AT last we've seen some bass starting to appear for shore anglers.

It's been great to see the massive amount of thornback rays over the last few months, especially with the lack of codling that didn’t materialise this year.

However, it's good to see those summer bass arrive.

All the beaches from Walton to Clacton have seen bass catches and although there haven't been reports of any large fish yet, they will be there in the next few weeks.

The Naze beaches at Walton have seen school bass in the 1lb to 2lb range and the beaches around the local pier are now seeing similar sized fish being caught.

On light tackle, they can be great sport but please remember all bass have to be returned until July and thereafter only one bass may be kept per trip.

Walton Pier is fishing well at the moment, with plenty of dabs, dogfish, whiting and thornback rays.

Garfish should appear in the next week or two.

Colchester angler Phil Buy fished a daytime tide on the pier with a few friends and they caught a variety of fish which included dabs, whiting, dogfish and two thornback rays.

The heaviest ray weighed 6lb 14oz and was caught by Ted Gower.

Reports have also been good from the Burnthouse beaches, with bass also showing here, plus some flounders.

The Frinton beaches have seen the first rays caught on the night tides.

The place to head for is the golf course area.

The Holland-on-Sea coastline is still a bit on the slow side, especially for those thornback rays.

They are there to be caught, but not in the numbers that we've seen elsewhere.

Colchester Sea Angling Club fished here at the weekend.

Fourteen anglers fished and all caught fish - mostly eels, whiting, bass, codling, rays, dabs and flounders.

First place went to the in-form Nik Highfield, with 2lb 10oz, and in second was Phil Buy, with 2lb.

Vic Pearce was third in 1lb 12oz.

Nik also took the heaviest fish prize with a 1lb 2oz thornback ray.

Clacton Pier has also seen a steady catch of fish, with rays and dogfish plus still plenty of small whiting.

St Osyth beach is also in a similar mode with rays and dogfish, plus now some bass.

Most of the rays have certainly been smaller in size for the last couple of weeks with an average size of around 3lbs

However, there are still a few double-figure rays here to be caught.

The Clacton Boat Club have had some pretty good catches over the last few weeks and Kevin Scrivener landed some good-size rays from his boat Dippa.

I've had reports that some of the charter boats have been catching anything up to 80 rays on a trip, plus the odd smooth-hound is now starting to show.

The Clacton Pier Charity Shield, in aid of St Helena Hospice and the Dream 100 Kids' Trust, is once again being held on the local pier on Sunday, May 7.

Fishing is from 9.30am until 2.30pm.

Tickets are £7.50 for over-16s and £5.50 for under-16s.

Tickets are available at Clacton Angling on 01255 221863 and Deans Tackle on 01255 425992.

If you have any reports or photos you can contact me at

The high tides for the weekend are 9.07am on Saturday and 10.07am on Sunday.