Lower Birgham, River Tweed
The Lower Birgham beat forms part of the border between England and Scotland, with the north bank in Scotland and the south bank in England. Kelso and Coldstream are 6 miles and 2½ miles distant respectively.
The River Tweed is perhaps the best known of all salmon rivers in Scotland, and is over 100 miles in length from its source in Dumfriesshire to the North Sea at Berwick-Upon-Tweed. For the last 19 miles it forms the boundary between Scotland and England.
The salmon catch on Tweed is phenomenal with some 16,682 recorded fish caught in 2011 (23,219 in 2010). It has one of the longest seasons (1 February to 30 November) and its autumn run is noted for the size and number of fish caught. Tweed has also been enjoying an improved spring run in recent years.
Fly fishing only is allowed between 1 February and 14 February, and 15 September to 30 November. At other times, spinning is allowed but the use of treble hooks is prohibited.
The Lower Birgham fishing is situated close to the small village of Birgham, about 6 miles downstream from Kelso in one of the most attractive and accessible parts of the Lower Tweed Valley.
The Lower Birgham beat extends to about two-thirds of a mile of double bank fishing for three rods. The south bank is in England and the north bank is in Scotland. There are 8 named pools and the beat lies between the North Wark and Carham beats.
One ghillie is employed on a full-time basis throughout the year. A part-time ghillie is employed for the spring and autumn fishing only. Full time angling assistance is provided for the spring and autumn runs. During the summer months however the assistance of a ghillie is by arrangement only. Two boats are kept on the beat. This provides fishing for one rod in each boat with the third from the bank by rotation. There is a comfortable and well-equipped fishing hut on the Scottish bank, which has gas heating, lighting and cooking facilities. It is, in fact, a former cricket pavilion. There is also a fishing hut on the south bank at Carham House.
The beat fishes well in most heights of water. A few years ago it was described as the most improved beat on the river and is now consistently one of the top twenty most prolific beats on the river. A few fish of over 20lbs are expected each season and a fish of 30lbs was caught recently. There has also been a sea trout of 19lbs taken.
One of the most attractive and accessible parts of the Lower Tweed Valley
The beat is conveniently located between Kelso and Coldstream on the Scottish bank and between Carham and Wark on the English bank.