About Sturminster and Hinton Angling Association
The Sturminster and Hinton Angling Association was founded in August 1905, based upon an agreement with the Pitt-Rivers family to fish the River Stour which flows through Hinton St Mary Estate. The Hinton St Mary Estate, just north of Sturminster Newton, has for four centuries been the property of the Pitt and Pitt-Rivers families, and is the heart of an estate of major importance to the surrounding area, including most of what is now the neighbouring town of Sturminster Newton.
The first recorded meeting of the Association took place on 6th October 1905 with a Mr Wilkinson in the Chair and 6 Committee Members present. Brief minutes record that it received an application from the Water Bailiff for a rise in his wages which, following discussion, was left to the Hon. Secretary to determine. The first accounts, produced in March 1906 show 2 rates of wages for the Bailiff, the first of 5 Shillings and the second of 6 Shillings per week, so it can be deduced that his application was successful.
The accounts for the first year to 31 March 1906 also showed:
- Income of £25-8s, from 61 Residents and 59 Visitors.
- Expenditure of £1-8s including rent to the Hinton & St Mary Estate of £1 with £10 Stamp charge.
- Balance in Hand of £11.
- Members’ subscriptions rates at this time were recorded as 10s 6d and 5s, presumably for Juniors.
At the next meeting on 17 April 1906 the Association agreed that no pike under 18 inches and no perch under 7 inched should be kept, a rule that has long since been replaced by the requirement that all fish must be returned. At this meeting Mr Pitt-Rivers was elected President of the Association and Mr Blandford the Honorary Secretary.
Since that time a full record of meetings and accounts has been maintained by the Officers of the Association and show how some things have changed and some remained the same including the following during the first 60 years of the Association’s existence:
- Subscriptions raised to 6s for Adult Residents, 3s for Boys over 16 & 1s 6d for Schoolboys. (No mention of girls here)
- Recurrent complaints made about members bringing dogs when fishing.
- The death of a large number of fish was believed to have been caused by pollution from the Milk Factory in Sturminster Newton.
- Committee minutes continued to focus on income/expenditure & matches with no particular references to the Second World War.
- Water Bailiff’s wages increased to the previously unheard of amount of 12s 6d per week.
- Barnett & Sons appointed as Official Tackle Dealers to the Association.
- Yeovil Angling Club excluded from Association waters due to “unsportsmanlike behaviour”, in particular by one individual. (No further details were recorded)
- T J Caines, Hon Sec caught 7 pike in less than an hour at Fiddleford weir pool. All caught on a spinner & the heaviest was just over 10 lbs (Western Gazette March 1950).
- Complaints about bathers at Cutt Mill. The Bailiff spoke to the boys and they promised to cause no nuisance in future. (Would it were the same today).
- The sum of £1-10s was credited to the Association’s bank account for the sale of a pelt of an otter, shot at Cutt Mill.
- Trips organised to fish at Longleat & Stourhead.
- Limit of 80 Visiting Members reached and the Committee agreed to open a waiting list for such memberships.
- Spectacles found at Fishes Island were passed to the Hon Sec, who notified the police of the find.
- Applications for membership continued to be considered by the Committee before approval.
- Concerns about Dorset Schools’ Canoeing Association intended use of the lower stretch of the waters resulted in the Hon Sec contacting the Estate to ask that they restricted such usage (nothing new here)
|Mr W Locke
|Mr G Hearne
|Mr Jeff Sibley (Streeters)
|Mr M Colohan
|Mr J Barbett
|Mr M Phillips
|Mr D Welch
Officers of The Committee
Phone: 07970 228076
Phone: 01258 820928
Phone: 07493 260462
Phone: 07730 046950
Phone: 07748 626427