Country Pursuits

Country Pursuits

Sea fishing: Culture and a catch

The Hull city of culture year now sees its fourth month. Opera North has been inspired by the sounds of the Humber Bridge. They have incorporated rustling reeds and wind in a new City of Culture orchestral rendition called The Height of the Reeds.

Tie a bit of snow shoe hare fur above the wing of your F fly for best results.  Fly dressed by Stephen Cheetham.

Fly fishing: Success of pursuit is almost all in the eyes

Is it just me, or is the rest of the world growing younger? I cannot believe that young people in their early teens can have achieved a professional qualification. I suppose that one day soon I need to accept that I am growing older and that my perception of age is becoming distorted. Nevertheless, I do think that the new breed of professionals needs to refine their diplomatic skills.

Fewston Reservoir in the Washburn Valley.  Picture: Gerard Binks.

Bounty of trout set to lure anglers to Nidderdale

An influx of anglers is expected at a North Yorkshire beauty spot to enjoy vastly replenished fish stocks.

Graham Elliott of Hull, champion of the 2017 Paul Roggeman European Open Beach Championship, holding aloft his winning catch of a thorny backed ray

Sea Fishing: European showdown proves a big success

In the City of Culture year what better culture for the seafaring city of Kingston Upon Hull than around 1,000 anglers competing for the European beach fishing crown? A jewel in that crown would be, if only a local Hull angler could beat the best fisherpersons in Europe this year - please read on.


Anglers aim to reel in prize catch in world’s biggest angling event

ANGLERS competed for a share of £35,000 in prize money during the world’s largest beach angling festival, which took place along the Holderness coast at the weekend.

Stewart Calligan, sporting different headgear, cleans his boat in readiness for an Easter launching.

Sea fishing: Cultural nod to the city’s fishermen

the unfolding City of Culture year in Hull has seen, among other things, a huge wind turbine blade erected in the city centre, the opening of art galleries, a unique Speaker’s Corner where your words appear in large letters on Hull’s flood barrier and the saving of ‘Dead Bod’ graffiti from the side of an old corrugated steel warehouse facing the River Humber.

Aerial picture over the Kirkstall Road area of Leeds, where flooding occurred after a monumental amount of rain caused the River Aire to burst its banks in December 2015.

Row over flood risk benefits of major tree felling along the Aire

The Environment Agency has defended its decision to fell trees along 15 miles of the River Aire and has insisted it will help protect communities from flooding.

Ladies Day at the Meynell and South Staffordshire Hunt.  Pictures: F Stop Press Ltd.

Traditional country pursuit enjoys its very own ladies day

Ladies on horseback challenged the perception of a male-dominated country pursuit when 93 riders travelled from far and wide to take to beautiful countryside for the thrill of the hunt.

The Greenwells Glory.  Picture: Stephen Cheetham

Fly fishing: Dedication to fishing is a hobby inherited

As our regular fly fishing correspondent Roger Beck has been smitten down by a virus that has laid him so low he cannot put pen to paper, so to speak, you will have to make do with me this month. I am sure that we all wish him a speedy recovery and trust he will soon be back to his normal self.

Fishing under the supermoon, it will not be bettered until November 25, 2034.  Picture: Kamran Jebreili

Sea fishing: Moonlight trip proves an eerie experience

Darkness, coldness, wetness and brainless sums up the extreme stupidity I labelled myself with on my last night-fishing adventure.

Stewart Calligan needed the full waterproofs for a rough time at sea on his most recent fishing expedition.

Sea fishing: Slim pickings to show for braving the elements

Nature never fails to amaze me. As I was preparing my bait for a fishing trip I saw something out of my eye corner through the kitchen window. My resident squirrel, who I call Cyril and who had polished off all my cob nuts despite my netting of the bushes, had finally found a mate.

Roger Beck pictured in action.

Fly fishing: Dried out riverbeds disrupt the season

I hated geography when I was at school. The single simple reason is that my geography teacher was incredibly boring; he was about as inspiring as leaking waders in February.

Stock Image: Fox Hunting.

Will MPs succeed in getting fox hunting ban repealed?

THE government is planning to push ahead with attempts to repeal the ban on fox hunting, sources say.

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Stewart Calligan wearing his Huddersfield Old Boys rugby shirt in tribute to Hull FCs Challenge Cup victory at Wembley.

Sea fishing: Sharp end to the day is a lesson learned

Now that Hull FC have finally triumphed at Wembley, beating Warrington 12-10 in the Rugby League Challenge Cup, I decided to wear my Huddersfield Old Boys rugby shirt on my next fishing trip as a sign of respect.

The knotted midge, now known as the bleeping midge, solved the trout catching problem. Flies dressed by Stephen Cheetham

Fly fishing: Roger Beck’s trout snub puzzler

I’m afraid that this month’s column needs to be read after the 9pm watershed.

Stewart Calligan sailing his boat around Flamborough Head

Sea fishing: Mackerel proves to be catch of the day

I have a confession to make: I’ve been disloyal to the great county of Yorkshire and ventured north of the border.


Slideshow: Glorious Twelfth on the North York Moors as Ian Botham goes out to bat for shooting rights

HE is known as one of cricket’s hard hitters - but cricketing legend Sir Ian Botham has taken to hitting out of another kind as he showed his support for grouse shooting.

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Roger Beck's Reeve's Revenge fly, dressed by Stephen Cheetham.

Fly fishing: Purple majesty on annual road trip

It is often said that with age comes discretion and that one learns by experience. So, on that basis I should no longer be making an annual expedition to the far north west of this archipelago that we call Britain.


Great Yorkshire Show: Parade of hounds - a snapshot of rural history

Crowds gathered for one of the most spectacular sights on the Great Yorkshire Showground as the competitions drew to a close yesterday.

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The reverse mayfly, dressed by Stephen Cheetham.

Fly fishing: Flight of the insects raises river excitement

In this column in June 2006 I bemoaned the loss of significant mayfly hatches on my local river, the Rye. I am delighted to report that over the last few years the numbers have significantly improved.

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