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Match Rule Change from April 2014

It has become apparent that anglers are having difficulties sourcing suitable floats with an above surface portion not exceeding 8mm diameter. In order to stay in line with modern float design and still remain outside of the large self hooking float techniques, the maximum above water diameter of floats allowable has been increased from 8mm to 12mm. The total shotting capacity will remain the same, i.e. 12 grams

To clarify this, the above water (i.e.visible) portion of  all waggler type floats may not exceed 12mm in diameter.


Match Anglers continue to enjoy the huge winning weights which seem to have become the norm this summer. With five 300 pound plus catches and too many 200 pound plus weights to mention recorded recently, things are looking good for the upcoming Bank Holiday Monday Pairs and the Autumn Festival ( Sept 3-Sept 7). Both events will be fished on the Swan Pond and Islands Lake and provided that the weather holds, should produce some excellent results.

Hard pellets, both 8mm and 10mm have been the most successful bait in matches over the past few weeks and with carp being the target species for most anglers, hard pellets have been the best bet to avoid the attentions of the smaller fish.

That said, Ian Taylor claimed the top spot in last years Autumn festival by fishing with paste and targeting Cucian carp, F.1`s and Skimmers, this gave him an excellent level of consistency to gain valuable section points every day.

With a guaranteed overall prize of at least £1200 as well as daily and section prize money, this years competitors will need to be honing their tactics in the coming week if they are to claim the title.


With the continued hot weather the fishing on all of the Lakes remains at a very high level.

On the match scene the results have been so good this summer that many anglers will have achieved lifetime best weights and such has been the consistency of the fishing that these will often not even have made the frame.

The Islands Lake has been in exceptional form and looking at the match weights it could be assumed that Carp are the only species worth targeting. However there have been some exceptional weights of Crucian Carp which have been averaging 2 to 3 to the pound and anglers who are adept at speed fishing have been taking weights in excess of 150lbs on a regular basis.

Lenny`s Pool continues to provide plenty of action from both Carp and Catfish. There were a surprising number of smaller cats out last week, indicating that they have been spawning successfully over the past few years, however with the predatory nature of their parents, it is only the lucky few that make it to a reasonable size.




The hot summer has seen plenty of people complaining about the heat but anglers are certainly reaping the benefits.

Fish are feeding with remarkable enthusiasm and catches, like the weather have been red hot.

Although it is expected that plenty of 100lbs plus match weights are recorded during the summer months, a 200lbs plus catch would normally be a talking point and 300lbs plus a rare event. This year however, a number of weights over 200lbs have been recorded each week from the various lakes and Tripp Lake produced two weights over the three hundred pound mark in one week.

Steve Ellis fished 10mm hard pellet on the pole on peg 34, catching a mixture of carp and F.1`s to weigh in 323lbs 2oz which is a new match record for Tripp, although Hull angler James Hall almost made it a brief claim to fame for Steve when he put 321lbs on to the scales just a few days later.

Dave Dalton fished 8mm hard pellet on a waggler on peg 4 in the Wednesday Open on Islands to claim first place with 251lbs and also added another £100 to his prize money courtesy of a golden peg draw.

8mm or 10mm hard pellets are without a doubt the most consistent baits to win matches with at the moment, although even these tough offerings don’t deter the Roach, Skimmers and Crucians all of the time.

Even Steve Ellis who is real paste fishing stalwart has abandoned his normal summer method and the switch to hard pellets keeps paying off as he found on Hollywood lake on Sunday with a 233lbs winning weight from peg 20.

All of the Day Ticket lakes are in excellent form, with the Oak Tree Pond Carp in particular feeding with a vengeance.

The Syndicate members have also had a great year with a surprising number of 20lbs plus Carp showing,

Two fish of 25lbs 15oz and 26lbs exactly coming out from Lenny`s Pool as well as a 46lbs Catfish this week.


Dave Flatman enjoyed the perfect draw on Sunday in the Crowhill A.C match on the Swan Pond.
Peg one had a light breeze blowing in to it and Carp were in residence in numbers.
Dave caught from the off and it is rumoured that he even went for a sit down for 15 minutes half way through the match to give the other anglers a chance to catch up (either that or his arm was aching and he needed a rest).
As it turned out his 270lbs 7oz was miles in front of second placed Martin Young who had comparatively modest 110lbs, with Andy Bryant just 3lbs adrift on 107lbs claiming 3rd place.

Carp are feeding well on all of the lakes, with some good sized fish to over 20lbs caught from the North and South Lakes. There have also been a number of small Catfish from 2lbs up to 6lbs coming out as well as a few larger specimens up to 30lbs.

The Oak Tree Pond is in tremendous form as fish are feeding  well on most baits and there have been plenty of double figure fish landed.


Don Hudson is certainly enjoying his match fishing at the moment. Don recorded three consecutive 100lbs plus weights this week. He won the Friday Open on the Swan Pond with 168lbs from peg 10, on Wednesday he had 116lbs from peg 55 on the Swan Pond and on Tuesday he came 3rd on the Islands Lake with 105lbs from peg 48.

These results reflect the consistent level of sport at the present time as all species of fish are feeding well;  Dave Mountford had a mixed bag of F.1`s, Carp and Crucians from Tripp lake on Saturday to win the Open Match with 230lbs and Jamie Hall won his club match on the Islands lake on the same day with 245lbs.

The importance of finding out what the fish prefer to eat was brought home to two Barnsley anglers who had booked a 48 hour session on the North Lake at the weekend. After a fairly poor first 24 hours when they concentrated on fishing boilies a switch to large pieces of Luncheon Meat saw the floodgates open as they enjoyed run after run, netting 28 carp up to 19lbs in weight. Jordan Baxter and Robert Winterburn finding sleep hard to come by on the last night of the session.

The Syndicate lakes are also in fine form, Steven Amys recording a new p.b. with a 26lbs 3oz Mirror carp from Lenny`s Pool and prior to this he had landed 23 Carp to 22lbs and 3 catfish up to 38lbs over a 7 day period.


Last weeks bumper weights continued for a few more days until nature intervened. Roach and Bream began to spawn on all of the lakes, providing a huge amount of free food for the rest of the fish species and the Carp in particular could be seen grazing on the apparently very tasty fish eggs which had been laid on tree roots and overhanging vegetation.

This resulted in a drop off in match weights towards the weekend.

