Club Rules

Essex Fly Fishers’ Club Rules (effective from 24th September 2021)
Rules 8 to 26 inclusive apply to all anglers whether members of the Club or guests.

    The club is known as the “Essex Fly Fishers’ Club”.
    a. The annual subscriptions for the following season are notified to members prior to and at the Annual General Meeting of the Club held in October each year. All other charges for that year will be notified at the same time.
    b. A new member joining after the start of the season shall pay fee as advertised at the time.
    c. Subscriptions are due on first joining and thereafter by the 31st October prior to each season. Payment is preferably made by  Bank Transfer or a single cheque.
    d. If membership has not been renewed by 31st October the member is deemed to have resigned, and no further fishing is allowed.
    e. The Committee reserve the right not to renew any membership, and to cancel any existing membership at any time. The reason for dismissal, findings and decisions of the committee will be for the subject member only, and will not be generally broadcast.
    A member may ‘Self-Guest’ for an additional day’s sport if desired upon payment of the charge notified and displayed in the Clubhouse. (See Section 14 for bag limit.)
    – Every guest must be accompanied by his member host whilst fishing.
    – A member’s guest must fish in same boat as the host member.

Members are reminded that they are wholly responsible for the conduct of and the observance of these rules by their guests whilst they are on the premises. Failure of guests to comply will result in action being taken against the host member.
– A non-member may not fish the Club’s waters more than 4 times in any season.
– A member may not have more than one guest on any one day without prior approval – the Warden being the first point of contact. (See Section 14 for bag limits.)

    Special concessions exist to enable members’ children or grandchildren, under the age of 16 to fish upon payment of the charge notified and conditions notified and displayed in the Clubhouse.
    Juniors must be accompanied by the hosting member whilst fishing and members are wholly responsible for the conduct of and the observance of these rules by juniors whilst they are on the premises. (See section 14 for bag limits.)
    From June to the end of August, members may additionally fish evenings from 5:30p.m. (17:30hrs) onwards upon payment of the charge notified and displayed in the Clubhouse, (See Section 14 for bag limit.)
    This is open only to a person having served a minimum of fifteen years as a paid-up club member, and having extenuating health circumstances (in the eyes of the committee)  that preclude his/her continued fishing on a regular and ongoing basis. A member fulfilling these conditions may make representation to the Committee of the Club. The club committee will then decide if the application meets the requirements to become a ‘Life Member’. Upon acceptance by the Club Committee, such a member may, upon payment of the current guest fee, sign himself/herself in at the lakes and may fish with a bag limit as in Section 14. In all other respects the ‘Life Member’ will be considered a normal Club Member. A ‘Life Member’ can ONLY visit the lakes a maximum of 6 times per season, and cannot be guested in addition to the 6 visits by any other member. The committee would like to advise the membership, in normal circumstances the committee will normally notify a member, that the said member would be considered for ‘Life Membership’ should he/she apply.
    The ‘Lodge Lake’ and the ‘Lavender Lake’, together known as Leez Lakes, are situated in private property just East of Leez Priory and each is approximately 16 acres in extent. Entry to and exit from the Leez Lakes is allowed only by the approach road from the Great Leighs – Felsted Road. No other means of entry is permitted.
    This road access gate must be closed and locked behind a member on entering or leaving the site. A second gate at the top of the drive leading to the lakes is also to be securely locked on entry and exit.
    Only persons authorised to fish, or accompanying authorised anglers, are allowed in the fishing area.
    The season opens on the 1st March and closes on the 31st of October of the same year. However, the last Saturday of October and the preceding Friday are non-fishing days, and when the first of November falls on a Saturday the preceding Friday is also a non-fishing day.
    The committee reserve the right to change the season in exceptional extenuating circumstances (such as the ‘Foot and Mouth’ crisis of 2001).
    Fishing outside the Season (Section 9) may be granted subject to the annual renewal of winter access to the property. When available, the season extends into the winter months from 1st November to 13th February 2022. A condition of this “Winter Period” dictates that we do not have access to the lakes on Fridays or Saturdays. All other days of the week in these months we do have the normal access.
    Notification of the availability of Winter Fishing following the current season is given prior to and at the AGM. Members will also be advised at the AGM whether or not spare season tickets may be used by them in lieu of members’ winter fishing payment until the 31st December each year.
    Fishing may commence at 4.30a.m. or one hour before sunrise whichever is the later and must cease one hour after sunset or 10p.m. whichever is the earlier. No member shall arrive before 04.00a.m. or remain on site after 10.30p.m.
    Members’ only ‘Evening Ticket’ sessions commence from 17:30p.m. (Section 6)
    a. It is not permissible to change lakes during the day of fishing.
    b. Fishing shall be by one rod and line with artificial flies not exceeding No.6 (old scale).
    c. A team of not more than three flies may be used on each line. SINGLE hook flies ONLY (no double hook snakes flies allowed) .                                                                    d. From 1st March 2022 ONLY barbless or very well crushed barb hooks will be allowed at any time.                                                                                                                    e. All fish caught over 5lb MUST be returned and should not be dispatched                f. Dapping and the use of nymphs are allowed.
    g. Trolling (that is, towing a line behind a moving boat) is not permitted.
    h. Use of electronic (sub water radar) fish-finders is not permitted.
    g. All Brown trout caught must be returned unharmed to the water.
    i. Members must produce their membership card on demand by any other member.
    a. When starting the practice of Catch and Release there must be at least one fish remaining to complete the individual’s bag limit. (Bag limits detailed in Rule 14)
    b. When the individual’s bag limit is reached, fishing must cease immediately.
    c. There is a daily total (i.e. kill plus catch & release) limit of 10 fish in total. Kill limit from 1st November 2021 is 3 fish.
    d. Barbless hooks (or hooks with a flattened barb) only to be employed.
    e. Avoid using flies and techniques likely to result in deep hooking e.g. static fishing of booby style flies
    f. Fish must be killed if damaged or bleeding, .
    g. All Brown trout caught must be returned unharmed to the water.
    h. Avoid handling fish. If it is necessary to handle the fish, use wet hands.
    i. If it is safe to do so fish should be unhooked in the water.
    j. If a net is used, it must be knotless, and fish are to be returned to the water in the net as quickly as possible.
    The limit to the number of fish killed shall be as follows from 1st November 2021:-
    (a) Members – 3 fish per day
    (b) Guests – 3 fish per day
    (c) Members Self-guest – 3 fish per day
    (d) Life Members – 3 fish per day
    (e) Juniors – 2 fish per day
    (f) Members Evening Ticket – 3 fish per day
    Members and Guests must cease fishing on reaching their individual bag limits.
    Dogs are not allowed in the grounds.
  12. WADING
    Wading is entirely at the member’s own risk. Great care is necessary and extreme caution must be exercised at all times as side slope away fast in most areas of the lakes.
    a. Motor vehicles must be parked in the car parks reserved for that purpose and not on any access roads.
    b. Vehicles are to keep to the hard-surfaced roadways and parking areas, and not driven onto grassed areas of the lake banks.
  14. LITTER
    a. No litter of any kind may be left in the grounds or boats, or thrown overboard from boats. This is particularly important in the case of leader material, which can cause serious injury or death to wildlife.
    b. Litter-bins are provided both in the Clubhouse, and between the two sheds on ‘Lavender Lake’ (used as the Toilet and to house the boat equipment). However, it is preferable that members take their litter home with them.
    c. The lighting of fires is prohibited.
    The taking or disturbance of birds, or their nests or eggs and all shooting is prohibited. Entry into any areas newly planted with trees or shrubs is expressly forbidden, whether these are wire fenced or not.
    Permits will have been issued for this purpose by the landowner, and every facility is to be given to holders to enable them to carry out their activities.
    Chemical toilets are provided close to each lake and members and their guests are requested to leave these facilities in a clean and tidy condition, as they would wish to find them.
    All members and their fishing guests must be in possession of a valid fishing licence issued by the Environment Agency, obtained from most Post Offices or via the internet.
    Members will be issued with day tickets before the start of each season. These tickets are personal and non-transferable.
    However, the Club may include specially marked tickets which members may optionally use for a day’s fishing by a non-member guest (See Section 4).

