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Category: SMAC (Page 1 of 7)

SMAC Meeting December 2023

Tonight we drank a toast to the memory of a dear friend and SMAC member, Bill Arnold who passed away last week. Bill was a huge supporter of the club and did a lot of practical work behind the scenes to help. He was a regular contributor at our meetings, a fearsome seller of raffle tickets and of course a very competitive angler. We will miss him terribly.

To recognise his contribution to the club, there is a proposal to create a new prize which will be announced at the Presentation Night. Bill himself had the idea for both the award and the construction of the prize itself, so it will be nice to see it all come together.

We had a great turnout to the meeting and there was a lot to talk about. The Club Standings are listed below – Dan Lumsden leads (by one point) the Species Competition, the Bass Cup has changed hands and we have a new leader in the Cod Pool. It’s all still happening! The Bass Season remains open until the end of the SMAC year now, so there will be no early finishes.

Fish Of The Month was awarded to the larger of two cod entered, Tony Skinner’s cod of 8lb 5oz.

The Open Cod Competition still hasn’t happened due to the weather, and if it is postponed again on 10th the next possible Sunday (due to committee availability, Christmas and New Year) will be 7th January.

We have had very positive messages of support from Premier Marinas so we are hopeful that this will extend to more storage facilities and other practical measures. In turn, SMAC will continue to attract new members and new berth holders for them!

The Mandela Cup competition will be held on Saturday 30th December, to be followed by our traditional annual curry. This time it will be at one of the Albert Road establishments in Southsea. Details and a poll of members intending to go will be circulated separately.

Our Presentation Night will be held on Saturday 2nd March in the Marina Bar. This year the cost of glass prize replicas has increased considerably, so instead we will be giving out vouchers from our two main tackle shop sponsors, Fish-On and Cosham Angling.

The January meeting will be held a week later than normal due to New Year, so we’ll see you on 9th January 2024.

SMAC Open Cod Competition 2023

*** Please note: if the competition is postponed from 10th December due to bad weather, the next date will be 7th January 2024 ***

This will be our 6th Open Boat Cod Competition from Southsea Marina and it gets better and better. As usual the First Prize will be a whopping 60% of all the entry money, Second Prize 30% of entry and a table full of runner-up prizes from our generous sponsors. Heaviest cod wins, and if we run out of cod the heaviest whiting will count. Ladies and Junior (under 16) Bonus Prizes too. Sign in at Southsea Marina £10 per angler in cash or online with Eventbrite (booking fee applies). Fishing 8am to 4pm, weigh-in by 5:30pm at the Marina and presentations in the Marina Bar at 6pm.

SMAC Bait Supplies

We have our own in-house supplier of frozen squid at a very competitve price! SMAC member Peter Atkinson runs the wet and smoked fish retailer Anyfish based in Bishop’s Waltham, and also charters his boat Dotty which is based in Southsea Marina.  Pete is supplying 5lb boxes to members at only £18 (but check prices as these can change). These can be collected from his shop or by arrangement Pete can deliver to the marina. For enquiries and orders contact Pete by email or phone 07860 920007

Other baits in smaller quantities can still be bought from the Premier Marinas office at Southsea Marina.

SMAC Meeting November 2023

Our stalwart members have got used to the cold dark evenings and this month turned out in force to support the SMAC get-together in the Marina Bar. John Wearn kept us supplied with chewy sweets while we waited for the formalities to begin. Steve put the finishing touches to his paperwork, last meal orders were put in, drinks topped up and we were off.

First item was a review of the club competition standings, which you can read below. Then came Fish Of The Month, and because of the recent weather the list was very short. I was surprised there were any, given the severity of the storms. Nevertheless, we had a vote and the top specimen was a 10lb 2oz Bull Huss earning Mick Beatty a medal and a tenner.

The Cod Pool is still open and currently stands at £320. The only cod entered so far is a very junior 3lb something so if you haven’t put your money down, hurry up because that next cod could be worth a lot.

The last order of our Anniversary t-shirts has now been distributed, and thanks to all the members that supported this.

A quick update on The Shed Saga, Episode 4. The original shed used by SMAC members has now gone back to Premier for re-letting. The number of members wanting shed space puts the total requirement outside the scope of what SMAC funds can cover, so we recommend that those members who want to combine forces to share a shed with freezer space do so without involving SMAC. We have been promised “something” by Premier for the limited club requirements but unfortunately this won’t cover the wider needs of individual members.