 Prior to this however Paul Hewitt had a superb 180lbs winning weight from an unfancied peg 13 on the Islands lake, Paul fished 8mm pellets shallow on a waggler, landing Carp up to 10lbs.

The following day also saw a string of 100lbs plus weights from The Islands Lake, this time Mick Crosby led the way with 172lbs from peg 21, Ian Taylor on 143lbs claimed the runner up spot from peg 17.

Hollywood Lake produced a 140lbs winning weight in a club match on Sunday and Mick Deighton had 146lbs to win his clubs match on the Swan Pond from peg 54 on the same day.



The sudden increase in water temperatures and the need for fish to build up their reserves in preparation for spawning has seen an impressive increase in catches this week as they have really ramped up their feeding activity.

All of the match lakes have now produced weights in excess of 200lbs. The Bank Holiday pairs saw no less than 5 double tons from the Swan and Islands and Tommy Grice won on Hollywood lake on Sunday with 240lbs.

The Oak Tree Pond is also in sensational form as Carp to double figures provide hectic sport.

Bright sunshine and flat calm conditions lowered expectations prior to the Bank Holiday Monday Pairs match which was fished on The Swan Pond and The Islands Lake. The Sixty competitors were highly delighted to find that the fish were in a real feeding mood however and the top five all had over 200lbs.

Individually, Luke Picken from Hull topped the list from peg 23 on the swan Pond with 252lbs and he was ably backed up by his partner Andy Kean who came second on the Islands Lake with 218lbs from peg 1. Their 3 point total saw them win by a clear 10 point margin over Phil Deitch and Tony Woods from Grimsby.

As well as some tremendous carp weights, the Swan pond produced Silverfish nets up to 103lbs and the Islands Lake up to 129lbs. This meant that everyone had the chance of a good points scoring peg on the day and the average weight per man on both Lakes was just short of 100lbs.

Bank Holiday Monday Pairs Match Swan Pond and Islands Lake


1 Andy Kean & Luke Picken 3 points

2 Phil Deitch & Tony Woods 13 points

3 Jack Turner & Matt York 14 points (superior weight)

4 Wayne Childs & Tim Chapman 14 points




1 Luke Picken Hull 252-04

2 Scott Gollins Grimsby 250-00

3 Andy Kean Hull 218-05

4 Jack Turner Scunthorpe 203-15

5 Chris Mack Grimsby 201-14

6 Martin Young Grimsby 183-12




After catching his first ever Catfish last week from the South Day Ticket Lake, Michael Jay decided to join the Syndicate Lake at the weekend with a view to catching a few more. It did not take him long to realise his ambition as a 41lbs fish from Lenny,s Lake gave him his second p.b. within a week.


The final Match of the Drennan Silverfish Spring league which was fished on the Swan Pond on Saturday was a complete contrast to last weekend’s record breaking competition.

After a taste of summer it was back to cold wet and miserable conditions and to make matters  worse the only pegs available on the lake were all in a facing wind.

Luke Harrison came up trumps on a low weight day and with the results being very close at the end, it was a switch from the more positive expander pellet approach which has been producing all of the big weights recently to fishing casters shallow which swung it for him on the day.

Luke had an excellent last hour catching quality Roach, putting a vital 10lbs in to his net to just edge out Danny Taylor into second place.

Dave Mountford did just enough to gain the extra point required to win the league, benefitting from the absence of Paul Seeed over the past couple of weeks.


Sport has been spectacular for the time of the year on all of the Lakes this week. A rapid rise in water temperatures has brought everything on to the feed, not least the Catfish which have been conspicuous by their absence since last November.

The Syndicate Lakes have produced at least 10 Cats over 30lbs, Andy Penn landing one weighing in at 38lbs from lenny`s lake. The South day Ticket Lake has also seen some good sized fish come out up to 38lbs and a number of others hooked and lost.

All of the matches Lakes have produced 100lbs plus winning weights, although Glen Collins fell agonizingly short in the Open on Sunday on Hollywood. His 99lbs deserves a mention however as it did not include a single Carp. The bulk of his weight was made up of Crucians which averaged around 4 to the pound.

Rob Seward benefitted from the major clearance work which has taken place over the winter on the Islands Lake in the Sunday open. He drew peg 53 which has seen many an angler walking away with tales of lost fish and broken tackle. Rob found life much easier on this occasion however and he topped a string of 100lbs plus weights with a level 123lbs.


Dave Mountford broke the Silverfish League Match record on Saturday on the Islands Lake with a sensational 154lbs of Skimmers Crucians, Tench, Roach F.1`s, and ide.

Drawn on peg 47 on the arm he alternated between three swims all fed with micros and 6mm expander pellets, catching close in on the bottom and up in the water on a long line. His tactics worked exceptionally well, attracting a really good stamp of fish.

With the rapidly increasing water temperatures the lake was expected to produce some good catches in this match and it did not disappoint. Alan Gregory also had a brilliant day, catching a similar mixture of fish to the winner to weigh 125lbs 12 oz from peg 24 and Steve Ellis proved the effectiveness of a pellet and paste approach for Silver Fish with another 100lbs plus weight from peg 4 for third in the match.

With Paul Seed away and just one match left in the series Dave Mountford is looking to be the likely winner of the league, especially when he is in this kind of form.


Rising water temperatures have seen an increase in feeding activity and more consistent results on all of the lakes.

Carp are feeding well but it is noticeable that smaller baits such as pellets, corn and meat are dramatically outscoring larger offerings, indeed anglers targeting silver fish on lighter lines and small baits are hooking more fish than those who are setting their stall out to catch carp deliberately.

Steve Ellis wasn,t exactly jumping for joy on Saturday in the Silver Fish only match on the Swan Pond however when he found himself attached to a 14lb Carp within two minutes of the start of the match,( or at least he didn,t sound particularly pleased).

The Oak Tree Pond has come alive after the recent cold weather and Carp are being caught in good numbers on a variety of baits. Pole tactics seem to be the best at the moment.

The deeper lakes are usually slower to respond as they warm up less quickly than the shallower lakes but up in the water tactics can be very effective in this period of time.


The Swan Pond was in great form for the latest round of the Drennan Silverfish league.

Saturdays match saw fish feeding really well all around the Lake with good sized Skimmers, Crucian Carp, Roach, F.1`s, Tench and Perch featuring in the catches.

