Category Archive Articles


Shot of the Month – Spencer John June 2015


Spencer John took this photo on March 17th on the Usk.

It was published in the June edition of Fly Fishing & Fly Tying Magazine.

Great photo Spencer.

Come on you Guys & Girls send me your photos and I will publish them on the website.


Catch Returns are now overdue!!!

Catch returns are now overdue!!!

If you can’t find or lost your forms, never mind, just ring or email Geraint and advise him of your catch returns for this year.

Tel No. 01873 859696

. E Mail



AGM minutes for 2016


               PRESIDENT: Mr. J. Devoy     CHAIRMAN: Mr.S.D. Carrington

Honorary Secretary: Mr D. J. Rees, 12 Brookfields, Crickhowell, Powys, NP8 1DJ

Tel: 01873 811604       Mobile: 07506539377       Email:

Honorary Treasurer: Mr. S. Gable, 73, Dan-y-Bryn, Gilwern, Abergavenny, Monmouthshire, NP7 0BL

Tel: 07921 223832 Email:

Crickhowell and District Angling Society

Minutes of 2016 Annual General Meeting held at The Bear Hotel Crickhowell, at 8pm on Friday 29th January 2016


Steve Carrington sends his apologies for his absence as he is currently in hospital so he had asked Scott Gable (Hon Treasurer) to chair the meeting on his behalf.

According to the constitution, (rule10.1) the selection of a replacement chair for the meeting has to be ratified by election so Scott asked for any alternative nominations to chair the meeting, as there were none, it was proposed and seconded and agreed that he would conduct the meeting.

Minutes Silence

Scott asked members present to observe a minute’s silence for members who had passed away since the club was formed.

Scott addressed the meeting with points of order, he pointed out to members that there is no fire alarm planned and if it goes off it is a genuine alarm and members must exit via the appropriate exit.

Toilets and bar are downstairs, if anyone needs to visit during the meeting they were asked to be discreet in order not to disturb proceedings. Members were asked to sign in; in order that we can ratify the voting process after some housekeeping entries the meeting proceeded…

Holding of the AGM is embedded in our constitution and rules. The purpose of the meeting is clearly described to address the points that form the Agenda. Items for discussion have to be with the Hon Secretary 14 day’s item before the meeting (rule 9.3) in order that they can be added to the agenda and if needed be circulated to the membership for prior consideration. No items have been submitted. The quorum of the meeting is 12 members.

Where a vote is required on agenda items a simple majority of members present and voting shall be required to pass the item/resolution. Where the vote is on an issue that will amend the society rules then two thirds of members present and voting shall be required to pass the resolution. Everybody has the opportunity to speak, however Scott asked that we respect each other, don’t talk over each other and direct any points to the chair don’t all know each other and for the benefit of the minutes to state your name when you first speak.

Apologies for absence

The Hon Secretary David Rees informed the meeting that up until the start of tonight’s meeting he had received 29 apologies .At the start of the meeting 41 members were present.

Minutes of last year’s AGM

Unanimously agreed that they were a true and accurate record.

Matters arising from those minutes

All issues to be addressed through the reports received during the meeting.

Chairman’s report

Prior to going into hospital our Chairman had prepared his report which Scott read out to the meeting, it read as follows:-

It has been another disappointing year all round this year with the ever declining Salmon catches which was a major talking point all along the river. Steve himself blanked again this season, the second time since he started fishing, although he only spent four hours on the river. However he did manage to hook and lose a fish on GGC. He went on to say that the committee have all been working hard this past year. Bank clearance was over four weekends in early January/February, members were invited along to help and quite a few turned out despite the cold. A lot of work was done to improve access to our fishing by their hard work and commitment. Since the newsletter has been circulated we have lost one of our committee men due to work commitments, namely David Sanders. David has served for quite some time and his help has been invaluable. Steve thanked him for his time and support. There is now a vacancy on the committee which Scott will mention later. He also thanked the committee for their support and commitment during the last year.

