Alexander Armstrong opens new fishing season

Alexander Armstrong opens the new fishing season on the River Dee.
Alexander Armstrong opens the new fishing season on the River Dee.

The opening of the 2017 salmon fishing season on the River Dee was celebrated on Wednesday on the riverbank by Banchory Lodge Hotel.

Alexander Armstrong, comedian, presenter and singer, was the guest of honour and formally opened the fishing with a traditional whisky toast to the river and the first cast.

Mark Bilsby, River Director of the Dee District Salmon Fishery Board and River Dee Trust, said: “This time last year we were beginning to come to terms with the devastation caused by Storm Frank.

“The flood affected the community on Deeside and widely impacted on all those who love and visit the river.

“It’s at such times we see the best of people and everyone pulled together to support one another.

“The community spirit in the Dee valley grew and grew, inspiring volunteers to join the effort to clear up huge amounts of debris, including the dozens of fishing huts, caravans and benches that were swept away.

“They mended pathways, tracks and fences to help get the river accessible and the fishery back on its feet.

“Whilst we cannot forget those still not back in their homes, the river community is stronger now than it was a year ago.

“The friendships and partnerships that have been forged will stand us in good stead as we look to the future.”

Director of Banchory Lodge Hotel, Carol Fowler added: “This is the second year we have hosted the launch of the fishing season for the River Dee Trust.

“When the storm hit last year, we felt the impact of falling numbers of people fishing.

“We offered support to the Trust in any way we could to get the River Dee back to all its glory.”