Angling Notes: Leitrim council awards €100,000 to develop lake angling

Grant will assist in building centre of excellence to attract domestic and overseas anglers

Leitrim County Council has awarded Ballinamore in Leitrim a grant of €100,000 as a result of a funding submission to assist in development of an angling facility at Garadice and Kiltybarden Lakes. The resource will include accessibility for wheelchair users and a special area dedicated to youth angling. As the Ballinamore and Carrigallen areas are well-known angling locations, the grant will also assist in building a centre of excellence to attract both domestic and overseas anglers.

Overall, the project will cost €125,000, of which €100,000 will derive from the Department of Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs. Additional funding of €21,200 will be provided by Inland Fisheries Ireland and €3,800 from Leitrim County Council.

The council's chief executive, Frank Curran, said: "Angling is an extremely important economic driver for this area made possible by the excellent fishing lakes. Ballinamore-Carrigallen have been host to numerous competitions such as the world pairs and Dutch king of clubs."

Specialists from Natural Resources Wales are taking a new approach to flood maintenance work on the river Rhymney in southeast Wales. Approximately 900 tonnes of shoal had built up at Ystrad Mynach, causing the river to flow into a deep, narrow channel.

As traditional excavation methods could have threatened wildlife, a different approach was taken, with water diverted around the shoal so the excavator could work in a dry environment, thereby reducing the movement of silt which can harm fish. Special silt wattles and silt mats were used to slow down the flow and capture sediment dislodged by the work.

An innovative “bubble curtain” was also tested for the first time in the UK. This curtain of air bubbles stretches across the river to manage silt and provides an acoustic barrier to absorb sound and oxygen levels to protect fish and river life during the disturbance.

The Howth lifeboat station was the busiest coastal station in Ireland during 2015 with 60 launches and 58 people assisted. The local fundraising branches raised €171,748, supporters of the charity were told at this year's annual meeting. These funds contributed to training crew members, provision of lifejackets and crew kit, the maintenance of two lifeboats and running costs of the station.

Chairman Russell Rafter expressed his thanks and gratitude to the donors, past and present crew members, fundraisers, shoreline staff, coastal safety team and education liaisons and their families for their continued support.

“We have a fantastic group of people here who devote their time and energy to enable us to launch the lifeboats,” Mr Rafter said. Our crew are incredibly brave and we want to make sure that when they go to sea to save lives they are highly trained with the best of equipment,.

Fundraising chair Rose Michael added: "I'd like to acknowledge the continued support of local businesses, clubs and individuals. We are grateful for all their contributions."

Other items: Delphi Lodge in Leenane, Co Galway, is delighted to announce that Robert Gillespie, its highly qualified tutor/guide, will be hosting a number of casting courses throughout 2017. A course at Delphi Lodge is a wonderful, relaxing and learning experience for those who wish to take their first step in this rewarding form of fishing. For many, fly-fishing becomes a true passion. Price per person of €895 includes three nights, full board accommodation with two days of fly-casting tuition. Gillespie is also available for one-to-one tuition throughout the season. For course dates, see link: Delphi Fly fishing School.

Make sure to watch the last of the eight-part series Along Home Shores on UTV Ireland on Thursday at 7.30pm, repeated on Sundays at 6.30pm. Avid sailor Bobby Kerr discovers the hidden treasures of the Ireland's coastline and waterways. "I have been truly amazed by the scenic beauty of Ireland's coastline and inland waterways and the fascinating characters I met. The sheer magnificence cannot be overstated," he said. The series is funded by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland and sponsored by Volvo.