The Cod Open Competition will roll on from Sunday to Sunday until we have a suitable weather window.

The Nelson Mandela Cup (a SMAC event) is traditionally held in that quiet period between Christmas and New Year when our families want rid of us and this year will be held on 30th December. We will fish 8am to 2pm, with plenty of bar time afterwards. Largest cod or if no cod largest whiting will win.

Rumours abound regarding frozen squid availability, but there are some in 1Kg boxes in the marina office freezer for £12 a box.

Club funds stand at a healthy £2,302.29 which means we can have a very jolly Presentation Night. This will be on 2nd March 2024 in the Marina Bar. Families welcome, there will be a free drink for members and a free buffet. There will be a presentation of cups if we can get the prize cabinet open. Steve has accidently thrown the keys away – does anyone know a locksmith? Otherwise we will just have to point to them instead of giving them, which could make the award photographs a little awkward.

Next meeting will be on Tuesday 5th December. Nobody has mentioned Winter Bar Times so far so unless you hear otherwise it will be 7pm as usual.

2023 Inter-Club Competition

The BBC called it “unseasonably warm” and we called it great weather for the annual Inter-Club competition – sunny and calm. We could have done with a bit more tide but that’s being a bit picky, considering how often competitions are blown off completely. The competition is between four local clubs: SMAC, ECA, SSAC and LHFA. This year a total of 27 anglers and 15 boats fished for the Largest Specimen – one prize, a cup and winner takes all on the prize money.

LHFA won last year, so this year they were hosting. It’s a great excuse to visit, because their clubhouse is very pleasant and the evening views from the deck are delightful. Throughout the day a lot of large bull huss were caught, plus bass and rays. A report came in of an enormous bass of 14lb caught by an ECA member, but unfortunately for him he hadn’t entered the competition. All was not lost for ECA though, because Wayne Comben boated the winning fish, a bull huss of 11lb 7oz which is a 94% specimen weight or thereabouts, depending on whose list you are looking at. Ray Plomer, winner of the 2022 competition presented the prize. Congratulations Wayne, he consistently proves he’s a great angler. Although privately I’m thinking he’s winning a lot these days. Should we introduce handicaps like they have in horse racing – maybe slow him down a bit by filling his pockets with 1lb lead weights? Continuing the tradition, next year ECA will be hosting and Wayne will be presenting the prize to the 2024 Inter-Club winner. It was a great day, well supported and a good demonstration of the collaboration and friendly rivalry between our three clubs.

Next up will be the SMAC Open Cod Competition on 5th November – see you there.

SMAC Meeting October 2023

Evenings are drawing in and Portsmouth were playing at home so perhaps that’s why we had just a few of our core supporters at the meeting. OK, so some people had Covid and others had to work, but those are pretty poor excuses. Anyway, with our small but merry band we quickly proceeded with our agenda so some of us could go over to the ECA for the Langstone Harbour Meeting, more of that later.

Steve went through the current standings which are reproduced below. The Species Hunt Cup leadership is changing daily because the top three (at least) are very close. Do remember to photograph your fish before throwing it back though.

There were several eligible catches for the Fish Of The Month medal, but in the end the important decision was which fish would Steve Tambling win with and we decided a turbot of 7lb 9oz was the best candidate.

The Cod Pool stands at £240 so if you haven’t paid, get your £10 to Steve before you catch that winning cod. You can’t pay afterwards!

The Inter-Club competition will be hosted by LHFA this Sunday 8th October, but you can sign in at the Southsea Marina Office. £5 entry, winner takes all for Best Specimen.

The Cod Open is most likely to be held on Sunday 5th November, weather permitting.  Hold the date and more details to follow, but it’s highly likely to be exactly the same as all the other years we have run it.

The last order for our 10-Year Anniversary printed t-shirts and polo shirts is being put together, so if you don’t want to miss out please order on this form before 9th October.

Finally – an update on the shed which we have used for storage. As the tenant who allowed us to use the shed is leaving the marina, we urgently need alternative storage. Premier have asked us what space we need so Steve, Stuart and I will put together a request for Premier to consider.

