Full version of a story which first appeared in The Herald on 10 January 2008

ONE of Scotland’s most iconic angling prizes, the Malloch Challenge Trophy for the
heaviest salmon caught by fly-fishing, is being reinstated this year with the aim of
helping to promote fish conservation.

The solid silver leaping fish, valued at £15,000, was first awarded in 1972 but was
retired in 1999 when sponsorship of the prize ended. It was named after the Perth
tackle retailer and legendary angler P D Malloch.

Now, with the backing of the Tay Salmon Foundation and the Tay District Salmon
Fisheries Board, the elegant trophy will again be contested by anglers from the
Tweed to the Thurso. For the first time, however, all fish must be released alive back
to the river. Entries will have to carry an accurate weight or estimation of weight, appropriate measurements and the corroboration of an independent witness. The 2009 salmon fishing season is opening this week.

The Malloch Challenge Trophy
REINSTATED: The Malloch Challenge Trophy

Tay Salmon chairman John Milligan said: “The Board is delighted to have been able to acquire whatwas for decades the most coveted award in the Scottish angling world. We look forward to receiving entries from rivers across Scotland. I have no doubt that it will be keenly contested.”

New trophy secretary, Robert Rattray added: “In the last year or so we have seen
something of a resurgence in the numbers of very large salmon in Scottish rivers, so
I have no doubt the trophy will spawn more interest than ever. It is particularly
heartening that from now on it will be closely associated with conservation.”

During 28 consecutive years of competition, winning fish were landed from a variety
of rivers including the Dee, Spey, Tweed, Tay and Naver. The last winner was a
43lb fish from the Tweed.

Meanwhile, young anglers and children are set to benefit from the salmon season
opening celebrations on the Tay at Kenmore, Perthshire on Thursday. All proceeds
from the sale of permits and from a gala dinner and auction at the Kenmore Hotel will
go to Angling for Youth Development, a social inclusion project sponsored by
Strathclyde and Tayside police, and the Children’s Hospice Association Scotland.
Last year’s event raised £4,500.

Hundreds of anglers are expect to attend in the hope of landing the first Tay salmon
of the season. The 2008 honour went to an Inverness angler who caught a 15lb
salmon within minutes. This year strict new guidelines are in place for catch and
release throughout the Tay catchment.