The rivers are bare bones and algae is starting to build up, in fact conditions are looking a bit grim. It's times like this when I fear for our rivers. Under conditions of normal flow levels a slight pollutant getting into the river would probably be diluted but in conditions of little flow we could end up with a fish kill.

Talking of pollution, I have a problem on the river Aire from a landfill site where a pump that takes the liquid waste from the site to the local sewage works for treatment has broken down. I have complained to the EA without any action having been taken. I have also written to Nigel Evans, MP for the Ribble Valley, who has been in touch with the Environment Minister Mr M Meacher demanding some action. In the latest correspondence from the Environment Minister, Meacher states, and I quote just one paragraph, this is a 'minor pollution incident which has a limited effect on water quality, normally only around the point of discharge, but including thin oil sheen or film extending over a larger area'.

If this is a minor pollution, why have we had a pump working 24 hrs a day for several years taking the liquid waste to the sewage works? If you were to see the state of the riverside field and the river water, you wouldn't feel it's a minor pollution! This Government keeps telling us they care about the environment. I don't believe it for one moment. It's only interested in power. Prime Minister Blair wants to be a President and he is certainly a good poodle of American President Bush, who no doubt tells Prime Minister Blair how high to jump. Enough said for the moment but I have gone back to my MP demanding the pump be repaired.

On the river Aire from the A59 upstream to Gagrave on both banks where the fishing is controlled by Bradford City AA and Bradford No 1, the trees and bushes are at long last free of plastic sheeting and bags of all description. In the past three days I have either burnt or taken to the local rubbish tip some 24 large sacks of rubbish. None of this rubbish is angler related, it's all down to the building industry, general public and farmers.

During my days on the river, I have also spent some time rescuing small fish from an area of virtually stagnant water which had been left by the floods of winter. If I don't get these fish out in the next couple of weeks they will perish. On the river Aire from Carlton downstream to Kildwick and Silsden areas, many people are abusing the close season for coarse fish on rivers by fishing for chub under the pretext of trout fishing. When you go trout fishing you don't need rod holdalls and seat boxes, and then sit in one place all day as we have seen on the river Aire. It's time the Environment Agency and the angling clubs made it fly fishing or spinning only. Also let's have a rule where no fishing is allowed on sections of river where fish are trapped in that section of the river by low water levels.

Three years ago the late John Driver and I built a stile so anglers wouldn't keep breaking down the stone wall. In those three years it's stood all the floods of three winters. Many occasions the stile has been under water while sections of the stone wall have been broken down by the force of water. Even Rolls Royce cars need some maintenance and that's true of the stile; this week it's been done, including putting in a new step and strengthening the rails. Some two hundred yards down river from the stile a swan had a tough fight for it's life with a mink but sadly it died from its wounds. So my next job is to set up some mink traps and get rid of this, the biggest killer in the countryside. I cannot understand those idiots who release this killer from mink farms. They tell us they care about the wildlife and the animal welfare. That's a lot of rubbish - if they cared they wouldn't let this killer loose. When have you seen any of these antis helping out in the countryside to enhance the habitat and improve conditions for the fish, birds and wildlife?

Rivers and streams countrywide have trees and bushes that will have plastic bags and other rubbish in their branches, no doubt your local stretch of river or stream has this problem. Why not give up a few days fishing to clear away all the rubbish. I can tell you now, you will feel a lot better for having done some work to improve your favourite fishing spot. Don't leave it to the other guy or nothing will get done. Bradford City AA have working parties every other week summer, spring, autumn and winter but they only get a dozen or so - and the average age is probably fifty five! - but they get a lot of work done. Other clubs that get a few members working to improve the environment and the fisheries are Prince Albert AS and Bowland Game Anglers.

Today, Wednesday, after working for some five hours I decided to have a few casts. I made up an 8'6" rod rated for a five weight line. It was built for me by Tim Damon ( The rod comes with a soft tip action and I find it perfect for dry fly fishing. My line was a double taper floater with a ten foot tapered leader down to a three pound point. Today with no fish rising and no flies hatching off a very cold blustery east wind, I decided to start off fishing a size 14 Eric's beetle, tied up for me by Stuart Bowdin of Pendle fly dressing, Tel 01282-695296. Eric's beetle is a favourite north country fly designed by Eric Horsfall Turner who at one time was the Town Clerk for Scarborough and a fine fly fisher who also fished Yorkshire's only chalk stream, the Driffield Beck. I had been advised to grease up the leader and fish the fly a few inches under the surface.

I slowly made my way upstream casting into all the likely spots that might hold a trout but no takes and no sign of a fish. After some forty minutes of fishing I decided to change over to a Richard Walker Mayfly nymph tied up for me by Alan Bithell, Tel 0161-284-2825. Alan's the man who thought up the Paythorn olive which I have found to be an excellent pattern when olives are coming off. With this heavy fly I fished all the deep water pools but nothing came. The fish didn't want to eat my flies today and after an hour and a half of fishing I went back to clearing rubbish. The forecast for the next few days isn't good. It's more of the same with frost at night. What we desperately need is lots of rain with a warm south-westerly wind. If you cast your mind back to last year I think you will find the weather was roughly the same. With the fishing not worth the effort, it's time to get out clearing away the rubbish from last winters floods.