Maguire is Moyola Angling Club winner

IT proved a very unseasonably cold night for the middle of May when members of Moyola Angling Club took part in their annual McCracken Cup competition.The water was well up and suited those using worm.

This proved the right choice as Philip Maguire took first place on that bait. Second went to Patsy Harkin, on spinner while in third was Andy Glendenning, using fly. The previously postponed Meet at Regans Junior Cup was also held on this night.This was won by John McKay with joint second being Joseph Spiers and Stephen Ewing.

It is getting very close at the top of the league table with Barry Diamond now just ahead on 33pts. Other placings are - Tommy McGrath, 32pts ; Philip Maguire, 30pts; Brian Bigmore, 28pts ; Patsy Harkin, 26pts. The best junior at present is Joseph Spiers, 22pts, and John McKay in second on 18pts.

A great time was had by all those who took part when Moyola Angling Club went on their annual weekend trip to Sessagh Lakes, Dunfanaghy in County Donegal.However,the event proved not only hard but very few fish were landed.Winning his first competition, the Francis Loane Memorial Cup for the heaviest trout, was Christy Gilmore with a 1lb 10oz catch. Second went to Willie Darragh with 1lb 7oz and third Tommy McGrath with a trout of 15oz. Winner of the Martin O’Neill Memorial Cup for the heaviest bag of trout, was Willie Darragh. Second here was Christy Gilmore and third Tommy McGrath. This made it a very good weekend for the trio. A big thanks goes to Bernie and Philip for a great dinner on Saturday evening and Bernie,Willie and Seamie for a splendid barbecue on Sunday.

Unfortunately, the Meat at Regans Junior Cup was not won and will be fished for on another date. Meanwhile, it is asked that all anglers please keep an eye on the Moyola River up around Draperstown as there is sand being washed down from here and lodging in the bed of the water in Castledawson. Anyone who has time, please keep an eye on this as it will destroy all the spawning gravel in the river. The NIEA are monitoring the situation and may now know the source of this sand.

Members of the club met with DCAL Minister Caral Nichuilin to discuss the ongoing issues with salmon conservation.Club chairman Philip Maguire, along with Seamus Donnelly and Willie Darragh,had a very production meeting with the minister. The main topic for discussion included free passage for migratory fish such as salmon, dollaghan and brown trout.The Minister recgonised the passion that anglers across the Province have for their sport. The consultation period has now begun into the future of salmon conservation and it is vitally important that everyone who has any interests in conserving this iconic creature, fills out the online document.

Moyola Angling Assocation will celebrate their 30th anniversary this year.To mark this occasion, a barbecue and awards ceremony where all past chairpersons and long serving committee members will be honoured for their service to the club. The event is also open to everyone to attend and takes place in Moyola Park Football Club this Saturday May 26, starting 6.30pm.

There will be a barbecue, for which a small charge will be made, music and awards ceremony. If you are thinking of coming along, please let a committee member know as soon as possible. A charity competition was held on the Moyola River last Saturday. Held jointly by Moyola and the Willowbreeze Angling Syndicate,proceeds go in aid of the Childrens Heartbeat Trust for treatment of children with heart disease. The competition was open to all and there were some great prizes on offer for the heaviest fish, places from 1st to 6th and also 1st, 2nd and 3rd for juniors. A raffle for a rod and reel by Braddles of Belfast, and a years membership in Moyola Angling Club were made after weigh in.Prize donations were kindly contributed by - Moyola Angling Association, Darren Fullerton, Braddles of Belfast, Springvale Fishery,Temple Springs Fishery, Huestons Castledawson,Eoin Fairgrieve, Tommy Chada, Inflatables NI and Trevor McClenaghan.On conclusion, Fergal Diamond handed over a cheque for the sum of £400 to Ian Rowin. Next club competition will be another evening one for the Glenview Perpetual Cup Monday May 28. All taking part should meet at the Moyola Bridge, Castledawson, in time for a 7pm start.