Whats happened to the "Essex Match fishing scene "

Barone

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Jun 10, 2020
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Hi all,

I'm a new (recently rejoined again member) probably 7 or 8 years ago that I stopped fishing completely and have just come back to be shocked at what I've seen so far or do I have it wrong and missing g something?

1st so many of the tackle shops I used have now gone totally or been sold, shops like Leslie's or Luton, Ted Carters, Fosters sold etc.
2nd forums completely non existent now and very very few members live or using them

And the Essex match scene where I live was busy there was matches everywhere small and large, two or three a week at colemans, Tyler's common twice a week, puddle dock twice a week, matches at raynes lodge, the Warren fishery and many more intact there was always a dozen or so in the local papers with evening and weekend matches. Now ?

What's happened? Any one know?

Colemans is annual membership and then you can fish there matches, redbridge lakes exactly the same, Tyler's common & Rayne lodge no more, The Warren used to have a match lake stuffed with bream and trench matches there twice a week....and plenty more.

Now it seems like match fishing has left Essex pretty much.

(Puddledock you can still get a open match if you book, but it's the same one venue all the time )

Anyone shed some light on what I've missed while away please ?
 

MarkW

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Jul 30, 2011
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Because the carp anglers want to fish around the clock many venues can make more money through clever pricing of charging much more for 24 hour fishing, extra rods etc. instead of the much lower match fees, that and the fact that the age of the average match angler is probably 60+; match anglers are a dying breed!
 

Barone

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Jun 10, 2020
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It seems that way, but hard to except. Huge festivals and finals all over the North and further South so there's plenty of match anglers out there just seems Essex has completely gone cold.

Is it the same kind of thing inside Dave ?
 

davej1981

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no idea what happened, i kmow both my local clubs still run matches on their waters but the open circuit has reduced massively. I haven’t fished for 20 years , but back then there were several venues running opens every Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday. Ive asked around recently and been told the open circuit in sussex is almost dead. Although not exclusively in sussex there is drennan sponsored south east reservoir champs but thats about it. There used to be the angling times summer and winter leagues etc but they seem to have gone and alot of the match anglers i knew in the day have turned to specimen anglers one of which is now sponsored by sonubaits, so it looks liken that’s the way its going down here
 

Arry

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Southend farm, Lake John, Tylers still run matches as far as I know... they were last summer anyway
 

Arry

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the Essex club league was running up to a year or so ago... they were teams of 6... otherwise join a club and support their monthly matches... although theres not much happening due to covid at the mo
 

Arry

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Billericay have regular matches on home and away waters... but again covid has knocked that on the head
 

smiffy

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Club matches seem to be doing ok and I include the Essex inter club in that. When I last fished it though there were two divisions and not many B teams. Most of the commercials seem to be quiet,although it was only really Coleman’s that could handle a decent amount of anglers. Brookhall is now a clubwater.
It’s a sign of the times I’m afraid. Geographical aswell. Come south of Watford Gap and match fishing is on its knees,apart from the West Country it would seem. I packed up several years ago now because of the unavailability of natural water open matches. Years before that though I could be travelling anywhere from South Lincolnshire to West London to find decent turnouts. Essex has never been a hotbed of matchangling.We always had to put the miles in.
If you want to carry on match fishing my advice is to move??
 

Barone

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Jun 10, 2020
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Thanks for replies, kind of what I've seen myself in a short term back. I was just about to pull the plug on a top end 16m pole glad I did my home work first most of the places mentioned 14.5 will more then cover (exception of some pegs at colemans)

Never been a fan of travelling over an hour to get to a match makes the day to long but again all the big matches seem miles away, apparently rockery fishery & Decoy do opens as well so just over hour so there's some hope or just join a club.

Thanks for the reply, glad I posted might save me a few quid :-/
 

160642fishing

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If you're happy to drive an hour there are matches on the Fen rivers come Autumn time,March run four or five with anglers coming from a lot farther away than you because of the great weights of silvers,Alex at Rookery Waters Pidley will put you right on their opens and the river matches,give him a ring he's a top man.
 

smiffy

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I’m North Essex and March is still a bit of a trek. I can remember going to March and anglers turning up without a ticket hoping for no shows such was its popularity. Lads came down from Nottingham to fish it. It is only a winter venue though.
Still some great matches to be had on the river Yare during the summer. That’s my old Saturday stomping ground. Normally, still get 50 plus turning up,possibly more. The drive up isn’t too bad but the drive home, once everybody has woken up, can be a nightmare.
Maybe worth keeping an eye on Alton water between Colchester and Ipswich. They had a sold out 50pegger last year I believe. Nice natural water where Roach are the main quarry, it’s on a slow recovery from years of neglect. Massive water though.
Clappy sold Brookhall and went on to buy Suffolk water park. That’s probably where I’d head for a match or two nowadays. I’m assuming they still run matches there, I’m a bit out of touch.
 

rudd

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Biggest open in Suffolk is probably Kirton hall - run by Tackleup Felixstowe.
Most matches here are club matches and they are dwindling.
 

NickNewman

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Jul 23, 2020
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Foster's was purchased by Angling direct. They are as far as I'm aware the biggest tackle distributor in the country now having bought up the competition. Other than that, tackle UK are in the same ball park. Everything is online these days, but on the positive there are plenty of retailers for these larger companies referee you can physically see and try stuff
 
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