Fishing is a great thing to do with kids when you have no money. It can be a huge amount of fun and very rewarding.
If you are going to the seaside you can start by fishing for crabs with a crab line which you can easily buy for a couple of quid. Top places for fishing for crabs are Cromer Pier (in Cromer), Norfolk and The Cobb in Lyme Regis, Dorset. Having said that although just about anywhere at the seaside will do if it has a pier or harbor wall.
Do not worry if you do not live near the sea side. Kids Stuff And Stories is based about as far in land as it is possible to get and there are plenty of rivers, lakes, & canals near to us.
The next step up from crabbing is to buy a proper fishing rod. The Tackle Box in Lyme Regis (located near The Cobb) were most helpful and did not take advantage of our lack of experience. They offered helpful advice and some great tips. I was able to buy an excellent 5 foot rod for my 4 year old for about 12 pounds
Obviously a lot of people use worms and maggots as bait but we have caught bread on the Grand Union Canal using sweetcorn. I am told a small square of spam can be good to. The bait you use will depend on what you are trying to catch.
I would advise you to check with your local angling center (fishing shop) any rules you should follow.
The Environment Agency website states: “Any angler aged 12 years or over, fishing for salmon, trout, freshwater fish or eels in England (except the River Tweed), Wales or the Border Esk and its tribunals in Scotland must have an Environment Agency rod license. We do not issue online licenses to eligible disabled or senior citizen (65 years and over) concessions at present. anglers and could be fined up to £ 2,500. ” So be warned!
Dos for fishing:
- Have fun
- Be safe near water. Always watch kids
- Do not force kids into it if they do not want to
- Try and spot wildlife while you wait
- Do talk to other anglers (fishers) and get some tips
- Look over your shoulder before casting your line out. No-one wants a face full of fish hook!
- Tidy up after yourself before you leave
- Be patient and enjoy the things around you while you wait to catch something … could be a long wait.
- Put back all the fish you catch
Don’ts for fishing
- Do not stay a moment longer than your kids want to. If your kids are fed up after 30 mins accept it and say “Ok, let’s have another go some other time”
- Do not tell your kids about how many wonderful fish they are about to catch. Just say “Let’s get some fresh air and see if we get lucky”. You will probably catch NOTHING on your first attempts !!!