A Fishery of Your Own

GrahamM

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Has anyone had a go at creating, or has controlled, their own fishery? If so, what was your experience of it.
 
I

Ian Knowles

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I once jointly held a lease with a friend on a small carp water. Things went well for the first few months then the promises made by the land owner failed to materialise. It was probably due to our experience, but my advice to anyone would be always get promises by the landowner written into the lease. They may appear all very helpful at the beginning, but things soon change once they have your money.
 

fongy74

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I have control of a small pool and it's very hard work,the pool is leased to us for free on the understanding that we (myself and other 2 managers)maintain the waters,we get no financial help from the owners who quite frankly don't realy care and because the venue is in an urban area we get plagued by vandals and litter bugs.As for the fishing itself it's exellent theres a massive head of fish that have been in there for decades without any interference and some of the big carp in there are probably 25-35 years old weighing 35-40 Llb.We run the venue as a syndicate waters but the price of a place is very reasonable,£65 per year and for that you can live at the waters edge.We do shut the pool down for a fortnight each season as we get a large build up of elodea crispa (canadian pond weed)we bring in a flat bottom skiff and remove absolutely tons of the stuff but the local garden nursery is only to happy to come and stick the weed on their compost heap,this also benefits us in the sense that we get fat red lush worms off of the heap in return.Theres alot of work involved but the positives far outweigh the negatives.
 

Bluenose

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An 11 year old thread brought up. I think this is a record.

Good post by the way.

What other species does the water hold?
 

peter crabtree

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I suppose my dream fishery would be a modest home with
a long stretch of the Thames in the back garden.
Somewhere in Oxon, Berkshire ...
Dream on.
 

fongy74

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RE Bluenose:We have a good stock of carp as mentioned grass carp,crucian,tench,roach,golden orfe,bream,pike and chub.We don't know when the orfe were introduced but their specimens some to 4Llbs,The carp are our prize species their in mint condition and the mirrors are beautifuly scaled oh and there are 2 true leathers in there both over 20Llb.I see you only live in cheshire be my guest if you would like to fish sometime.
 

barbelboi

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Nope, but the nearest thing, after being born in Ruislip, lived the first 3 years of my life ('48-'51_ in Broxbourne, (before moving back to Ruislip) with the Lea running past my back garden – unfortunately too young to fully appreciate it. In the 70's had exclusive access to a stretch of the Loddon to the farm fields (friendly farmer) to the r/h side of the Lands End PH near Woodley, Berks. Fully appreciated it.
Jerry
 

stu_the_blank

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Have been very lucky in the last 20 yrs.

Have run, managed and developed a beautiful lake in Sussex for the last 19yrs, big bankside barby planned for the 20th. Good grief, would take a book to tell the story of the frustrations, elation, up's and downs over the years. The management of the syndicate, the balance between raising enough money and keeping subs low enough to allow us to control the ethos of the Syndicate. Removing bad apples and losing good friends (both fish and people!). Learning on the hoof and professional advice. You know, this winter, I might put pen to paper.

Wow, if you have the skills, determination and don't mind compromising fishing time to deal with the management, when somebody catches a pb, the first 2lb Roach, first 10lb, 20lb, 30lb Carp, 3lb Perch, big Pike etc, is the next best thing to catching them yourself.

Also, I have 80yrds of river at the bottom of my garden, have caught 1lb Roach, 4lb Chub and some reasonable Bream from the little sluice pool at the top end of my stretch. However, I only own one bank, I would never take on a river again unless I controlled both banks. The Local Authority have the other side, they look at my managed wilderness, I look at their unregulated rubbish tip (unless I clear it up regularly) laughingly called a picnic area.

Stu
 

fongy74

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Fongy....is this water of yours very deep a rod length out?
No mate theres a steep drop off about 20 ft out in general but the depth varies as you go from peg to peg it has very deep mud though hence using the skiff to clear the weed,if you were to get caught in the mud?well it's just not worth the risk.

---------- Post added at 03:40 ---------- Previous post was at 03:26 ----------

RE: Stu the blank,also have been very lucky in the sense that i have managed to negotiate a free lease for our pool on the understanding that our syndicate maintains it otherwise it doesn't bear thinking about as to the fate of the place,it's £65 a year and all proceeds go straight back into the venue.We have a good thing going i suppose as long as everyone sticks to the rules and applies a reasonable amount of common sense then we should have a good future as a syndicate/club.My ambition would be to gain a few more waters for our click but i would like that to be on a basis of "we have seen what you guys have done with the other place,would you do the same for ours heres a free lease"but the worlds to money orientated and im not holding my breath.
 

stu_the_blank

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I wish you luck mate. Whilst money generally does talk, not always. I have been asked to take on three lakes over the years based on what I have achieved, pretty much on the basis you mention. The quid pro Quo is:

1) Develop and maintain the water.

