Some fishery owners suffered six-figure damage but there is optimism for 2024 salmon fishing prospects on the North and South Esk.

Sunshine greeted anglers on the opening day of the Angus salmon season – in contrast to Storm Babet conditions which left some beat owners with repair bills of more than £100,000. And despite the serious impact on both the South and North Esks, fishers are queuing up to return to their favourite stretches of water. It comes just weeks after the Atlantic Salmon was added to an international ‘red list’ of species feared to be facing extinction.

Inshewan, north of Kirriemuir on the River South Esk, hosted the traditional opening day ceremony. And as hopes of a spring fish were shared, conversations also turned back to the devastating impact of October’s storm. The South Esk runs through Brechin, which was the worst hit town in Scotland and saw more than 300 homes evacuated.