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The County of Merseyside has no streams containing trout.

This is the view of no lesser an authority than Dr Malcolm Greenhalgh, and is based on research he conducted in preparation of a scientific paper, as noted in his response to my enquiry of him, which read –

“Dear Tony

First, Merseyside is not a real county but an administrative county! Parts of the County Palatines of Lancashire and Cheshire! But here goes:

There is an angling club, Wirral I think, that has some fishing in that area. There are no river trout in southwest Lancashire = North Merseyside; and Wirral (South Merseyside) may well be the same. In 2004 I produced an account ‘The freshwater fishes of Lancashire, Merseyside and Cheshire’ for the Lancashire & Cheshire Fauna Society and sought help from many sources, with 0 for Merseyside

The problem is that that is known as Merseyside is low, with lots of urban connurbation. Rural areas in the northern bit is mostly low lying acid peat farmland (= mossland in S Lancashire) and with very few streams. The largest, the Alt, is clean in places, but not trout water.

On Wirral there are even fewer streams, none with trout.

Note, however, that sea trout are now running the Mersey, though they are not catchable in the river here or the Ship Canal!


Malcolm G”

Malcolm Greenhalgh is both a naturalist and a fly fisherman. After reading biological sciences and researching estuary ecology for his PhD, he lectured for sixteen years before becoming a freelance writer on his fortieth birthday, and anglers will be aware of his prowess, and expertise from his many interesting and challenging articles in the angling press.

His view is supported by Tim Jacklin and Paul Gaskell of the WTT, and by Kevin Nash and Gareth Pedley of the EA…., as well as the officials of the many Angling Clubs in Merseyside with whom I have exchanged correspondence.

So…maybe my ‘Mission’ will not succeed, but this sad news is no reason to stop searching.

I could make angling history if…