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The charity making life better by water

Let’s Fish! Families across England encouraged to try fishing for free

People living in England will have the chance to experience the health and wellbeing benefits of fishing on their local waterways this half term school holiday with free angling taster sessions taking place at locations throughout the country.

girl smiling at camera while holding a fishing pole, other people fishing further down canal bank

Made possible with the support of players of People's Postcode Lottery, we are holding special Let's Fish! events throughout October encouraging families to have a go at fishing on their local canal.

It's part of a series of events that are running at locations up and down the country – with almost 300 sessions having already taken place this year. The sessions encourage people to get outdoors and experience the peaceful family time offered by fishing.

Visitors to the events are taught the basics of fishing by a professional angling coach and get the opportunity to learn about the huge variety of fish found in canals and rivers. All tackle and bait as well as a rod licence and fishing permit is provided for free on the day meaning people can just turn up and have a go - although to be sure of your place its best to book up in advance at

John Ellis, national fisheries & angling manager, said: “Research tells us that just spending time by the water is good for our health and wellbeing but fishing is particularly good at helping us to feel happier and healthier."

“We want more people to feel those benefits for themselves and, thanks to the support of players of People's Postcode Lottery, we've held almost 300 Let's Fish! events across the country this year. These events have given around 8,500 people the chance to have a go at fishing – many for the first time – and to experience the health and wellbeing benefits of being by water."

“The events coming up over half term are a great opportunity to enjoy some quality family time and give the kids a chance to catch their very first fish. It's a great way for people to discover the amazing waterways that are right on their doorstep and available for everybody to enjoy.”

Sanjay Singh, senior manager of environment at People's Postcode Lottery said “Our players have supported many initiatives by the Canal & River Trust since 2012 and Let's Fish is another wonderful event to engage the local communities of Leicestershire whilst encouraging families to spend some quality time together learning a new skill. It's great for everybody, no matter your background to experience the health and wellbeing benefits of doing something outdoors in your local area.”

Our waterways are home to millions of fish including around 40 different species. We are the single largest owner of coarse fishing rights in England and Wales with over 2,000 miles of waterways and over 70 feeder reservoirs. It is estimated that it would cost £40 million to replace all our fish stock.

Visit our Let's Fish page to find a taster session near you.

Two women eat lunch next to the canal

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Last Edited: 18 October 2019

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