A gillies’ association?
The content of Richard Donkin’s articles varies slightly each month but the underlying trend is that he is increasingly frustrated by the lack of salmon north of the border. There’s nothing unusual about that, though – we all feel the same – but having to read about it every month doesn’t help the cause. I’m sure the same conversation is taking place in every fishing hut in the country just now: “Salmon numbers crashing through the floor, jobs at risk, hotels going to close, predator numbers going skyward, tenants staying at home...” I spend an increasing amount of time thinking that, as gillies, we do not have a representative body. I don’t believe any government will listen to an individual, so has the time come to form an association with the primary aim of representing the gillies on the water? There are enough charities fundraising for one project or another, but what about the people at the coalface? The people whose homes and the livelihood of their families is most affected? We have the National Gamekeepers’ Organisation in England and Wales and the Scottish Gamekeepers’ Association north of the border, both of whom seem to represent their interests very well at the highest level. Given the current crisis facing the salmon, perhaps it’s time for the gillies to stand up and be counted? Calum Mcroberts, Perthshire