The office will be open this week (beginning Mon 19) every day 9:30-12:30.
Due to oxygen levels, the trout pool is closed until further notice.
--MANDATORY NOTE TO ALL ANGLERS--
Due to a local outbreak of K.H.V. no keepnets to be used on any still waters. Dip tanks are in place on all stillwaters. Nets, mats and slings MUST be dipped (FULLY immersed) for a minimum of 15 minutes. Keep nets are allowed on the River Stour (only) from the start of the river season.
Following his successes at Stour Lake Terry Culley opted to try Fordwich Lake in early October and finished with five good carp including a 26lb fully-scaled mirror. Despite Fordwich carp catches slowing a little John Collins managed another good fish, this time a 24lb mirror.
Pike anglers enjoyed a reasonable start to their season with a number of small fish seen from the river and local still waters with all methods producing.
Stonar Lake continued to produce tremendous catches of all species and for regular and occasional visitors alike. Roach to over 1lb and rudd to over 2lb were not uncommon during a spell of great angling at Stonar.
Kate Cox hooked eight carp to 10lb and then bigger fish of 10lb 13oz, 13lb 6oz, 17lb 8oz and her best a good mirror carp of 21lb 4oz ahead of Andy Cox with seven more lively carp to 12lb 11oz.
Andrea Palmer banked three small carp and six sizeable bream to 6lb 8oz while Andrew Palmer caught six carp to 13lb and fifteen quality bream to 8lb. Alan Plant enjoyed a massive bream haul with fish to 5lb 4oz in his 70lb total.
Unlucky for some, but thirteen proved lucky for Phil Combes with thirteen carp to 19lb 12oz and thirteen bream to 6lb. Phil also landed a big eel although some anglers might not consider that quite so lucky. Other good carp and mixed bags were reported by Terry Cutter, Clive Phillips, Alan McDermot and George Dowle during a busy and successful period at Stonar.
Towards the end of the month at Stonar Lake Gavin Stewart topped the catches with thirty one bream to 6lb, twenty carp to 10lb and eleven more big carp including commons, mirrors and fully-scaled mirrors to 20lb 4oz.
The good roach and rudd catches slowed a little but bream remained very catchable with Tony Dellaway weighing in sixteen specimen bream to 9lb as well as a 16lb 2oz mirror carp. Mick Batten targeted bream and ended with nine fish to his name and Jason Peterson five more.
Following on from his other successes at Stonar Andy Palmer hooked two more common carp and five bream to 6lb while Mike Chandler connected with, and safely landed, another big Stonar carp in the form of a 22lb 12oz mirror.
Father and son Terry and Chris Culley hooked some fine carp hauls this season from various Association waters and fishing at Stonar in late October Chris caught a brace of 24lb 4oz mirror carp and four more ‘doubles’ to 19lb 3oz while his dad hooked five more including a 21lb 12oz common carp.
At Fordwich Lake Sam Murphy landed a 31lb mirror carp while Simon Pagdin banked two more big carp over 30lb in one amazing night. Colin Hurst and Mick Wilson added to their season’s tallies with Colin bagging twelve more fish that included three more specimen carp over 30lb while Mick tackled four more to 28lb.
Stour Lake in the Fordwich complex proved a worthy venue for Steve Payne with a 16lb mirror carp and Kevin Harding with a tremendous 26lb mirror carp. Steve Matthews fished on the River Stour to catch three more weighty carp to 19lb in a most memorable session.
Early September saw our still waters slow a little although Fordwich Lake witnessed a few big carp including a fantastic 35lb common landed by Pete Wade and an even heavier common weighing in at 37lb carefully landed by Steve Kemp.
Numerous small to medium size mirror and common carp continued to be caught from the prolific Stonar Lake where some huge fish were also seen. Jeff Davis topped the Stonar catch report at that time with six carp to 10lb, four more between 10lb and 21lb 4oz and most notably ‘Big Girl’ a huge mirror carp that weighed 36lb 8oz at that time.
Big bream hauls of twenty plus fish to 4lb were not uncommon and Kevin Prior was in on that action. Kevin along with other anglers including George Dowl, Mick Lee, Tom Mansell, Cameron Neale, George Hof, Henri Thomas and Ian Phipp also hooked decent carp in their bream, roach and rudd hauls.
Carp-only catches were taken by Kiefer Ludkin who managed a mix of mirrors and commons between 15lb and 24lb, while Melvin Jarman successfully connected with five more fish including a 23lb 8oz mirror carp.
Andy Palmer’s bream haul included a real handful in the form of a big eel that tipped the scales to 4lb. The Association record eel is a fish of 6lb 6oz caught from Westbere Lake during the 1981/82 coarse fishing season.
Association Bailiff Jon Weir fished at Stonar with his son Henry, Jon finishing the session with bream to 3lb 8oz and fourteen carp to 13lb. Junior member Henry bagged bream to 4lb, a brace of tench to 2lb and six carp including a Stonar personal-best fish of 15lb 4oz.
By mid and late September early autumn catches were reported from all areas of Stonar Lake with match, pleasure and carp anglers all filling their nets.
A number of big roach were hooked from Stonar and John Stevens bagged eleven to 1lb 4oz while Tony Lavender had eight more to 1lb 12oz plus thirty five bream to 7lb.
Ken Stokes bagged up on bream with thirty six fish to 3lb 8oz while Dick Big had a small common carp and notably several roach to 1lb 8oz and twelve quality rudd to 2lb.
Over the years Mike Chandler has enjoyed some very fruitful sessions at Stonar and a visit in September produced a mixed bag comprising tench to 1lb 8oz, six bream to 3lb 8oz, a small common carp and six double-figure carp including a brace of mirrors weighing 22lb 8oz and 22lb 6oz. Other mixed bags included Frank West’s with bream to 5lb and carp to double-figures; Graham Pugsley with carp to 9lb and nineteen bream to 5lb 8oz; and Robert Dutfield who caught tench to 2lb, bream to 5lb and carp to 18lb 4oz.
One of the best carp hauls of the season from Stonar was reported by Dave Stewart with eight fish to 10lb and twenty one more double-figure common and mirror carp to 26lb 4oz. Bailiff Jock White also targeted carp and landed seven to 10lb and nine bigger fish including mirrors of 24lb 10oz and 22lb plus a splendid fully-scaled mirror of 24lb 7oz. Brian Martin scooped his landing net safely under nine more weighty carp to 22lb 4oz, and Dylan Crosbie banked a good common/ mirror brace weighing 15lb 6oz and 20lb.
Fordwich Lake also produced some fine carp catches in the last week or two in September. Kevin Harding demonstrated his experience with five carp including a fantastic 31lb common and Gavin Stewart six more including three over the ‘magic 30lb’ mark.
A fully-scaled mirror carp of 20lb was a well deserved catch by John Collins while Charlie Holdsworth enjoyed a memorable mirror carp brace of 28lb and 27lb from Fordwich Lake.
Opting to fish Stour Lake for carp, father and son Terry and Chris Culley bagged up despite the more autumnal weather and variable conditions. Eleven fish to 22lb fell to Terry, and Chris hooked and safely landed seven more carp to 18lb.
At Fordwich Lake, a night on the north bank resulted in Dan Boden landing six carp on boily up to a respectable 25lb, Dan’s haul included a mix of commons, mirrors and fully scaled carp. John Collins topped this with three fish to 28lb.
There was plenty of activity at Stonar Lake. Lee Cull across multiple sessions landed a series of fully scaled mirrors ranging from 16lb to 28lb 8oz. Lee’s other catches included seven carp to 10lb and a mirror of 24lb 4oz. Andrew and Andrea Palmer’s catch included six mirrors to 15lb, while Andy Palmer stormed ahead with a sizeable haul consisting of rudd to 2lb, twenty two bream to 5lb and several carp up to a 28lb mirror.
Father and son Steve and Adam Matthews caught a good range of commons and mirrors, with the largest being a 22lb common. Adam set a new personal best with a 20lb 1oz mirror. Terry and Chris Culley caught nine carp between them, the largest was a 19lb mirror.
Other notable hauls at Stonar during early August included that caught by Colin Winbush, with a 17lb 8oz fully-scaled mirror, several more mirrors, bream to 4lb and tench to 2lb 8oz. Paul Sturge managed an impressive thirty six carp, the largest was a 26lb mirror.
Arguably one of the best catch reports in August was taken by Jim Malyn fishing at Fordwich Lake. Jim ended his latest sessions with ten fish to a very impressive 36lb, including three of 30lb.
There were several great carp catches taken from Fordwich Lake towards the end of the month. Dave Footman’s brace of mirrors weighing 34lb and 26lb included the heaviest of these but Steve Matthews was close behind with a five fish haul that included a fantastic 31lb 7oz common carp and Reece Payne with nine more carp including a 29lb common.
Stonar Lake remained in very fine form with coarse anglers and carp anglers sharing the spoils. Dave Dunkley landed a 10lb common carp but most notably hooked fifty rudd, with some quality fish to 1lb, while John Neame banked four carp including a 19lb 2oz common as well as twenty four bream to 7lb.
Mark Cleary concentrated on rudd and bream and finished with a massive haul of thirty five bream to 4lb 8oz and numerous rudd to 1lb 8oz and Michael Tilley tench and bream finishing with more bream to 4lb 8oz and tench to 2lb 8oz.
Weighty carp were landed by several anglers including a 22lb 7oz mirror taken by Mick Luesley bettered by a couple of pounds with another mirror of 25lb for Andy Tappenden.
Arguably the best catch at the end of the month was taken by junior angler Harry Pollard who caught bream to 5lb, three small carp to 12lb and one of the biggest fish in Stonar Lake known as ‘Big Girl’ that Harry landed weighing 35lb.
Further mixed bags were seen including that taken by Luke Easter with rudd to 2lb, bream to 6lb and small carp. Austin Pryor also caught small carp and bream to 6lb with rudd to 2lb.
The heaviest bream from Stonar have generally tipped the scales to 6lb plus, occasionally 7lb, and Mark Hodder coaxed several of those in another successful session in August.
The ongoing hot and sunny weather put a dent in catches of carp reported from Fordwich Lake with ten good fish recorded over the first week in July in contrast to the 140 plus fish caught in the opening week of the season.
Steve Sheppard topped the best of the hauls at that time with four fish including a 24lb and 22lb brace, while Dan Boden hooked three more including a 25lb mirror carp. Sam Clugston also landed a 25lb mirror while the heaviest two fish were both commons and Steve Kemp’s fish of 34lb just tipped the scales a little further than Hugh Malloy’s fine common carp of 33lb.
Catches at Stonar Lake were generally less affected by the extreme weather with a variety of fish continuing to be seen on the bank.
Great hauls of fish were landed by some anglers targeting carp while others caught fewer but bigger fish. John Neame managed to combine both approaches and finished with fifty one carp including mirrors of 29lb 5oz, 22lb 12oz, 22lb 10oz, 19lb 6oz and 18lb 9oz, and commons of 22lb 14oz and 18lb 10oz, as well as twelve bream to 7lb.
In contrast float fishing also produced some fine catches from Stonar including the net-full taken by David Sturge who caught roach to 1lb 8oz, forty rudd to 1lb, bream to 4lb and most notably a 26lb mirror carp, all hooked and safely landed using a pole.
Mixed bags of quality roach and rudd were reported by Andy Tappenden and Tim Glass with fish between 1lb and 2lb not uncommon. Rudd and bream were banked by Bob Stead and Jock White while Chris Dilnut and Gary Marsh both caught numerous rudd to 1lb.
Float fishing tactics worked for Kevin Prior who coaxed thirty five bream to 5lb, thirty rudd to 2lb, tench to 4lb and a 15lb common carp.
Having eight bream to 5lb to his name Karl White hooked a small common carp and a 14lb mirror carp before catching a personal-best mirror carp weighing 28lb 2oz to crown a first class session.
