Three Lothian fishermen named to Scotland’s sea fishing team for Home International
And an Edinburgh-based fisherman has been named a reserve for the event next July on popular Chesil Beach, one of England’s three main pebble beaches, stretching 29 kilometers from West Bay to the island. from Portland near Weymouth in Dorset.
Chris Empson of Dunbar, Barry McEwan (Port Seton), both members of the Bass Rock Shore Angling League, and Mike Kyle (Dalkeith) are on the squad along with former Bass Rock club member David Cooper of the reserve .
The captain is David Neil from Salcoats and the other member is fellow debutant Nuno Santos from Glasgow who was at the recent St Serfs Open in Fife.
Empson, an East Lothian Council carpenter, and McEwan, a freelance carpet installer, are both new caps and this is the first year the two have been aiming for a place on the team.
The qualification took place over a period of several months and over a series of matches with rounds in places such as Arbroath, Luce Bay in Dumfries and Galloway, Cairnryan, Prestwick and Greenock.
A father of two, Empson is a well-known competitive fisherman who wants to see more people fishing and recently hosted two free matches in East Lothian.
A third place finish at the recent Clyde and West Open, where his five-year-old daughter, Abby, won the junior award, helped the 36-year-old secure his spot.
He admitted to never having fished for Chesil but is delighted to have had the chance to have a spot on the team and represent Scotland for the second time since he was a member of the National Team of powerlifting in the four nations tournament for four years.
Empson said: “I saw a few videos from the beach and fishing for Scotland is a real honor for me. I have been fishing since a young age and this year I have decided to be part of the team.
“My results have been good and now I have. It’s also good to see new people coming into the sport as we’ve seen a lot of new people fishing in East Lothian over the last few years.”
McEwan started fishing at the age of six and fished at Chesil Beach when he was young, having traveled there with the Ogilvie family from Haddington on vacation, but that was many years ago.
The 44-year-old said: “It’s towards the unknown for me. We just confirmed the squad, so we await news of what’s happening now. It’s scheduled for New Years, but the family is very happy for me. “
He added: “It’s great to see two guys from the same club on the squad and also to see three Lothians anglers representing Scotland.
“It’s been an exciting time in qualifying and my results were good, two firsts and two seconds, so now we look forward to July and head back to Chesil.”
McEwan, 44, who also has two children, is one of the founders of the popular Bass Rock Club which regularly fishes matches in the summer and winter at various locations in East Lothian.
In fact, he won the club’s Christmas Hamper event last week with a 9-ounce rockling and admitted, “It was tough that night.”
He is the treasurer of the Bass Rock club and said: “We created the club several years ago to encourage more people to play this sport and everything is going well.
“Yes, we fish competitively, but members are always welcome to help newcomers and we encourage new people to join us for our games.
“The club’s goal is to encourage more people to play the sport.”
Empson and McEwan plan to fish together more often next year in anticipation of the event.
Kyle is an experienced angler and Cooper, a freelance painter and decorator, won a major award at the Amble Open several years ago in a field of over 400 people from across Britain.
Meanwhile, Bass Rock members fish their Winter Series Round Nine on Wednesday, December 29, registering from 6 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. and fishing from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. The venue is probably North Berwick, but check their Facebook page for details. New members are always welcome.
Alan and Stewart are hosting a Christmas Cod Open on Tuesday December 28 at Carnoustie’s Ferryden Light and contact Alan on 07872 899791 or Stewart on 07759 379978 for more details.
Registration is at Victoria Park, Arbroath from 11:30 am to noon and fishing is from 1 pm to 6 pm. The scales close in Victoria Park at 7 p.m. Entry £ 15 and prize for first, second and third in heaviest cod and heaviest bag. Scottish Sea Fishermen’s Federation rules apply.
In Eyemouth, Aquamarine Charters plans to run boats on December 27, 28, 29 and 30, weather permitting. Boss Derek Anderson said: “There is a lot of cod. Last weekend saw a good fishery and the best fishermen had up to eight keepers.”
His boats run most weekends as long as the weather permits and he plans to race on January 3, 4 and 5 if there is enough interest.
Don’t forget that the Amble Open in Northumberland takes place on Sunday 23 January from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. with registration from 8 a.m. and the price is £ 6,000. £ 12 and 478 anglers took part last year, including several from the Lothians.
Meanwhile, fly fishing, Drumtassie will be open every day throughout the holiday season and Eric Gibson is on duty on Christmas Day (8 a.m. to 4 p.m.). By the way, a 25 pound rainbow has just been stored.
Bowden Springs near Linlithgow will be closed on Christmas Day and Boxing Day. In East Lothian, Markle, who has just put on his shoes, is closed on Christmas Day but has a competition on Boxing Day with prizes. SFSA rules apply.
Admission costs £ 25 and fishing hours are 10am to 2pm, with release in effect. Your neighbor checks your card.
Markle fished really well. Black and green lures and pink apps have performed well and one angler, who has fished in other waters for the past two years, has made a comeback recently.
Manager Jimmy McLachlan said the fisherman told him he caught more fish in one day than he caught in more than two years in other fisheries.
Tweeddale near Gifford will be closed on Christmas Day and Boxing Day, but will host a competition on December 29 which was booked within hours. Snakes, diawl bach and buzzers have recently tempted the fish.