I have fished canals since I was five years old and they’ve played a massive part in my match fishing career. I grew up with typical English shallow canals like the Grand Union, Birmingham-Fazeley, Coventry, Staffs-Worcester and the Oxford Canal, where we are today. All of them used to be dominated by weights of small fish, with roach, skimmers, perch and gudgeon all being an important target. Fast forward to today and bigger fish now seem to dominate these venues. Now more than ever a big weight of skimmers and bream is needed for success. There must be more of them in our waterways than there once was, but I also think we are now much better at catching them!
To catch a net of canal bream there is one major factor you must remember and that is location. It sounds obvious but bream are not as evenly spread compared to roach and perch, so if you are not in an area where bream live then you will not catch them. Wider areas and turning bays are always good spots, or anywhere where they can shelter away from boat traffic. A marina is another magnet for bream and that’s exactly where I am today.