Good catches recorded in fishing competition

Competition winners outside the Craighlaw Arms.
Competition winners outside the Craighlaw Arms.

This year’s annual Kirkcowan Fishing Competition took place on Saturday, producing some good results.

With the River Bladnoch at low flow, it was not ideal for salmon anglers amongst the entrants but for the coarse anglers, the day produced some modest catches. Ten juniors made up the entry of 33 anglers this year, fishing from 8.30am until 5.30pm across 13 beats of the Bladnoch and Tarf.

Despite the low water and absence of salmon caught during the day, anglers returned from the river freshly sun-tanned and in good spirit for prize giving. After much deliberation by the judges Jamie Ribbens and Jonathon Haley, ‘Best Fish’ was awarded to Paul Ryman who entered a 14lb pike by photograph, caught and released at Torhouskie where interestingly, a 26lb pike was witnessed being returned by Ken Barlow earlier in the day (unfortunately not an entrant in the competition).

Second Adult was won by Julie Peck with a 6lb pike caught on Mochrum Park. Winner of ‘Best Bag’ went to Peter Henk who was presented with the ‘John King’ cup for Best Coarse Bag which included five pike up to 7lbs in weight, caught on Shennanton.

In the junior section, all prizes came from the Peter Greasley Memorial fund. Connor Wright took home first prize (for the third year running) and the Peter Greasley Cup for two brown trout returned at Craighlaw on the Tarf. Robson Atherton took home second prize and the Bill James Trophy for a brown trout returned on the Tarf. Third prize went to Abbie Ribbens for four perch and two pike caught at Barness on the Bladnoch. A selection of fishing rods and reels, fishing bags and boxes and a bottle of whisky made up the winner prizes, kindly donated by Paul Greasley, Colin Richardson and Kirkcowan Post Office.

Some superb prizes were also on offer in the tombola, generously donated by many Newton Stewart and Wigtown businesses. In the five pound board, John Ryman was winner of the Sharpes Belmont fly rod and box of flies. A bottle of Bladnoch Whisky, side of smoked salmon (donated by Sir Michael Wigan) and an array of fishing rods, reels and bags made up prizes for second, third, fourth, fifth and sixth places.

Galloway Fisheries Trust would like to thank Tina and Kevan of the Craighlaw Arms who have been extremely generous over the years by providing a tremendous buffet (with salmon this year kindly donated by Galloway Smokehouse) and organising sponsorship from Belhavan Best. Many thanks to Paul Greasley for additional funds to the Peter Greasley Memorial fund; Jonathon Haley and Dick Scott for tombola prizes; and all River Tarf and Bladnoch proprietors who kindly donated use of their beats for the day. The day would not have been possible without organisational help and Galloway Fisheries Trust would like to thank Colin Richardson, Jonathon Haley and the Craighlaw Arms proprietors Tina and Kevan who helped make the day a great success, raising £531 for the Galloway Fisheries Trust.