THE UK SALTWATER FLY FISHING FESTIVAL 2023 TAKES PLACE BETWEEN THURSDAY 14 AND SUNDAY 17 SEPTEMBER IN AND AROUND THE HISTORIC ST MAWES FISHING HARBOUR. SIGN UP, JOIN IN AND GET HOOKED…
My word. We could ramp this up with as many fishing puns as is humanly possible. But we’re not going to do that. Instead, we’re just going to give you the facts as succinctly as possible: this is the UK Saltwater Fly Fishing Festival 2023 and if you’re into angling in the sea then you should book your place to join in the fun between Thursday 14 and Sunday 17 September.
The festival, which takes place in the waters around St Mawes Harbour near Falmouth, is, after ‘six very successful years’, quite simply one of the biggest events in the UK’s game fishing scene. Fly fishers from around the world rock up to the event that is ‘suitable for both the highly experienced fly fisherman and those less experienced’ who want to learn more about this exciting form of fishing.
Expect the beaches and rocky areas around St Mawes to be packed with anglers and their rods during the festival, with participants encouraged to catch and release their game. Prizes, of course, are given out to the best fly fishers and there is ‘training’ for participants ahead of the competitions, which is included in the entry price. Plus, lunch is arranged throughout the festival at local pubs so that ‘everyone can get together over a drink and some food to discuss the morning’s happenings’.
The organisers say: “The 2023 festival will feature a variety of training clinics. There will also be detailed local information, available only to festival participants, of the best local marks and how these vary with tide and wind conditions.”
Here are some stats from the 2022 festival that was held in St Mawes over a weekend in late September: during the Saturday and Sunday, a total of 23.9m of fish (it’s all measured in length) was caught, 15.6m of which was bass and 4.3m of which was garfish. Malcolm Sargeant was the overall festival winner with 6.4m and Michael Peterson was second with 3.63m. Keith White snared a bass that was half-a-metre long though, which deserves special mention.
Of course, the competition adds an extra edge to already one of the UK’s best fly fishing festivals 2023 but really it’s all about having a good time with a good bunch of people who hail from far and wide. Alongside all sorts of social events in local pubs, this festival is worth joining if you’re a keen fly fisher or, at least, want to be one, if it floats your… damn! Almost made it too.