THE SKIPTON Angling Association will be holding its annual river clean-up this Sunday morning together with the addition of the start of a planned bank regeneration programme.

It is hoped that this will result in an improved river environment that will ultimately benefit both the fish population and wildlife in general.

Members of the Association together with anyone wishing to be involved should meet near the by-pass overbridge on Carleton Road at 9.30am. All materials will be provided and the event will conclude at approximately 12.30pm.

With the gradual improvement in the weather over the last few days, anglers fishing Whinnygill Reservoir have experienced the awakening of the water after the dark winter slumber.

Coarse anglers have enjoyed some good sport among the roach, bream, rudd, perch and even the brown trout that the water contains. One of the best catches was an approximately 20-plus fish bag of quality roach landed by Russell Heaton while others have enjoyed mixed bags of up to ten fish or more.

Two more open matches on the reservoir have been arranged by the Skipton AA for April 2 and 16, which should take advantage of the better sport.

The draw will be held at 8am with fishing from 9am until 1pm. All anglers are invited to attend and the entry fee will be £7 all-in.

River coarse fishing has now come to an end with the close season starting today. Fishing recommences on rivers from March 25 for brown trout but to prevent the unnecessary catching of coarse fish, a number of bait restrictions apply with only the worm, minnow, spinning and the fly permitted.

Most clubs will now require the payment of subscriptions before any fishing is undertaken and Environment Agency rod licences will be due from April 1. This year rod licences will run for 12 months from the date of purchase so a later start will still yield full value. However, make sure you have a valid rod licence before fishing as prosecution penalties are quite severe in our area.