Fishing beat reeled in for a cool £200,000 plus

A fishing beat on the Tyne owned by the same family for more than 100 years has sold for almost treble the asking price - more than £200,000 - at auction.

A fishing beat on the Tyne owned by the same family for more than 100 years has sold for almost treble the asking price - more than £200,000 - at auction.

The stretch of fishing at Eltringham, near Stocksfield, Northumberland, is believed to be the first beat on the River Tyne to go on the market since the 1970s.

It sold at auction on Monday for a sum that was "substantially in excess" of £200,000 - just weeks after it was put up for sale at a price of £85,000.

Because of the high levels of interest that developed over the following weeks, estate agents Smiths Gore had forecast a sale for about £170,000.

Philip Scrope, partner at Smith Gore's Corbridge office, said: "We had a lot of offers and the final price was substantially in excess of £200,000.

"It was quite interesting that the calculations people used for their offers were based on getting 100 fish per year from the stretch and then multiplying that by the capital value of the fish.

"We had a lot of bids over £200,000."

The new owner is though to be an individual rather than a group of buyers.

Mr Scrope added that the "phenomenal" amount of interest in the auction had not been a complete surprise because the opportunity to purchase such a beat is unusual.

He said: "The Tyne has had no fishing sale for a long time and until 20 or so years ago the value wasn't that relevant.

"But in those last 20 years the salmon have been returned to the river, which gives it that value.

"The Tyne is now one of the top rivers in the country for this type of fishing."

The salmon season on the stretch lasts between February and October.

The stretch had been owned by the Humble family from Eltringham for more than 100 years and had been let to a Newcastle angling club until the lease expired. It is not yet known wwhether parts of the river will be let out again in the future.

Fishing in the Tyne has improved over the past 20 years following clean up operations and the river has been restocked by the Environment Agency.

The Kielder Reservoir project also releases about 560,000 salmon fry into the river each year and has contributed to a current rod catch of up to 4,000 salmon and sea trout annually.

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