With so many fish feeding it was a case of making the right choice of tactics as early as possible and Dave Mountford got it right straight from the off. He loose fed 6mm expander pellets at 13 metres with a view to catching on the bottom early on and hopefully catching shallow as the match progressed.

 As it turned out, there were good sized Skimmers queuing up right from the start of the match and he established a substantial early lead which he maintained throughout, although he did catch a few fish shallow, the bulk of his excellent 89lbs weight came by fishing his bait on the bottom in 12 feet of water.

Skimmers also provided the bulk of the 75lbs catch for the runner up, mostly coming in the latter half of the match and Paul Seed maintained his great form by fishing caster shallow for a real mixed bag which included some superb Roach and an excellent 59lbs for third place.



Drennan Silver Fish league rd 10 Islands Lake

Finally the competitors enjoyed some respite from the tough weather conditions which have dogged almost every match in this series so far and the fish responded well.

Increasing water temperatures saw a change in the behaviour of the fish and the well deserved winner Luke Harrison was the quickest to respond.

After a steady start to the match he soon realised that the fish were well up in the water and a switch to fishing casters shallow at 12 meters proved to be a master stroke. He was quickly in to Ide, F.1`s and some really good Roach, with fish to over 1lbs gracing his 59lbs winning net.

Although his catch rate did not slow down, the size of the fish decreased in the last couple of hours, although he managed to keep enough smallish Roach going in to his net to hold off a late charge from the second placed man who caught mainly Skimmers on expander pellets for 56lbs.

The two anglers who are battling for the title were separated by just one ounce, Dave Mountford weighing 55lbs7 oz to take third place and Paul Seed finishing in fourth. They were however in different sections and both went away happy with their maximum point scores.


The final match of the Tripp winter league provided a tight finish and although carp were few and far between, F.1`s, Skimmers, Crucians and Ide fed well to give some good weights and a close finish. Mark Lidgard won with 86lbs from peg 15, holding off Nick Houghton on peg 21 who weighed 83lbs.

Tommy Grice won the league on weight after tying on points with Nick Houghton, both with an impressive 23 points total over 15 matches. Tommy had a total weight of over 700lbs, meaning that he averaged over 45lbs through the winter series and this was 100lbs too much for Nick Houghton.

Drop A.C. enjoyed another hastily arranged match on Hollywood Lake at the weekend, once again producing some excellent weights, this time 120lbs was needed to claim first place.


Syndicate Members Andy Penn and his brother Tony had a great first week of the  new season on lenny`s lake, catching five twenty pound plus Carp up to 24-02 between them as well as a number of other double figure fish.

Fishery Bailif Jim Urry decided that the Oak Tree Pond would be the ideal place to try out his newly elasticated pole kits for a couple of hours on Saturday; the fishing was so productive however that it turned in to a full days session as he caught 61 Carp from 3lbs up to 9lbs on Corn and Pellets, need less to say he was pleased with the results of his labours.




Good Friday Teams of Five, Islands Lake, Swan Pond, Tripp Lake 60 fished.

Twelve teams of 5 lined up to fish this match Bank Holiday match and although a bitterly cold Easterly  wind helped to take the edge off the fishing, the result was as tight as could be. Two teams tied with 19 points each and total team weight came in to play to decide the result.

Maun Valley Massive claimed the honours with a total weight of 287lbs compared to the Grimsby outfit who weighed a combined 247lbs.

Maun  Valley included a section win by John Barningham with 93lbs from peg 54 on the Islands lake and his team mates Dave Hiley, Chris Greensides, Matt Mallia and Ben Holmes all scored good enough points in their respective sections to topple the Grimsby team which was made up of venue regulars Dave Mountford, Dennis Pattinson, Paul Seed, Dave Rawcliffe and Mark Lidgard.

The Individual winner on the day came form peg 13 on Tripp Lake where Barnsley`s Mick Ward had a great start with 6 Carp early on in the match which he topped up with Crucians and F.1`s by fishing corn and meat in the margins.


1 Maun Valley Massive 19 points 287lbs

2 Grimsby 19 points 247lbs

3 Messingham 30 points

4 Noon,s Interiors 32 points



1 Mick Ward Barnsley 94-05

2 John Barningham Maun Valley 93-02

3 Jamie Wilde Barnsley 92-01

3 Nick Houghton Hull 89-08


Drennan Silver Fish Spring League round 9 Tripp Lake. Saturday

Tripp Lake fished well for the Drennan Silver Fish Spring League on Saturday.

Dave Mountford made the best of the shelter from the elements afforded by his draw on peg 15 and targeted F.1`s and Crucians by fishing 4mm and 6mm expander pellets over micros, he put together an excellent 69lbs to hold off Steve Ellis in second and Mick Wills in third who were separated by just over a pound.

 Steve and Mick were in the deeps and both had a real mixture of fish, including Ide, Skimmers, Crucians and F.1`s, Steve opting to fish pellets and Mick putting his faith in maggots.

1 Dave Mountford Grimsby 69-12

2 Steve Ellis Scunthorpe 59-6

3 Mick Wills Scunthorpe 58-02

4 Danny Taylor Crowle 56-04


Easter Monday Pairs, Swan Pond & Islands Lake 70 fished.

Praise must go to the 70 anglers who braved what can only be described as atrocious weather conditions to compete in the Bank Holiday Pairs. Although the fishing was probably the hardest ever for this event, the result was also the closest ever.

Both of the top two pairs scored 10 points and when weight came in to play to decide the outcome a mere 10 ounces separated them. Gary Hansford who top scored on the Swan Pond from peg 54 with a meagre 34lbs was ably assisted by his partner Andy Bryant who endured a facing wind accompanied by sleet and rain on peg 6 on the Islands Lake and yet still managed a creditable 28lbs to help secure the win. The unlucky pair just edged out of the top spot were Phil Deitch and Dave Mountford who drew peg 26 on the Swan Pond and peg 15 on the Islands Lake respectively.

Scott Gollings took the individual honours from peg 8 on the Islands Lake with 65lbs of Carp, second place also came from the islands Lake, Geoff Wilde netting 57lbs from peg 27. 


Saturday saw a complete change in the weather conditions after last weeks Arctic blast and for the first time this year in the Drennan Silver Fish Spring League series it actually felt like Spring and not Winter.

