Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Sunday, 21 February 2010

The case for CS gas!

Photo - The bridge washed down fron The Megget.

In November the area around the lochs was subject to much rain and localised flooding took place, it appears to be an increasing phenomenon, the cause of which is laid at the door of the much bandied around term of global warming.
The area is fortunate to have two means by which excess water may be dispersed in a controlled fashion down the Yarrow River; they are Megget dam and St Mary's loch both of which have huge catchment areas and sluice controls and therefore the means to manage the water levels within them.
There was a meeting midweek at Yarrow Feus Hall which attempted to address the problem of why the build up of water within these structures was not properly managed and allowed the water levels to fill up to the point where no more could be contained leading to overflow and the resulting flooding of several areas in the district.
We were not represented at the meeting because we had not been notified (looking into this), the River Tweed Commission were not present again I assume because they also had not been notified, relevant individuals such as a Hydrologist were not present, SEPA I am told had a representative in the audience and not at the top table, there was I am told a selective amount of information provided and the usual reliance on graphs and technical speak in an effort to bamboozle the predominantly lay audience. The techniques of parrying and downright avoidance of answering audience questions were much in evidence.
The effects of the non managment of the water build up was the cause of the wooden bridge being swept away by the Megget and deposited at the foot of the loch photographed in an earlier post such was the force of the water. Yes the bridge has been recovered and will be put back into its original position but its removal had serious implications for the farmer who used it and cost him dearly in time and in the financial aftermath. The effects on the bed of the Megget look like being catastrophic in terms of the altered habitat for our young Trout and Salmon who use the stream for reproduction. The stream bed has been dramatically altered for the worse in that the banks have been severely eroded, gravelled areas have been washed away, the silting of the stream has increased leading to the canalisation of the stream devoid of pools and riffles with a huge amount of gravel being deposited at the mouth of the stream where it enters St Mary's loch. The effects on the fry of Trout and Salmon in what is one of our major spawning streams are likely to be grave!
The response of Scottish Water when confronted with the outcry of enraged locals concerned with the future safety regarding flooding was astonishingly that they were doing all that was required of them under the law as it currently stands!
Now if you or I were in charge of a huge body of water with a sluice gate we would I am sure would let water out in a controlled fashion when a deluge was forecast to endeavour to accommodate the heavy down pour and thereby minimise the risk of flooding. It's called responding with preventative measures to an imminent event.
It would seem to be a matter of common sense!
Scottish Water may abrogate responsibility for the mess by saying that under the terms of the law they did nothing wrong, however in many cases the law is an ass, and under social and moral law do they not have a responsibility to cause no harm and ensure the safety of the general public?
Of course they do, this is incumbent on every utility company and the matter does not rest here, the whitewash that was the public meeting will be picked over in the coming weeks and mark my words Scottish Water will be held accountable for their non action with regard to the flooding. Local feeling on the subject is unanimous and currently at fever pitch! Much has been made of the proposals to implement flood containment measures in Selkirk and whilst this is a laudable action it does not treat the cause of the problem! Do the people who reside between Megget and Selkirk not have the right to protection from floods? I believe if you asked any one of them they would say they had that right!
There is much taking place behind the scenes to bring SW to book and we as an angling club also affected by this lamentable and largely avoidable ongoing fiasco have pledged our full and unconditional support to bring this "jobsworth" organisation back into the real world where each and every action has a consequence! We will use all resources and agencies at our disposal to this end! A large dose of common sense would seem to be the order of the day! The CS gas in the title is not the variety used worldwide by law enforcement agencies but a currently fictitious gas called Common Sense gas which I am sure the population in the vicinity around the lochs wish was a readily available product!
Photo - Superb view on the loch by John W

Wild Trout Competition 16/05/2010.
Information packs for the above are now reaching all good tackle shops and you should be able to obtain the requirements for entry therein. You may also use our website and particularly our news page which will give you up to the minute news.

Bargain Pike Bait

Probably only relevant to our local Pike anglers but try your local Morrison's supermarket anyway. Six bait (5in) sized Sardines only £1.18 and 8 large whole Mackerel only £5.40 easily gives 2 large baits per fish and it stays on the hook! Spratt's (small) a load for next to nothing. "Baitbox" bait in these varieties is becoming an unnecessary expense when you can get the above and guaranteed fresh!

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