‘Trout in Dirty Places’ is a recent book authored by Theo Pike. It is a guide to fishing in the UK’s post Industrial Urban landscape and highlights 50 such stretches of river across the UK. My personal feeling is that its main purpose is to act as a catalyst to inspire individuals to search out these forgotten watercourses for themselves. And then to subsequently undertake to love, cherish and protect ‘their’ waters. I suppose at its most literal level it could be interpreted as a ‘how to’ and I would be not at all surprised if some, if not all, of the locations featured in the book have experienced increased fishing pressure since the publication hit the shelves. However I would hope that this would not be a sustained medium to long term level of fishing pressure.
I have taken the quotation above from the ‘Trout in Dirty Places’ facebook page and to me it encapsulates the almost visceral response from someone who does not want to see increased fishing pressure on these rivers and streams. I can understand this response but it is not the response that I had. Simply put, in my experience, the average UK fly angler is not all that interested in fishing running water for fish that may average 8 – 10” and so may never even be tempted to make any attempt. Of course some do make the make an attempt at rivers and streams and, as I did myself, experience an epiphany. Others will have a go and decide it is not for them.
Simply put the more like minded souls who access and enjoy these, and other, stretches of water the better for these environments and the inhabitants. It is perhaps a sad fact that in our modern world that in order to be conserved an environment must be perceived as having a ‘value’. And that value will be more readily appraised when more than a select few are enjoying the fishing.
For this to work everyone has to rub along together, and it can be frustrating to find that you have to share water. May be even with others who may not be as considerate as desirable. But this is the ‘price’ paid to fish these waters. Exclusive fishing usually requires a cheque book!