Shore sport is very good at present with the overlap of summer and winter species producing some good mixed bags from all of the region’s piers and beaches. Small cod are increasing in numbers particularly from the rock marks, the lower Tyne and the beaches North of the Tyne, with odd bigger specimens to 5lb reported. The lower Tyne, South Shields pier and Tynemouth pier all seem to be producing a lot of gurnard lately. Coalfish are showing from all areas with the piers and rock edges all producing large bags of fish around the 1lb mark but several to 3lb have been reported from the Tyne and from the Dunstanburgh Castle area. The best was a monster of 7½lb taken from Roker Pier by Ronnie Head last week. Pollack are also evident from a lot of the rock edge marks in addition to Roker and South Shields piers, where they are taking both float fished and bottom fished baits as well as lures.
Whiting are showing from the Durham beaches after dark, but only when there is a bit of movement or colour in the water. The river Wear has quality flounders, eels and small coalfish in the lower river. The Tyne is on top form with large numbers of small, but in size cod, as well as coalfish, flounders and eels from the lower river marks with flounders and eels from the upriver marks.
Paul Westmoreland fishing a Northumberland Sea League match at St. Mary’s Island landed a pollack of 7lb 2oz on his first cast, after which he did not have a bite. Ritchie Douglass won the match with three cod for 8lb 5oz taken from North Crab Hill. William Stokoe was too late to register for his club match so went and fished Whitburn Beach to land a surprise bass of 3lb 8oz which would have been the heaviest fish and the heaviest bag!
Gary Tulley won a Newbiggin match with five cod for 8¼lb from Amble. Graham Foster won another Newbiggin match with four cod for 9¼lb, best 5¾lb, from the Beacons and Bob Ferguson won a third Newbiggin match with two cod and a wrasse for 7lb 14oz.
Tynemouth A.C. saw thirteen out of twenty-eight anglers weigh in for their last winter league match. Dave Hayley won with two coalfish and a cod for 4lb 2oz from Sharpness Point and in second Marty Elliott had two cod and an eel for 3lb 11oz from Haven Rocks. Third place went to Dave Cruddas with two cod weighing 3lb 3oz also from Sharpness Point. The heaviest fish went to Steve Richards with a cod of 2lb 11oz from Haven Rocks.
The Tynemouth Sunday League match saw thirty-five fishing but only six managed to find fish. Steve Harper won with a good bag of six cod and three coalfish for 11lb 12oz from the Sandbar, Alan Norman weighed in two cod for 3lb to take second from the pier and six year old junior angler Emma Elliot had two gurnard and a pollack for 2lb 15oz. Her pollack was also the heaviest fish at 1lb 9oz.
The last match in the Whitley Bay Summer League saw only Steve Williams weigh in with two fish for 2¾lb. This helped him win the £300 prize for the League’s heaviest total with a very good 38lb 10oz and he also had the heaviest with a cod of 6lb 3oz. Andy Grief was second with 20lb 10oz and Chris Stringer was third with 15lb 10oz.
Cleadon A.C. had a good turn out of forty-two members with twenty-seven weighing in mainly mixed bags of cod, coalfish, flounders and eels from the Tyne. John Taylor won with thirteen fish for 11¾lb, Richard Landsbury in second had eight for 8lb 10oz with third placed Ian McLaughlin landing three cod for 8¼lb, best 5lb 2oz. The next two places were filled by Steve Elliott on 6lb 9oz and Tony Cook with 6lb 2oz.
Horden Mechanics fished their first winter match at the weekend and struggled in calm conditions with the expected hordes of whiting failing to show. Lots of bait robbing swimming crabs were present on the night. Darren Thompson managed to find one whiting and a cod, the heaviest fish at 1½lb, for a total of 2lb 2oz. Paul Raison had three whiting for 1lb 12oz and Nathan Lee was one ounce behind.
In the Wear the last Eastenders sweepstake saw eleven out of twenty-one weigh in five cod, four flounders, three eels and one bass. Steve Maw won with the lone bass of 2lb 3oz taken from Whitburn. Willie Rowntree finish second with a cod of 1lb 9oz from Marsden and Steve Rackstraw had a cod of 1lb 7oz for third. A flounder of 1lb 3oz giving Jimmy Gardner fourth from Panns Bank.
The East End and Hendon sweepstake the next day only saw three out of eleven find fish from the Timber Beach. Darren Welsh and Steve Rackstraw tied each with a flounder of 1lb 9oz and Darren also took third place with a flounder of 1lb 6oz.
The Eastenders open on Saturday fished at the Glass Centre saw fourteen out of fifteen weigh in an all flounder catch. Jimmy Gardner won with 1lb 5oz, in second Chris Hossack had one for 1¼lb and third placed Jim Dobie had a fish of 1lb 2oz.
Sunderland S.A.A. fished Sunday with five out of thirteen landing fish. Andy Rutherford won with a flounder of 1lb 3oz, with Thomas Rutherford and Bill Gamblin joint second with 1lb 2oz.
Seaham A.C. fished for the Dillon Cup on Sunday when nineteen out of fifty-seven weighed in ten plaice, eight mackerel, five flounders, four cod and two coalfish. Gary Malloy won with two fish for 2.80lb, Dean Furness with two fish and Mick Davison with one cod, which was also the heaviest fish tied for second place with 1.98lb, while Gary Pye was fourth with 1.94lb.
Stewart Campbell fishing with Lar Burr and son Paul Burr on their boat Mary “B” around the Can at Whitley Bay, took around thirty fish including cod, whiting, mackerel and red gurnard. Paul took the biggest, a cod of 7lb and all but seven decent fish being returned.
Saturday October 3rd sees a sweepstake on Horden Beach fishing from 5pm till 10pm between the Bell Hole and Dene Holm. Register and weigh in on the beach. Basic entry is £5. There is a two hook limit and whiting will be size at 32cm.
Sunday October 4th sees the Seaton Sluice Open fishing from 8.30am till 12.30pm between Tynemouth Pier and Amble Pier. Register at the Bank House Club Newbiggin from 7am till 8am. Basic entry is £10, juniors are free but must be accompanied by a fishing adult. First prize is £500 plus a full supporting prize table. Contact Barry 01670-732851 or Gav 07974-130205
The Ryhope Instrip Demolition Open Sweepstake is on Sunday October 11th fishing from 2pm till 6pm. Basic entry is £5 for seniors and £1 for juniors and ladies with optional heaviest bag pools and team event. Top three prizes for the heaviest fish are £200, £100 and £50, followed by ten cash prizes determined by entry numbers. Ladies, juniors and the heaviest flatfish each win £25. Register at the Village Tavern at Ryhope Green from 11.30am till 1pm. This is a Penn points match. Contact Bob Surtees on 0191-5237272 for details.
Hartlepool O.M.A.C. fish the first of their winter league matches on Saturday October 3rd from 7pm till 1am, then on Saturday October 17th also from 7pm till 1am.