We have invested some of C&DAS’s income into buying strimmers, branch loppers, and saws for the bank clearing days. All the large tools we need can be provided and operated by trained personnel on the day. All you will need if you would like to attend is some small hand saws, gloves and safety glasses. The last clearing day is this coming Sunday at our Bridge Meadow beat meeting at 10am by the cottage. It would be good if more of you could come along to help.

We have had great success with the skills day’s this year. The hard work of Geraint, Justin, Paul, Ricky and Steve certainly paid off again. All the guest instructors from GAIA who gave up their time free of charge enjoyed passing on their skills to all the members and guests who attended and who are looking forward to next year tuition already. He could not thank them enough because their passion for casting is infectious and you have to be there to appreciate it. They really offer first class tuition.

One day for trout skills was held on GGC in July and one for salmon also held on GGC in August. Both days were well attended and finished off with great food cooked on the BBQ by the chefs from the Bear Hotel. Everyone who attended enjoyed learning new skills but it seems the food was the main attraction that everyone was talking about later. We were also lucky enough to have a fishing/fly tying stand run by Toby Merrigan from Funky Fly tying, all his products were first class and well worth the money. Although he travelled a long way to exhibit his products, he gave us a great discount on all his gear. Many of us purchased his material from him and could thoroughly recommend his products. Paul Slaney also gave a demonstration of fly tying and we are extremely lucky to have Tyers of his quality as members of the Society. We hope to do the same this year but due to the commitments of the guest instructors elsewhere we will only be holding one skills day which will encompass both single and double handed rods.

There are a lot of photographs on the website if you fancy having a look.

This year Paul is due to be a guest tyer at the British Fly Fair International on Sunday 14th February this year. The event is sponsored by Veniards so it is a great coup for us to have one of the Societies members representing us. The fly tying club will be organising a trip to the fair but numbers will be restricted so first come first served. Contact Geraint, Justin or Stephen for information.

As stated salmon catches are raising a few concerns with National Resources Wales our governing body. As you probably know the River Usk as a Special Area of Conservation under the Habitats Directive and has been designated ‘’probably at risk’’ for the last few years. However things do not look as though they are going to change in the very near future. There have already been discussions about ‘’compulsory catch and release’’ at meetings of the NRW together with the Usk Local Fisheries Group and the Usk Fishermen’s Association and he believed there is a real threat of this being imposed upon us in the very near future. The ‘consultation process’ has already begun. He had to formally respond on behalf of the society within the next two weeks, please let him know what your objections are, additionally raise objections individually, the more objections etc. received the louder the voice that will be heard by NRW.

We have done our very best to promote voluntary catch and release but he was afraid some of us are not willing. During the season we have had reports off several members that coloured fish have been caught and killed by our members. There is no real need to do this, as our handbook clearly states the only fish to take for the table are ‘Silver Fresh Run Fish’. Any others we take later in the year, even though they look clean have expended their remaining energy and the fish will be tasteless even when smoked. Most will have put their remaining energy into egg and milt production too. Please only take fresh silver fish if you have to take any at all. An average hen fish contains approx. 5,000 eggs. Surely it is better for her to carry out her duties and get to the spawning grounds safely. They used to say it was Ok to take cock fish and return the hen fish, but the hen needs a cock fish, so please consider this next year and return all fish that look a bit doubtful.


After the late catch returns came in we can confirm that 31 Salmon were caught on our waters last year. We had a catch return of 85% which is disappointing after last year which was 100%.

There were two winners of the Edwin Price Memorial Trophy Cup for last season they were Roy McAdam and Neil Stratton with fish estimated to be in excess of 24lb in weight, both fish were returned. Congratulations to them. They will be presented with their Trophies at the Presentation Night on Wednesday 24th February 2016. Because we want to encourage all salmon to be returned the criteria for next year will be length and girth of fish which will give an approximate weight. All fish entered must be verified by another member or photographic evidence next to rod, landing net etc.

