Almost £100,000 of fishings and other sporting opportunities goes under the hammer to aid salmon and sea trout research

The biggest-ever auction of angling opportunities to go under the hammer in Europe has been announced by the Atlantic Salmon Trust (AST), the leading salmon and sea trout research organisation. A magnificent selection of some 300 lots of the best game fishing and other sporting opportunities in the UK and beyond are on offer, with reserves ranging from less than £50 to several thousand.

Lots include some of the most prestigious beats on Britain’s major rivers such as Tweed, Tay, Dee, Spey, Tyne and Wye together with numerous opportunities on lesser-known gems throughout the UK and Ireland and further afield. For the first time the auction features shooting and stalking including hind-stalking on some of the most dramatic west Highland estates.

This is the 24th consecutive year of the AST’s annual auction. All the funds raised, some of which will be distributed through the AST’s partners, the Rivers and Fisheries Trusts of Scotland (RAFTS) and the Association of Rivers Trusts (ART) in England and Wales, will be used to fund salmon and sea trout research aimed at finding solutions that will enable stocks to be restored towards previous abundance. There is increasingly close co-operation between AST and the local trusts represented by RAFTS and ART – to which the auction is testimony.

Tony Andrews, Executive Director of AST, commented: “The AST’s annual auction has an unrivalled pedigree. It was the first-ever such auction and it remains the world’s most prestigious offering of fishings. AST is entirely dependent on private donations and our auction is a vital constituent of our annual schedule of fundraising events which enable us to fund important salmon and sea trout research. In the last 12 months, thanks to last year’s record-breaking auction, we have been able to distribute over £112,000 in direct grants and research funds and we are determined to maintain this momentum to ensure that we increase our understanding of these iconic species. Knowledge remains the key to the conservation and restoration of stocks”.

Copies of the catalogue, which includes an increased selection of online-only lots, are available from the AST on 01738 472032. Email: jenny@atlanticsalmontrust.org The catalogue is also on the AST’s website: Atlantic Salmon Trust

This year, in a new initiative, all those who bid in the auction will be entered into a Prize Draw for spring salmon fishing on a “celebrated Scottish salmon river”.

Auction Day is Tuesday 2nd February 2010 – the final deadline for fax, post or email being 9 am that day. The Electronic On-Line Auction will operate separately with on-line bidding on the Trust website (Atlantic Salmon Trust | Welcome). This site will also close at 9 am on Tuesday 2nd February 2010. There will be a reserve price as before for these bids.

See also 2011 Aution