third.
The Bedlington Station Open had a fantastic weigh-in from 29 out of the 101 anglers who took part.
In total, 70 fish (180lb) were weighed in. Winner Darren Shields caught four codling (19lb 1oz) taken from Cresswell – his bag included the heaviest fish (7lb 10oz).
The next bag of four codling (18lb 2oz), which came from Blyth Beach, secured second place for Ron Smith, while third-placed Peter Stewart’s bag of five fish (17lb 3oz), also from Blyth Beach.
Cleadon Club saw 33 anglers fishing their competition on Monday night, with 13 weighing in.
Stevie Gordon took first place with 15 whiting and dab (11lb 14oz) taken from South Shields Pier. Runner-up Stephen Brown caught three codlings (10lb 2oz) from the River Tyne, with Andrew Nickerson’s five codling and whiting (7lb 10oz) from South Shields Pier securing third place.
The heaviest fish prize went to Terry Wood for his 5lb 10oz codling.
Monday night’s match was also their “fur and feather” heaviest fish competition. The top three fish were all codling and Terry Wood (5lb 10oz) took top spot, followed by Stephen Brown (4lb 10oz), with Paul Garvock (4lb 6oz) in third place.
There are plenty of competitions over the holidays to keep anglers away from the mince pies, starting with the Eastenders Open on Christmas Eve (11am-3pm) at the Glass Centre.
Entry is £8 per person with registration at the Glass Centre. This is a measure and release competition (how measure and release works is that when you catch a fish you take the fish and your record card to the angler on the next peg to measure the length of the fish for you and mark it on your card. You then return the fish to the water. At the end of the competition, the angler with the longest length of fish caught is the winner).
Each angler can have two hooks and fish 25cm and over will count.
On Boxing Day, Seaham Sea Angling Club will hold the George Mulholland Charity Open (12-5pm). Entry is £10 all classes with optional pairs £2 and heaviest bag £1. This is a heaviest single fish competition.
Registration (10-11.30am) and weigh-in (5-6pm) are both at Seaham Angling Club HQ. £1 from each entry will be donated to the RNLI.
Tuesday sees Jarrow Alberta Sea Angling Club hold their Christmas Cash Match (8am-2pm), which is open to everyone. Registration (7-7.30am) and weigh-in (until 2.30pm) is at Hebburn Marina.
The boundaries are Jarrow Riverside Park, River Police HQ Church Bank, the Mesh and Hebburn Marina including the Stone Jetty. Entry is £5 with 100 per cent pay out plus optional £1 for heaviest fish.
Eastenders Club will be out again on New Year’s Eve at the Glass Centre for a measure and release competition (2-6pm). Entry fee is £8 and registration is at the venue. This competition will qualify for Penn Points.
Looking further ahead to Sunday, January 15, the very popular Amble Open (10-3pm) takes place. Boundaries are Seahouses Pier (excluded) to Lynemouth Pipe.
Disabled anglers may fish Amble Pier and can be assisted by one helper who may also fish from the pier. All rivers are excluded. Basic entry is £12 all classes, with registration at the Radcliffe Club in Amble. Those weighing in must be in the queue by 4pm.
Junior anglers with a valid ticket will receive a Grey’s goody bag at the weigh-in. Top prizes are £400 plus rod, £300 and £150 for the heaviest bag; £200 plus rod, £200, £100 for heaviest single fish; and £150 plus rod, £100, £50 for the heaviest flat fish, as well as a prize table worth £7,000. For more information, contact Tony on 01665 602034 or Jim 01665 711007.
Ryhope Sea Angling Club hold their annual general meeting on Wednesday at the Village Tavern (7pm prompt). All members are asked to attend.