Once again the Amble Open proved to be one of the best in the country by attracting 515 anglers who could choose to fish any of the varied rock edge and clean ground beach marks along the Northumberland shoreline for either cod or flounders. The forecast north west winds failed to put any movement on the sea and it was the flounder experts who dominated the weigh in, particularly 12 year old Rebecca Abbott who, as well as being a very able sea angler is also a competent fly angler, and well capable of casting to where the flounders are. She cleaned up on the day, taking first place with a 14 flounder bag weighing 10lb 15oz, the junior trophy, and the ladies trophy. It was very close for the top places though, Gordon Fairley had 18 flounders totalling 10lb 13oz, and John Tweddle had 14 flounders for a total of 10lb 7oz. Junior runner-up Bobby Thompson also enjoyed a great day with seven flounders for 5lb 5oz ahead of Erin Ternent whose five weighed 4lb 15oz. Erin was also the ladies runner up and third was Gail Oliver with five flounders for 4lb 2oz. The rock edge marks did produce a few cod however, G. Turner had the best at 5lb 9oz, Alan Wood had one of 5lb 5oz, and Robert Peruzzo had one of 5lb 2oz. Stu Carr had the best flatfish, a monster flounder of 2lb 2oz, and there was a tie for third place with Kev Moffat and Geordie Hall both with specimen flounders of 1lb 13oz. A total of 126 anglers weighed in mainly flounders.
The Ryhope Tuesday evening sweepstake saw Paul Riley win with a cod of 4½lb taken from the White Rock, John Robson had one of 3lb from Ryhope, Andy Rutherford had one of 2lb 1oz from Roker, and Bob Surtees was fourth with one of 2lb. The Ryhope club match on Sunday produced a nice cod of 7lb 7oz for Colin Stead, taken from the base of Roker pier, Steve Moore had two flounders and a whiting for 3lb from the Glass Centre, Keith Carter had two cod for 2lb 10oz, George Crawford had the best flatfish at 1lb, and Ryan Taylor was top junior with a flounder of 0lb 10oz.
Seaham A.C. fished for the Dawe Brothers Trophy last weekend in a match that saw 36 out of the 75 anglers weigh in 115 fish for 111.52lb, a good result considering the fresh westerly winds and flat calm seas. Dean Monarch had 17 fish from the Blast Ledge for 13.28lb, Dave Bond had 10 fish weighing 11.38lb from the North pier, Peter Appleby had 11 totalling 10.21lb, and Ian Lawson had the heaviest fish with a nice cod of 7.93lb from the North pier.
There were lots of quality whiting from the Hartlepool piers on the midweek tides before the sea produced a lift at the weekend as forecast, and pushed the cod inshore again. Hartlepool O.M.A.C. fished Saturday night in heavy seas and Liam Ferguson fished the Pilot pier to win with three cod for a total of 6lb 13oz, the best weighing 3lb 10oz, ahead of Steve Sweeney with a cod of 2lb, plus a whiting for the second heaviest bag, all from the Tyne.
The Hartlepool piers and other Teesbay marks seemed to have had the best of the shore sport for a change, even if most fish were whiting, flounders, or dabs. The Tyne has been strangely quiet, and few matches in the north of the region have been won with any decent weights. Paul Brown only needed four flatties for 3lb 5oz to win a Whitley Bay match, and even the normally productive Tynemouth A.C. results fishing the pier and river have been poor, Dave Hayley won their last match with two cod and a whiting weighing 3lb 10oz.