About Bradford No1
Founded in 1878 to provide fishing for local anglers, Bradford No1 Angling Association is now one of the oldest and largest angling clubs in the country, boasting an annual membership of around 2500 and holding fishing rights on more than 70 waters, including over 35 miles of river, 12 miles of canal and 11 still waters. The club offers outstanding value for money while providing some of the best fishing in the whole of Yorkshire for all varieties of angling. From the faster flowing stretches of the River Calder and River Wharfe for fly anglers and narrow, tree-covered stretches of the River Nidd for barbel hunters to large gravel pits at Knotford for specimen anglers and the heavily stocked Raskelf Lake for match anglers, there really is something for everyone. A busy and popular match calendar is run by the club with 30 matches per year, including open matches, member’s matches, junior matches, the Calder League team series and the annual Calder Championship which has a guaranteed first prize of £500. The association is run entirely by volunteers elected by the membership to ensure that member’s interests are the number one priority.
Where to begin with the vast array of river stretches among the club’s portfolio? The 9 miles of fishing rights which the club controls on the River Calder begin up at Elland where the shallow, fast paced water provides excellent trout and grayling for fly anglers, as does the stretch at Gravel Pits. Trout, grayling and chub are the main species present on most of the stretches going through Brighouse and towards Mirfield, although the deeper stretches at River Street and below Cooper Bridge provide good quality roach, perch and even some large ide. The odd specimen fish can be caught along the river with large pike and even a rare double figure Calder barbel. The River Wharfe and upper reaches of the Aire are also good fisheries for trout, grayling and the chub. The lower sections of the River Aire around Beal are much deeper with depths of over 20 feet but offer good catches of bream and roach throughout the year.
For quality chub and barbel look no further than the rivers Nidd, Swale and Derwent where we control a number of stretches which contain barbel into double figures and chub to over 6lbs. The Cowthorpe stretch of the River Nidd offers almost 3 miles of some of the best fishing in Yorkshire with a wide variety of swims, ranging from fast glides and weir pools to deeper pegs and overhanging willows. Good numbers of chub, barbel and pike are present for specimen hunters but nets of dace and grayling are also a regular occurrence fishing float.
The River Ouse at Widdington is an outstanding winter fishery, being very deep and holding good numbers of roach, dace and perch as well as some specimen bream. Another equally good winter fishery is the River Ure at Roecliffe which produces good nets of roach and dace on maggot.
Although membership covers fishing from one hour before sunrise to one hour after sunset, night fishing is permitted on the River Swale at Maunby and an ‘extended hours permit’ is available for fishing until 10pm in winter or 11.30pm in summer on a number of our river stretches in order to make them more accessible to members.
Bradford No1 AA is a member of the Boothferry Aire and Calder Joint Canal Committee which gives our members access to 11 miles of continuous canal from Great Heck to Goole. These sections are noted for good catches of roach, perch, bream and hybrids throughout the year. The club also have fishing rights along Kirklees Cut Canal, Cooper Bridge Cut Canal and Milby Cut Canal which are noted for roach in winter.
All of the club’s still waters are mixed fisheries with a variety of species to suit all anglers. Carp are present in all lakes but Knotford and Kirklees Lagoons hold the biggest heads of specimen carp. Both these lakes have recently received stockings of carp around the 10lbs mark to compliment the older stock of fish to over 30lbs and the new fish are showing outstanding weight gains. Most of the fish in Knotford are high doubles or low twenties but numerous fish can be caught in a session, whereas Kirklees tends to be a harder water with most fish over 20lbs. The Black Heath pond at the Queen Mary’s complex in Ripon also holds a good number of large carp which are worth targeting. Night fishing is permitted at Knotford and Kirklees by means of a single permit covering both waters.
Raskelf Lake is the clubs main ‘match style’ fishery with a heavy stock density of F1 carp, ide, skimmers, tench, roach, barbel and chub. Although most of the fish are in the 1-2lbs region, nets of over 100lbs are achievable during the summer months and nets of 50lbs in winter from most of the 50 pegs on the lake. A number of large tench and bream are also present in the lake, with some tench over 7lbs. This water is perfect for beginners and is a great place to introduce juniors to the sport.
For those wishing to target tench and bream, Queen Mary’s ponds hold good numbers of tench to 8lbs and bream to 11lbs within the peaceful surroundings of the SSSI site. Specimen tench and bream to double figures are also regularly caught from Knotford and Kirklees lagoons.
Shelf Dam, Chellow Dene, Willow Hall and Gratrix Dam are all deep reservoirs but hold very good quantities of roach, bream, ide and perch which provide plenty of bites fishing shallow.
As part of the clubs investment into still waters over the past few years, otter fences have been installed around Black Heath Lake at Queen Mary’s Ponds, Knotford, Kirklees and Raskelf to protect fish stocks for future generations as well as regular restocking across all lakes.