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Luton Angling Club General Match Rules (Revised 2023)


Match Secretary

  1. The Match Secretary shall be responsible for arranging and producing a match program for the season detailing club matches for inclusion on the website and in the membership book prior to the publication deadline.

  2. Matches are normally fished 10am – 3pm unless agreed otherwise

  3. The Match Secretary / Club Captain or appointed representative shall be responsible for appointing the Stewards for each Club match. Competitors should produce their current membership book and rod licence on the first occasion they compete in a club match each season

  4. The Match Secretary or appointed representative shall be responsible for collecting the match entry fee (Currently £1.00 per competitor) at each match. This will be handed to a member of the group who will act as treasurer and keep records of income and expenditure in a format where they can be inspected by the club if required. The fees shall be used to provide such items required to administer the matches, including scales & calibration, plaques, engraving, social activities, deposits for commercial fisheries and any other purpose as agreed by those participating in the matches   

  5. The Match Secretary shall be responsible for the safekeeping of the clubs weighing equipment, ensuring it is kept in good order, and ensuring that it is available at each match.

  6. The Match secretary or appointed representative should endeavour to produce a timely match report of each match for publication on the Club website and social media

  7. Inter Club Matches fished on Club waters shall be fished to Club rules unless agreed before the start of the match


  1. Matches will normally be pegged down, unless agreed otherwise and Stewards are responsible for pegging out and should ensure that each swim is accessible and fishable, is not unsafe due to power line or other obstructions and has sufficient depth for the placement of keepnets. Pegs should be nominally 15 Metres apart unless local circumstances prevent this.

  2. In event of a ‘walk off’ draw being agreed competitors will walk off in order of the draw and should not pass the competitor in front until they have selected their swim. Competitors who pass a swim cannot return to it until it has been passed by the last drawn angler in the walk off  

  3. Stewards shall conduct the optional pools and the draw for swims. Optional pools pay-outs are 100% of take, matches under 12 anglers pay top 3 divided 50/30/20 over 12 pay 40/30/20/10 unless agreed otherwise.  Anglers under 16 may not enter the pools.

  4. Stewards are responsible for taking the scales to the peg, recording weights, and shall ensure that all fish are returned safely to the water after weighing.

  5. Stewards are responsible for ensuring the pegs are clear of litter and no competitor shall have their catch weighed in who has litter on the banks of their swim. Peg markers must be returned prior to weighing in the competitor. Competitors that have litter in the peg or fail to return the peg marker if used will not be weighed in.

  6. Any matter not covered by these match rules shall be dealt with by the match stewards whose decision will be final.



  1. Competitors are responsible for familiarising themselves with the rules

  2. At the conclusion of the draw competitors shall proceed to their pegs and must fish from a point within 1 Metre of the peg marker / fishing position

  3. Moving pegs and exchanging pegs with other competitors is forbidden.

  4. No competitor should not normally leave his/her peg other than to answer the call of nature. However, in the event of an emergency and/or severe weather conditions, a competitor may leave their peg. In such circumstances the Steward may decide in the best interests of the competitors that fishing should be suspended. In the worst-case fishing may be terminated

  5. Any competitor leaving his peg to fish elsewhere, or ceasing fishing and leaving the venue will be disqualified and not weighed in

  6. A competitor shall have in use, one rod or pole, one line and single hook at one time, but may have other poles or rods and tackle assembled, providing that tackle is not baited.

  7. Competitors will start and cease fishing at the given signal. In the event of a fish hooked but not landed before the cease signal the competitor will be allowed an additional 15 minutes in which to play and land it.

  8. Adult Competitors must bait their own hooks, and strike and land their own fish.  In Junior matches competitors may be given assistance in removing hooks and given any other assistance stewards deem necessary. In the event of physical incapacity, a competitor may request assistance to land a fish.

  9. Every competitor must fish from within one metre either side of his/her designated peg. On flowing water, he/she will fish from their position in the direction of the flow as far as the next peg. On still waters he/she may fish as far as half the distance between his/her peg and the angler on either side. Where competitors are drawn on opposite banks the limit of the swim will be the middle line between either bank. The competitor will restrict their activities completely to these boundaries, neither his/her person, tackle, bait, ground bait or hooked fish may intrude into his/her neighbour’s swim. In an extreme situation e.g., snagged tackle or a snagged fish, an angler must seek permission from his neighbour/neighbours before moving from his/her designated peg to try and remedy the situation The canal is considered a Stillwater.

