The heavy seas of last week produced better bags of cod from the sheltered marks when the sea was at its roughest. Those anglers expecting the cod to show in greater numbers as the sea fell away were slightly disappointed as only the occasional smaller cod seemed to stay behind, and the whiting quickly moved inshore to eagerly snaffle any baits presented to them. Middleton pier and the Staincliffe at Hartlepool still produced cod to 4lb among the whiting and dabs. Some cod to 2lb were reported from the Promenade, Parton beach, and Crimdon, but generally, sport was quiet along the Hartlepool and Durham beaches. Roker pier and South Shields piers saw better results with cod up to 6lb taken over several of the tides.
Hendon promenade also produced some better bags of cod once all the washed out debris had dispersed. Paul Richardson had cod up to 6lb 10oz, Liam Simpson landed three for 9lb, the best weighing 5lb, and Ken McCoy took eight to 3lb on worm baits. The rock edge marks around Roker and South Shields have fished well so far this winter and continue to do so. Paul Riley had a cod of 10½lb from Ryhope, Mick Rich had cod to 9½lb from Whitburn, and there were reports of other anglers landing cod to 11lb or more. The river Wear has flounders, whiting and codling present, but there are also many bait hungry crabs at this time of the year. David Thynne landed a surprise dogfish of 3lb during a recent session at the Glass Centre.
Cod have started to show south of the Tees but results are very unpredictable, several anglers report cod up to 11lb, and down at Whitby cod to 17lb have been landed. Paul Lobley had cod to 9lb from Runswick, and Mick Ayres reports cod to 8½lb from Saltburn. Saltburn pier has fished well for cod to 6lb or more with the odd bonus bass to 2lb present. Stan Preston won a Saltburn match with a cod of 5lb 14oz while second placed Dan Redoing had one of 5lb 3oz and Chris Woods only needed a rockling of 7oz for third place.
North of the Tyne the rock edge marks produced some better fish and the biggest cod reported was one of 17½lb taken by Karl McLaughlin from Slatey Gut as part of a five cod bag. Billy Foster won a Newbiggin match with nine cod for a total weight of 25lb 9oz from Bog Hall Rocks.
The Ryhope Tuesday evening sweepstake saw Chris Hossack win with a cod of 8½lb, followed by Mick Davison with one of 5lb 3oz. The Ryhope Sunday match saw 49 anglers struggle to catch much of size. The winner, Ritchie Carr fished the productive Marsden rocks to land two cod totalling 1.38kg. Ken Hayley finished second with three whiting and a flounder for 1.0kg, and Chris Hossack had a single whiting of 0.50kg. Top junior Daniel Tate weighed in 0.18kg.
Seaham A.C fished their Christmas match on Sunday with 14 out of 49 finding fish. Mick Grey won with four cod for 6.41lb, Andy Clegg had a single cod of 5.82lb, and Paul Westmoreland had two weighing 4.92lb. Mick Grey and Denny Halliday won the team event with 9.53lb.
Saturday December 15th sees the Whitley Bay Evening Open match with fishing from 8.30pm until 12.30am between the Ice House in the Tyne to Cresswell Carrs. Basic entry is £12 and there is £1200 in cash prizes starting at £300 for the winner. Register from 6.30pm until 7.30 pm at the Whitley Bay clubhouse, back of the mini golf course, the Links, Whitley Bay.