Towards the end of the month Stonar fished well with multiple catches of rudd and bream being reported across the lake. Additionally, carp were landed in numbers with Dale McGurk topping the July summary having caught fourteen quality fish including ‘Big Girl’ weighing 35lb 11oz, a brace of mirrors of 20lb 4oz and 19lb 4oz, plus eleven smaller carp to 13lb.
The local Koi Herpes Virus (KHV) outbreak continued which meant keep-nets were not permitted to be used on Association waters. KHV is a serious viral (notifiable) disease of fish and can result in large scale mortalities. Dip tanks remained in place on all still waters and nets, mats and slings had to be dipped (fully immersed) for a minimum of 15 minutes.
At the end of the month at Fordwich Lake Jim Malyn caught a tremendous haul of big carp that included a 35lb common, a 32lb mirror and three fish over 20lb. Three more fish were banked weighing 25lb (a mirror) and two commons of 24lb and 15lb by Bill Cozier, while Dave Footman landed a 25lb common carp after skilfully playing the fish.
Fishing over three nights Sam Clugston hooked thirteen fish that included seven more specimen carp over 25lb despite the extremely hot weather with very little rain seen for several weeks.
In an incredible start to the new season over one hundred and forty carp were caught from Fordwich Lake during the first week.
Richard Bacchus landed forty two of these including five over 30lb, his best a 36lb 10oz common carp in arguably the best start to any season in living memory.
Richard shared a swim with Nathan Hogbin who landed nine carp to 26lb meaning there were an incredible fifty one fish totalling 1,034lb landed from one swim. Continuing the action from the ‘North Bank’ Keith Minter landed twelve carp including a 26lb 1oz common and ten tench while George Fagg had three carp to 14lb 12oz.
Gavin Archer had a 19lb 8oz mirror which was his first carp from Fordwich Lake and Carl White a lively 22 lb common. Stuart White started his new season on Stour Lake and landed four carp to 11lb and then went into the swim vacated by his brother Carl to hook eight more carp from Fordwich Lake including a 28lb common carp with five of his fish over 20lb.
Lee White caught seven rod-bending carp, his best a 25lb 12oz common. Andy Davies had seven more carp to 28lb 4oz (a common) and he finished with six of these fish over 20lb.
Mark Parker spent a lot of time in the closed season rebuilding a swim which he deservedly fished during the first week to catch a 31lb 8oz mirror carp.
The following anglers all fished from the ‘Deeps’ and this area also produced some tremendous catches. Steve Shepherd landed a 16lb mirror, basking in sunshine and enjoying the fine June weather Ben Johnson a 27lb mirror and experienced carp angler Colin Hurst seven more sizeable carp. Chris Culley had a 22lb common carp, Steve Matthews five more fish his best a 26lb 2oz common while Steve's son Adam Matthews, a junior member of the Association, had a 5lb 8oz bream which was one of several big bream he bagged on the first night of the season.
A few bream and tench were seen at Stour and Trenley lakes and the fishing there started to improve towards the end of the month.
Stonar Lake fished fantastically especially during the latter part of the closed season with numerous big carp landed and most species of native freshwater fish seen. Late in June Mike Chandler bagged six carp including two over 20lb and a fine 3lb 9oz chub.
Large hauls were taken by Shane Mason who caught twenty carp to 10lb and Paul Mills with forty one more including bigger fish of 22lb 12oz and 26lb despite the continued hot weather.
Alan Ashdown and Steve Duke both recorded catches of bream, carp and most notably numerous rudd to 1lb while Barry Morgan hooked a small common carp and twenty bream to 4lb.
With sixteen small carp to his name Craig Wedgner also landed a tremendous 6lb tench, a 19lb mirror carp and a personal-best 24lb mirror carp from the ever-fruitful Stonar Lake.
Following the stocking of the River Stour with several thousand fish, there were good catches reported particularly at the Fordwich ‘Straights’ despite the freezing cold weather at the beginning of the month.
While the local lakes remained quiet the river also continued to produce a number of pike caught using various methods with Plucks Gutter and Grove Ferry the most fruitful.
The 2017/2018 season closed with the usual rush of anglers to the Association’s waters despite the last two weeks of the season being framed by two bitterly cold spells of weather.
A number of good carp recently stocked in Stour Lake were caught in the final week of the season but it was at Fordwich Lake where the majority were taken.
Fishing at long range Steve Young landed a 31lb common and a 24lb mirror carp from the north bank while Kevin Harding bagged an 18lb mirror carp and Shay Williams a 24lb common carp.
Simon Pagdin made two overnight visits to Fordwich and connected with a 29lb mirror and a 14lb common carp. Stuart White hooked a 26lb 2oz common and his brother Carl White a 15lb mirror carp.
With just over a month to go until the end of the traditional coarse fishing season, catches remained down due to the ongoing cold weather and less than ideal conditions experienced throughout February.
A stocking of the River Stour with the Environment Agency saw roach, skimmer (small) bream, dace and chub introduced at Fordwich, Grove Ferry and Plucks Gutter. A few coarse fish were hooked from various locations along the river and a small number of pike from Grove Ferry and Plucks Gutter.
Stonar Lake was productive for some although very few big fish were landed. Tony Dellaway tipped the scales the farthest with a 22lb 4oz mirror carp, a smaller mirror of 14lb 2oz and a brace of commons to 11lb.
Mixed bags of carp and bream fell to Dan Gassor with four carp to 9lb 2oz and five bream to 6lb, while Christie Dean bagged seven carp to 18lb and four bream to 4lb, and John Neame with three bream to 4lb and three carp to 12lb 3oz.
Anglers with one carp to their name in difficult conditions at Stonar included Charlie Allen, Joshua Marsh, Danny Ellis, Shaun Haynes, Bob Fisher and Carl Rose.
Jim Covus bagged five carp to 14lb and Mick Moyes went one better with six to 12lb 10oz. All Mick’s carp were commons. Junior angler Jack Vickers showed the seniors how to do it by landing two more lively commons from Stonar – a small fish of 5lb and a rod-bending and tough fighting fish of 15lb 8oz.
Stonar Lake was quiet over the festive break with few anglers venturing there. Lee Cull bucked the trend with four small common carp and seven mirror carp between 14lb and 21lb 5oz and in two further sessions eight more commons to 12lb and nine mirrors to 14lb.
Bob Fisher’s hefty 21lb 3oz mirror carp was a fantastic catch taken and returned in less than ideal weather conditions. In a later session Bob went on to hook smaller carp of 10lb 8oz (common) and 12lb 8oz (mirror). Graham Pugsley targeted bream and landed a fine haul of thirty eight fish to 6lb 8oz as well as four carp to 11lb.
The first week to ten days in January saw a slight improvement in catches despite the weather. Several other top-teens carp were hooked but Mark Burns was the only other angler with a ‘20’ when he safely landed a 21lb mirror carp.
Paul Mills landed seven carp to 14lb 12oz, his heaviest a mirror and he also went on to bank a 3lb chub, a fish rarely seen at Stonar. Local Bailiff Jock White was also in on the action when he coaxed three small common carp, another of 11lb, a 14lb 5oz fully-scaled mirror and topped these off with a 15lb 6oz mirror carp.
Fordwich Lake encountered similar mixed fortunes with few anglers venturing out but those who did hooked good fish. Alan Boxall landed a fine specimen common carp of 37lb followed by a 26lb mirror carp landed in a single session within just 14 hours of each other. Another good mirror of just over 20lb was banked by Jack Warner and as with Alan’s brace this was taken from the ever-fruitful north-bank.
Dave Lowry recorded his twentieth good pike of the season and this time a fine 20lb 6oz predator finally came to his landing net after a tussle at Grove Ferry.
By the end of the month the river was in flood and conditions were less than ideal across our waters. Anglers were politely reminded that extreme care should be taken, particularly during the winter months, with the river and adjacent lakes often in flood. Even when the water level dropped banks may be left unstable, undercut, eroded and slippery.
The cold weather continued through December and slowed angling again during a period where fewer anglers traditionally brave the weather and conditions.
At the Fordwich lakes complex the occasional pike angler ventured out with mixed fortunes. Spinning at Trenley and Fordwich Lake resulted in fish to 12lb with pike to 15lb caught in the same manner on the River Stour at Grove Ferry and Plucks Gutter.
Quality rather than quantity came to the net at Stonar Lake early in the month, mostly due to the number of anglers being well down and those venturing out targeting their fish well.
With two small common carp to his name, Gavin Stewart went on to reel in a 16lb 4oz mirror carp before landing a massive 32lb 14oz mirror carp known by our Stonar regulars as Big Girl.
Terry Marshall fished for perch and hooked six good fish to 1lb 8oz. Hauls of bream were taken including Graham Pugsley’s with fifteen fish to 4lb and Tony Cox with ten more to 5lb. Both Graham and Tony also caught carp to 10lb during their sessions.
All carp-catches were seen including by Peter Wade who banked seven common carp to 15lb and Phil Combes with two small commons and a 19lb 9oz mirror carp.
Paul Mills reeled in seven mirrors and commons ranging from 9lb to 23lb, while Stuart Dale also tackled up for carp and finished his trip (and the year) with two small commons, a 22lb mirror carp and a 26lb fully-scaled mirror carp.
Throughout November angling was generally much slower than in previous months.
At Fordwich Lake far fewer big carp were caught. A handful of exceptions included a good common carp brace of 27lb 4oz and 24lb 10oz landed by Gavin Stewart. Two more anglers shared four more good carp at Fordwich Lake including Peter Wade with a 28lb 10oz mirror carp and 28lb and 24lb commons, while Shaun Warren had the best of the bunch with the only ‘thirty’ of early November when he reeled in a fine 31lb common carp.
Stonar Lake was quieter than normal with only a few anglers taking to the bank. Despite the challenging conditions with much colder weather taking grip, Carl White stuck to his game-plan and caught eight carp including a new personal-best 24lb mirror. Darren Edwards targeted some of the lake’s smaller carp and slipped his landing net safely under twenty five that included two 15lb commons and an 18lb mirror.
All-carp bags were taken by Mike Chandler, Kenny Kneedham and Mick Squire. Mike had five to 21lb 7oz, Mick six to 16lb 4oz and Kenny six more to 20lb 4oz.
A few bream were seen at Stonar where Phil Isted coaxed thirteen to 5lb 8oz as well as a 15lb mirror carp and Bob Stead landed more to 5lb as well as a small eel. Mixed bream and carp bags were reported by Phil Combes with bream to 4lb and carp to 13lb, Graham Pugsley had bream to 4lb 8oz and carp to 16lb, Jason Brady bream to 5lb and carp to 21lb and Tony Lavender bream to 6lb and five carp ranging from 13lb to 19lb.
KHV remained a very real threat locally and all anglers were instructed to use the dip tanks provided. The keep-net ban remained in place. By mid November angling again slowed across our waters with colder weather setting in and fewer fish being caught.
In contrast to the recent carp catches, particularly from Fordwich Lake, very few carp were seen on the bank. Gavin Stewart’s 10lb mirror carp was the only reported carp from Fordwich in late November.
Pike anglers faired better at the Fordwich complex of lakes with most methods producing fish around the lakes. Association Bailiff Jon Weir landed seven pike to 9lb and a 1lb 12oz eel from Fordwich Lake while Jon’s son Henry Weir caught another pike of 8lb 12oz to give Henry a new personal-best fish.
At the Grove Ferry picnic site on the River Stour, the informal ‘Old Boys Match’ was fished by seven anglers over six hours and was won by Alan Caine with 9lb 8oz of silver fish ahead of Jeff Spearpoint with 8lb 4oz and third place J. Wigston with 5lb 8oz.
Some larger pike were coaxed from the river with Plucks Gutter and Grove Ferry producing notable fish. Jon Weir hooked his 14lb pike from Grove Ferry during a short session.
Stonar Lake saw fewer anglers venturing there but those braving the conditions were rewarded. Targeting silver fish, as many do at Stonar, Ian Frost reeled in twenty bream to 4lb and a 10lb common carp. Graham Pugsley also enjoyed a great bream haul with twenty five fish to 5lb, along with common carp of 6lb, 11lb and 16lb before hooking and bringing safely to his net a new personal-best mirror carp of 24lb.
