Farnley Estate Salmon Video


with thanks to David Corcoran

Latest News plus a little history of Farnley


Attracting New Talents: Farnley Estate Salmon Fishing Courses 2018

This is a long and hopefully none too boring story of revelation.
" A long long time ago my father and I ventured up to Speyside after reading in the crusty old Telegraph Sunday Magazine about an amazing chap called Jim Cornfoot, lovely pictures of the highlands and flowing rivers, lochs, birds of prey and even the name Cornfoot perhaps American Indian ancestry evoked something special and mysterious. Special fly fishing courses,in Aviemore OK the go-cart track, food vouchers for the Pinewood for breakfast and steak and chips in the Swiss you get the picture!
As it turned out an exciting week for an impressionable 14 year old just a fab week in the highlands amazing scenery and a chance to learn from a real naturalist and expert fly fisherman. As it turned out boy could Jim cast like a demon and way back then even a massive 15ft 12weight Spey Salmon rod single handed, just try it ...if you want to break your wrist and bear in mind rods were heavy beasts back then.
Great to know, very wise and I think Jim is still alive bless him, a great Scotsman and so passionate about the incredible landscape and its bounty and fellow countrymen. The course took us to mighty fast flowing Spey and many lochs where the wild trout threw themselves as our flies all day long.Jim was also a rescuer of birds of prey, many a journey halted for a dangerous pick up of road kill. More so we met such interesting people from all walks of life. This little part of our lives came to an end on the A9 back to Newcastle and was so memorable it led my father and I to have had such an enduring passion for game fishing and the fly. So much so that up until his passing 14 years ago (he caught 2 massive springers in late February 2002 at Farnley biggest 25Lb and that was pretty much his last proper fishing trip...what a bloody lucky man..I should have pushed him in!)
That particular fishing course caused my interest in (amongst fiercely competing with later cricket, golf, rowing, scuba, sailing, cycling, sea angling, shooting oh and the ladies!) the love of salmon fishing and to endure many laughs with daft friends, silly exciting days in pursuit of wily salmon, leaping sea trout and dogged brownies. Never to be taken to seriously but relaxing in wonderful surroundings and the peace broken by a bit of luck here and there when that fish actually takes your fly!

So with this in mind on a freezing December evening I thought and then talked with Barry our amazing salmon fisherman and casting maestro so lets do it again in 2018 (we ran a successful course in 2017 in April) , you too could be a star salmon fisher !!
That's simply why we are reserving the beat on 4 dates in Spring to teach a new generation the joys of salmon fishing and improve keen salmon fishers with all the amazing new successful techniques. Perhaps if your interested also have a go using some state of the art rods and special lines! Its time again to share our passions and find the next band of lovely people to throng the banks and ranks of the lovely Tyne river . We hope if you're reading this and could think about people you may know ?Perhaps a father and son, a group of best friends, ladies, daughters just wanting to do something out of the ordinary who may want to challenge themselves? This could be very much in demand so let us know soon!
Call Barry on 07979023301 or John on 07733389474 or email office@farnleyestate.co.uk

Our Course Dates :
The dates in April are 12th to 14th and 16th to 18th inclusive. The course charges are £900 per head and £1,600 per couple
In May we will run 2 courses from 3rd to 5th then later in the month 24th to 25th. £1,000 per head or £1,800 per couple.

We will Offer :
A brilliant fully qualified local instructor Barry Mitchell plus a local expert, no egos just friendly help from people that have a T shirt or two. Not just instruction but a really good chance of a fish with teams switching places to properly seek out salmon or sea trout. Fun is promised , appetising lunches a spot of tea/coffee and refreshments. A chance to enjoy a lovely part of the world with a unique place to relax, lodge , river hut with log burner. Plus some exciting extras thrown in for our new friends, you will leave with unique knowledge and skills that will be the envy of your friends!!

We are partnering with the Matfen Hall a really amazing place with all the best facilities owned by the Blackett-Ordes very friendly and very very comfortable! The Grade II Hall is also a renowned golf resort with Spa and owned by Sir Hugh Blackett, the 12th Baronet, and Lady Blackett. There are other great local establishments that we can also recommend so get in touch. Prices will be exclusively for our guests....

Its a Redd Christmas here

THE salmon season is long over "accidit stercore" there again time to reflect and plan next year ? Lets all keep warm loading up the log burner toes toasty and perhaps a glass of what you fancy?
Its just seems way to long until you can breathe in the unique river aroma the wild garlic and witness new life that stirs in the spring. Hold on plenty is happening on the river..right now.
Late November I stood astonished as a rush of fresh beauties slipped up the main pool and passed through, surely next years lot ...the banks already had a lot of rotting salmon and sea trout that had spawned and not made it. Then in the tail of dead tree in early December the unmistakable movement of fish in pairs, redds in progress. Amazing considering the short distance we are from Wylam and the top of the tide, there again the river is gravel on the beat and should make ideal redds. I'd not witnessed this before or maybe I'd wrongly assumed its too low in the system. I'd been told by Phil in Grey Court that he'd seen fish spawning and that is exactly the case. Its a Spawn Again Christmas, enough puns but every reason to be cheerful for the future of these amazing survivors of the ice age.