Once again this year after all the discussions and importance placed on you completing the catch returns by the required date we are still having to remind people to do so. Geraint is phoning emailing, and putting messages on Face Book and the club website, and you also have a reminder in your handbook. The club bylaw states that returns have to be in by the 31st October or face expulsion. We have given you this year until the end of November. How do we get this across to you how important it is to get accurate records of catches on our waters? The value of your fisheries depends on catch records. Do not be surprised if you are not allowed to renew your membership this season. Geraint Meadows-Catch returns 07972289133 or e mail

The sea angling section has now been cancelled. Members were asked some time ago to take over but no one did and so as Steve did not have the time to commit we decided as a committee to wind it up. Paul Bowen is still running trips from Abergavenny but no longer under the CDAS banner.

The website is still going strong and now looks even more professional. Stephen Cox has done a great job managing the site and it has grown over the last few years. Most pages contain at least some information regarding the society with contact details, fishery maps with pools identified, the society bylaws and constitution etc. This would be ideal for our new members. Steve is always looking for articles to publish so if you have anything interesting to share with us or something to sell (fishing related) he would be glad to hear from you. The forum is also a great way to contact other members. You can contact Steve via email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..”>

That’s all our chairman had to report, he stated that he looked forward to meeting members at the fly tying, skills day, presentation evening or on the riverbank.

Treasurer’s report

Scott Gable (Hon Treasurer) gave the meeting a breakdown of this seasons (2015) income and expenditure account for the society, the I&E and Balance sheets are attached.

Income and Expenditure Account


  • The Income for the society was lower by £3,878 (12.25%) compared to the 2014 season, this fluctuation has been seen before so is not concerning as a long term trend.
    • The variance has been primarily due to the reduction in paying adult members; the reduction has been predicated by the constitutional 66/33% split of local /non local anglers. The locals waiting list was cleared however the society membership rules meant not all places (200) could be filled. This is reflected in the reduced joining fees and reduced membership fees.
    • One individual was offered membership; however the cheque submitted was returned unpaid. The individual was offered the opportunity to repay by electronic transfer or cash however they have not made contact with the society so have had the membership cancelled. This is not reflected as a debt in the accounts as the membership offer was withdrawn.
  • Disappointingly the number of special juniors and juniors fell again form 11 to 5, this is a reflection of the general poor junior recruitment across our sport; we have continued to develop skills days and communication channels with local schools in an attempt to reverse this trend.
  • Guest ticket income this year decreased this year, however there is an additional £45 that will appear on next year’s balance sheet which missed the 31st October banking deadline. The reduction in income is probably a reflection of the reduced number of salmon guest tickets requested

Total income for the 2015 season was £22,172, a decrease of 12.12% (£3,878) against 2014


Subs and donations

  • Variance is noted in the subscriptions and donations made by the society during the 2015 season.
  • UUFA subscription rates should have been £50 the increased standing order transfer failed so this will be reflected in a higher subscription fee being paid this season. The committee still feel it important to support our local fisheries group.
  • The Angling Trust payment this year is £1000 lower reflecting the payment made last season to the sustainable access appeal. This year’s payment contains our membership subscription and our insurance premium payments.
  • A donation was made to the WUF during the 2015 season of £702 as pledged by the committee last season following a written request.