Jock White took a well deserved break from his bailiffing duties to catch a tremendous array of coarse fish. Bagging two eels to 3lb 8oz, bream to 4lb, four small common carp to 10lb, larger carp of 11lb 8oz, 12lb 4oz, 13lb 3oz, 13lb 5oz and 15lb 7oz, Jock went on to catch a new Stonar-personal-best mirror carp of 31lb 1oz.
Short sessions at the Sandwich still water proved as productive as longer ones as Tony Munt demonstrated. Fishing from Peg 35 he landed mirror carp of 11lb, 23lb and 26lb 2oz all between 11am and 4pm on a most memorable day.
Mixed bream and carp bags were reported by several anglers with Tony Dellaway, Mick Ellis and Melvin Jarman each catching bream to four and five pound, and carp ranging from single figures to 19lb in varied and exciting sessions.
Other notable carp catches were taken by Mick Palmer with a common brace of 23lb 3oz and 11lb 8oz, David Brock with a pair of mirrors weighing 15lb 10oz and 11lb 6oz, and Mike Chandler four more to 11lb.
There were some fine early-autumn catches of carp from Fordwich Lake during October. Gavin Stewart topped the lot with a fantastic personal best common carp weighing 35lb with other anglers at the ‘deeps’ and north bank hooking numerous other big doubles.
Shaun Warren netted a brace of mirrors of 27lb 5oz and 24lb 7oz, Kevin Ostritch another hefty mirror of 26lb with a 28lb 8oz mirror falling to Stuart White along with a 27lb 4oz common and a 23lb 12oz fully-scaled mirror carp.
At Stour Lake Sean Ames tamed three carp to 18lb, while at Littlebourne’s Birch Lake Ian Ashdown hooked twelve more to 17lb in a most successful session.
During October, and following on from the Stonar Charity Shield held in July, anglers raised a grand total of £3,146.85 for Pilgrims Hospice. During the formal presentation John Sturge who organised the competition said: “Thank you to all who took part for raising so much money for such a good cause, thank you also to Jon Weir our head bailiff for all his support with the event.” Caroline Dixon, community fundraising officer said: “We are so lucky to get such wonderful support from our community, John Sturge and all the anglers involved with the event have been so generous in their support. We’re delighted that they have also chosen to support us again at next year’s event and I look forward to working with John again.”
Back on the bank at Stonar, bailiff Jock White reported things were a little quieter at the Sandwich still water but nevertheless a few fine catches were reported to Jock. Bream were seen in large numbers with Brian Kirkaldie hooking a massive haul of forty eight fish to 4lb as well as a 13lb fully-scaled mirror carp. Christie Dean landed more bream to 5lb, as did Andrea Palmer, Andrew Palmer and Duncan Riddle with some tipping the scales to 6lb.
Slightly heavier tactics produced nine carp to 15lb for Scott Roberts and a brace of 16lb common carp and another specimen common of 21lb for Stacey Pennell.
Paul Roskell’s mixed bag of 6lb bream, roach to 1lb 12oz, perch to 1lb 8oz and rudd of 1lb, was one of the most notable catches of the month. Early autumn often produces good roach catches and there were several taken from Stonar. With fish to 1lb 12oz Graham Pugsley was delighted with his roach haul.
During the middle of the month the spectacularly warm weather producing temperatures well into the twenties provided some comfortable and most enjoyable angling across our waters.
Stonar Lake continued to produce fantastic catches and there were all species of resident coarse fish coming readily to the net. Personal-best fish were landed by two anglers with Chris Woodall hooking three small carp to 10lb and a massive haul of eleven good double-figure carp including fish over 20lb, and most notably a 31lb 12oz mirror carp providing Chris with a new personal-best.
Adam Spain’s four fish included a 21lb mirror carp that set his personal-best weight at a new high, while Ivan Rubins bagged a 20lb 6oz mirror, Stacey Pennel six more great carp to 23lb and Peter Wade a big mirror brace of 19lb and 24lb.
Lots of other anglers were reeling in common and mirror carp to 15lb at Stonar using various tactics and baits. Kevin Coultham landed two small carp, mirrors of 11lb and 14lb and a fine bream bag that comprised thirty five fish to 4lb.
An all-bream bag of fifteen fish to 3lb fell to Oli Hook while Sam Weale reeled in twenty seven more to 7lb, a 4lb common carp, a tench of 2lb 8oz and six rudd to 1lb. A number of bigger tench were caught from Stonar with Antonie Page netting a 4lb fish, Ron Weaving another of 4lb along with bream to 5lb and numerous roach to 1lb 8oz.
Despite the ongoing KHV restrictions anglers continued to enjoy their sport through the end of the month. At Fordwich Lake ‘carpys’ enjoyed bumper catches with Lee White topping the list with seven carp including commons of 30lb 2oz and 31lb 14oz, Chris Culley with a fantastic common of 33lb, Terry Culley a tremendous common of 32lb and a 27lb mirror and a 25lb common falling to Stuart White.
Other notable Fordwich carp catches at that time included Darren Offen’s with a 27lb 10oz mirror and commons of 25lb 8oz and 23lb, Brian Gaymer with a 19lb linear and 29lb common and a mirror brace tipping the scales to 30lb 6oz and 21lb for John Collins.
Quite a number of carp were banked from the River Stour in the past month or so but away from the river sizeable still-water carp continued to be caught at Fordwich and Stonar lakes.
Paul Whitehorn pitched up at Fordwich to hook four good ‘doubles’ including a 23lb mirror carp and a fabulous 34lb common. A 25lb 8oz mirror carp was landed by Chris Powell while a tough scrapping common carp of 22lb 8oz eventually slipped into Andy Davies’ landing net.
The September Stonar carp catches included quality and quantity with many anglers achieving both even during relatively short sessions. Dale McGurk took fifteen carp, his best a mirror of 25lb 12oz and Daniel Gisby six more good doubles. Chris Gisby’s tally included seven more Stonar carp, bream to 7lb and a 4lb 1oz tench.
A mixed carp bag of commons, koi and mirrors gave Paul Mills a fantastic fourteen fish to 29lb 12oz. Plenty of good silver fish bags were seen including that caught by Dave Kemp including rudd to 1lb and small tench, as well as thirteen carp to 16lb.
Andrew and Andrea Palmer shared the spoils with bream to 6lb and carp to 16lb 1oz. Quality roach continued to be landed at Stonar with Tim Glass netting nine to 12 ounces and sixteen fine rudd to 1lb and tench to 2lb. Dick Big reeled in lots of fish during the 2017/18 season and in September his Stonar catch report comprised twelve excellent roach all over 1lb. Dick’s best was a specimen of 2lb.
Terry and Chris Culley chose to fish at Stour Lake in Fordwich and finished with a brace between them. Terry hooked a 15lb mirror carp and Chris weighed in an 11lb common carp.
Due to a local outbreak of Koi Herpes Virus (KHV) no keep-nets were permitted to be used on any Association waters at this time. KHV is a serious viral (notifiable) disease of fish and can result in large scale mortalities. Dip tanks were in place on all still waters and nets, mats and slings had to be dipped (fully immersed) for a minimum of 15 minutes.
The variety and quality of catches throughout September was superb with Stonar Lake proving particularly fruitful.
A phenomenal all-carp weight of 322lb was caught by Terry Culley with twenty nine fish safely slipping into his landing net. Terry’s fine haul included several good ‘twenties.’ Chris Culley was also in touch with big carp and finished another great session with two small commons and a big mirror brace of 21lb 4oz and 20lb 2oz.
Mixed bags have always featured from Stonar and Tony Cox caught another with lots of rudd to 1lb 8oz, bream to 4lb, five small common carp and heavier mirror carp of 14lb, 16lb and 18lb in a most memorable visit. Dave Armstrong’s catch of twenty three bream to 6lb, a small common carp and an unexpected big eel of 1lb 8oz was of note, as was Ian Ashdown’s of ten rudd to 1lb 8oz, eleven bream to 6lb 2oz, two small commons and two eels also to 1lb 8oz.
Thirteen bream to 5lb 8oz, a small common and a 17lb 10oz mirror fell to Clive Lammin while a traditional approach also worked well for Robert Dougless who finished with roach to 1lb 12oz and bream to 5lb 8oz.
Several anglers caught approximately ten carp each during single sessions at Stonar including Andrew Palmer and Dave Kemp, with fish to over 20lb not uncommon in such catches.
Keen river angler George Howson swapped his running water gear and tactics to hook numerous roach to 1lb 8oz and seven good perch to the same weight. Roach to over 1lb and bream to 9lb were also caught in numbers by lots of anglers at Stonar with all the popular swims producing fish.
Despite a more autumnal feel to the weather the carp at Fordwich Lake were active and anglers there were catching from the ‘deeps’ and the ever-popular north bank. Continuing on from the four carp from Stonar, Chris Culley bagged an 18lb 4oz mirror and five commons ranging from 13lb 2oz to 27lb 8oz.
Colin Hurst landed one of the biggest fish in late September with a fantastic 33lb 15oz common carp while Gilly Gilmore landed two thirties of 30lb 10oz and 30lb 2oz, both common carp, and super mirrors of 25lb 8oz and 21lb.
To finish off the month Steve Shepard and Dave Footman were also in action at Fordwich with Steve hooking a 24lb common carp and mirrors of 23lb and 21lb, with Dave landing a 17lb common carp and a 16lb mirror.
Trenley Lake fished well at the beginning of August and good bream and tench catches were seen during the night and day from all swims.
More big carp catches were seen in another busy period at Fordwich Lake. A common carp brace of 27lb and 24lb was taken by Brian Gaymer while Dave Footman had two more carp, his best a 22lb 4oz common. Yet more common carp were banked when Kevin Ostritch hooked a 24lb 6oz specimen and Oliver Law three more of 17lb, 19lb and 22lb.
Jack Warner’s fine season continued with commons of 25lb 10oz and 27lb 14oz, a fine 20lb 1oz mirror carp which were all topped with a cracking 35lb 6oz personal-best mirror carp.
Stonar Lake continued to fish fantastically well during August with most visitors to the Sandwich still water connecting into good quality coarse fish of all species.
Junior member Jack Hensbey netted a personal-best common carp with a 16lb fish. Stonar Bailiff Jock White used his local knowledge to hook roach of 1lb 4oz, 1lb 6oz and 1lb 8oz, rudd to 1lb 12oz and a 7lb common carp, all taken using half an 18mm boilie presented on a float rod, as well as a 14lb mirror carp when Jock switched to his heavier carp rod.
Tremendous mixed bags were taken by Steven Duke when he landed a 7lb 8oz common carp as well as twenty bream to 3lb 8oz and twenty rudd to 2lb, and Andy Tappenden with rudd to 1lb 4oz, bream to 5lb, and carp of 10lb, 15lb 6oz, 22lb 6oz and 25lb 8oz. Andy’s last fish, a mirror carp, was a new personal-best and finished his excellent session at Stonar Lake.
Plenty more big carp were seen at Stonar and some fell to anglers targeting smaller fish on light tackle. Mick Sharpe bagged fifteen bream to 8lb and a 29lb 2oz fully scaled mirror carp and Matthew Slater seven big bream to 9lb 8oz and five common carp to 14lb 8oz.
Despite the excellent catches during the middle of the month, the Blundell Cup competition had to be cancelled due to a nearby outbreak of Koi Herpes Virus (KHV), requiring the ban of keep nets on our waters. Dip tanks were installed into all club waters and had to be used for all nets, mats and slings.
At Fordwich, a massive thirty five pound common was landed by Simon Pagdin and Stuart White fought commons of both eighteen and twenty one pounds. Meanwhile Reece Payne recorded a fair sized 13lb 12oz mirror.
Fishing the north bank was Steve Shepard, who used boilies at one hundred yards to land two commons, the largest of which was twenty pound. Nearby Mark Jarett fought with a twenty seven pound common. Adding some variety to the mix was Andy Davis and his twenty two pound mirror, caught in the same fashion. Gavin Stewart fished the deeps at eighty yards range to capture a 21lb mirror.
