In the July - August News I touched on the value of life jackets (DROWNING!). Shortly after the page appeared in public two cousins went missing in Galway Bay, Ireland.

On the 12th of August they had taken their paddle boards to Furbo Beach on the north coast of the Bay for an evening paddle. Sara (23) and Ellen (17) expecting it to be a brief venture, were not wearing wet suits, being satisfied with their swimming costumes and life jackets. A change in the weather saw them being carried out to sea unable to return to shore. As the weather deteriorated - with heavy rain, thunder, lightning and increasing wave action, a full scale rescue operation was commenced at 2200 hrs. Meanwhile the two girls, heading further out to sea, took their own action. They remained as calm as they could, stayed together and lashed the two paddle boards together. A massive air and sea search was underway with, ironically, the two girls able to see the helicopters from time to time. With no sign of the girls and the worst being feared, with daylight returning, fisherman Patrick Oliver and his eighteen year old son Morgan had their own ideas of where the weather might have taken them!

They set off for the Aran Islands at the mouth of Galway Bay. Morgan spotted a movement some two miles south west of Inis Oirr. The movement turned out to be the girls waving their paddles. They had managed to grab hold of some crab gear, which was intended to have been moved the previous week. Their fifteen hours at sea had come to a happy ending, to the obvious delight of all concerned. Had they not been able to catch hold of the crabbing gear they would have continued into the Atlantic! John Leech CEO of Water Safety Ireland said “…they were wearing lifejackets, which is crucial in these situations”. How would you value these lifejackets?


There is now less than 50 days to World Fish Migration Day! This is a trans-global event with something for all. Go to

To see what is happening. To date, I have been most impressed with the multi-nation “Dam Removal Europe” webinar  which provided much food for thought. Take out the obstructions and watch the fish move upstream.

Don’t miss this one.


This charitable organisation continues to express it’s appreciation for the support which the Auction received earlier in the year – despite the lockdown.  The monies received help it to pursue its aims as a river conservation charity that inspires and helps everyone to protect habitat for trout and all wildlife. Visit to see the full story. To enable more work to take place WTT is currently seeking to increase membership and would invite the current members to “sign up a friend”. Possibly the greatest help for clubs and riparian owners to receive is a “Practical Visit” in which help and advice is given aimed at improving and better managing your local habitat.


News came in the Autumn edition of Trout & Salmon magazine  that Salmon & Trout Conservation Charity had withdrawn from the MSA. Simply, there appears to be a conflict in connection with approaches to salmon farming and a fear that the aquaculture PR machine might “greenwash environmentally damaging activity……”

That leaves the Atlantic Salmon Trust (AST), GWCT and the Angling Trust in MSA.


Norway’s farmed salmon community is reeling following the discovery of 20 cases of ISA this year at aquaculture sites in the north of the country. This is a highly infectious and incurable condition. It also calls for suspected cases to be notified to all EU governments. To discover more information visit and/or

Anyone going to Norway to fish should guarantee their gear is sanitised on return. 


If you enjoy good music, like me, you will be disappointed to hear there is no International Music Festival at St Asaph Cathedral this year.
However, after a great day on the river bank – or a challenging one – have no fear you can still enjoy some stunning music.

As a result of the pandemic the North Wales International Music Festival is going virtual for the first time in its 49 year history. Usually held at St Asaph Cathedral, this year, it will be hosted on the festival’s website between 12 – 26 September. Highlights include a piano and cello concert by Isata & Sheku Kanneh-Mason, vocal group VOCES8, guitarist Craig Ogden, orchestra in residence NEW Sinfonia, pianist Luke Jones, Ensemble Cymru and folk groups Awen Celtica & VRï.



All of the virtual concerts are free of charge with donations gratefully received. Although disappointed not to have live music in the cathedral this year having to hold a virtual festival will hopefully open the door to a wider audience for the future. You can sign up for the festival’s newsletter, donate and watch the concerts at