What a catch! Braidwood man Andy Britton lands 31lb salmon to win Bemersyde Trophy
Braidwood man Andy Britton has spoken of his delight after landing angling’s prestigious Bemersyde Trophy with a 31lb salmon.
The fish, which was caught at Tweedmill Beat, near Coldstream, secured Andy’s award for the annual trophy, which celebrates the largest - and best caught - salmon landed on a fly on the River Tweed.
Andy caught his fish on August 11, 2020 on a light 12lb nylon and tackle, using the latest Gaelforce fly line and a self-tied, size 12 double-hooked fly.
He played the fish for 45 minutes before it was netted by Jock Veitch, one of the two ghillie witnesses to the triumph and winner of the Ghillie’s Award.
Andy told the Carluke and Lanark Gazette: “It feels fantastic. I have fished the Tweed quite a lot and caught big salmon elsewhere before - including a 43lber in Norway – but to land a 30lber is a massive achievement and something I never thought I would achieve, especially on the Tweed.
"I was so pleased when they lifted the restrictions last August and it was great to get a 30lb salmon on light tackle.”
Meanwhile, Harry Brownlow of Denholm won the Bemersyde Trophy junior award with a 16lb specimen caught at the Hawick Association Water at Rulefoot on the Teviot.
Harry also landed his fish on a 12lb nylon with a Conehead Ally Shrimp on October 29, 2020.
Harry’s fish was described by the judges as a “super catch in every respect”; it was caught on a cold and windy day with coloured water and his party was about to head home.
Harry’s father offered to cast for him but he refused before casting, hooking, playing and landing the fish – his first salmon - on his own.
The fish was returned safely to the river after 15 minutes of rest in the water.
Harry, who was 12 at the time, kept the fish in the water only taking it out briefly for photos.
He said: “I am very happy to have won the trophy, but most of all it was worth the wait for the fish. I have fished for a long time and the salmon finally came along!”
The winners were announced live online from Bemersyde House on March 27.