FREEZING weather conditions have severely affected angling activities with only a hardy few braving bleak local waters.

Despite the cold, several catches have been reported at shaded sections as well as sections close to bridges along some stretches of the Leeds Liverpool canal.

River conditions have stabilised after recent heavy rain and snowfall with some swims finally yielding decent catches. Although some brown trout and grayling have been netted, anglers chasing predatory perch and pike have fared even better after choosing spinner and dropshot tactics.

Decaying reedbeds and fast-flowing sections have seen several fine strikes notably a stunning double-figure barbel caught near Steeton.

Keighley Angling Club has received news that the Environment Agency and the Angling Trust are currently reviewing governance of the close-season rules.

An evidence paper will set out arguments for and against change and give anglers an opportunity to voice their opinions about the 140 year-old Freshwater Fisheries Act. Present rules restrict activity, especially the use of some baits, to assist and encourage river-dwelling fish during the spawning season. Whilst some anglers support existing rules, others are opposed to the limits imposed on them.