Professional fees

  • Secretary and Treasurer Expenses remain unchanged, as they have for the last 8 years.
  • Accountant fees were static on 2014

Other expenses

  • No advertising was paid for this season, last season a banner was purchased to use at events like the “Round Table Duck Race” and “Skills Day”.
  • Loan interest accrued during the season against the Bridge Meadow purchase has fallen slightly as the lender adjusted the repayment schedule.
    • No additional repayments were made during the 2015 season to reduce the loans medium term impact,this was a committee decision based on the quotes received during the season for undertaking bank maintenance work on the newly acquired beat.
    • The work has been started and is predicted to cost significantly less than originally quoted.
    • To this end the committee will discuss extra loan payments during the season based on expected expenditure and liabilities.
  • Renegotiation of the loan product with other lenders has proved difficult with lenders still demonstrating significant lending caution and requiring financial forecasting and modelling. Many factors are seen by uninformed lenders to place membership levels at risk (C&R, declining stock etc. etc.) The lenders approached have required an annual five year average surplus of income over expenditure of at least £20,000
  • Website hosting fees were decreased during 2015 to £100 from £450 (-78%), this was a negotiated short term reduction following a number of issues that arose with the hosting and management of the site.
  • While the society sent out a comparable number of mail shots during the season the cost of printing stationary and postage increased significantly on 2014. Stationary and printing up 20% to £555, postage up 58% to £483.
  • Year book costs remained the same at £466, each yearbook therefore costs the society £2.33
  • The skills day barbeque was this year self funding, the day was excellent, spending even half a day with such skilled instructors has made my casting significantly better, I would recommend coming along even if it is just for the social interaction with fellow members.
  • Fishing right rentals and car parking remained static after small increases last season. These costs will fall next season with the release of the Llanwenarth beat following failed renegotiation of rental terms.
  • £1,673 for repairs and bank maintenance have been accrued this year, an increase of £1,574. Reflected in this sum is the purchase of a brush cutter and other equipment to enable effective bank maintenance during work parties and paid work      undertaken to improve access to areas of the bridge meadow fishery.

Total expenditure for the 2015 season was £13,783, an increase of £7 or (0.05%)

The excess of Income over Expenditure for the 2015 season is £8,389 a decrease of £3,098 (26%) over the 2014 season which is wholly reflective of the lower income during the season

Balance Sheet

Owned fishing assets remain unchanged

The current net assets of the society see an increase over the 2014 season with £948 cash in hand (£300 in the junior / fly tying kitty residual form 2013) and a bank balance of £27.493 with a number of rolling deposits held by charter skippers awaiting return now that the sea angling section is not part of the society.

Current liabilities for the 2016 season amount to £8,565.

The net surplus for the 2015 season of £8,389 brings the total net value of the society assets to £197,377.

It is my recommendation to accept the accounts as presented to the committee and society.

In light of the approaching end to the fixed term period of the bridge meadow medium term loan I would also recommend continuing to follow the current financial model. In addition it might be prudent to make a lump sum payment against the outstanding loan debt (£82,317)

As an indicative example based the current debt value of £82,317 and the remaining 11 year term at an interest rate of approx 5%, each £10,000 lump sum paid reduces overall repayments over the term of the loan by approx £3,153

Total payable without a lump sum payment would be                                £108,265

With a £10k payment the total payable would be  £10,000+£95,112           £105,112

With a £20k payment the total payable would be £20,000+£81,960           £101,960

This will be discussed at committee when we have a clear understanding of this year’s income and any additional liabilities as yet unknown.

Action Scott

Please see attached record of accounts. The accounts were unanimously accepted as being a true and accurate record.

Discussion ensued around the reduced income and membership numbers dictated by our constitutional 66/33 local non local membership split. A number of different impassioned arguments were made by members present. As the proposal had not been placed before the membership in accordance with the constitution, a vote could not be held on any motion. Scott agreed to take the issue to the next committee meeting for discussion being mindful of the strength of feeling in the membership.


Action Scott

Appointment of Accountant

Scott proposed that we remain with Catherine Williams – agreed unanimously.

Subscriptions for 2017

Agreed at committee to remain unchanged for 2017, with a view to the committee reviewing subscriptions during the season, as liabilities and debts become more evident and the negotiations with lenders proceed.

Action Committee

Election of Officers

No nominations have been received to stand for the offices of Chair, Secretary or Treasurer; all current incumbents are willing to stand for re election. Scott asked the floor for a proposal that the current incumbents to be re elected unanimously agreed.

