Angling: Gurnard catch would have broken British record but was returned

Chris Whitty's streaked gurnard

Chris Whitty's streaked gurnard - Credit: Archant

I would like to start this week’s report by welcoming all readers of the Exmouth Journal - the Torbay Weekly’s sister title - who may be seeing this for the first time.

The aim of this column is to promote all forms of fishing and show all that is good in our wonderful sport. I can be contacted by email if anybody has anything for me on

Newbarn Farm has continued to produce fish this week with day anglers finding shelter from the storms in the huts surrounding Willow Lake. One of the best fish a fine, fully-scaled common carp of 23lb falling to Brendan Pease.

The sea anglers have had a tougher time with the charter boats still tied up due to the storm and the beach anglers having to brave the elements.

Bryz Augur fished a South Hams beach and landed a fine bull huss. Matilda Bjorkland fished a night session landing small conger eels and pouting.

Slapton Sands seems to be producing plenty of whiting with Stuart Lawley finding mackerel, congers, a silver eel and whiting up 39cm in length, a fine fish.

Tom Travers from Honiton also fished Slapton finding some good-size whiting along with dogfish.

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Berry Head was also fished by some Honiton SAC members in their roving competition they managed to find mackerel, whiting and poor cod.

Saleem Ali took young Cohen out on a night session searching for congers and dogfish. Cohen caught both.

Chris Whitty fished a short session while visiting his parents and landed a streaked gurnard of 1lb 8oz, this fish would have broken the British record but was returned.

As another lockdown approaches the Angling Trust have been lobbying the Government and it seem commonsense prevails and we can continue fishing, either alone or with one other person. The Angling Trust website is the place to look for updates.

Most tackle shops are operating a phone and collect service so getting bait should not be a problem.

Those operating this system include Brixham Bait and Tackle, Euro Angling, and Hookz in Torbay and further afield Tackle Trader in Newton Abbot, Hook, Line and Tackle at Exmouth, Seaton Angling Centre and The Tackle Box in Lyme Regis.

Preston Hardware is classed as an essential business and will be open as usual. Coarse fisheries should still be open although there may be some changes to the payment system. Websites and Facebook pages will give further details.

Tight lines and stay safe.