An angling club which has used a dam to fish in for 35 years have been given notice to quite following a simmering row.

Holme Valley Anglers have been told to quit Magdale Dam by Honley Village Community Trust.

The anglers, who used to be called the Holme Valley Piscatorial Society, have been fishing the Dam since 1979.

For 35 years they have also organised an annual event for disabled anglers. The last one was in August last year.

Trustee of the Piscatorial Association, Peter Budd (right) and concerned visitor, Stan Halsall, amongst the stumps off the felled trees
Trustee of the Piscatorial Association, Peter Budd (right) and concerned visitor, Stan Halsall, amongst the stumps off the felled trees

The angling club applied for National Lottery funding to buy the Dam 17 years ago but were turned down because they are not a charity.

Secretary Peter Budd said: “We asked the Community Trust, which is a charity, to apply for funding on our behalf and they were successful. They were given a grant that covered two thirds of the cost.

Trees which have been felled on the banks of Magdale Dam, Honley, which has angered members of the Holme Valley Piscatorial Association who stock and fish there.

“We raised the money to buy the other third and gifted it to the Village Trust. Now they want us out and have given us notice to quit by the end of May.”

The two organisations have been in conflict before and three years ago the anglers claimed the Trust acted without consultation in clearing a wildlife habitat.

Anglers angry after land clearance at Magdale Dam undertaken by Honley Village Trust

The Village Trust posted this explanation on their website about the current dispute and did not want to comment further: “Honley Village Community Trust (HVCT) has had a management agreement with Holme Valley Piscatorial Association (HVPA) regarding the water management and fishing rights on Magdale Dam since the acquisition of the Dam in 2003.

“Following the demise of HVPA in 2016 the existing management agreement became redundant.

Trustee of the Piscatorial Association, Peter Budd (right) and concerned visitor, Stan Halsall, amongst the stumps off the felled trees
Trustee of the Piscatorial Association, Peter Budd (right) and concerned visitor, Stan Halsall, amongst the stumps off the felled trees

“After prolonged discussion with representatives of its proposed successor organisation, and after careful consideration, the HVCT Management Committee has decided to terminate this agreement with effect from April 1, 2017, but will permit fishing on the Dam until the expiration of the membership year on May 31, 2017. HVCT does not intend to enter into an agreement with any other fishing club but is committed to preserve Magdale as a conservation area of outstanding beauty that can be enjoyed by all of the community.”

Mr Budd said after some committee members of the Piscatorial Association had resigned or retired, others, including himself, took over running the club and changed its name to Holme Valley Anglers.

He said: “They have wanted us out for ages and this year they asked for £200 a year rent in advance.

“I pointed out that the Lottery Fund grant stipulated they could not sub-let and offered a donation of £200 at the end of the membership year which would be May 2018.

“This obviously wasn’t good enough and they sent us a termination.”