The rise in water temperatures saw fish feeding confidently all around the Islands Lake and the lowest weight recorded was over 20lbs with an average of 36lbs per man.

The winner was drawn on peg 8 and fished 4mm expander pellets on both pole and waggler for a real mixed bag of fish. 69lbs of Skimmers, Ide, Roach, Crucians, F.1`s, Tench, Goldfish and a few good sized Roach/ Bream Hybrids made for a really interesting days fishing and provided a comfortable 12lbs margin over the ever consistent Dennis Pattinson who came second with 57lbs.

 Dennis fed an astonishing 8 pints of maggots to catch mainly Roach, Skimmers and Ide on the pole from peg 27 and he felt that there were enough fish in his peg to have fed even heavier.

Third placed Pete Riley got of to a  flying start on peg 10, catching Skimmers from 6oz to 3lbs on 6mm expander pellets from the off and he looked like being a runaway winner until his catch rate slowed down in the last couple of hours, finishing the day on 50lbs.

It was noticeable that the shallower lakes responded well to the improvement in the weathe last weekr, the deeper water taking longer to warm up.

Some good weights were recorded from the Islands Lake in particular as Carp return to the feed. Thursdays Open was won from peg 47 by Dave Henderson with 91lbs, which was 8lbs clear of Ian Coatham on peg 24. The previous day Don Hudson topped the list with 81lbs from peg 4.

Plenty of Carp to low double figures are showing in the Oak Tree Pond, pole fished 6mm pellets appearing to be the most successful approach at the moment.

The North and South Lakes are in exceptional form for Silver Fish, quality Roach and Skimmers can be caught at any depth and some really good sized, hard fighting Roach/Bream Hybrids are feeding well.


With the previous round of the Drennan Silverfish Spring League cancelled due to the severe weather conditions there was plenty of enthusiasm at the draw for round 5 which was held on Tripp Lake on Saturday.

After water temperatures had fallen to below freezing point, courtesy of last weeks strong winds, it was a question as to whether the fish had recovered their appetites in time for the match, but judging by the weights recorded and the number of Carp caught and returned the answer was a definite yes.

Winterton`s Steve Bontoft ran out a clear winner with a good mixed bag from peg 13. Steve included Skimmers, Roach, F.1`s, Crucians and Ide in his 42lbs weight taken on maggots fished over casters at 13 meters.  Tommy Grice continued his run of consistent results on Tripp Lake, coming in second with 35lbs of mainly F.1`s caught shallow, on expander pellets and Kyle Hartley was just one pound behind him with 34lbs of Roach and Ide caught shallow on maggots.

The Lakes` good form continued on Sunday with a 91lbs winning weight for Dave Toyne who caught mainly carp on sweetcorn from peg 19.

Josh Brown enjoyed a good match on the Islands Lake on Friday, winning with an excellent net of mainly Skimmers, topped up with a few small Carp. Josh fished expander pellets on pole after drawing peg 39.

Congratulations to Sheffields Roger Hill on winning the Tardis Tackle Silverfish Winter League with one match still to go. Roger won his section on the Islands Lake on Sunday with 34lbs of Silverfish from peg 31 to secure the title. The match was won from peg 62 by Paul Shannon with 47lbs of Silvers. There were a lot of moans from some quarters (no names mentioned Brian Chatterton) about the number of Carp feeding, which bodes well for future events when everything counts.

Although water temperatures are still well below the norm for this time of the year they are increasing steadily and the fish are responding well.




The latest round of the Drennan Silverfish Spring League, which was fished on the Islands Lake, resulted in as close a finish as it is possible to see.

Dave Mountford and Jamie Green battled it out at adjacent pegs to finish just 1oz apart at the end of the match.

Jamie set off like a train on peg 10, initially catching well on the pole and then changing to waggler as the fish backed off. He was catching quality Roach, Ide and Skimmers on casters and soon established a healthy lead.

 Although Dave, who had drawn peg 9, was catching steadily on maggot on the pole and waggler, the fish were of a much smaller stamp and it appeared that a next peg trouncing was on the cards. Half way through the match however, Dave foulhooked three F.1`s in quick succession, suggesting that a change in tactics was required. By cutting back on the loose feed he found that the small fish disappeared and by waiting for bites he could catch some really good Skimmers, Goldfish and F.1`s.

Realising that the gap was closing rapidly, Jamie switched back to the pole in the last hour and found plenty of Roach and Ide feeding, enjoying a really good late run he finished on 30lbs 12 oz but this proved to be an agonizing 1oz behind Dave’s total.

Despite a freezing cold Easterly wind, the lake fished well and everyone managed to catch double figures.

There are certainly some hardy souls amongst the Messingham Sands Syndicate membership. The long cold nights don’t appear to be a deterrent for some and they are being rewarded with some decent sized fish, William Farnham landed a surprise catfish last week weighing 29lbs 14 oz as well as Carp of 19lbs 12oz and a Mirror just ounces under 23lbs. Jimmy Hibbard also came up with a few Carp to over 20lbs in weight whilst filming a feature for tackle giants Nash.

Andy Melbourne enjoyed a fruitful, if cold, two day session on the North Day ticket Lake, landing over a dozen fish which were mainly in to double figures as well as a 5lbs Barbel.



Paul Seed opted to fish maggots at 12 metres after drawing peg 49 on the Swan Pond in the latest round of the Drennan Silverfish Spring league and it paid off handsomely for him.

Paul caught almost every species of fish in the pond and included some good sized specimens in his winning weight of 27lbs 11oz; he also enjoyed the outcome of a peg for peg battle with Dave Mountford on 50. Dave fished in a similar fashion but did not find as many bonus fish in his second placed  22lbs catch.

An improvement in the weather saw everyone getting plenty of bites and some surprisingly big Roach put in an appearance with fish to 1.5lbs caught.

Peg 31 came up trumps again in the Tripp Lake Winter league match in Sunday, Mark Lidgard was into Carp from the off, landing 15 plus an assortment of Skimmers, Crucians and F.1`s  on 6mm expander pellets to win with 87lbs 6oz which was exactly 30lbs in front of second placed Tommy Grice who was on peg 19.



Weather conditions once again made the fishing match something of an endurance test for the competitors in the second round of the Drennan Silverfish Spring league which was fished on Saturday on Tripp Lake.

Arriving to find the Lake frozen over, a pre-match ice breaking session was quickly followed by strong winds and driving rain, not exactly the conditions one would associate with Carp feeding activity.