Stour Lake saw Terry Culley successfully catch three carp on his boilies at close range, the largest of which was a nineteen pound mirror.
Over at Stonar, Alan Plant graced his net with several bream up to five pounds, as well as four carp including a 12lb 12oz common. Gareth and Bill Wordsfold together landed fifteen carp up to a respectable 20lb. Phil Bing landed two reasonable carp, while Dave Kemp battled with a rather large twenty six pound ten ounce mirror along with a sixteen and a half pound common and nine other smaller sized carp.
Daniel and Floyd Cromack together reeled in five carp, ranging from a ten pound common to a near fifteen pound mirror. Elsewhere on the lake two Coopers were also catching carp, with John landing fish up to a 20lb mirror and Arron surpassing that by two pounds six ounces, again a mirror. Father and son Terry and Chris Culley’s visit saw a large variety of fish, including Chris’ tench to three pounds, several rudd from 1lb to 1lb 8oz and a number of carp up to twenty eight pounds three ounces. Terry’s haul also included a number of rudd and a mirror of 23lb 8oz.
Other Stonar catches at that time included Stacey Pennel’s three carp: two twelve pound commons and a fifteen pound mirror. Jason Peterson deceived a mix of roach, tench, bream and common carp with a legered cocktail of worm and corn, while Tony Cox bagged himself a fourteen pound fully scaled mirror. George Dowle caught bream up to three pounds as well as nine carp up to sixteen and a half pounds; Tony Atwood netted a few small bream alongside three small commons, and Martin Wright float fished to see a series of rudd and bream on the end of his line.
Undoubtedly one of the best sessions of the month was Andy Warner’s on Fordwich. Not wanting to be outdone by his son Jack, who had caught four carp to thirty five pounds in the previous week, Andy’s catch resulted in twelve carp, the largest of which saw him staring eye to eye with a whopping thirty four pound common caught at long range from the north bank.
A few carp were landed from Fordwich Lake at the beginning of the month although the numbers had notably dropped since the opening two weeks of the season in mid June.
Colin Hurst took the best haul during this period with eight good carp, his best a tremendous mirror of 36lb. Three more big carp were taken by Matt Pritchard with fish to 25lb while John Collins went a little better than his Baldwin Cup catch by banking four more fish including a weighty 28lb common carp.
After a day’s work at the Fordwich complex of lakes, our Bailiff Jon Weir hooked a fine brace of carp overnight that included a 29lb mirror and a 27lb common.
Despite the angling slowing at most venues, Stonar Lake remained a great venue with fish coming readily to the net. Fifteen double-figure carp including a 22lb mirror and six bream to 6lb were banked by Dave Mewburn. Other carp hauls made at that time included Jason Brady’s fish to 22lb and Dean Baldock just ahead with more to 24lb 14oz.
Bream were also caught there in numbers with most coaxed amongst mixed catches of carp and bream. Alan Plant bagged fish to 5lb, Bon Fisher bream to 5lb 8oz and Tony Cox ten more to 5lb as well as half a dozen small carp. Andrea Palmer tempted two carp to 11lb 10oz as well as bream to 4lb 8oz.
Graham Pugsley landed roach to 1lb 14oz and rudd to 2lb 1oz. Good roach and rudd catches with numerous fish between 1lb and 2lb were also reported from Stonar Lake in July by Colin Shaxted and Sam Plews.
During the middle of the month Stonar was still fishing extremely well with all species of resident fish being seen. Chris Harnett enjoyed varied species with four tench, rudd to 1lb and thirty three big bream to 7lb 9oz. Fifty more good bream to 5lb were taken by Graham Pugsley while bream to a similar size were reported by Shaun Tooth along with numerous rudd to 8oz.
Lots more rudd were hooked at Stonar with Alex Stewart taking twenty fine fish to 1lb 4oz along with bream to 4lb 8oz. Mick Palmer’s thirty six bream to 5lb 4oz accompanied rudd to 12oz into Mick’s net, with Mick Rayner’s rudd to 12oz, roach to 1lb 4oz and bream to 5lb another good mixed bag. With roach to 8oz and twenty-seven good rudd to 1lb 4oz, Tim Glass was delighted with his latest catch from the prolific still water.
Perch were also banked at Stonar with fish to 1lb 8oz in Terry Marshall’s haul. Joshua Marsh netted eight bream to 5lb and Vincent Marsh five more, a small common carp and most notably a new personal-best mirror carp of 29lb to finish a tremendous session.
Carp anglers were encouraged at the time to know that big fish were still being taken at other Association waters as well as from Stonar. At Fordwich Lake Gavin Stewart hooked three fantastic commons of 21lb, 23lb 6oz and 30lb 14oz while Dave Roberts’ own trio were topped with a 26lb mirror. Experienced carp angler Don Sedgwick fished at Stour Lake and landed another lively rod-bending common weighing 18lb.
The traditional 2017/2018 season commenced with carp anglers enjoying an absolutely tremendous start!
Fordwich Lake’s angling pedigree has never been in question and experienced and less experienced anglers alike all caught despite the very hot and sunny conditions.
With eighteen carp to his name Richard Bacchus arguably had his most productive start for several years; his best fish was a common carp that tipped the scales to 36lb.
Keith Minter bagged eleven more including a specimen brace of commons weighing 26lb 8oz and 24lb 8oz. Sam Clugston and Stuart White both landed ten fish with Sam’s haul including five fish over 21lb and his best a 28lb common and Stuart’s heaviest, a mirror carp, weighed in at 21lb 8oz.
Fish were landed from the ‘north bank’ and from the ‘deeps’ areas at Fordwich. Alan Boxall tussled with nine more big fish including a 24lb mirror and Andy Davies three fish over ‘the magic twenty’ mark culminating in a 27lb common.
Dave Knight reeled in a brace of common carp of 20lb a piece and Tom Bennett a 21lb 8oz mirror, a 17lb common carp and seven eels to 2lb 8oz.
The searing heat and intense sunshine during the daytime put a few anglers off and some finished their early-season sessions earlier than normal. Opening week regular Steve Cock caught another fine fish with a mirror carp of 21lb.
Trenley Lake adjacent to Fordwich Lake also opened after the three- month closed season. Dan Boden fished there overnight to catch an incredible 172lb that included fifty bream and three tench. Two nights angling gave Neil Harrop twenty six bream, six tench, three big eels and three carp to 9lb 8oz.
Stonar Lake produced some mammoth bags in June. Gary Taylor targeted roach and bream and caught fish to 1lb and 3lb respectively. Plenty more bream came to the net including some sizeable ‘slabs’. Carl Rose’s haul included bream to 6lb 2oz, while David Sturge landed bream to 4lb 8oz and most notably lots of rudd to 1lb.
Gwyn Wiltshire hooked a 16lb fully scaled mirror carp and a fine bream bag of over 150lb that included fish to 5lb 12oz, and Mark Wiltshire banked six carp, his best a 24lb common.
The best Stonar carp haul at that time was taken by Peter Wade. Thirty six carp were recorded by regular visitor Peter; his excellent catch included all types of carp to 25lb 4oz.
Despite the changeable weather at the beginning of March angling generally improved.
Our members on the river and at the lakes shared in the spoils with more fish caught in the first week of March than in all of February.
The River Stour at Fordwich produced a fine 3lb 8oz chub for Bob Milkins while pike anglers fared better at stretches of the river at Grove Ferry. Dave Lowerey celebrated with the catch of his 100th pike of the season with a three fish catch from Grove Ferry. Dave’s latest fish included a small jack pike and two heavier fish of 18lb and 15lb.
At Fordwich Lake carp were more readily caught. Brian Gaymer banked a 35lb common while Dan Boden hooked and landed a new personal-best common carp of 29lb 4oz. Dan Craddock was also in on the action and his 22lb mirror carp was a welcome fish to his season’s tally.
Stonar Lake continued to improve with the weather and conditions, and lots of fish were reported.
Junior angler George Dodds hooked bream to 2lb and a good brace of common carp weighing 10lb and 9lb 4oz. Bream to 4lb and 5lb were caught in numbers at Stonar and Derek Travis, Victor Edginton and Jock white all had their fair shares. Sam Weale went a little better with twelve more ‘slabs’ to 6lb and lots of small roach.
Tremendous catches of roach and rudd were taken in March. Ernie Millard bagged sixteen roach to 1lb 4oz as well as several big bream, Chris Harnett forty three roach to 1lb 14oz, rudd to 2lb and yet more big bream.
Graham Marshall hooked twenty bream to 5lb as well as ten roach to 1lb and small carp while John Sturge had forty two roach to 1lb 9oz as well as rudd, bream and carp. Mick Moyes arguably had the best of the recent carp catches with four fish, his best 15lb 2oz.
The coarse fishing season finished in the middle of the month with the usual rush to local waters before the three month break.
At Fordwich Lake several big carp were caught including Lee White’s haul of commons weighing 16lb, 18lb, 27lb and a mirror carp of 23lb. Brian Gaymer had a great end to his season with several twenty pound plus fish topped by a superb common carp brace of 31lb and 35lb.
Three more anglers recorded tremendous carp catches from Fordwich. Stuart White’s common carp brace of 14lb and 16lb were bettered by a superb mirror carp of 36lb 8oz, while John Collins tussled with a 28lb common and Don Sedgwick a mirror of 22lb.
The Association’s first class waters that remain unaffected by and open throughout the traditional closed season were starting to fish well.
Stonar Lake continued to improve weekly. Chris Harnett enjoyed a superb trip with three rudd to 13oz and twenty five roach including four over 2lb. Chris’ best roach was a specimen of 2lb 4oz. In a return trip Chris weighed in seventy five more quality roach including fish of 2lb, 2lb 2oz, 2lb 5oz and 2lb 6oz. He also added to his rudd with thirty six, the best a superb fish of 2lb 4oz. Chris also caught five bream to 6lb 7oz in the same session.
Ten bream to 6lb and five carp to 15lb fell to Steve Harris while Jim Covus hooked eight more carp to similar weights.
Ian Gandon and Mike Chandler had a carp each with a 16lb mirror and an 18lb 3oz common respectively, Tony Cox three more to 13lb and Brian Mills reeled in a lively 16lb 3oz common carp.
The freezing conditions dented catches across the area with few fish being caught early in the month and only the occasional angler venturing out.
Where the conditions permitted a few jack pike were plucked from our local lakes but the River Stour was a little more productive with more jack pike and the odd bigger fish. Fishing at Grove Ferry Dave Lowery hooked three pike of 13lb, 18lb and 19lb.
At Stonar Lake Chris Harnett enjoyed bream to 6lb, rudd to 8oz and roach to 1lb 4oz although fewer than normal carp were landed. Paul Mills reported the best haul of that time with eleven carp his best a splendid mirror of 21lb 2oz.
Towards the end of the month, a few days of much milder weather gave the promise of a busy final three weeks to the traditional coarse fishing season.
Improving reports of catches continued with all species being landed and particularly some splendid carp at Fordwich Lake including Jack Warner’s specimen common carp of 40lb 2oz and a tremendous 24lb 4oz mirror carp for Vince Smith.
In the adjacent swims, pike anglers continued to do battle with lots of jack pike falling to lures and spinners, and the month finished a fair deal better than it had started.
There were very few anglers venturing out during the festive season and early into the New Year with conditions less than ideal.
A few pike anglers enjoyed some good sport by ‘travelling light’ and carrying a rod, reel, net, lures and the usual small tackle while venturing on foot from swim to swim to catch jack pike at the Fordwich complex. Ice formed on and off at the lakes and despite the occasional small jack pike the fishing was generally slow.
Junior member Ellie Warner started 2017 exceptionally well by hooking and landing a fantastic pike of 24lb from the River Stour at Fordwich.