  10. Before the starting signal no competitor must on any account groundbait or loose feed the swim but will be allowed to wet a line, plumb the depth, and test the float, mix, or wet ground bait, clear his/her fishing ground of weed or obstructions and position his/her equipment. On no account must a feeder be used prior to the starting signal apart from the purpose of clipping up at specific distance

  11. Any bait excepting Bloodworm and Joker (or any other bait banned by club rules) may be used, excepting live or dead baits, artificial lures, and spinners, which can only be used in predator matches.

  12. Maximum length of poles permitted is 16 metres, floating poles are not allowed.

  13. Braid hook lengths are not permitted.

  14. The use of electronic fish finders is forbidden.

  15. No competitor shall present their baited hooks into their swim by any means other than the pole or rod to which the line is attached.  All feed may be thrown in by hand, or by using catapults, throwing sticks, swim feeders, bait droppers, bait cups and bait shuttles, but no other mechanical means of projecting feed is allowed. No bait shall be introduced with a pole or bait dropper attached to an extra pole or rod whilst continuing to fish. Spodding is not permitted including the use of spombs, boppers and other similar devices

  16. No competitor will have live or dead fish in their possession before the match

  17. Competitors shall not leave lines unattended in the water during a match

  18. Competitors must retain all fish in a keepnet that complies with the relevant Environment Agency bylaws. Nets should be dry when arriving to fish, as dry nets do not spread diseases. Fish must never be handled with gloves or towels

  19. A minimum of 2 keepnets should be taken where specimen fish or large weights are expected. In the interest of fish welfare any Carp should be weighed and returned or placed into a separate, pegged out keepnet separately from less robust species. Stewards should weigh fish during a match in the case of a fish in distress or if it is impossible for a competitor to retain fish safely

  20. Both the competitor and stewards must ensure that the correct procedure is used for transferring fish from a keepnet to a weigh net. This MUST utilise either, pulling a lower ring through and pouring fish into the weighing net or swimming them up the keepnet and pouring.

  21. Any competitor contravening the rules, wilfully annoying or causing distress to other competitors will be liable to disqualification. Where radios are used the competitor should use an earpiece or headphones to prevent disturbance to others


Eligible Fish

  1. With the exception of agreed predator matches, all fish caught are eligible for weighing except for Game Fish, Pike, Zander, Catfish and Crustaceans. Where fish are designated Non-Native and invasive such as Catfish and Zander in the GUC they must not be returned alive

  2. The individual weight of each competitor will be recorded to the nearest 10 grammes rounded up (Where 10Kg scales are used) and 20 grammes, rounded up (Where 20Kg scales are used). Where electronic scales are used the recorded weight will be actual.

Short Walk (Near) Pegs

  1. Members applying for near pegs shall apply at the first match attended each season. If not applied for at the first match the facility shall be denied. Once a member has opted for a short walk peg the member must continue to draw short walk pegs for the remainder of the season. The following categories of members may apply to the match secretary for a short walk peg near the draw.

  • Registered disabled members with physical disability

  • Older members with physical or medical disability\

   2. Temporarily incapacitated members may be allowed a near draw peg at the discretion of the Match secretary and Stewards during              the period of incapacity, or alternatively be aided their peg by other members



  1. When fishing other than Luton Club waters (e.g., other Club or commercial fisheries) local rules fishery rules including those concerning scales, weighing equipment, nets, baits etc shall take precedence over any Luton Club rules

  2. All trophies offered for competition shall remain the property of the club.

  3. Winners of trophies are responsible for safe custody, and they must be returned to the match secretary by 1st February following the award.


When taking photographs during club matches for publication the following guidelines should be observed

  1. Fish should be kept out of the water for the minimum time possible to facilitate taking the picture

  2. Weigh nets containing fish should be placed on an unhooking mat, not placed directly on the ground or photographed in a supported weigh net.

  3. In the case of Carp or large specimen fish an unhooking mat should always be used.

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