However those anglers drawn on the North bank of the Lake found themselves playing Carp for most of the day, whilst trying to catch enough fish that counted to justify weighing in at the end of the match.

Tommy Grice was drawn on peg 31 which has produced a number of 100lbs plus weights of Carp in the past few weeks and he was in to them from the off. Fishing 6mm expanders through the ice, just 3 feet deep in 12 feet of water, it was a bite every drop in and to his credit he stuck with it to win the match with 36lbs of F.1`s, despite returning over 100lbs of Carp.

Carl Swetnam had an even more frustrating day at the next peg, landing over 30 Carp up to 8lbs, this would probably have given him the biggest match weight of the winter so far had they counted and only managing 15lbs of Silvers in between.

Dennis Pattinson managed to avoid the attentions of the Carp on peg 4 on the opposite bank and put together a lovely net of quality Roach weighing 29lbs by employing his usual tactic of feeding heavily with maggots.

Strangely enough, the following day the Sunday Winter league match which was fished on the same

pegs saw no Carp caught on a day when they would have counted.



The first round of the Drennan Silverfish Spring league was a very damp affair, rain falling steadily for the duration of the match which was held on the prolific Oak Tree Pond.

Crowle angler Danny Taylor got his league off to a great start with a win from peg 8. Danny fished casters on a 4 metre whip, catching as many small Skimmers and Roach as he could whilst giving himself a chance of a few bonus fish which duly obliged in the shape of a couple of Tench and a few Crucians. Danny finished the day on 21lbs 1oz, just 6oz ahead of Dave Mountford who fished 4mm expander pellets at 11meters on the next peg.

With everyone enjoying a bite a cast from small Roach, Silver Bream and Skimmers, the weights were good under the conditions and everyone had over 10lbs on what was a pretty miserable day.



The final match of the Drennan Silverfish Winter League was held on the Swan Pond on Saturday.

The winner on the day was Graham Mumby with 30lbs from the un-fancied peg 38. Graham went all out for quality fish with worm and caster at 12 metres. Feeding small balls of bait packed groundbait and fishing a piece of worm on the hook,  he got off to a great start with a 2lbs Tench and a 3lbs Perch in the first half hour of the match. A steady run of Roach, Skimmers and Perch for the rest of the match  was enough to keep him ahead of the field, although Steve Richardson on peg 51 wasn’t too far behind with 28lbs of mainly Skimmers from peg 51.

There were no changes in the overall league positions and Kyle Hartley claimed a well deserved title.

Kyle stuck religiously to his worm and caster approach from the outset of the series and his confidence paid off, catching a really good stamp of fish throughout, consistently beating those around him.

The individual winners of the past three years claimed the top three places, Dave Mountford finishing second and Steve Richardson taking third place.


Carp have certainly fed well this week in matches, responding to a slight increase in water temperatures. Tripp Lake has again produced some really good weights.

Two anglers who drew opposite each other in the Thursday Open, Barry Lepley and Tony Hepburn found themselves sharing a large shoal of feeding Carp. Both fished 11mm pellet shallow on the waggler and were fish for fish throughout the match. Tony just claimed the top spot as his 109lbs 2oz from peg 31 was a mere 1lbs 10 oz ahead of Barry who was on peg 6.

The following day Ken Pacey was rubbing his hands as he pulled out peg 6 and made no mistake, winning on the same tactics with 94lbs.

Drop A.C. made a late booking on Hollywood lake for Sunday after enjoying a good match there a couple of weeks ago and the Carp were particularly obliging on this occasion. The winner had over 130lbs, the second placed man also had over 100lbs and the backs up weights were very good.



With air temperatures barely creeping above zero over the weekend it was a case of fishing for bites in the penultimate round of the Drennan Silverfish Winter League on the Swan Pond.

However, despite a slow start for most, fish fed well as the match progressed and weights were good under the conditions.

Dennis Pattinson fed heavily with maggots on peg 41 and recorded another individual win. Dennis had a real mixed bag, boosting his weight of Roach and small Skimmers with some good sized Perch, F.1`s, Crucians and Ide, all taken on single maggot on a size 22 hook at 13 metres.

His winning weight of 25lbs 2oz was just 7oz too much for Pete Riley who came second from peg 31, there then followed a string of low 20lbs plus weights in what was a fairly close match.

Kyle Hartley made the most of his peg 12 draw to secure an important section win with 21lbs5 oz, which was enough to see off the challenge of Dave Mountford in the overall league. Dave did well from a moderate draw but his 18lbs mixed bag was only good enough for second in his section, leaving Kyle with an insurmountable lead with just one match to go.

Sunday saw all of the Lakes frozen over and even the ever reliable Tripp Lake proved to be a hard nut to crack.

After last weeks bumper weights the Tripp Winter league was a fairly tough affair, although the top two were neck and neck all the way. Gary Hansford and Tommy Grice were separated by less than a pound at the all out and Gary got the verdict with his 36lbs 7oz of F,1`s caught shallow through the ice.

One angler who will be keen to see the ice disappear is syndicate member Ian Hobson. He has been enjoying some terrific results from Lenny`s Pool. In one recent session he banked four fish over 20lbs, including a 27lbs Mirror Carp and on his last visit he also landed a 25lbs fish.


With just three matches remaining in the Drennan Silverfish Winter league, neither of the top two contenders could afford a slip up on Tripp Lake at the weekend and as it turned out, neither of them did.

Finishing in first and second places respectively and both gaining the necessary section wins, Kyle Hartley and Dave Mountford approached the match in entirely different fashion.

Kyle, on peg 31 targeted Roach shallow on maggots, fishing 3 feet deep in 12 feet of water at 12 metres; he had bites from the off and soon found that plenty of bonus fish were there to be caught. He included some good F.1`s, Ide and Skimmers to 2lbs in his match winning 33lbs.

Dave took the normally productive soft pellet approach on peg 8, but with the Lake carrying less colour than usual the fish were backing off all of the time and he had to work hard to come in second with 31lbs.

With the final two rounds due to be held on the Swan Pond, an interesting finish is in prospect.


Carp are certainly showing a willingness to feed on Tripp Lake as match results have shown this week. The Thursday open was dominated by a method normally associated with the summer months. All of the top places went to anglers fishing hard 11mm pellet shallow on the waggler, Tony Hepburn topping a list of good weights with 91lbs.