The next SMAC monthly meeting will be on 7th November. There being no other business, a few of the few nipped over to the ECA for the advertised Langstone Harbour Advisory Board meeting. Just quickly on that, because it’s not SMAC business really but it is relevant. As we hadn’t read the leaflet properly it wasn’t quite what we were expecting. Anyway, it was interesting and the bar was rammed with mostly sailing and environmental folk. There were four presentations from different organisations each with an interest in the Harbour.

First up was Solent Seascape Project, with some decent funding and can actually demonstrate some practical results in improving the marine environment – oyster beds, seagrass, kelp beds etc.  The Trawler-Free Zone on the Sussex coast shows that the seabed recovers surprisingly quickly. The Clean Harbours Partnership presentation was about monitoring storm discharges by the water companies and didn’t seem to have much in the way of practical proposals to be honest. We are all frustrated by the lack of direct Govenment intervention on this.

Langstone Harbour Board’s message was about the future use of the Harbour and supporting commercial use, leisure use and environmental protection. We know from the Annual Report there is a huge deficit in their budget, mainly because of the drop in revenue from dredgers and leisure use. They are currently exploring more ways of increasing revenue, some being commercial services but others being considered include walk-ashore moorings instead of swinging moorings. It’s good that they are trying to fill the funding gap rather than waiting for the Council to make them cut costs. Final presentation was from Fay Pasani of the RSPB who is acting for the Three Harbours Partnership. She has the probably impossible job of aligning 20 stakeholder organisations into a common strategy. This did appear vague at present but the intention is good – to have multiple partnerships with a common goal rather than the separate, conflicting and overlapping activities that are happening at present. Her presentation style reminded me of Sarah Pascoe which was a nice thought to end on.

Thank you ECA for hosting another interesting evening.

Inter Club Competition 8th October 2023

Our annual Inter Club Competition between SMAC, Langstone Harbour Fisherman’s Association, ECA and Southsea Sea Angling Club will be held on Sunday 8th October. LHFA won last year so they were hosting this year’s competition. The competition is to catch the single best specimen fish. Ray Plomer won the competition in 2022 (pictured) but fishing for LHFA which he has supported for many years. Ray is also a member of SMAC. Entry forms are in Southsea Marina office, entry fee pool £5, winner takes all.


Fishing 08:00 to 17:00

Weigh in by 18:30 at LHFA

Winner Presentation 19:00 at LHFA Bar

If you catch a fish of 75% of specimen weight or more, please let others know on Channel 10 so fish under that weight can be returned if people wish to do so. Further details please contact Ralph on 07383 081325

SMAC Meeting September 2023

Wow, another nearly full house! Our SMAC monthly meetings are getting so popular you’ll have to arrive early to bag a seat. We now have 76 members so perhaps that isn’t too surprising.

Our Chairman Steve Kelly opened proceedings by going through the Club Standings (details below). Of particular note is the highly competitive Species Hunt with Peter Churchill on 39 and Dan Lumsden in hot pursuit with 38.

Fish Of The Month Competition for Best Specimen: there were plenty of good fish entered in August which is a good sign. In fact there were so many to list we nearly awarded the prize to the wrong fish but having sorted that out SMDAC member Frank Chatfield collected his medal for a 15lb Undulate Ray (see header photo).

The Open Species Competition was held on 27th August and there is a full report here. Peter Churchill won it for the Club with 15 species, congratulations Peter.

The Cod Pool started on 1st September. £10 to enter, winner takes all for the largest cod caught between now and the end of January 2024. See Steve Kelly to enter, but only if you have £10 in your hand.

The Club Sole Night Trip took place on Saturday 2nd September, organised by Dan Lumsden. A small flotilla headed to Southampton Water to fish into the night, keeping together for safety. Most sole came to the net from dusk to nightfall, after which things went quiet. The joint winners of the Unofficial Sole Competition were Luke Scott and Steve Tambling, 11 ozs each.

The Inter-Club competition will be held on 8th October, and because Ray Plomer won last year on behalf of LHFA they will be hosting. The term “hosting” will be applied loosely, because the weigh-in may not be at LHFA for various reasons. More details to follow.