Despite the conditions Stonar Lake remained worth a try with most species being caught there early in the month. The notable winter roach and mixed-bag catches included Ernie Millard’s with twenty three roach to 1lb 2oz and thirty bream to 6lb 8oz, Chris Harnett’s eleven roach to 1lb 8oz and nineteen bream to 6lb plus a 7lb mirror carp, and John Sturge’s numerous all roach bag to over 1lb.
Andy Cox targeted bream and finished with thirteen to 4lb 2oz while Graham Pugsley caught thirty six more to 4lb as well as three carp to 10lb 4oz and a lively eel of 2lb.
Bailiff Jock White enjoyed a great session at Stonar and finished with thirteen bream to 5lb as well as five common and mirror carp including a great winter fish of 19lb 12oz.
Other notable carp hauls at that time were taken by Lee Cull, Charlie Hitchman, Paul Mills and Dave Kemp. Two common carp to 10lb were well received by Gary Guarniery but his 4lb 7oz chub was a very welcome catch on a cold winter’s day.
During the middle and end of the month freezing weather hampered anglers for several days at a time and only the hardiest ventured out in these conditions to catch fish.
Two weeks after Ellie Warner started her 2017 so well with her 24lb from the Stour at Fordwich, this time it was her Dad’s turn when Jack Warner reeled in another tremendous predatory pike of 20lb 8oz.
Fishing at Stonar Lake John Sturge added to his recent great catches there with eight more roach over 1lb, while Chris Harnett enjoyed mixed bags of fish including more specimen roach to over 2lb. It remained reasonably quiet at Stonar but during an informal four hour match between friends, J. Wigston caught 17lb 14oz of silver fish ahead of second placed D. Aldiss with 15lb 4oz and K. Hobson with 6lb 8oz. Bream to 5lb and double figure carp including the odd ‘twenty’ were also occasionally seen at Stonar.
As advent began and the Christmas countdown kicked off, the usual slowdown of catches continued in early December with fewer coarse fish landed.
At Fordwich Lake John Collins bucked the trend with five carp including four over 20lb. Braving the freezing conditions Vince Samson was rewarded with a much smaller but very welcome 9lb common carp.
A few jack pike were caught around the three lakes at Fordwich. Fishing at Fordwich Lake Terry Courtney hooked four pike to 13lb and an eel of almost 3lb.
Following his recent successes at Grove Ferry, Dave Lowerey fished for pike again and followed up his 17lb 12oz pike with an even heavier specimen fish of 25lb 5oz and four others to 14lb 2oz.
Stonar Lake remained well worth a visit despite the cold weather. Scott Roberts’ eight carp to 18lb 8oz and seven more to 16lb landed by Jim Covus, joined Jock White with eight to 23lb 12oz and Jock’s son Ben White with six carp to 14lb, as the best of the early December hauls reported.
Dave Parsons was the only other angler to skilfully catch a big carp when he tempted a 20lb mirror carp from the depths of the Sandwich still water.
December is generally a slow angling month and fewer roach and rudd were caught but bream to 4lb were banked by Clive Eversfield and more weighty eels were seen at Stonar when Robert Daniels caught two fish to 2lb.
By the middle of the month the local lakes were much quieter as they tend to be at that time of the year. The River Stour was particularly low but this didn’t affect anglers who cashed in with good pike catches from most areas along the river including at Fordwich.
Coarse anglers also enjoyed some fine winter fishing on the Stour.
In a short spell at Fordwich, junior Henry Weir caught several pounds of small fish of all varieties using just a four metre whip with a simple set-up.
At Stonar Lake there were a number of further good catches reported to local Bailiff Jock White. Stuart Dale landed eight good carp including the new mirror carp lake record with a splendid fish of 35lb 11oz.
In comparison, but no less impressive, was Tony Lavender’s thirteen roach to 1lb 8oz all caught on the pole in just three hours.
Jock White landed bream to 4lb, nine common carp to 11lb 11oz and an 18lb 10oz mirror carp to finish his great year at Stonar.
Carp anglers at Stonar have no idea how big or small their catch might be although it is fair to say they know they will be successful at such a prolific fishery. Dave Kemp bagged three carp to 10lb, two mid double common carp and finally a rod-bending mirror of 26lb. Another haul of three commons to 10lb 11oz followed by a 21lb 8oz mirror carp for Tony Cox and six carp to 14lb plus a 21lb mirror for Paul Mills proved the variety of carp in Stonar.
Three bream to 3lb, two carp and roach to 1lb gave Fred Munday a mixed bag while Les Hodder also enjoyed an early Christmas present with a specimen common carp of 20lb 2oz.
Angling across our waters generally slowed in November with fewer venturing to the lake or river bank.
With the much colder weather, Fordwich, Trenley and Stour lakes saw a number of jack pike coming to the net but coarse anglers were generally not catching as many fish at the popular Fordwich complex.
The exception was exceptional with Dave Roberts landing a fantastic 39lb common carp from Fordwich Lake and Bradley Linell a 25lb mirror and 26lb common carp brace from the same water.
Stonar Lake saw some reasonable early November action with most species coming to the net.
Les Lennell bagged eleven carp of all sizes most notably a 23lb 12oz mirror carp and a 6lb 11oz koi. Other great carp catches from Stonar included Adam Maxted’s haul of twelve fish to 32lb. Adam also banked a number of bream to 4lb during the same session. Wayne Pemble’s 25lb 9oz mirror carp was another fine fish, especially for Wayne who recorded this fish as a new personal-best. Mike Chandler was equally satisfied with his six carp that were topped with a lively 21lb 7oz mirror.
Also at Stonar Steve Briggs hooked roach to 1lb 11oz and perch to 1lb 13oz, while Ron Meares took a rest from pike fishing on other waters to target perch and finished with several good fish to 1lb 8oz. Other anglers landed bream, roach, perch, tench, eel and numerous smaller carp to 10lb.
By the middle of the month a flurry of great carp catches were taken from Fordwich Lake with most anglers catching their quarry using boilie baits with long casts from the north bank.
Craig Batchel connected with a tremendous 28lb mirror that came safely to his landing net while Lee White tussled with three mirror carp to 26lb 14oz and Lee’s son Stuart White caught a specimen common carp weighing 35lb.
A five fish haul was reported by Bradley Linell comprising three ‘twenties’ and an even heavier mirror carp of 30lb followed by a 34lb common. Brian Gaymer bagged a 21lb common carp and a linear carp – a carp with a line of scales along the lateral line – of 23lb 10oz.
By the end of the month Stonar Lake was quieter with fewer anglers on the bank and fewer fish caught generally.
Tony Dellaway’s twelve big bream to 7lb 3oz was one of the better bream catches of the autumn from Stonar and Frank Manning also reeled in bream to 5lb and most notably roach to 1lb 4oz.
Fewer of the big Stonar carp were seen and Lee Cull’s seven carp to 18lb 8oz was the best of the November carp hauls. Junior member Louis Bourton was also in on the action with a great catch of a 13lb common carp.
At Grove Ferry, Dave Lowery targeted predatory pike and reeled in a lively 17lb 12oz fish. The ‘Old Boy’s match’ informally fished by a few friends saw some good weights from ‘E’ section with all seven weighing in over 5lb. The best of the weights were 10lb 10oz taken by K. Hopton and T. Eversham, while A. Smith hooked 8lb of mixed fish.
The River Stour produced a number of small ‘jack’ pike from the start of the pike-season at the beginning of the month.
Association Bailiff Jon Weir landed a bigger 16lb 4oz pike on a lure while Miles Mace tackled up for roach fishing and ended up skilfully landing a 22lb mirror carp on his light tackle.
Jack pike were also caught from a number of locations around the Fordwich complex of lakes while Fordwich Lake witnessed more good autumn carp catches.
Terry Culley’s four mirror haul comprised fish of 18lb 6oz, 18lb 8oz, 19lb 6oz and one just creeping over the magic ‘twenty’ mark weighing 20lb 1oz. Other notable catches included Chris Culley’s 25lb 8oz common carp and a 20lb 11oz mirror taken by John Patterson.
Stonar Lake saw several big carp coming to the net and a good variety of coarse fish also being tempted from the depths. Les Lennell hooked sixteen carp culminating with a mirror carp known locally as ‘big girl’ being landed weighing 32lb 2oz. Nine more carp fell to Bradley Lennell including a superb 25lb 14oz mirror.
Brian Mills and Jock White both continued their recent fine form with the float, Brian catching an 18lb mirror carp. A 16lb 10oz mirror and 8lb common fell to Jock’s bait.
Nineteen bream to 7lb, a 3lb 6oz eel and fourteen carp to 22lb 8oz were coaxed by Frank West. Chris Harnett also enjoyed first class sport at Stonar with twenty two bream to 7lb 5oz, roach to 8 ounces, three small tench and ten rudd to 1lb 8oz.
By the middle of the month, the good run of carp catches continued at both Fordwich and Stonar lakes.
At Fordwich five tremendous carp fell to Jack Warner with his 31lb common topping the lot and his tally also included a good brace of 20lb plus fish. Jim Malyn’s 29lb carp was the best mirror at that time while Terry Culley also tussled with five more carp to 24lb.
At Stonar the carp were caught from all popular locations with Joe Brennan reporting a fine haul of twenty one carp to 18lb along with bream to 4lb. Jason Scott was delighted to slip his landing net beneath a small common carp but more so under his next fish, a 19lb 8oz mirror which gave him a personal-best carp.
Shaun Haynes and Paul Mills both had great carp hauls. Shaun finished with five fish to 24lb 12oz and Paul Mills an incredible twenty two more to 24lb 6oz.
Stonar’s other varied species were coming to the net. Bream to 5lb and perch to 1lb 8oz fell to Chris Harnett’s well presented baits while Ronald Rowley also reported bream to 5lb and Ian Burford yet more bream to 4lb.
A small common carp of 9lb along with five eels, five roach and fifteen rudd to 8oz were landed by Terry Marshall. James Pearce and Peter Solley both hooked eels of 2lb. James also bagged bream to 3lb and Peter bream to 3lb 8oz along with a 13lb 3oz common carp and a mirror of 17lb 2oz.
Various sections along the River Stour were fishing reasonably well towards the end of October with Grove Ferry seeing some of the best and most varied action. A number of quality roach were hooked there including a fantastic 1lb 14oz roach landed by Alan Caine. Plenty of small pike were taken at Grove Ferry and Dave Minster banked four lively fish to 16lb during a busy session.
A number of big carp were landed early in the month from Fordwich Lake despite the hot and sunny weather and ever increasing water temperatures.
The heaviest of these was a tremendous common carp of 26lb 12oz landed by experienced angler Gary Hills. Three more weighty Fordwich carp fell to Mark Plank, his heaviest was a mirror and weighed in at 23lb, while Luke Earl’s trio comprised mirrors of 20lb 3oz and 25lb and a splendid common of 23lb.
Junior anglers Shannon Minter and Henry Weir had a most memorable time at Fordwich Lake, both catching their first carp. Shannon was thrilled with her 25lb 11oz common carp and Henry equally so with his 21lb 8oz mirror carp.
It was a little quieter at other waters and even Stonar Lake witnessed a dip in fish reported. The most varied haul at that time was taken by Tony Cox who caught roach to 1lb, bream to 4lb, three small carp and finally a fantastic mirror carp brace of 25lb 13oz and 27lb 12oz.
Another notable Stonar brace was taken by Steven Sinclair who landed an 11lb 9oz common followed by a ‘personal-best’ mirror carp that tipped the scales to 18lb 5oz.
Junior Hayden West hooked bream to 3lb and a lively 9lb 8oz common carp while Martin West netted seven more Stonar bream to 3lb and a slightly smaller common of 8lb.
Pleasure anglers and carp enthusiasts all enjoyed varied mixed bags. With twelve bream to 6lb to his name, Frank West went on to catch three carp to 14lb 6oz. Dave Parsons took ten bream to 4lb and four good carp that culminated in a 21lb 12oz mirror. Bryan Kirkaldie banked fourteen bream to 3lb 8oz, a 13lb 4oz common carp and most notably thirteen roach to 1lb 8oz.
