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Accessibility of venues

A potential new member recently asked about ease of access from car to swim around our waters and I thought I would share my reply:

In terms of accessibility we can split our venues into 3 categories:

Very good – you can park in at least one swim: 

Howells (1 swim)
Little London (1 swim)
Little Park Main Lake (3 swims) 

Good - the nearest swim is a short walk (10 yards or less): 

Beckingham Hall (if parked by pump house)
Bog Grove
Brick Kiln Pond
Chelmer & Blackwater Canal (Heybridge Tesco stretch only)
Little Park Top Lake
New Hall
Railway Pond (but its too weedy for you to want to fish there)
Rook Hall 1
Slough House Farm
Totham Pit
Whitehouse Farm 

Poor – a lengthy walk to the first swim:

Heron Hall
Rook Hall 2 & 3
River Blackwater
The rest of the Chelmer & Blackwater Canal

Little Park scores highly on accessibility.

Eelsy does it

Dave Bennett wrote “After tales of me losing two big carp on prawns whilst Tench fishing this week, my son Mark decided he wanted to quivertip instead of float fishing.  He’s glad he did as he caught his first ever eel (and beautifully lip hooked as well) at around 1 and a half pounds.  That’s two we’ve had from Little Park in the last few weeks so it’s good to see Mr Anguilla is still around.

Mark with his first ever eel.

High water alerts

Please take the following into account if you are venturing out onto the soggy banks over the next week or so:

Flooded:  Little London

Higher than normal water levels:  Rook Hall (the middle and far lakes have joined together but some swims on all 3 lakes remain fishable), Railway Pond.

Brim full: Slough House Farm (outflow pipe cleared), Bog Grove, Little Park. 

Low Risk:  Heron Hall, Whitehouse Farm, Totham Pit, Beckingham Hall, Brick Kiln pond, Howells.

Closed:  All rivers and canals (just as well!). 

Please also remember that the access tracks at some of the venues that aren’t flooded such as Whitehouse Farm, Beckingham Hall and the alternative entrance to Little Park can get very slippery for ‘ordinary cars’ and only members with four wheel drive vehicles should attempt to access them. 

This must be the wettest drought since records began!

Rook Hall far lake is brim full and has joined up with the middle lake.

Please stick to the car parks

Members are reminded that under no circumstances can they drive beyond society car parks and around society waters.  Anyone caught doing so will be liable to receive a warning and lose their right to hold a night fishing permit.  The main venues where people are tempted to ‘drop off tackle in their swims’ or ‘fish from their vehicles’ are Slough House Farm, Rook Hall and Beckingham Hall but reports have also been received in the past from Howells and incredibly from Little Park, Bog Grove and New Hall!

Also if someone else drives around the lake to visit you or drop you off (member or not) then you are still responsible so please ask them not to do it!

Finally we are working on replacing the combination padlock at Little Park so until we do you might still have to use the alternative approved (by the landowner) entrance by Red Lodge.  It is very important that you close and lock all access gates, especially at Little Park and Rook Hall where new signage will soon be put up reminding members to do so and improve the security of these popular lakes.

Please keep access gates locked and stick to the car parks.

Rules revamped

The rules now have a new look and numbering system which hopefully makes things easier to find.  Most are still worded the same but the following new and updated rules were agreed at the committee meeting on Wed 7th Mar 2012:

Updated:  ‘No member is to use a fixed weight of greater than one ounce’ replaced by ‘Any fixed lead used must be able to detach itself from the hooklink should the main line happen to break (excluding split shot)’.

New:  ‘Members must produce their membership card when asked to do so by another membership card carrying member’.

New:  ‘The society reserves the right to refuse an application to join from anyone without giving a reason’.

Updated:  ‘No bait is to be discarded into the water at the end of a fishing session’ replaced by ‘Surplus bait must be taken home’.

Updated:   ‘Howells Lake, Little Park and Beckingham Hall; no junior members are allowed on these waters unless accompanied by a responsible adult member at all times’ (this is now a lease requirement).

Spur of the moment success

Dave Bennett has not been put off by the recent foggy weather and has been fishing at Little Park with his son:

Had a day off with Michael and we decided on the ’spur of the moment’ (no guesses as to which football team Dave supports) to go fishing. With no maggots to bang out a few Roach and Perch we just took some bread and sweetcorn to go for some big Redfins.  After an hour of blanking my float suddenly disappeared and stayed down.  When I struck the pole bent double and the fish headed straight into the lillies but strangely it came straight out again into open water.  Five minutes or so later without an epic struggle the fish was on the bank, courtesy of the man fishing for Perch whose landing net was slightly bigger than mine.  The fish was caught on a 5m pole, 3lb line, size 14 hook and a small piece of bread.

Dave’s double figure Common.

On an earlier visit (when they had some maggots) both Dave and his son Michael caught well:

Me and my dad had this net of fish which included some nice Roach.  All the fish were caught on pole, 3lb line, size 16 hook and maggot.

A fine winter bag of Roach.

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