The bass is by common consent the leading sport-ﬁsh in UK waters. The Bass Anglers’ Sportﬁshing Society, founded in 1973, was the climax of a long-planned initiative to bring together sea anglers devoted to the pursuit and study of bass. The Society’s magazine, started in a modest way with a few duplicated pages, has progressed to a high standard and offers today some of the best reading available to the sea angler.
Geoff Gonella has brought together a high-quality selection of items from the Society’s magazine, together with some impressive new material. For those old enough to remember, it parallels the best tradition of the former British Sea Anglers Society, whose Secretary F.D.Holcombe drew on the collective knowledge and experience of members to produce high-quality publications.
We have come a long way since then. Rods are lighter and stronger, reels are minor miracles of engineering, monoﬁlament and braid have replaced Cuttyhunk and silkworm gut, hooks are sharper, and new techniques for bass angling have been perfected such as plugging, surface popping and ﬂy ﬁshing. Most importantly we know much more about the habits and movements of bass. For this the members of B.A.S.S. can claim much credit, through their voluntary research activities which improve our knowledge of movement patterns and help us to estimate the abundance and growth of the various year classes. The Society actively participates in a large number of European policy groups on the sustainability of bass stocks, and the continuing research provides vital data to back up the Society’s quest for long-term political strategies to restore bass stocks to a sustainable level.
We now know so much more about bass and their ways than we did when I began ﬁshing for them 75 years ago. What I would have given then, for a book like this!
Donovan Kelley MBE