Reasons to Be Cheerful Even Though It's Late November

The test match series in Australia has began and despite the negative sledging England are making a good go of it!
Early this year some talk on the Tyne of a season that might not deliver, the omens were poor and all was quiet here in terms of keen visiting fishing folk. Much frustration and hands in pockets!
April signalled that perhaps a change might occur and we witnessed a decent run of fish ! Barry Mitchell and I were dead keen to get the beat fished. Plans were laid and a small group of improvers under the direction Barry got to grips with the Chocolate Roll cast and other delights including something called Snaggit Style (!). Suddenly a crackle on the radio "Fish on Dead Tree!!". It had started a corking 20lb belting salmon!!
The beat saw early runs of decent fish nearly every time I took my lunch by the river and no rods about ho!ho! The work could wait and unable to resist I had a sneaky cast here and there, suddenly the salmon were somewhat easy! Very exciting indeed but something perplexed me I don't usually experience fish hooked and on properly on...suddenly nothing, slack line and disappointment. Usually, I say typically if you get one on that's it unless its a particularly huge one or the river is running high. As the season progressed my fishing friends, some of whom it seems to me have a hell of a lot of time fishing were getting the same problem? Are salmon becoming wiser, the lines are excellent the hooks pretty good and our techniques and knowledge vastly better who knows ?
Generally our visitors had a decent time of it during the year and its never easy, never was never will be !
In summary we experienced some excellent fishing with great persistence not always duly rewarded, so well done everybody and thank you indeed for making it an excellent season in 2017.

Late September Beat Report John Rogers "Festum Salmo"

When we opened the beat to new friends of Farnley we had no inkling that in the happy days ahead the beat was to produce some of the most exciting fishing we believe could be ever wished for! In the past few weeks stationed here in London and not feeling well and only my mobile relaying the unfolding excitement !!
Go to NEWS....

Beat Report John Rogers "Salmon Fishing Is for all generations and is always female friendly " Early September2017.

The river is fining down today after a few big pushes of water ! Barry Mitchell our wonderful guide has seen fish on off and caught even allowing for the conditions (3ftplus!) yesterday the Oundle team headed by Chris Porter had fish on/off and a lovely afternoon topped off by a 11lb fat sea trout a real beauty netted by Barry. Pictures in 'news'...oh Garry Dog Waddington...fought like a dog terrier. I bet today (15th Sept ) and tomorrow will be very interesting for the right reasons ..good luck!
Luncheon was enjoyed by Mr Bateman's lovely friends and following this fine repast and a small glass they proceeded to haul the fish in ! So remember relax enjoy the place the salmon will always wait.
Previously (on FE news) John the Osprey M and his team absolutely bagged up, 6 salmon 1 seat trout for more details news !
The day before a fish 18-20slipped the knot at the net ! Check those knots or buy the classic Orvis Book on knots I've always a copy in my tackle.
Sadly John M of Upper Caberston fame can't fish his week and he was really cheesed off , Robert W has filled his slot and no doubt a fun group of keen friends will be on next week looking forward to see them. Peter a great friend of Robert W lost a lovely fish in the hut then for good measure Robert decided to shake another one off, what a pair of charlies !Elk joined the gang and didn't put a foot wrong lovely casting the right flies and determination , this time the fish evaded him; salmon fishing is a cruel master.

We had the great pleasure to host the regions Salmon and Trout Association people in late August in conjunction with the Grey Court beat. Phil Adams its secretary organised the event and Barry Mitchell offered the casting tuition. The party included two anglers Fupi and Cathy Muse , FishPal's Marketing director Anne Woodcock in attendance , three beginners Stephanie Duck, Cathy Muse and Jo. It was wonderful to see new faces enjoying the place and one guest even hooked a couple but the fish were the winners that day.
The river settled at last and this helped the fish to slow their rapid pace to the upper reaches. The latest folks trips were great fun Anthony T's team had great success and some new faces caught their first salmon , the Cooper (I put Hooper sorry I'll stop swanning around) Brothers ably assisted by their expert guide Neil Lobban. Well done all!.
We then had a new group on the beat George U and friends who managed 3 fish and a Gudgeon! James B managed to catch his first salmon ..oh and he is a father for the first time what a double ! Yes your very welcome back in 2018.
Roger Naish brought the team back and had great fun in not always easy conditions with powerful wind making casting very difficult, they still managed to catch but also lose some sadly.Finally Keith J and his pal popped in for three days and both had fish and for his guest it was again his first salmon. Please read our News page for pictures and more.