     Tickets are not issued for ‘Member-Only Summer Evening’, ‘Member Self-Guest’, Guests’, ‘Junior’ or Winter Fishing as these are paid for on the day.

    a. Before starting to fish, members must submit a valid fishing ticket unless:
    – i) Partaking in a “Members Only Summer Evening” session (Rule 6)
    – ii) ‘Self Guesting’ themselves (Rule 3).                                                                                b. Members, their guests, and anyone else authorised to fish, are to sign-in on the daily fishing register sheets located in the Clubhouse prior to fishing :
    – i) Enter name and starting time, on the sheet for the lake to be fished
    – ii) Members’ Guests are to be signed in the Guest area on the sheet, entering both the name of guest .
    – iii) Members must ensure that all charges payable for the day’s visit are placed in clearly marked money envelopes (provided) and deposited in the cash box; and the fishing tickets are put into the locked ticket box, prior to fishing.
    c. Upon conclusion of fishing for the day, each angler must sign-out on the same daily fishing register sheet, stating time of departure and enter full details of his/her catch. All fish taken must be weighed individually and recorded in the register. This is really important for re stocking reasons.
  2. BOATS
    Note that the use of lifejackets or floatation belts is highly recommended. The club accepts no responsibility for accidents or losses, however caused.
    (a) Boats are available for hire on each lake. (Charges displayed in the Clubhouse.)
    (b) The use of a boat is restricted to the hirer and is not transferable to another member.
    (c) Pre-booking of a boat may be done either on the day of hire or prior to this date by agreement with the Warden. Boats cannot be pre-booked for evening fishing.
    (d) No more than three persons are allowed in a boat, only two of whom may fish at any one time.
    (e) Full details for the booking of boats and the hire charges are displayed in the Clubhouse.
    (f) All boats must be securely fastened by the provided locks to their moorings, and the seat cushions returned after use. Anchor ropes must be left in a neat and seaman-like condition and the boats free from mud and debris.
    (g) Boat anglers are to exercise due care to limit wear and tear on the boats. Any damage to the boats, oars or equipment must be reported to the Warden immediately.
    (h) Members and their guests fishing from boats must obey the convention that boat anglers give way to bank anglers. However, in the event of a boat being on station consideration must be extended by bank anglers to allow the boat angler to remain in position. Once vacated the boat angler is not to return to that station again, unless the area is free of bank anglers.
    (i) The use of quiet electric outboard motors is acceptable for use on the lakes. However, use of petrol propelled outboard motors are prohibited.
    All anglers who have fished an any suspect waters in Great Britain or Eire must ensure that their boots, lines, nets etc. are disinfected before fishing in the Club’s waters.

Neither the owner/occupier, nor the ‘Essex Fly Fishers’ Club’ (its Officers & Employees included) can be held responsible for any accident, loss or damage to persons or property however caused.

N.B. These rules are made to protect the interest of all members and observation of them will ensure the continued enjoyment by all of the peace and tranquillity which we are so fortunate to enjoy and share. However, it has to be stated for the record that the Committee is minded to terminate the membership of any member of the club found to be in breach of these rules.