Yet more good bream to 6lb 13oz were reported by Chris Harnett, who actually finished with 32 in a tremendous spell at Stonar, and went on to catch a small tench and six quality rudd to 1lb 8oz.
By the middle of the month a sustained period of tremendous carp catches at Fordwich Lake culminated in over twenty big fish coming to the net. Luke Earl hooked eleven carp over three nights with his best a magnificent 30lb 4oz mirror carp and an even heavier common of 33lb 8oz. Luke’s tally also included five more over the ‘magic’ 20lb mark.
The late summer sun and warm water temperatures didn’t appear to affect carp catches with Gavin Stewart reeling in six more fish including common carp of 29lb, 22lb and 17lb and mirrors of 28lb and a super pair of 27lb fish. Dave Roberts was also in the thick of the action and finished with five more specimen carp including a mirror of 29lb.
Stonar Lake was well attended by carp anglers, but it wasn’t just them that enjoyed great sport with pleasure anglers using more traditional techniques to land all manner and species of fish from this prolific water. Tony Cox weighed in ten single figure carp and twelve over 10lb including a brace of mirror carp of 20lb 2oz and 21lb 8oz. Rudd also featured in many of the catches at Stonar with Brian Mills catching lots of these fine fish to 1lb 12oz as well as six carp to 16lb 2oz. Brian Kirkaldie netted rudd to 2lb 4oz as well as quality roach to 1lb 12oz and seventeen weighty bream to 5lb.
Proving the variety of fish in Stonar Dan Bean hooked bream to 5lb and a superb 25lb 2oz mirror carp, while Sarah Smythe bagged bream to 3lb 8oz, a 4lb 8oz tench and a brace of commons weighing 10lb and 13lb. Tony Dellaway banked ten bream to 5lb 7oz and four carp to 17lb 2oz.
Steve Easter concentrated on carp and skilfully landed a 19lb fully-scaled mirror and a 6lb common carp whilst Luke Easter tempted three more to 17lb and numerous bream to 4lb. An all bream bag for Chris Harnett produced fifteen big ‘slabs’ to 7lb 5oz in another fine session at Stonar.
By the end of the month anglers enjoyed good catches across our waters with the usual early autumn fine carp catches making the headlines.
At Fordwich Lake Gary Hills’ superb 36lb mirror was the pick of the bunch with other great catches taken by Keith Minter with another mirror of 25lb 12oz and a 26lb common carp caught by Mick Brooks. Anthony Warren carefully reeled in a superb mirror carp of 28lb 12oz which was a well deserved personal best.
Spectacular catches continued to be reported from Stonar Lake where junior angler Louis Bourton landed a fine brace of common carp weighing 18lb 12oz and 10lb and finished with a personal best mirror carp of 25lb 1oz. Another personal best carp of 23lb 14oz, again a mirror, was caught by Ian Ashdown along with seven more good carp to 18lb 12oz.
Arguably some of the best catches in late September at Stonar were made with float-fished tactics. Eddy Cross had roach and rudd to 1lb and Colin Maunders two perch to 1lb and 24lb of rudd to 1lb 8oz. Bailiff Jock White bagged commons of 14lb 8oz and 8lb using float-fished bread flake, while Brian Mills landed a 1lb 14oz rudd, commons of 10lb, 15lb 6oz, 17lb and finally a splendid 23lb mirror carp – all on the float!
Anglers on the River Stour enjoyed some reasonable catches with Cut End typically producing double-figure bags of fish of various species.
Good catches of carp were reported from the usual swims around Fordwich Lake. Reece Alleyne took three fish while all the other Fordwich carp enthusiasts featured in the early August report had two. Reece connected with a fully-scaled mirror of 26lb 4oz along with a mirror of 17lb and a good common of 23lb.
Bill Cozier’s brace comprised a 29lb common carp and a 24lb mirror carp was the best of the duos, but Bradley Linnell’s 23lb 2oz common and 12lb 12oz mirror were equally well deserved.
Both Gavin Stewart and Vince Samson finished their sessions with an 18lb mirror and a common of the same weight, while John Collins caught a 15lb common carp and a slightly heavier one of 15lb 8oz.
In addition to the sixty eight good sized carp, including a splendid 22lb mirror hooked by junior angler Bailey Culley, all caught at Stonar Lake early in the month, lots of other good quality fish were landed.
Steve Handcock bagged twenty five rudd to 1lb and a brace of roach to the same weight. Darren Fry landed another big Stonar eel following on from recent similar catches. Darren’s eel tipped the scales to 3lb.
Dan Bean landed a number of small bream and bream were also targeted by Alex Stewart, Jonathon Galligan, Chris Culley and Ian Day. Alex hooked twelve fish to 5lb, Jonathan ended his session with fish to 3lb 8oz while Chris reeled in bream to 7lb and Ian to 6lb.
Mick Small’s eight bream to 8lb were as welcome to the net as Scott Robert’s twelve bream to 6lb and numerous tench to 4lb 8oz. Rudd and tench to 1lb 8oz were landed in abundance by Andy Tappenden in another great trip to Stonar.
By the middle, and throughout the last two weeks in August, warm water temperatures created difficult conditions for anglers, causing the fish to be lethargic, however there was still a moderate number of catches with anglers making the most of shorter feeding spells.
Stonar yet again proved to be first-rate with the largest number of catches. Regular Les Lennel caught two carp including a fair-sized 21lb 12oz fully-scaled mirror, whilst Bob Stead snared 9 carp up to a sizeable 18lb 2oz common on boilies.
Jimmy Sutton’s pleasure session resulted in a range of species, including bream to 4lb, tench to 3lb, several roach and carp to 17lb 4oz.
Local Bailiff Jock White had some time off to fish with his son Ben White, catching 38 bream for a total of 110lb, whilst Ben hooked a 15lb 4oz mirror, as well as a 3lb tench and a 7lb common. The water was also fished by committee member John Sturge, who caught 22 roach up to 1lb 10oz, as well as several bream and perch to 1lb 4oz.
Peter Wade saw a series of mirror carp grace his net including fish of 22lb 8oz and 24lb 6oz, and Charlie Allen reeled in a mirror nearing on 16lb.
Paul Roskell ended his day with a 110lb bag containing a mixture of bream, roach, tench and rudd.
Probably the most memorable session at that time was enjoyed by Steve Matthews. After landing several good carp including one of 24lb 12oz, he landed the biggest carp in the lake at a whopping 34lb 2oz from the north bank.
Reports from other waters were a little patchier, nevertheless still very much worth recording. They included Fordwich catches by Steve Cox and Simon Pagdin. Steve caught several sizable fish over two short sessions using boilies at long range from the north bank. The first session resulted in a creditable 29lb 4oz and 23lb 12oz common, and the second a 24lb common as well as mirrors of 19lb and 29lb 10oz. Simon also used long range boilie tactics, catching a 24lb 9oz common.
Meanwhile on Stour Lake, Don Sedgewick chose to use short range tactics to lure five hefty commons into his net, the best of which pulled Don’s scales all the way to the 18lb mark.
Regular to Trenley, Brian Malyn stayed overnight and succeeded in using feeder fished corn. This method yielded a total weight of between 170lb and 180lb. The fish consisted of over sixty bream and one tench, up to the weight of 5lb. This included many smaller bream of 1.5lb to 2lb.
Float-fish tactics worked well on Grove Lake. Junior angler Matthew Smith, fishing in this style, encountered a magnificent 17lb mirror, which gave a great account of itself.
Although seldom fished during the summer, anglers again tried their luck on the river and successfully produced several respectable roach bags with trotted maggots and corn; these anglers included Alan Cain and Dave Sales, who were fishing Cut End. They both successfully landed bags to over 15lb, including roach over 1lb.
The changeable weather with prolonged spells of rainfall seemingly dampened the great start to the season with a notable drop in catches in early July.
Fordwich Lake produced a 24lb mirror carp for Brian Gaemar while Dan Boden reeled in a 10lb fully scaled mirror carp and an 8lb 8oz tench. Adjacent at Trenley Lake, Gareth Jones fished with his friend Keith Bell and the pair had lots of excellent quality tench to 5lb, bream to 6lb and numerous smaller roach.
Also fishing at Trenley, George Brabham hooked two tench to 5lb 8oz on his first night trip while Dan Boden beat his first night of 70lb with an amazing 204lb of fish including 73 bream and 2 tench.
Fishing at Grove Lake, junior Association member Harley Collins reeled in a scrappy 4lb 8oz tench and several good carp during a most successful evening session with his Dad.
Ahead of the Charity Shield, Stonar remained a first-class water with plenty of fish coming to the net including some big carp.
Jeremy Walker landed nine weighty carp culminating in a common of 19lb 4oz and a mirror of 25lb 10oz. Stonar Bailiff Jock White reported three personal-bests caught at that time including Mick Squire with a mirror of 23lb. Mick also caught a 14lb mirror and several bream to 6lb in a very memorable visit. Richard Cross landed a 4lb bream and a rod-bending personal-best mirror carp of 24lb 8oz while Ewan Galligan tussled with another big mirror which tipped his scales to a super 21lb ‘PB’ weight.
Les Lennell is no stranger to Stonar and his session there in July produced nine more superb carp with four of these over twenty pound with mirrors of 20lb 4oz, 20lb 8oz, 23lb 12oz and 24lb 4oz.
Carp anglers at Fordwich and Stonar Lake were in good form during the middle of the month although other anglers toiled as the weather warmed up.
At Fordwich Joe Sartain landed a 26lb 4oz mirror carp and Steve Cox a 27lb common, while Lee White skilfully played a 23lb mirror safely into his landing net and John Collins a 15lb 8oz common carp into his.
At Stonar all manner and size of freshwater fish were taken. Paul Mills hooked twenty two carp to 18lb 4oz, Andrew Hansen twelve more to 19lb 14oz and Charlie Hitchman a slightly larger common carp of 22lb.
Big bags of bream were taken by Mick Crocker, Gareth Jones, Gavin Stewart and Victor Chance while Chris Harnett’s spectacular catch of 65 bream to 9lb 5oz totalled an amazing 329lb.
Ron Meares’ mixed bag from Stonar comprised bream to 4lb, two perch to 1lb 8oz and a weighty eel of 1lb 8oz, while Steve Easter landed a good mirror carp weighing 21lb and another big eel of 3lb.
Quality roach were also caught at Stonar with Keith Bell hooking fish to 1lb and Chris Dilnut slightly bigger roach to 1lb 8oz. Both men also landed bream.
The 2016/2017 traditional coarse fishing season started in the middle of the month with a fantastic array of fresh water fish coming to the net.
At Trenley Lake Andrew Minter caught 58 bream and 8 tench in one night for a staggering 236lb while Neil Harrop targeted bream and hooked 22 in his first night for approximately 90lb and seventeen more for 70lb during his second fantastic night at Trenley.
At Fordwich Lake, Trevor Buggs took a break from his volunteer hard work on behalf of the Association and landed a fine brace that included a rod-bending 31lb 8oz common carp, Richard Bacchus hooked eight carp, his best a fantastic mirror of 31lb, Stuart White tussled with six more carp to 27lb 4oz, Stuart’s best was a 27lb 4oz common.
Gill Gilmore banked three more carp from Fordwich including a 27lb 8oz common and Alan Boxall’s four included another fish over the magic ‘thirty’ in the shape of a 31lb common carp.
A number of smaller but equally scrappy and no less welcome common carp were landed from the picturesque Fordwich Lake. Sam Clugston safely landed a 15lb common, Kevin Ratcliffe another of 13lb 5oz and Lee White a lively 12lb 6oz fish. Good catches of tench were also reported across the Fordwich complex of lakes.
Stonar Lake had fished well throughout the closed season that affects some of our other waters. Carp anglers had typically landed over ten double-figure carp in one outing.
Quality as well as quantity was seen on the bank in June with catches such as Neil James’ with nine carp under 20lb to his name as well as a much bigger 23lb 7oz mirror carp landed in a single session.