Election of Committee

Since the distribution of the newsletter and indeed very recently the committee has received the resignation of David Sanders as mentioned by Steve. The rest of the committee are prepared to re stand for election, which would leave us with a vacancy. Move to vote that the current committee members are re elected unanimously agreed.

Scott asked if there were any members present who would like to stand for the committee, each will need a proposer and seconder. There were two members present who would like to stand for committee. One of the members present was Paul Slaney, Scott asked the meeting for a proposer for Paul, proposed by Steve Cox and seconded by Justin Connolly. The second member present was Clive Williams, proposed by Mark McCloy and seconded by Jim Devoy. Scott then asked Paul and Clive to make a ‘pitch’ so that voting members present could make an informed vote.

Paul Slaney introduced himself to the meeting stating that he lives in Abergavenny, and is very active on the fly fishing, fly tying front. He got involved with Crickhowell Anglers in the past two years, he stated that he thought it was an excellent club as the balance shows, very secure club. He had got to know several of the anglers over the last couple of years, a lot of people he didn’t know. He stated that he was a businessman. He stated that he works in exhibitions, runs quite a large business, so working on a committee wouldn’t be strange for him. Scott thanked Paul for his pitch. He then asked Clive Williams to make a pitch.

Clive Williams introduced himself to the meeting stating that he had recently retired so he has got time on his hands, he had been a member of the club for over 30 years, and he was also a Chairman of a club in West Wales and is used to handling a lot of the problems that are associated with fishing clubs. He stated that he was an International Sales Director, so had travelled extensively, and that in him we would have experience in somebody that was used to running a club, that had been in this club for some time and a willingness to do some grafting.

Scott informed the meeting that they had the task of voting one of these onto the committee. He asked the meeting to vote for Paul, Paul received 15 votes. He then asked them to vote for Clive, Clive received 17 votes. So Clive was duly elected onto the committee.

Bank Clearance

Bank clearance had been mentioned by Steve, we had asked members to let us know what needs doing, and where we need to invest resources, it was emphasised that we need to know what needs doing otherwise we are not able to do it. If any member knows of any work to be carried out please contact the committee, whose contact numbers are in the booklet, on the website etc.

Catch returns

Scott then handed over to Geraint Meadows, Catch Return Officer for the Society

44% of members fished 372 days for Salmon in the 2015 season.

12 members caught Salmon in the 2015 season.

32 Salmon were caught in the 2015 Season for a total weight of 367.5lbs, an average of 11.5lbs.

Rod activity v Catch shows 1 Salmon for every 13 days of rod effort.

26 Salmon were returned giving a catch and release figure of 81%.

Salmon Catch breakdown by beat.

Pant-y-goitre- 4 Salmon

Cadfor Farm – 4 Salmon

Redbarn – 8 Salmon

Bridge Meadow – 12 Salmon

Glangrwyne Court – 4 Salmon

Salmon Catch breakdown by month.

April – 2 fish

May – 3 fish

June – 5 fish

July – 5 fish

August – 5 fish

September – 10 fish

October – 2 fish

Salmon Catch breakdown by method.

Fly -19 fish

Spinning – 11 fish

Bait – 3 fish

There were 2 large salmon reported as being caught, the first was caught by Roy McAdam on the 20th September 2015 at Bridge Meadow, the fish wasn’t weight but was measured by Roy at 44”, unfortunately Roy didn’t get a girth measurement but this would indicate a fish in the 24-27lb weight range. A further fish was reported by Neil Stratton caught on the 8th October 2015 again at Bridge Meadow, Neil didn’t weigh or measure the fish, but reported “Too big to net, and so too big to weigh “. Both of these fish were caught on the fly and both were returned.

Sea Trout Returns

There were 4 sea-trout reported in the 2015 season, of 2lbs, 2lbs, 2.5lbs, and 3lbs.