Tommy Grice drew peg 21 on Tripp in the Winter League series and anticipated a feast or famine day. As it turned out there were plenty of Carp feeding and he produced the first 100lbs winning weight of the year, albeit by just 1oz.

The Oak Tree Pond is also in good form for Carp, although small baits such as Sweetcorn, maggots and expander pellets are the order of the day.

It is apparent recently that Carp are settled in the upper layers of water, especially on the deeper lakes and popped up baits or methods suited to fishing baits up in the water are out scoring bottom fished baits at the moment.



With the weather forecast suggesting the prospect of a tough weekend ahead the Drennan Silver fish match was switched to the ever reliable Oak Tree Pond.

Although the sharp drop in temperature and North East wind contrived to put the better stamp of fish off the feed, anglers still enjoyed a bite a cast from small Skimmers, Roach and Silver bream. Most of the field managed between 100 and 300 fish on maggot, caster or pellet and the average weight per man was over 10lbs.

Scunthorpe angler Steve Richardson led the way with 25lbs 12oz from peg 36, not too far behind in second was Danny Taylor with 23lbs 12oz from peg 45 and Alan Gregory made up the top three with 22lbs 8oz from peg 39.

One angler who decided to opt out of the fishing race was Tommy Grice who took a more positive approach by fishing banded 4mm pellet; although his 9lbs 8oz catch of Crucians, Tench and F.1`s did prove that a few of the bigger fish were actually feeding, the 100lbs plus of Carp that he also caught suggested that it was probably not the best gamble on the day.

With just 3 matches left it looks like a two horse race between two previous winners of the league. Kyle Hartley is just one point ahead of Dave Mountford, with the rest of the field probably too far behind to have any realistic chance of overhauling these two.


There was obviously some method in Tommy Grice`s madness on Saturday as he employed the same method to much more effect on Sunday and the practice obviously paid off as he won the Tripp winter league match on an iced over lake with 44lbs of large F.1`s from peg 13; second on the day with 28lbs was Garry Hansford who caught F.1`s shallow through the ice. Mark Lidgard found his way to the correct peg (unlike the previous day on the Oak Tree Pond, which will take some living down) to come third with 25lbs.


Although the fishing is fairly hard going in general, the North and South Lake are providing Silverfish anglers with some excellent winter sport, Jim Urry included 6 Roach over the pound mark from the South lake on a busy day fishing maggots on the pole and Thorne angler Rob Elsetub, who is a regular visitor included a Perch of 3lbs 8oz from the North Lake on a day when he also caught some really good quality Roach




Drennan Silverfish Winter League

Rounds 8 and 9 of the Messingham Sands, Drennan Silverfish Winter League were held on the Swan Pond over the Christmas period and both matches were dominated by Grimsby angler Dennis Pattinson.

Dennis ignored the usual worm and caster approach which has been scoring well on the Lake for most of the series; instead he opted for his usual tactics of feeding heavily with maggots and fishing on long pole with light lines and a 22 hook.

To say that he got it right would be something of an understatement as he won both matches comfortably as well as managing to win a mid week Open also held on the Swan Pond.

The first match saw Dennis drawn on an in form peg 41 and he made no mistakes, catching a mixture of Roach, Perch, Skimmers and odd F.1`s for a total of 42lbs, this gave him a healthy winning margin over his travelling partner Paul Seed who employed a similar approach on peg 12 to weigh 26lbs.

Round 9 saw most people struggling for bites after two days of snow and ice followed by a night of really heavy rain and even Dennis was left scratching his head on peg 15 after an almost bite less first hour. He then began to catch a few small fish until a shoal of large Perch were attracted by his heavy feeding.

Dennis included two fish of around 3lbs in weight as well as a number of others which were between a pound and two pounds. These specimens all came  in the space of a couple of hours after which he was able to top his weight up with a steady run of small Roach to bring  his winning total up to 24lbs. Joint league leader Dave Mountford came in second from peg 41 with a mixed bag of small fish totalling 19lbs.



Heavy duty ice breakers were required for the latest round of the Drennan Silverfish League which was held on Tripp Lake on Saturday and due to the time needed to clear the swims the match duration was reduced. Added to this, air temperatures never climbed much above zero, causing the surface water to constantly refreeze throughout the day, making life even more difficult for the competitors.

Non of this managed to hinder last weeks winner Dave Mountford who made it two on the bounce with an excellent 44lbs of mainly small F,1`s on 4mm expander pellets from peg 11 on the shallows.

Second place went to Carl Swetnam who caught 39lbs shallow on the same bait from peg 31 and included some good sized skimmers taken just two feet deep in 12 feet of water through his hole in the ice.

Mark Lidgard fished pellet over micros at 6mm on peg 27, catching a mixture of Crucians and F.1`s for 31lbs.

Surprisingly the lake fished reasonably well considering the disturbance prior to the start, everyone managed to catch over 10lbs and 13 weights over 20lbs were recorded.

The lake had refrozen for the following day’s winter league but the ice clearing did not take quite so much effort as the previous days swims were used.

Tommy Grice fished 6mm expander pellets on peg 33, even including some small Carp in his 29lbs mixed bag of fish.



This weekends Drennan Silverfish League was fished on a very chilly Tripp Lake.

 None of the anglers were too surprised to find the Lake frozen over on arrival after overnight temperatures had fallen to minus 3 degrees centigrade and a quick work out with the ice breakers was required to clear enough swims for the match to go ahead.

What was surprising however was how well the Lake fished and it quickly became apparent that a previously suggested   target weight of 20lbs was well below what was going to be needed to win as F.1`s, Crucians, Skimmers and Roach fed with remarkable enthusiasm from the off.

Dave Mountford topped a list of good weights by fishing 6mm expander pellets at 11 meters. Dave weighed 62lbs from peg 3 to finish 6lbs clear of Tommy Grice on peg 11.

Things weren’t quite as hectic the following day, although the result was much closer with less than 2.5lbs separating the top 4 anglers.

Mark  Lidgard squeezed the win with 32lbs 1oz, just 12oz ahead of Carl Swetnam who pipped third placed Graham Mumby by  just 4oz.

The Swan Pond was in great form in midweek when temperatures were in to double figures and Tony Woods enjoyed a win in the Wednesday open with 48lbs of Crucians, Skimmers and F.1`s by fishing 6mm expander pellets on long pole on peg 51.



