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Angling more popular than rambling or association football

An independent poll* commissioned by the Countryside Alliance has found that more people have participated in angling than either rambling or association football.

The sports participation poll, carried out in July 2004, asked the question: "Have you ever taken part in the following?" The responses were as follows:

Fishing or angling 26 per cent
Rambling 23 per cent
Organised association football 20 per cent
Jogging/running 40 per cent

Campaign for Angling Director Charles Jardine said: "Angling has proved its popularity once again and we are delighted by the results of this poll. Yet, incredibly, the sport which is worth 3 billion a year to the economy and has 3.5 million participants in the UK still only attracts the same level of Sport England funding as movement and dance and rounders.

"Anglers themselves have paid over 18 million in rod licences this season, which will be ploughed directly into the Environment Agency's work in river and stillwater conservation, but the Government should be funding angling's development because of its proven economic and social benefits".

Mr Jardine added: "Enthusiasm for angling is running at an all time high, especially amongst the young, and we cannot take this enthusiasm for granted. If we don't capitalise on it, invest in it properly and make it accessible to all we will see a golden opportunity wasted".

* Opinion Research Business (ORB) 9-11 July. 1,003 respondents in total.


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