Daily Regular Salmon Fish On !
Late July 2017
Please read the NEWS page for more detail. In summary the teams had great fun and fish were there to be had , not spectacular but regular catches and lots lost ...best to date Robert W we will call 27Lb near as dammit well done ! A double figure sea trout from Anthony T's team! The river was up and down and at times had a beautiful malt whiskey colour I always feel lucky when its like this and the salmon seem to take that much more regularly.
We are getting delightful feedback from our clients in this our new way of running the estate , thanks and feedback is always welcome. Please let us know what we can do to improve your trip in 2018, we are hopeful again that the runs could be good and you all enjoy the thrill when the elusive salmon snatches our fly. More importantly to enjoy friendship, laughter , relax and create lovely memories to cherish.
Just contact us by email to enquire availability in 2018 or call 01661843674 or 07733389474 :

Farnley Estate covers some 140 acres and had the only tunnel on the Newcastle to Carlisle railway. This line was only the 4th railway to be built in the world and it runs to the south of our estate with our own private crossing. The line connects a story of great engineers, a certain George Stephenson was busy nearby on the Tyne downriver making the world famous "Rocket" in Wylam on the Tyne where a tea shop celebrates his achievements. Stephenson's inspiration was the Puffing Billy built by William Hedley another global hit now housed in the London Science Museum . The railway's first carriages were pulled by horses, apparently due to local landowners fearing the noise of the steam engines! We don't know what the hardy Navvies ate but its no doubt that Farnley Estate Tyne Salmon nearby would have made a welcome addition to their fare.
The salmon are still there and we are a short distance from the Riding Mill Fish Pass which tells the story of the daily movements of salmon and sea trout. These fish have to pass through our water so the canny fisherman just needs to concentrate and hold tight !
The land has been used for race horse training and was farmed until 1965 when my family started to take sand and gravel away which has left the Estate with three magnificent lakes which have been stocked with brownies and rainbows for many years. The members of the company were very proficient and keen fishermen they saw the Tyne revitalised as a Salmon and Sea-Trout fishery that rapidly gained the respect of anglers in the know.

When Kielder Dam (the largest man made reservoir in the UK ) was built in 1980 surrounded by the countries largest forest people feared for the future of the magnificent Tyne. In the years that followed the river had changed and the mighty shoals of dace and renowned trout fell away.  The Tyne angler and owners fought and got a salmon hatchery at Kielder to compensate for the loss of spawning sites. This along with ongoing habitat improvement has meant that the Tyne is a very successful river for migratory fishing and the counter at Riding Mill (only a mile downstream from Farnley) can be between 37,000 and 45,000 fish per year! The situation got better when the Northumbrian coastal netting interests were largely bought off this further improved salmon runs on the Tyne.

When the ownership changed the Farnley beat has been run as a syndicate since 2000, and our best month fishing the Tyne was September 2013 when the catch was 73 salmon and 5 seatrout, our biggest salmon so far is 35lbs. Some very large Tyne salmon have been lost over the years and this reliably witnessed by rods that have fished the best rivers on the planet most years we get 30 pounders and a good quality fresh fish. The wading is easy and the pools are all different giving the angler a great days fishing. The whole estate is wooded and there are some lovely walks through the woods. Before  the Estate was opened to visitors some incredible catches were taken. One of the owners took  12 Salmon from 15 to 25 pounds followed up by a 13pound sea-trout, all before lunch and rightly he called it a day. The senior Estate partner was a very skilful salmon fisherman in his day and its reckoned one of the top catchers on the Tyne. He really enjoys now giving the younger generation a hard time if they don't seem to be catching fish when perhaps they should! Contact us if your interested by booking your Salmon fishing days here , we will try and fit you in (but be warned demand is high on the main Tyne) In 2017 the runs were very decent with a smattering in April a steady May and bang June a massive run , in July and August pretty good and September and October enough about to keep people very interested.
If you are keen to try in 2018 please contact us here and we will respond promptly :
We have a great variety of wildlife on Farnley Estate Corbridge including deer, otters, heron, kingfishers and one lucky angler saw an osprey take a fish from the water in front of him. We also have some swans that have made a home here and Pauline H will be sharing some of the stories and images of the various inhabitants over the years.
The land is covered in many varieties of tree including our own cherry trees that make a welcome treat in August.

The Estate has had an interesting life since the machinery and men left and then returned to extract sand and gravel over many years. Its a place that is forever evolving and quite unique with many private places and views that bring our friends and guests back.

The River has Roman workings evident in respect of a massive man-made wall which was badly damaged by the 2015 floods incorporating fish traps that are just about visable on the north bank just above our fishing rights on the estate. These ancient fish traps could even be prehistoric as there is much evidence in the well-wooded and fertile middle Tyne valley of settlements. The Romans settled hereabouts as well, having built a rather major wall a few miles to the north with its major supply-base at Corbridge, only two miles to the west. The road that rods often use is Corbridge to York Roman “Dere Street” which is chiefly now the A68 you will note just how straight it is with terrifying blind summits so please drive carefully!