With most of the lakes proving to be hard going after a week of frosts and snow, expectations were not too high for the latest round of The Drennan Silverfish League, which was held on the Swan Pond on Saturday.

As is often the case though the fish had not read the script and most of the competitors managed to get plenty of bites after a slow start.

League leader Kyle Hartley was never going to waste the opportunity to increase his lead when he drew peg 12 and did not disappoint. Although he included some bonus skimmers and f.1`s in his 37lbs winning total, the bulk of his catch were quality Roach. Kyle once again proved the dominance of the worm and caster approach.

Second placed Paul Seed also fished the same method on peg 43 on the opposite bank, catching mainly Crucians and F.1`s for his 30lbs total and Steve Richardson finished just over 1lb adrift in third place from peg 31.




All species of fish would appear to have become acclimatised to the low temperatures now, as anglers found a real variety in the latest round of the Drennan Silverfish league which was held on the Swan Pond on Saturday.

Despite a heavy overnight frost, the average weight per man was over 20lbs and most of the competitors had problems with carp which were feeding with surprising enthusiasm.

Pete Riley made the most of his peg 12 draw to score his second win in the series. Pete caught mainly on casters, landing a mixture of Perch, Skimmers, Roach, Crucians and F.1`s to total 37lbs.

The next three places were separated by less than a pound, with Sheffield’s Lee Johnson claiming second with 30lbs 10 oz.

Perch are feeding well at the moment and quite a few fish over the 2lbs mark were landed, although as is always the case with big Perch on light tackle, plenty more were hooked and lost.


Carp dominated the midweek matches and Bruce Waddingham fell just a few ounces short of a winter ton in the Thursday Open on the Oak Tree Pond. Bruce drew peg 19 and finished over 20lbs clear of Dave Henderson on peg 2.

Tony Woods topped the list on Wednesday with 63lbs of Carp from peg 20 on the Islands Lake.

Hollywood Lake proved to be the exception on Sunday as Silverfish dominated the day. Tommy Grice led the way with a 44lbs all skimmer net on soft pellet on long pole, the back up weights were mainly Skimmers and Crucians, with plenty of bites to be had on a freezing cold day.




With the prospect of a bitterly cold day facing the competitors in the latest round of the Drennan Silverfish league, the match was pegged with comfort in mind and most of the anglers were afforded the benefit of shelter from the wind.

Luke Harrison was drawn on peg 43, which was one of the more exposed areas, but despite the chilly conditions he found plenty of fish feeding. Worm and caster fished at 13-14 metres provided constant  bites from a mixture of fish, including Roach, Perch, Skimmers, Crucians and F.1`s. Luke finished 0n 47lbs which left him  15 lbs ahead of second placed Kyle Hartley who employed similar tactics on peg 31.

Grimsby match angler Martin Young is enjoying a really good run of results at Messingham Sands at the moment and it continued in the Tuesday open on the Oak Tree Pond where he won with 115lbs of carp. Martin fished sweetcorn on pole, landing fish up to 9lbs in weight.

Wednesday saw a dead heat for first place between Mark Westerman with 50lbs 40z of Carp from peg 52 and Kyle Hartley with a mixed bag of silverfish, including 5 Perch over 2lbs in weight from peg 7.

The Syndicate members are certainly getting their rewards for spending some really cold nights around the Lakes at the moment and Andy Penn landed a number of good fish up to 23lbs last week.



Despite a flat calm day and bright sunshine, the Islands Lake was in good form for the second leg of the Drennan Silverfish league.

Last years winner, Kyle Hartley employed his worm and caster approach to good effect on peg 8 to win with an excellent mixed bag of Skimmers, Crucians, Roach, F.1`s and a bonus 2.5lbs Perch totalling 51lbs.

 Dave Mountford went for an all out pellet approach on peg 10, finishing on 45lbs while Grimsby`s Dennis Pattinson fed 7 pints of maggots to weigh in 36lbs, Dennis very generously used a keepnet with a good sized hole in the bottom, courtesy of a home building mouse which had taken up residence in his garage. Having caught good sized Crucians and f.1`s all match, Dennis was amazed to only weigh in 36lbs until the reason became apparent.

Water temperatures have fallen significantly this week and are now around 4 degrees centigrade, which is the norm for winter conditions.

Despite this, Carp, which are the species of fish which are less enthusiastic to feed at low temperatures, have provided some good sport for anglers fishing through the night.

One angler landed over 20 fish up to 16lbs in a two day session and Brad Elsome from Rotherham include a 19lbs Mirror carp in an 8 fish haul, both from the North Lake.

Silver Fish anglers are also enjoying great sport on the North and South Lake at the moment, soft expander pellets fished over groundbait has been a really good method for Skimmer Bream from 6oz up to 2lbs and most anglers have reported a bite every cast.

Similarly up in the water tactics with maggots or casters is providing hectic sport from roach up to 1.5lbs in weight.

Plenty of Carp are still featuring in matches, despite the cold conditions and Jet Harris had a red letter day on Tripp Lake on Saturday, weighing in 138lbs from peg 26.

The highlight of the week was once again provided by Grimsby`s Andy Loades. After waiting for decades for his first ever match win, which he achieved in October of this year, Andy decided that he enjoyed the taste of victory so much that he would have another sample and duly beat 32 other anglers on the Islands Lake on Thursday with a 50lbs catch of Carp from peg 43.

He announced after the match that he is available for coaching if any one is interested!



Drennan Silver Fish Winter League Round 1


The first of the 13 match, Silver Fish only series was fished on the Islands Lake on Saturday and heavy rain managed to put paid to the expected bumper weights.

Anglers experienced an early taste of winter fishing as water temperatures fell dramatically overnight and many found bites hard to come by during the early part of the match.

As is usually the case however, once tactics were adjusted, plenty of fish were caught and 20lbs-30lbs was needed to win every section.

Unlike most of the competitors, Pete Riley, drawn on peg 31 on the arm did not experience a slow start and was catching quality skimmer Bream on pole fished pellet from the off. His 56lbs winning weight was more in line with expectations and he finished 20lbs clear of the rest of the field, giving him an excellent start to the league.