Bream at Stonar were taken in numbers including fish to 6lb reported by Ryan Bean and John Wilkinson. Tim Glass fished for other species and skilfully caught a number of tench and most notably five rudd to 1lb.
With just under two weeks of the traditional coarse fishing season remaining a number of anglers were in action despite the chilly weather in early March.
At Fordwich Lake Mark Evans Jarret landed a splendid 32lb 2oz mirror carp while pike anglers tussled with several jack pike at various locations around Fordwich and from several swims on Trenley Lake.
Fordwich Lake and the other nearby waters closed to anglers from the middle of March but the Association has several still waters that remain open throughout the year including Stonar Lake. During Match carp anglers were encouraged by the size and quality of recent carp landed including a splendid 24lb 3oz mirror bagged by Stonar expert Phil Bing. Mick Sharp safely landed a good double-figure common and mirror brace while Matthew Law landed three more commons and a good mirror. Mike Chandler had a good pair of rod bending common carp to 14lb 5oz and Simon Shears four more commons to 12lb.
Mixed bags of carp and bream fell to several anglers at Stonar including Allen McDermott with a common carp of 8lb 7oz and several bream to 4lb, James Davies with bream to 4lb and three good commons and Hayden Plank with a 6lb common and even more bream to 3lb.
Bailiff Jock White caught a small common carp but on relatively light tackle and went on to land six bream to 6lb all taken using the method feeder with sweetcorn bait. Steve Harris’ haul were exclusively bream and included numerous fish to 4lb.
The 2015/2016 season drew to a close with the usual flurry of activity at our local lakes and on the River Stour. Plenty of Fordwich Lake’s carp were landed. Stuart White’s mirror carp of 28lb 8oz was a very fine specimen as was Brian Gaemar’s 25lb mirror and a common carp weighing 18lb 4oz hooked by a delighted Chris Knight.
In the final few days of the season at Fordwich two anglers enjoyed superb sport with a brace of carp each. Ady Minter weighed in mirrors of 27lb 3oz and 20lb while Lee White a fine 23lb mirror and another good common carp of 18lb.
At Stonar the fish continued to come to the net with numerous mid-size common and mirror carp as well as good bags of bream caught. Les Lennell hooked bream to 3lb while Bradley Lennell concentrated on carp and finished his session with five lively fish to 15lb. David Hills hedged his bets and landed both bream to 4lb and carp to 10lb, as did Shaun Haynes with fantastic specimen bream to 9lb 2oz and two weighty common carp, in more memorable sessions at Stonar.
Yet more bream to 4lb fell to Stephen Hardwidge-Webb while Simon Shears tussled with a 12lb 2oz mirror carp and good sized common carp were landed by Tom Day, Michael Scott, Sean Marsh, Mike Chandler, Dean Baldock and Mick Sharpe.
Despite the continuing unsettled weather with a mixture of heavy rain and freezing conditions, Fordwich Lake produced some first class carp catches in early February.
Mark Plank landed a splendid 32lb 2oz mirror carp while Brian Gaemar’s 31lb 8oz common and 25lb fully-scaled mirror gave Brian one of the best braces caught at that stage in 2016.
Fewer than normal anglers ventured to the Association’s waters but Stonar Lake remained reasonably busy with good catches of all species being reported to local Bailiff Jock White who himself enjoyed a good day fishing with seven carp to his name. Junior member Charlie Allen showed the seniors a trick or two with two small common carp and a great condition 13lb 8oz mirror carp.
In addition to the endless big bags of carp from Stonar including Jim Covus with three fish, his best a 26lb mirror, Mick Small with fifteen carp to 18lb 4oz and bream to 8lb, some tremendous bags of silver fish and other species were taken throughout the month.
Following his fantastic 3lb roach caught during the winter from Stonar, Paul Roskell landed more of the popular fish with quality roach to 1lb 9oz. Terry Marshall also bagged up with roach to 1lb 4oz and perch to 1lb, but it was Tony Lavender with twenty two roach to 2lb 2oz, seven bream to 6lb and two perch to 1lb 12oz who arguably had one of the best mixed bags of the month.
By mid month the wintry weather continued to affect conditions generally with few anglers venturing out.
At the Fordwich lakes complex a few jack pike were taken from various locations while carp anglers mostly struggled. Brian Gaemar enjoyed some success at Fordwich Lake and finished with three carp, his best a 22lb common.
Stonar Lake remained a popular venue towards the end of February with a good variety of fish coming to the net. Rodney Offen reported seven bream to 5lb, a 4lb roach/bream hybrid and a 14lb 11oz common carp while Darren Offen tussled a small common carp to the net before landing a very welcome 21lb 10oz mirror carp.
Simon Shears enjoyed a fantastic session with sixteen carp to 22lb and a number of bream to 6lb also to his name. Other all carp hauls included eight fish to 15lb 9oz for Mick Moyes and five more to 16lb for Andy Singleton.
Stonar regular Lisa-Marie Wallace used her local knowledge to safely bring two small commons to the net and then a tremendous common carp of 20lb 2oz.
Adam Spink’s bream to 5lb were matched by Steve Harris who also caught three carp to 22lb 8oz. Several twenty pound carp were caught from Stonar during February and towards the end of the month the most notable catches were a mirror of 26lb taken by Colin Winbush and a 23lb mirror carp that followed a much smaller common to Steve Price’s landing net.
For the past few seasons the start of the New Year has generally seen our local River Stour in flood and January 2016 was no exception.
Despite the difficult conditions, Steve Simmonds hooked and safely landed a lively 16lb 5oz mirror carp from the ‘deeps’ at Fordwich Lake while other good carp bags were reported from Stonar Lake.
Les Hodder banked seven carp to 15lb and a good ‘twenty brace of mirrors’ of 21lb and 23lb. Four more to 17lb fell to carp enthusiast Mark Plank while Michael Farrell and Steve Seager also took four a piece. Richard Martin had three more to 17lb and Mark Forrester another three to 19lb.
Mixed bags were also seen at Stonar where Tony Lavender caught bream to 4lb, roach to 2lb and perch to 1lb 8oz. Tony’s was a big perch but an even bigger fish was taken by David Haworth fishing at Grove Lake. Choosing float-fished red maggot, David hooked a tremendous 2lb 4oz perch.
Other notable mixed bags taken from Stonar included Angela Northcott’s carp to double figures and bream to 8lb, James Stanford with carp and bream, and Gareth Jones’ bream to 4lb and roach to 1lb. Keith Bell also targeted roach and caught several to 1lb 4oz, while John Sturge bagged up on roach, skimmer bream and perch.
Fishing at Fordwich Lake prior to the worst of the flooding, Bob Wilkins landed one of the best pike seen for several seasons. His 20lb 4oz fish was caught from the ‘deeps’ area.
Those anglers braving the freezing and flooding in January were reminded of the normal hazards and risks associated with such ventures including the increased likelihood of damage to the normal river and lake banks after such high water levels.
During early December several more big carp were landed from different swims at Fordwich Lake. Darren Offan reported a splendid common/mirror brace when he banked a 27lb 8oz common and a 35lb mirror while Steve Shepard tussled with a tremendous 32lb common carp that eventually came safely to his landing net.
Fordwich Lake has a flourishing head of smaller carp and Jack Warner carefully landed a common brace of 15lb and 10lb before returning them.
Stonar bailiff Jock White reported that fishing was starting to slow at the popular Sandwich still-water but a number of memorable catches were made before the seasonal down-turn of anglers attending set in.
Sam Murphy had one of the best sessions ever at Stonar finishing with over twenty five good fish including a 2lb eel, 4lb 12oz chub, several bream to 5lb, five common carp to 10lb, a mix of thirteen commons and mirrors between 13lb and 19lb, mirrors of 21lb, 23lb, a fully-scaled of 26lb 2oz and culminating in a personal best mirror of 34lb 2oz for Sam.
Another weighty eel of 4lb was taken by Richard Martin along with several carp, while Adam Spink banked a 3lb chub, bream to 4lb, a 2lb tench and seven carp to 22lb. All of Adam’s bigger carp were commons.
Lots of other anglers connected with big carp and good bags of bream were reported, but Lisa Marie Wallace targeted roach and finished her trip with a number of quality fish to 1lb.
Leading up to Christmas yet more great catches, including a record-breaker, were reported from Fordwich Lake.
Kevin Harding broke the Association’s common carp record with the first forty pound plus common. At 40lb 14oz Kevin’s common beat the previous record fish of 35lb 10oz caught by S. Simmonds in the 2006/2007 season also from Fordwich Lake. Not content with this early Christmas present, within 48 hours Kevin also landed another superb common of 35lb plus five other big carp including a 29lb mirror carp and a common over 20lb.
Other notable carp hauls at that time were taken by Steve Shepard who bagged three fish including a 24lb 8oz mirror and a 21lb common, and four fish taken by Kenny Needham that featured a 21lb mirror and a 22lb common.
Hugh Molloy enjoyed several fruitful day sessions at Stonar to hook sixteen small common carp, ten more double figure fish to 20lb and four good mirror carp over the ‘magic’ 20lb mark. Another big catch was taken by Sam Murphy who banked a 10lb red-koi and twenty common carp to 19lb and an equally welcome 16lb 12oz mirror carp.
Our Bailiff Jock White used his local knowledge to reel in five common carp to 12lb while Jock’s son Ben White eight more to 11lb. Craig Fisher landed a mixed bag that comprised bream and big rudd, as well as eight carp to 20lb 15oz.
Leading up to what is generally a quiet period across many of the Association’s waters, a number of other all carp bags were taken including Ashley Clay with nine good carp, with his best a 26lb 8oz mirror carp, while Dave Dunkley landed several rod-bending carp and sizeable bream to 5lb.
Angling in early November was generally slow with few venturing to the lake or river bank. Fordwich, Trenley and Stour lakes saw a small number of jack pike coming to the net but coarse anglers weren’t catching many fish at the popular Fordwich complex.
Despite the dip elsewhere, fabulous catches at Stonar Lake continued with Darren Edwards haul of thirteen carp to 10lb, ten more double figure carp and mirrors of 20lb, 21lb, 26lb and 27lb not untypical. Owen Fowler banked four mirrors weighing 12lb 12oz, two at 13lb and one a little heavier at 15lb and Kent McDonald a good common/mirror brace of 19lb 8oz and 15lb 12oz.
Quality roach continued to be caught at Stonar with Terry Marshall catching fish to 1lb and Colin Maunders to 8oz.
Mixed bags went to Tony Dellaway with two small carp, one of 19lb 8oz and a number of bream to 5lb, while Martin Bing also took bream to 5lb, two small commons and a very fine mirror of 23lb 8oz. Michael Palmer targeted bream and finished with twelve to 4lb 8oz. Other notable mixed bags included those taken by Angela Northcott made up of bream to 5lb and two common carp, Jason Peterson’s with more bream to 5lb and carp, and Alan Plant’s carp to 19lb 10oz and bream to 3lb 8oz.
By the middle of the month, Fordwich and Stonar lakes once again hosted some great carp catches. At Fordwich Gavin Stuart landed a splendid 28lb 4oz common carp while congratulations were also due to David Frost who landed his first Fordwich carp, a lively 13lb 12oz common, with a number of other heavier double-figure fish coming to the net from various swims on the ‘north bank’ and the ‘deeps’.
Two notable, but different hauls, were reported from Fordwich Lake. Brian Gaemar hooked six carp to 32lb, his best fish was a mirror, and Sam Binks five pike to 12lb.
By the end of the month, in one remarkable night at Stonar, carp angling enthusiast Sam Murphy bagged a 34lb mirror, a 26lb full-scaled mirror and nineteen other carp.
Paul Chatley fished at Brook Lake in Minster and caught only the second perch he had ever landed. His specimen fish of 3lb 8oz was a marvellous catch and only a quarter of a pound less than the Association record fish of 3lb 12oz shared by R.J. Milham and K. Pennick, both caught at Fordwich lakes in the 1987/88 and 1995/96 seasons.
