Six new venues, twelve more places in the final, a bigger prize pot and a new 'teams of three' competition are the big changes to this year's RiverFest competition.
The Angling Trust has been working closely with competition creator Dave Harrell to grow the popular event still further, starting with more qualifying venues. These include, for the first time, rivers like the Tyne, Medway and middle Nene and also new sections of the Severn, Thames and Trent. With the competition now in its third year, the prize pot has grown substantially and the Angling Trust is also currently seeking a main title sponsor to boost the payouts still further.
As it currently stands, subject to all tickets being sold, there will be 10 main prizes in the final ranging from £500 for 10th place, up to £12,000 to the winner. Section prizes of £250 will also be paid out every six pegs on both of the final days. Another change will see a new team prize. The teams will be made up of the three anglers who get through from each of the 24 qualifying matches with £450 paid to the winning team.
"We've said all along that it is our intention to keep growing this fantastic competition," said Angling Trust Ambassador Dave Harrell. "These latest changes will allow an additional 240 anglers to take part and the prize money will grow considerably as a result. I am personally delighted with how the competition is developing and I’m looking forward to seeing it all unfold again from June. We've got some great new venues as well as established favourites and we'll have an additional 12 anglers in the final this time. It's going to be a great competition!"
Angling Trust will introduce a new entry process for 2015 with anglers invited to apply for their tickets from 23rd March. There will be a 3 week window in which applications can be made which will be followed by a random computerised draw to determine ticket allocation. Any remaining tickets will then go on general sale. Further updates of the entry process will be available shortly at www.anglingtrust.net
Ben Thompson of the Angling Trust said; “The competition is growing year on year and the demand for 2014 was incredible. We want to ensure as many of our members as possible have the opportunity to compete without the new developments affecting the quality or integrity of the competition. In light of the competitions' growing popularity, changes to the booking process for 2015 are important and we will provide clear and concise guidance prior to launching this year’s competition.”
The final will take place on the River Wye at Hereford over the weekend of 14th/15th November and an additional section below the old river bridge will be included for the first time. Spectators will be welcome to watch the final, free of charge and there will be a bookmaker present on both days for competitors and public to have a flutter.
QUALIFIER VENUES AND DATES
1) Sat 20th June – River Calder, Mirfield
2) Sat 27th June – River Swale, Morton
3) Sun 5th July – Bristol Avon, Newbridge to Saltford
4) Sun 12th July – River Trent, Newark Dyke
5) Sun 19th July – River Tyne, Corbridge to Wylam
*6) Sat 25th July – River Trent, Holme Marsh
7) Sat 1st August – River Weaver, Northwich
8) Sat 8th August – River Soar, Sutton Bonnington
9) Sun 16th August – River Yare, Langley
10) Sat 22nd August – River Tees, Bowsfield to Yarm
*11) Sun 23rd August – River Nene, Orton
12) Sat 29th August – River Don, Sprotborough
*13) Sat 5th September – River Severn, Bewdley
14) Sun 6th September – Great Ouse, Littleport
15) Sun 13th September – River Wye, Breinton to Eign
16) Sat 19th September – River Severn, Bridgnorth
17) Sun 27th September – River Trent, Burton
18) Sat 3rd October – River Thames, Medley
19) Sat 10th October – River Severn, Upton
*20) Sun 11th October – River Medway, Barming
21) Sat 17th October – Warwickshire Avon, Eckington
*22) Sun 18th October – River Severn, Shrewsbuy
23) Sat 24th October – Yorkshire Ouse, Hunters Lodge to Linton-on-Ouse
24) Sun 1st November – River Nene, March
14th/15th November – River Wye, Hereford
1st Reserve Weekend 21st/22nd November – River Wye, Hereford