Fishing permits prices for the new season on Northumbrian Water’s reservoirs - which opens on Saturday 14 March – will not be increased for the third year running.
And there’s a new all-day sporting ticket being introduced for fly anglers who want to return all they catch.
The sporting ticket costs £15 and is available only to fly anglers who must also use barbless hooks.
Don Coe, operations manager waterside parks and fisheries, said: "We are really pleased to be able to introduce the sporting ticket that so many fly anglers had asked for - and at just £15 for a full day there probably isn’t a better value permit in the country.
"We also appreciate that in these tough economic times many of our anglers are finding it increasingly difficult to fund their fishing. It’s not easy for us to meet the costs to sustain our fisheries either but we continue to look closely at our budgets and believe that we can keep prices down for the third successive season.
"We hope that anglers will find it that bit easier to enjoy their pastime and support our fisheries with their visits."
There will be at least 14,000 fish stocked at the six premier fisheries waiting for anglers on opening day, many of them from the water company’s two fish farms in Northumberland and the Tees Valley.
Fish will be stocked at all the premier reservoirs: Derwent in County Durham; Fontburn and Kielder in Northumberland; Grassholme and fly-only Hury in Teesdale and Scaling on the edge of the North York Moors.
Full eight-fish day permits remain at £23 with concessions at £21, the four fish afternoon Credit Cruncher is pegged at £16 and the family and couples 12-fish ticket will stay at £35. Full day boat hire charges for Kielder Water have also been frozen at £15 midweek and £19 for weekends.
Advance day permits can be bought online from www.fishpal.com
Last season’s popular change to the earlier opening time of 7am and the earlier start to the Credit Cruncher permit of 2pm will also continue this season.
Anglers are urged to strike and join the growing 6,500-strong loyalty card fishing family so when they have fished seven times they get an either free day.
The extra reward for repeat visitors of a catch limit increase to ten on a full permit complimentary loyalty day and five for a Credit Cruncher ticket also continues.
Loyalty members will get monthly special offer deals on tackle, clothing and bait and existing loyalty card holders will automatically receive their free copy of the new-look ‘Discover Waterside Parks and Fishing’ guide packed with information.
The guide features all the premier stocked trout reservoirs together with coarse fishing at the Whittle Dene lakes in the Tyne Valley and at Derwent reservoir and includes a feature by expert Dave Coster from Hardy and Greys.
There’s information about the wild brown trout waters of Balderhead, Cow Green and Selset and there are tips and information from Northumbrian Water’s own angling expert, Teesdale ranger Andrew Scott, who is a gold-medal winning England International.
Loyalty cards and copies of the guide are available from 0845 155 0236 or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Further information is on the website www.nwl.co.uk/gofishing and anglers can follow stocking and other news on Facebook at ‘fishing with Northumbrian Water’ and on Twitter @gofishingnwl.
‘Try it,’ three-hour tuition courses for the under 18’s costs £15 – a special offer made possible through a unique partnership with the British Trout Farmers Restocking Association (BTFRA) which has donated the proceeds of a memorial fund collected following the funeral of the late trout farmer Rob Mackie from Lancashire.
Don Coe added: "There’s a brilliant season lined up for our customers and we will continue to invest in the future and attract newcomers to the sport.
"Our emphasis is on having fun while fishing and encouraging people to join our fishing loyalty ‘family’ is a big part of that. The future of fishing is in the hands of the younger generation and we are doing everything we can to encourage them."
‘Try it’ teaching days are held at Derwent reservoir on Tuesdays and Saturdays and start on 7 April and will alternate between any method and fly.
Everything required is provided under expert tuition and three hour courses cost £30 for adults and only £15 for the under 18’s.
Courses can also be arranged at other premier fisheries by appointment. All ‘Try it day’ sessions must be booked by phone on 01207 255250.
There’s a busy competition calendar lined up throughout the region headlined by the annual WaterAid fundraisers once again generously supported by world class Alnwick-based tackle company Hardy & Greys.
Northumbrian Water’s partnership with Hardy & Greys has so far raised a record breaking £50,000 for its adopted international charity WaterAid – saving more than 3,300 lives in Africa and Asia.
Rainbow trout marked with special sweep tags will continue to be stocked in Fontburn, Derwent, Grassholme and Scaling. Anglers who catch one of these marked fish and who have joined the optional over 18’s sweep for just a £1 stake before fishing could win up to £400.
Building on past successes of encouraging young people to have a go, Northumbrian Water is promoting affordable family fishing. The age limit for free fishing with an adult is 18 and all the children in the family under that age can fish for free and share the limit catch with their full paying parent.
Fishing opens at all reservoirs from Saturday 14 March except the wild brown trout waters of Cow Green, Selset, Balderhead and Blackton which open on 22 March. Brown trout caught at Kielder and Derwent must be returned before 1 May and after 31 October. Whittle Dene is open to coarse fishing all year round.
Kielder Pairs: Heats 26 April, 24 May, 21 June – final 12 July.
Fontburn Lions charity day 9 May
Kielder Scierra Pairs 9 May
Derwent Bankmaster 7 June
Kielder Jack Charlton Disabled Anglers Cup 10 June
Kielder ATTEFF England qualifier 31 May
Fontburn Blind Association charity day 31 July
Kielder Water team of four 2 August
Whittle Dene Coarse challenge 31 August
Derwent Reservoir Charity coarse challenge 15 November.
For further media information contact Alistair Baker 0191-301-6851 or 07711-793493