Finding bait on a Wednesday can be difficult living in South Wales. Mid week match day, as it is sometimes referred too, means that my nearest store is closed as it is run by a keen match angler. I only remember this after I pulled up and parked at the rear of the shop. This left me in the tricky situation of having arranged to go fishing, but potentially not having any bait. (School boy error!) A quick re-think involving Google and a few phone calls and I was on a rather impromptu trip to Cwmbran Angling to pick up the bait and see what else they had on offer.
Firstly the Sat Nav lied and 26 minutes quickly turned into 30 minutes+. This wasn’t helped by the ongoing road works at Pontypool and parking outside the store was a fiasco. I later learned that there is small car park behind the building, but you have to follow the one way system. I was lucky and found a short stay space just outside a nearby chippy and treated myself to a sausage in batter for my troubles. On entering the store, I could see it is no bigger than a large living room, but every inch of space has been filled with equipment. To utilise the space (and house an enormous amount of stock), the rod racks on the right as you enter are on top of a huge amount of fly tying equipment. Hackles, tubing, fritz, deer hair, you name it they had it, although you might have to move some things around to get to it. The rods on top of the fly tying equipment ranged from feeder and float rods, to carp and beach casters. Another rod rack which holds another multitude of rods is in the middle of the shop. The opposite side to this rod rack, you’ll find a large amount of coarse fishing equipment.
On the left hand side of the shop you will find the majority of the coarse fishing equipment, along with a good selection of Pike lures, ranging from Rapala’s to Storm Shad’s. There was also a surprising amount of Sea fishing equipment in this store which, given the size of the shop, is a very admirable. As for the coarse fishing equipment, every inch of wall was covered, with lines, hooks, rig bits, and almost everything you can think of. There were also buckets of various sized pellets all different flavours which can be bought in your desired quantities.
There was also a good selection of Pole Fishing equipment with floats, elastic, bungs, pole cups (including the new Frenzee Softee cups which I have struggled to get hold of), readymade rigs and a reasonable selection of universal top kits, which are all packed into this small space. I spent the best part of 20 minutes, desperately thinking “what do I need?” so that I could root around, looking for specific items, all of which I found. Also, everything in the store seemed reasonably priced, which is always a plus when you are counting the pennies!
There was a great selection of tinned and flavoured baits including the latest glugs, dips and additives. There is also an extensively stocked groundbait range compromising of Van Den Eynde, Sensas and Bait Tech, which is good news for local coarse anglers as these 3 brands tick all the boxes for any groundbait you may need on almost any venue. I was pleased to find that they had casters in stock (another plus), and along with a pint of maggots and a tub of dendrobena worms it came in just over £6 which seemed reasonable, given some places I have visited charge £3.50 for a pint of maggots.
This shop definitely qualifies the saying “big things come in small packages”, as this store was really something else given the size. I couldn’t get over the sheer volume of products they had on site, and that they also catered for sea fishing, pike fishing and fly fishing. A remarkable achievement given its size! I would recommend Cwmbran Angling to anyone in the area, coarse, pike, fly or carp there is bound to be something in this store for everyone.
Tackle Store Rating *** ½