Big carp were certainly on our member’s radars in October. At Fordwich Lake, Keith Minter banked a lively 19lb 12oz mirror carp while another bigger mirror of 27lb 2oz was safely landed by Dan Boden. Four more big carp were hooked at the picturesque 33-acre water by Stuart White with his best a common carp of 23lb 4oz proving the big carp were starting to feed up for the colder months ahead.
The Association lakes at Minster are well looked after by local bailiff George Gore. Taking a well deserved break from his bailiffing and maintenance duties, George caught twelve carp to 17lb in one incredibly productive and hectic morning while George Brabham landed ten more to 7lb in his first ever trip to the popular venue.
Bailiff Jock White reported that angling at Stonar had picked up with some splendid fish caught. Owen Fowler’s 10lb common carp joined Wade Fowler’s personal-best 19lb 4oz mirror to the bank, while Ian Phipp bagged up with several bream and nine carp including two over 20lb.
Other magnificent carp hauls included those taken by Sam Murphy with twenty three fish that included a 23lb mirror and two of 24lb, and Les Lennell’s who caught sixteen more including mirrors of 22lb, 23lb 14oz, 25lb and 26lb 2oz. Mick Hulbert’s 10lb common and 19lb 5oz mirror were landed in the same session as twelve weighty bream and a personal-best carp of 23lb 8oz. Ten more carp that included a tremendous mirror carp of 32lb 8oz fell to Stonar expert Martin Bing.
Grove Lake regular Charles Church was once again in on the action with two carp to 10lb coming to the net in a short session. Charles also lost two more with luncheon meat proving to be the successful bait.
The cooler autumn weather encouraged the big carp to feed for the winter ahead with a number of specimen fish seen at Fordwich and Stonar lakes towards the end of the month.
Terry Culley’s superb mirror of 30lb 8oz was a fantastic fish to weigh in at Fordwich, as was Dave Roberts’ 37lb 8oz mirror, while Steve Cox had a tremendous haul, five Fordwich carp including a 26lb common.
Stonar’s big carp were also on the move with Mick Sharpe’s 25lb 10oz mirror one of the best landed in October and Steve Segar bagging one of the best hauls finishing his session with eighteen heavy carp. Martin Whitney scrapped with three small common carp to 11lb 8oz before reeling in a good mirror brace weighing 17lb 2oz and 20lb 5oz.
From the start of the pike season at the beginning of the month no big fish had been reported but pike anglers were encouraged to learn that a number of smaller jack pike had been landed from the Fordwich lakes complex. Fishing in the River Stour, Sam Binks, Alex Dredge and John Collins all took pike to 10lb.
Autumn roach fishing was also underway on the river with the occasional quality roach coming to the net including a fine 1lb 2oz fish, his first roach over one pound, for junior Association member Henry Weir. Henry’s roach was caught at Grove Ferry.
Our club record roach is 3lb 4oz and fish of that weight were taken during the 1980/1981 season by R. Nicholls and during 1985/1986 season by A.W Sharp, with both roach landed at Grove Ferry.
Another short but memorable session at Grove Lake proved most successful for Charles Church who bagged ten carp including several good double figure fish in just three hours facing into a rather chilly north-easterly wind.
In contrast to his successes, a few days later Charles returned and reported he waited three hours for his first bite and landed just two small common carp.
The heavy and prolonged rainfall through August and September left the River Stour very high although a number of fish were being taken from the adjacent lakes.
Brian Gaymer’s fine brace of common carp weighing 35lb and 31lb were arguably one of the best duos at that point in the season from Fordwich Lake and another superb 35lb carp, this time a mirror, was reeled in by Gary Hills. Congratulations also go to Samuel Binks who recorded his first Fordwich carp by skilfully landing a fantastic 29lb mirror.
Largely unaffected by the unseasonable weather, Stonar Lake anglers continued filling their nets. Junior Association member Lauren Matthews hooked 80lb of bream and a mirror carp of 17lb, while Stephen Matthews banked six carp to 10lb, twelve sizeable carp ‘doubles’ and a mirror and common both of 22lb.
Tyler Jordan, also a CDAA junior, was amongst the action when he bagged bream to 4lb and carp to 12lb from the popular Sandwich stillwater.
Perhaps the most notable catch from Stonar in September was the mixed bag of roach, bream and perch that included some superb roach to 2lb 1oz taken by Ron Meares.
Other mixed bag catches included James Rintoul’s bream to 4lb and perch to 1lb 8oz and notable carp catches include Jim Covus’ with fourteen fish to 23lb and Lee Cull’s two commons of 14lb, a mirror carp of 17lb 8oz and a personal best mirror of 26lb 5oz. Szczepan Lipiec finished his session with bream to 4lb, an 11lb common carp and finally a splendid mirror carp of 23lb 8oz.
Bothers David and Charles Church continued their fine seasons at Grove Lake although during one session the north easterly wind meant the fishing was a little slow. David caught one chub of approximately 2lb and also lost a carp at the net, while Charles landed five carp, a mixture of commons and mirrors to 10lb, plus a small gudgeon.
A few days before our Open Competition, another notable catch of silver fish was taken by Colin Shaxted fishing at Grove Ferry. Colin skilfully caught more than 25lb of fish using tares, mainly roach, with a number of quality fish over 1lb.
Back at Grove Lake regular Charles Church braved a strong north-westerly wind and moved to various swims including two backing on to the Nature Reserve and another near the car park, to land fish at all, and finishing his day with five common carp, the best tipping the scales to just under 14lb.
Some sizeable carp were landed at Fordwich Lake including Stuart White’s 30lb mirror and a 24lb mirror that fell to Frazer Marsh. One of the best carp braces of the month was taken by Tony Moscati who ended his session with a 27lb mirror carp and a 19lb common carp.
Anglers continued to fill their nets at Stonar Lake during mid to late September. Fair size carp and big bags of bream were taken using simple tactics such as float-fished bread. James Rintoul landed ten carp to 10lb, bream to 5lb and most impressively rudd to 3lb 4oz.
Mark Wiltishire’s carp bag included five fish to 10lb, nine doubles and two hefty mirrors weighing 26lb and 34lb 4oz, while Gwyn Wiltshire bagged up with six more carp to 18lb. Junior CDAA member Bailey Culley showed the adults a trick or two with ten bream to 4lb, a tench of 4lb and fifteen carp to 15lb 10oz.
Early August at Fordwich Lake saw a number of good carp catches including Hugh Malloy’s six big fish that included a fantastic 30lb mirror carp.
Roach and skimmer bream were weighed in at the end of a local match on the River Stour at Cut End. The winning weight of 19lb 14oz taken by J. Ryan with second placed M. Elsom hooking 18lb 5oz and J. Byron 7lb 6oz.
Trading in his sea-fishing gear that he is arguably best known for, Alan Yates won a local four-hour match at Stonar Lake with a very fine 82lb ahead of T. Libby with 74lb and Alan Caine with 24lb. All three top weights reeled in bream to 6lb and roach and rudd to 1lb 8oz.
Fishing at Stonar, Bradley Lennell landed a new personal best when he caught a mirror carp known as ‘The Big Girl’ that tipped the scales to 34lb 11oz.
Several other big carp were banked early in the month from Stonar including Bob Stead’s 22lb 4oz mirror carp, Michael Cotton’s 23lb 2oz common and Tony Cox’s mirror of 23lb 9oz, with the three men all reeling in other hefty carp in the process.
Silver fish were also seen in plenty at Stonar where Ian Frost bagged numerous roach to 1lb 14oz and over fifty bream to 6lb.
By the middle of the month the hot weather and bright conditions affected catches but a few big carp were still being landed from Fordwich Lake. Commons and mirrors were being seen and Matt Pritchard’s 22lb common and Dan Boden’s 21lb mirror were both excellent typical catches.
Fishing at the Association’s Grove Lake, Charles Church landed a mirror carp of 8lb 8oz while his brother David hooked six more to 8lb and Charles’ uncle Peter Wilson a lively brace, also mirrors, the largest fish tipping the scales to 12lb 8oz. The three men found floating crusts the most successful bait and the fish tended to feed when the wind blew across the lake in a southerly direction. A visit to Grove also paid dividend for Sam Binks and Alex Dredge who landed eleven similar size carp in just 2 hours.
Stonar Lake continued to fish well through the month. James Sutton banked three bream to 7lb, common carp of 15lb and 8lb, and a splendid mirror brace of 12lb 4oz with a personal best carp of 25lb 7oz. The lake’s credentials have never been in question and in addition to the big fish the variety of species to be landed remained superb. In addition to carp, Bob Stead banked bream to 8lb and a 4lb eel whilst rudd to 2lb were weighed in alongside carp by Mark Bancroft and roach to 2lb 2oz along with 135lb of bream to 8lb by Peter Croft.
The last two weeks of August saw torrential and prolonged rainfall and the River Stour was very high throughout this period.
More big bream known as ‘slabs’ were reported by David Sturge in his 100lb plus bream haul from Stonar, with Kevin Prior slipping his landing net beneath twenty more to 7lb and more big rudd to 1lb 4oz.
Carp anglers at Stonar never quite know what they will land and Hayden Plank proved that in late August with a small mirror carp followed by a much bigger fish of 20lb 5oz. Gavin Stewart’s incredible twenty eight carp included two fish over the magic 20lb mark.
The July hot weather slowed catches at the Fordwich lakes with only a few bites to be had. Early morning and late evening proved the most successful, additionally with a respite from the intense sunshine and high temperatures.
Despite the conditions Martin Daily hooked a splendid common carp of 37lb 12oz and ever successful junior CDAA members Hannah Boden a fine 1lb 4oz perch and Henry Weir a weighty bream of 5lb. In addition to Fordwich Lake, the north bank of Trenley Lake with its deeper water remained a good option.
Our bailiff Jon Weir skilfully fished to land thirty one bream that included fish to 8lb 10oz and three tench to 6lb 4oz, in a most memorable session at Stour Lake.
Grove Lake was also fishing well when Alan Caine landed 27lb 8oz of silver fish ahead of I. Peet with 25lb 5oz and T. Libby 22lb 8oz.
A few days before the Stonar Charity Shield anglers were encouraged to learn that the Sandwich stillwater was fishing extremely well with many twenty pound plus carp coming readily to the net. Numerous smaller carp were also being landed as were bream, rudd, roach and eels.
Joseph and Terry Willis shared nine carp to 22lb 12oz while Scott Golesworthy banked eight carp to 10lb, nine ‘mid-doubles’ and a great common of 23lb 15oz in a remarkable stint at Stonar.
Ten bream to 7lb were taken by Les Lennell and a small bream for Ian McDonald accompanied eight rudd to 2lb 3oz. Terry Marshall also bagged up with some fine rudd that included fish of 2lb 5oz.
Stonar bailiff Jock White reeled in twelve bream to 7lb, four carp including a mirror of 16lb 12oz and a massive eel of 4lb 8oz.
Towards the end of the month at Stonar, Paul Whitehorn banked nineteen carp under 15lb and six more over 15lb culminating in a mirror of 24lb, while Jason Brady skilfully tackled up to catch another rod-bending mirror carp of 23lb.
Good bags of bream, rudd and roach were also recorded. Szczipan Lipiec caught eleven big bream to 8lb 8oz and six carp to 14lb 4oz. Stonar witnessed a number of personal bests established. Michael Farrell’s eight small carp to 10lb 8oz were good practice for his personal-best mirror of 24lb while Stuart Groombridge’s PB of 20lb 2oz accompanied three smaller carp to 7lb. Junior member Aaron Powell targeted bream and finished his session with a new PB fish of 3lb 13oz.
Away from Stonar things slowed down again, possibly as a result of the warmer air and water temperatures. Notable carp catches from Fordwich Lake at that time included Brian Gaymer with a 21lb mirror carp and Hugh Malloy a common of 22lb.
Pump House Lake at the Association’s Littlebourne lakes was fishing reasonably well. Alex Dredge hooked eight carp to 11lb and Sam Binks five more to 9lb.
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