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Combe Martin angler catches one of year's biggest plaice

By North Devon Journal  |  Posted: September 20, 2012

HUGE PLAICE: Jon Patten with his 7lb 8oz catch.

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Wayne Thomas

JON PATTEN has boated one of the biggest plaice caught off the British coast this year.

The Combe Martin Sea Angling Club member travelled to Weymouth to go aboard Colin Penny's renowned charter boat Flamer 4.

Patten's catch was the largest of 19 plaice caught on the trip – a stunning specimen of 7lb 8oz.

Jazza John won Bideford Angling Club's end-of-season match with a quality wrasse scaling 4lb 7¼oz. Runner-up was Martin Short with a wrasse of 4lb 5oz and third was Terry Dymond with a triggerfish of 2lb 6½oz.

Bideford club member James Atkinson landed a fine smoothound of 13lb 8oz from a local shore mark.

Flounder were abundant in the Taw for Triple Hook Club's Sportsman's Cup.

Competitors had up to 20 catches each, with the majority of fish returned alive.

John Passmore won the match with a flounder one-eighth of an ounce short of 2lb.Steve Luxton was runner-up with a flounder of a little over 1lb.

The wet and cool summer has produced excellent conditions for trout anglers at Blakewell Fishery.

Chris Wall landed a fine rainbow of 14lb 6oz and David Impey a rainbow of 11lb 2oz.

Jamie Steer and Josh Steer, both aged 10, caught trout of 5lb and 3lb.

Several quality bags of trout have succumbed, with Ken Carlow catching six for 26lb, including a superb brown trout of 5lb.

R Lawrence landed a 6lb brown trout and Mark Reynolds a fine brown of 4lb 8oz.

Regular Les Cleavely had a six-fish bag totaling 18lb.

The average weight of the trout is now more than 3lb for rainbows and 4lb for browns.

The next few months will undoubtedly see some fine sport as the trout relish the cooler conditions of autumn.

The River Taw is set to benefit from £1.8 million restoration work over the next three years.

The Taw Improvement Project is designed to improve the ecosystem through targeted habitat management, building upon recent fish-migration projects.

The project partnership includes the North Devon Biosphere Reserve, West Country Rivers Trust, Devon Wildlife Trust, River Taw Fisheries Association and Tarka Country Trust.

The West Country Rivers Trust will manage the work with funding from the Environment Agency and Catchment Restoration Fund.

Anglers have a vested interest in the wellbeing of the region's rivers.

It has been said anglers are the true guardians of the river and that is highlighted by their involvement in this project.

Stafford Moor's September pairs match saw several ton-up bags of fish, the majority carp.

Brian Shanks had the top individual weight of 198lb.

The top pair were Ray Hayward and Martin Preston from Somerset.

Hayward landed more than 40 carp on day one for a total bag of 168lb. Preston caught eight carp from Joseph's Lake for 131lb.

On the second day, Hayward landed just six carp for 107lb, the best a fine mirror of 22lb taken on waggler tactics. Preston took 35 carp on day two for 140lb.

Diary dates

Sunday: Triple Hook Club Ladies and Junior Open, fishing 9am to 1pm, weigh in Royal British Legion 1.45pm.

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