Brown Trout Returns

48% of members submitted a Return for Brown Trout caught during the 2015 season

All of C&DAS waters accounted for an annual catch of 662 Brown Trout of which 111 were retained. Subsequently a catch and release figure of 84 % was realised.

Brown Trout Returns by Beat, Anglers and Catch

Glangrwyne Court

Members returned a catch of 202 Brown Trout

Red barn

Members returned a catch of 283 Brown Trout


Members returned a catch of 14 Brown Trout

Cadfor Farm

Members returned a catch of 62 Brown Trout

Pant y goitre

Members returned a catch of 51 Brown Trout

Bullpit Meadow

Members returned a catch of 16 Brown Trout

River Grwyne

Members returned a catch of 16 Brown Trout

Further Information

It should be noted that 55% of members submitted a zero/didn’t fish return.

Discussion ensued following the report around the issue of late and none submission of catch returns.

The constitution is clear that membership will not be renewed however this was felt to be self defeating if membership numbers and thus income fall. There was an appetite from the members present of a form of financial penalty i.e. £10 extra on subs. Scott agreed to take this issue to the next committee meeting for discussion and resolution. This would be communicated to members.

Action Scott

Presentation night

The annual presentation night will be held at The Bear Hotel, Crickhowell on Wednesday 24th February 2016 starting at 8pm, as usual there will be a free buffet provided by the society, the night is a good reason to get together before the season starts to reminisce and dream of what might be with some like minded individuals.

AOB at chairman’s discretion

Tony Flynn informed the meeting that parking had been secured for Red Barn fishery, namely the old gas compound. At present the combination lock for Glangrwyne Court Fishery has gone missing and needs replacing (the number for the lock is:- Contact Dai Rees – details at top of page)

Tony Konieczny informed the meeting of the improvement work being undertaken on the Y-Fenni and the benefits that should ensue for the greater Usk catchment

The membership discussed the issues raised in the chairs report around the consultation being held by NRW around stock management including compulsory catch and release, the membership where keen to express their own opinions, it was agreed that the window of opportunity was short.

Discussion was held about opting in and out of postal / email communications from the society. Clive suggested asking the membership again of their preferred option for communication. A questionnaire was sent out last season with a response rate of less than 20% of membership. Scott agreed to ask the question of the membership again, this will go out with the AGM minutes and renewal reminder.

There being no other business the meeting was closed at 9pm.

Actions Arising

Point Action Responsible individual Target Date
1 Discuss at committee the   overpayment / early repayment of the bridge meadow loan S. Gable (Hon Treasurer) 5th March 2016
2 Take discussion paper to committee   re: change to membership demographic (review of 66/33 split) S. Gable (Hon Treasurer) 5th March 2016
3 Review membership subscription   level in light of liabilities and income S. Gable (Hon Treasurer) 5th March 2016
4 Request communication preferences   from membership S. Gable (Hon Treasurer) 5th March 2016
5 Take proposal document to   committee to amend catch return rules S. Gable (Hon Treasurer) S. Gable (Hon Treasurer)



Presentation Evening 24th February 2016


Our Annual Presentation Evening was held at The Bear on Wednesday February 24th at 8.00pm. This evening gave all of our members and families or friends the opportunity to have a pleasant evening where they can chat and enjoy the FREE BUFFET provided.

Nominees for the Edwin Price Memorial Cup we’re Roy McAdam & Neil Stratton who both caught and released Salmon in excess of 24lb. This cup was awarded jointly as there was nothing to choose between the sizes of the Salmon caught. Both nominees were not able to attend the presentation so Margaret Price presented the awards to Justin Connolly & David Probert on their behalf.

As we encourage a “catch & release” policy for all fish caught it makes it difficult for the lucky angler to weigh his/her catch therefore in future the award will be for the LONGEST SALMON caught which is to be measured and photographed and witnessed by a CLUB MEMBER alongside a suitable measuring device e.g. wading stick, fishing rod, tape measure etc.