2) Set up a syndicate with owner friendly members (most of these have been on the owners land and behaving correctly and getting on with the residents is paramount.

3) Look after the lake and provide security.

All of these add value.

I turned them all down by the way as my little piece of heaven takes a lot of my spare time and I'm getting a bit old to take on another 15 year project.

Spread the word, it will find you.

Stu
 

Chevin

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I had my first fishery in the early '60s and I worked hard clearing some swims even though there seemed to be nothing but rudd in the lake which was at Dane End near Stevenage. I introduced some carp and they were doing well owing to the huge amount of food in the water but sadly it froze over in the '62-'63 winter and every fish in it died. I learned a lot during the time I had the fishery though and hoped to do the same again at some time in the future.

About eight years later, **** Walker asked me to manage his fishery at Beachampton being as some of those to whom he gave permits were abusing the privilege. A visit to the fishery generally included a stay at the hut which, up until I took over the management, was free. **** paid for everything including the gas for cooking etc. I put in pipe work from the farm water supply to the hut which alleviated the need to carry water from the farm in large water carriers. **** paid for that and so I pointed out to him that such a situation could no longer exist, I felt that we must get those who used the hut to pay something towards the running of it. You should have heard the screams from some of the old users - it was quite unbelievable and most of them no longer wanted to fish the river and, oddly enough, the abuse of facilities was greatly reduced as they disappeared off the scene.

The thing I learned from that experience is that you must put a value on privileges like that. If people get them for nothing, then that is the value they put on them and that is reflected on the way they behave. I am not saying that all of the problems were solved overnight, but from then on it was easier to weed out those we did not want.

Once Beachampton was up and running, **** and FJT asked me to take over the running of Snowberry Lake at Brickhill and the fist thing we did was to put in some Leney carp that had been in a bit of dammed off canal since they were fingerlings and had achieved double figures in a short space of time. They took to the water well and continued to progress.

After what I had learned with the Beachampton fishery I decided to syndicate the water and keep the numbers low so that those who were prepared the higher fee that resulted would be keen enough to ensure that the land, property and water were treated with respect. I had only one problem there, a guy who had modified a .22 rifle to a dangerous condition and was causing grave concern to others at the fishery. I expelled him, refunded his fee and reported him to the police. A solicitor's letter was sent to him over some slanderous remarks he had made to Kevin Clifford. The guy in question committed suicide on the banks of the Ouse some years later. The fishery thrived and produced a lot of nice carp, some good zander and perch to over 4lbs. However, word of the fishery spread and eventually a guy called John Curry stepped in and offered the owner more money than I could afford on the basis I was running it. Some time later, most of the fish died from some pollution, but exactly what it was I don't know. I do know that since I was here in Oz, the new owner was fined around 600 quid for illegal fish movement - perhaps they were put into Snowberry?

During that time Fred saw that Wotton Lakes were going to be closed to anglers because of damage being done there. The lakes were controlled by an Aylesbury angling club and the lady owner of the estate had had enough of the behaviour of some of the club members. Fred Taylor and I went to see her and I offered her more money than she had ever had for the fishing and told her that numbers would be strictly limited and that all would be identifiable. Some guest tickets would be issued during the course of a season, but each guest would also be identified. A bailiff would be appointed and he would get a free permit - I also became a professional fishery manager/owner. The lady concerned was very nervous about it all, but gave it a try anyway and after the first year she was absolutely delighted. Tickets were not cheap so there was a strictly limited number of them sold and before long many of the members knew each other which resulted in even better security. The fishery is still being run in the same way today something like 40 years later.

Owning or managing a fishery can be a lot of fun but there are several factors essential to make it a worthwhile effort. It needs to have fish that make the fishery interesting. It has to be an environment the type of person you want there enjoys. You must be ruthless with anyone who decides that normal sensible rules also apply to him and you must be prepared to listen to feed back from those who are fishing the water. Taking on the task will result in a lot of work and it is essential to be on site at any time a situation demands it. If such dedication is not a possibility, it is much better to join a small syndicate and let someone else do the worrying.
 
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stu_the_blank

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Hi Chevin,

fascinating trip down memory lane. You are spot on with a few points.

People value things more if they cost, don't know why but cheap or free tends to get abused.

You've got to deal with bad members ruthlessly. I do what you did, money back, don't come back.

There are owners to whom the money for rent is secondary to the behaviour of the anglers.

Stu
 
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