The Irish Game Fair on 25-26 June at Shane’s Castle, Antrim, has a bigger angling focus this year
The Irish Game Fair at Shanes Castle which takes place at Shanes Castle on 25 & 26 June this year has always been a wonderful day out for the whole family, attracting thousands of visitors from across the globe and is often enjoyed by people while on fishing holidays in the county.
Now there’s even more for visitors to see and take in with the introduction of even more attractions to delight both the casual visitor on holiday and especially for the visiting touring angler and their family.
Irish Game Fair Director Albert Titterington said: “There is simply no better location for our Irish Game Fair than Antrim, offering as it does some of the most exciting game and coarse fishing in Northern Ireland. It is not unknown for anglers to literally ‘get hooked’ on one of its fisheries or scenic rivers.
“Whether you’re a keen angler or a novice, Antrim is the perfect place to indulge your passion and where else can you find such an Aladdin’s Cave of ‘fishing’ of all sorts than at the Game Fair at Shanes Castle.
“The whole area is renowned for its great rivers and streams, teeming with wild brown trout and salmon and The Antrim Fly Fair at the Game Fair is ideally located just a short distance from Lough Neagh, home to the mysterious and powerful dollaghan, a migratory brown trout which, around midsummer, enter the rivers from Lough Neagh to spawn.
“This year the Irish Game Fair has really gone all out to provide a real (should that be reel?) ‘Fishing Focus, ’ which may well even exceed the expectations of even the most seasoned globe travelling enthusiast.
With angling being the number one pastime for many people throughout Ireland and farther afield – and just one of the reasons so many set Antrim as their holiday destination – it’s expected that this new additional fishing focus for the Game Fair will be a major draw for anglers of all ages, especially with the strong emphasis on introducing young people to the sport.
“At the same time there will be so much more this year to be experienced and enjoyed by casual visitors and their families who have yet to grace a river’s banks. Who knows, maybe the Game Fair will see even more people flocking to fish.”
Albert Titterington also announced that The Salmon & Woodcock Pavilion will this year feature displays by the Federation of Seatrout & Salmon Anglers (FISSTA) & the Ulster Angling Federation (UAF) and also a ‘show within a show’ by the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) Fisheries division who will have three Fly casting instructors, Fly Tying Demonstrations a Magnetic Fishing Game, and an angling simulator where you can catch and play huge fish! DAERA are also sponsoring the nearby Put & Take Fishery.
And Albert also highlighted the addition of the special ‘Antrim Fly Fair at the Game Fair’ which will be a bonus event for enthusiasts and would-be fishers of all ages. He said “We were delighted to invest heavily to sponsor Stevie Munn, international coach and flyfisher, in bringing a specialised fly fishing fair to be another ‘show within a show’ at the Game Fair and a real boost for Antrim as an angling destination.
Commenting on the new ‘Fishing Focus,’ well known local international fly fisherman and coach, Stevie Munn, who is responsible for the Irish Fly Fair at the Game Fair this year, confirmed “there would be ‘something for everyone from beginners to experienced anglers.”
Highlighting just some of the attractions Stevie Munn said: “The Fly Dressers’ Pavilion will be buzzing with some of the finest fly tyers from the UK and Ireland in action. Fly casting demonstrations by experts throughout the day from leading tackle companies, including ‘try before you buy.’ And if you would like some expert advice, you can book a free casting and fly-tying lesson during the weekend from qualified angling instructors of APGAI Ireland.
“One of our aims is to introduce young people to angling and there will be experts on hand to answer any questions on rods, casting, fly tying, conservation and much more. And of course there is the hugely popular’ put-and-take rainbow trout fishery’ sponsored by DAERA and run by the No to Salmon Nets (NSN) conservation group, headed up by Bobby Bryans and his brilliant team.
“Nearby, a huge floored marquee, sponsored by the Game Fair, will feature top brands in fly fishing, including a massive selection of fly-tying materials, while Susan Brown will be heading up a special section on entomology. Over 20 expert Fly Dressers, including many household names have been confirmed already from across Ireland and the UK.”
In conclusion, Albert Titterington said: “I know that the Irish Game Fair has welcomed many youngsters in the past who are now adults and are visiting again with their own children. With angling being such an ideal pastime for a parent/child expedition together, I’m sure that the family tradition of families visiting the Irish Game Fair at Shanes Castle will continue for many years to come, and will be enhanced by our commitment to a Fishing Focus this year.”
#Embrace a Giant Spirit at Shanes Castle, Antrim, the Game Fair Weekend of 25 & 26th June.
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