Cod made a welcome reappearance as the heavy seas returned last week, particularly in the north of the region. However, they also showed up south of Seaham and into Teesbay where whiting and dabs continue to dominate. Colin Gordon had cod to 5lb 7oz, with other anglers taking fish to 7lb during a recent session from the Hartlepool piers. Colin also reports taking smaller cod to 2lb from the promenade marks, but other than these isolated appearances, the expected cod have failed to show in any great numbers from any of the Hartlepool marks. Large numbers of whiting continue to show on late evening and nighttime tides and the local piers and beaches have started to produce good numbers of big fat spawning winter dabs with some exceptional specimens approaching the 1lb mark amongst them. Worm baits tipped with mackerel or squid have taken fish two at a time when they are on the feed.
Roker and South Shields piers have both seen cod to 8lb or more showing along with the usual whiting, dabs, and increasing numbers of coalfish. In the lower Tyne, some tides are producing both codling and coalies around the 2lb mark in decent numbers with worm and crab baits taking the majority of the fish. When conditions are right, club matches have been won with bags into double figures and pleasure anglers have taken mixed bags of over 20lb from most areas.
With a good sea running the South Shields open last Sunday saw 296 seniors and 12 juniors fishing. First prize for the heaviest fish went to Paul Harrison for a cod of 4.02kg; Phil Wright was second with a cod of 3.69kg, followed by Ged Stevens with a cod of 3.63kg. Joe Archer had the heaviest bag of 7.90kg, Gary Pye had 5.97kg, and Gavin Head had 5.87kg. Top woman was Pauline Ferry with 1.80kg, and the junior winner was Mason Taylor with 1.69kg. Gavin Head and Andy Rutherford took the team trophy with 8.07kg. Anglers not in the match took cod to 8lb from the end of South Shields pier at the same time.
Seaham A.C. also fished on Sunday with 13 out of the 38 entrants finding fish. R. Wright won with four cod weighing 5.56lb while A. Clegg had two for 4.41lb in second place. D. Bond had the heaviest fish of the match, a cod of 3.46lb. Brad Hill won a Tynemouth midweek match with two cod for a total of 5¾lb and a Tynemouth Sunday league match saw Laurie Hall win with a mixed bag of whiting, coalfish, and dabs totalling 6lb 5oz. Just behind was Doug Spivey with 6lb 2oz. Kevin Charlton’s cod of 2¼lb was the heaviest fish, and Neil Carter had a pollack of 1lb 15oz.
Bedlington Station A.C. saw 10 out of the 18 weigh in, Alan Naisby had 11¼lb, and Keith Armstrong weighed 7lb 14oz. S.B.R.A.A.C. had a good match with 10 out of 14 weighing in 23 cod and three whiting. Phil Smithson won with six cod and a whiting weighing 15lb taken from the productive Blyth beach where Kevin Moffat also fished to land four cod for 6¼lb. Micky Bell also fished Blyth to win a Northumberland sea league match with 10 fish for 8lb 6oz. Alberta S.A.C. had a productive match in the Tyne with 20 out of 24 weighing in. Paul Farrell won with 10 fish for a total of 12lb ahead of Steve Richardson whose eight fish weighed in at for 8½lb. Darren Shields won a recent Bedlington Station match with 11lb 7oz, Chris Potts weighed 10lb 10oz, and Steve Davis had 9lb.
Sunday November 18th is the date for the Bedlington Station Open fished from 9.30am until 1.30pm between Seahouses South pier and Tynemouth pier. Basic entry is £10 plus the usual pools and team events. Register at the Bankhouse Club Newbiggin from 7am. First prize is £500 for the heaviest bag, 100% pools payout for the top three heaviest fish, and £100, £50, and £30 for the top three heaviest flatfish. Contact Steve 07888674873 for details.