Steve reminded us of the open invitation to attend the Tagging workshop for Bream, Sharks and Rays to be held at the ECA on Monday 2nd October from 6pm to 8pm.

Nearly all of the SMAC 10th Anniversary t-shirts have now been collected by members. If there is enough interest we’ll put in one final order for more so watch out for the notice on WhatsApp and Facebook.

There may or may not be a Berth Holders BBQ at the end of the month to celebrate the new paint job on the BBQ area, we await details from Premier.

And that’s all for this month! Next meeting same time same place (Marina Bar) on 3rd October.


SMAC Open Species Competition 2023

After a postponement due to the weather, the 2023 SMAC Open Species Hunt Competition was held on Sunday 27th August. The alternative attractions of family activities on a Bank Holiday weekend and the Victorious Festival meant we had fewer  competitors than for our usual open competitions but that didn’t deter those that entered. The weather didn’t help either, and although it was sunny there was a strong westerly wind blowing which put paid to plans to fish to the east. Fortunately, there is always somewhere fishable and even the harbours can produce enough species to be competitive so there’s no need to travel far. As it turned out, the first few species were logged before the boats had travelled at all!

Fishing finished at 4pm and boats started arriving back. However, one was missing, and it contained our Species Hunt legends Bill Arnold and Peter Churchill. Eyes anxiously scanned the horizon and then, with seven minutes to the deadline, Sea Biscuit came down the channel and arrived at the holding pontoon with a flourish. After a final check of the entry photographs in the shade of the fuel hut we were ready to award the prizes. Glasses were replenished and we all sat back in the sun to await the results. Then we realised two essential competitors were missing from the assembly and once more, eyes anxiously scanned the horizon, although this time into the marina. Yes, Bill and Peter had decided to put Sea Biscuit to bed and were making their way slowly back to the bar. Finally, we were ready to start proceedings.

Last year’s winner Wayne Comben was invited to present the prizes and as a practice run he presented Michelle Plomer with her Fish Of The Month medal from July. Then we could get down to the real business. We have a complicated way of determining tie breaks, but this wasn’t necessary except in one case. As it involved Ray and Michelle Plomer we decided to award the pair of them both prizes and let them fight it out between themselves. So in reverse order, the prize winners are:

10th place: Steve Kelly (4)
9th place: Ray Plomer (6)
8th place: Michelle Plomer (6)
7th place: Bill Arnold (7)
6th place: Dan Sissons (8)
5th place: Aiden Ely (9)
4th place: Pam Eckersall (10)
3rd place: Wayne Comben (12)
2nd place: Dan Lumsden (13)

and the Winner of the 2023 SMAC Species Competition is the man who must be on first-name terms with every fish in the Solent: Peter Churchill (15)

Pam Eckersall also wins the Ladies Bonus with the highest score among the lady competitors.

We would like to thank all of our sponsors who donated prizes: Premier Marinas; Sportsman’s Knight Charters; SMDAC; Baits ‘R Us; Victory Gas and Heating; Cosham Angling; Prestige Plumbing; British Big Game Charters; Newnham Builders; Marina Bar and Fish-On Tackle.

A big Thank You also to all the competitors and the organising team (mainly Steve Kelly) who made this another successful and enjoyable competition.


SMAC Open Species Competition 2023

We have had to postpone the Open Species Competion to 27th August due to the weather forecast.

Southsea Marina Angling Club hosts the return of the ever-popular 2023 Open Species Competition. The rules are simple: catch as many different fish species as you can! There are species scores which will be applied in the event of a tie. First prize is 60% of the entry pool. Second prize 20% of the entry pool. There will be a full prize table for runners-up, plus a Ladies bonus and a Junior bonus. Entry fee is £10 per angler, sign in and pay cash at Southsea Marina or if you wish to book on-line and avoid having to start from the marina there is an on-line booking portal (ticket fee applies). Fishing 8am to 4pm, all claims must be registered in person at the marina by 5pm. Prize-giving will be held in the Marina Bar (or outside) at 5:30 to 6pm.

Competitors will be issued with a unique number on the day which must be included in a time-stamped photograph clearly showing the fish and any distinguishing identification features. Winning claims may have their photograhs inspected for verification. This is a catch-and-release event, although if competitors wish to retain fish within the Southern IFCA rules they are free to do so.

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