1 Pete Riley Scunthorpe 56-12

2 Kyle Hartley Scunthorpe 36-12

3 Kevin Johnson Messingham 33-14

4 Danny Taylor Crowle 33-05


The Swan Pond is in really good form, winning weights, including Don Hudsons 221lbs in the Wednesday Open have come from different areas of the Lake, giving everyone a chance of competing.

Tony Noon wasn’t too optimistic though when he drew peg 34 on Saturday, but by fishing 10mm hard pellet short on the pole, he found enough Carp to win the match, weighing 142lbs.

Don Hudson also caught close in on the golf course bank when he won the Wednesday Open and included some really good fish. He had 9 fish in one net which went just over 100lbs; again, 10mm hard pellet was the preferred bait.

Jim Urry showed the potential for the Islands Lake matches to be won without Carp when he led the way in a midweek club match with 123lbs of Crucians, Skimmers and Tench from peg 55 by fishing 6mm expander pellets close in on the pole.

Carp and Catfish continue to give good sport on the North and South lakes, Scot Jackson had a 36lb Cat on Luncheon Meat from the South Lake and one angler, also on the South Lake, had a real shock when the piece of bread he was using to tempt a Carp was taken by a 30lbs Catfish.

The Syndicate Lakes have certainly provided some excitement this week. Andy Penn found himself involved in an hour long battle on Lenny`s Lake with what turned out to be a personal best Catfish of 41lbs 4oz.

New member Sly Pinder also did really well on Ralph`s Pool, lLanding a 39lbs 6oz Catfish which was also a new p.b.



Carp are feeding really well on all of the Lakes and are definitely the target fish at the moment in matches.

There have been some really close results this week with just a few pounds separating the leading contenders and there were plenty of tails of woe from those who were just pipped at the post.

Not so for Don Hudson with his tremendous 275lbs catch from peg 3 on the Swan Pond. Fishing bomb and Pellet on peg 3, Don finished a massive 119lbs clear of second place.

Catfish continue to feed really well with 40lbs plus fish recorded from the North Day Ticket Lake, Lenny`s Pool and Ralph`s Pool.

The North and South Day ticket Lakes are also producing plenty of double figure carp, both for day ticket anglers and for those on a night session. Scunthorpe angler Danny Harmann landed 16 good sized fish up to 19lbs 5oz from the North lake on Saturday.

Fishery Bailiff Jim Urry was tasked with catching some Roach as part of a stock check last week and armed with just a pint of maggots he had a tremendous day on the South Lake, with over 60lbs of good quality fish, which were all caught just 12 inches deep.




Wednesday saw a really tight finish in the Open match on the Swan Pond, Carp fed really well and there were several 100lbs plus weights. Don Hudson found just enough fish to hold off Ken Pacey who was on the Golden peg and his 151lbs 15oz was 14ozs too much for Ken to claim the extra prize money, much to Don`s delight.

Weights have been consistently good across all of the lakes, Tyler Wilson claiming a new 3 hour record from Hollywood in the RAOB club match in the week with 167lbs 9ozs.

Carp and Catfish continue to feed well on the North and South Lake, Connor Turner landing 3 Cats on luncheon meat up to 34lbs in a night session on the South day Ticket Lake as well as a number of carp.

Josh Skipworth had Carp to 18lbs and two Cats of 19lbs and 21lbs from the North Lake on Sunday night.

John Walker has also enjoyed some great sport on the Syndicate from Lennys Lake, banking over 40 fish in his last three sessions, including Catfish up to 39lbs and plenty of good sized Carp.




Last weeks heavy rainfall created something of a yo yo effect on match results. Fortunately things had settled down by the weekend and anglers enjoyed some really good sport.

Wickersley A.C. held a club match on Sunday on the Swan Pond where Steve Beast led the way with 162lbs from peg 57, fishing pole in the margins. There were 7 weights over 100lbs and the average per man was just short of 90lbs.

The average weight on the Open match on Tripp was even higher, at over 130lbs per man. Simon Gayle topping a string of really good catches with a huge 258lbs of Carp and f.1`s.

The influx of extra water seemed to encourage Catfish to feed and the North and South Lakes produced a number of good sized specimens over the weekend, including fish of 34lbs for Andy Melbourne, a 35pounder for Luke Gash, both from the South Lake and a 38lb North lake fish for Dwayne Shaw. There were also a number of other 20 pound plus fish landed and a several reports of big fish hooked and lost.

Doncaster angler Ian Hobson found things a little too hectic on a midweek 24 hour session on the North Lake, such that he decided to reel his rods in at midnight in order to get some sleep, despite this he still recorded 25 Carp up to 17lbs and a 22lbs Catfish.

The members of the Syndicate are also hooking in to plenty of rod benders, Ron Fox landed a 39lb Cat from Ralphs Pool and Adam Ridley recorded a personal best fish of 41lbs 8 oz from Lenny`s Lake

The Oak Tree Pond is in sensational form for those anglers who prefer a smaller stamp of fish and margin fishing with meat, pellet or corn on pole gear has resulted in some spectacular sport. Pleasure anglers are regularly landing between 50 and 80 fish in a session ranging from 1lb up to low double figures.




Members of the Syndicate lakes are enjoying some great sport at the moment as Carp and Catfish appear to be in the mood for feeding. Scunthorpe angler Mick Waller had a memorable session on Lenny`s Lake, banking Catfish of 29lbs, 31lbs and 47lbs.

Brian Skoyles made a return visit to the North Lake with a young angler for a coaching session on Friday. He opted to try King Prawns again after achieving a lot of success in the winter on this bait from the same water and once again was amazed at the variety and numbers of fish keen to take it. The duo ending the day  with 40 carp, a number of Barbel and some really big Eels, plus other species including Bream, roach and Chub.


Tripp Lake is currently in exceptional form, an algal bloom is providing colour and cover, encouraging the fish to feed with confidence. Dave Mountford fished two matches on the lake this week and almost made it back to back wins with weights of 183lbs and 224lbs on Thursday and Saturday respectively, unfortunately he came up against Nick Houghton on Saturday who weighed 235lbs from peg 18, pushing Dave in to second place.

Thursday saw him take the honours however from peg 30 in a match which produced 8 weights over the 100lbs mark.

John Alderson went to the draw bag for the Wednesday Open on the Islands Lake saying that he would like peg 17, sure enough that was the one to come out and he made no mistake, landing a level 147lbs of carp to beat Neil Vernon on peg 55 in to second place, Neil weighing in with 138lbs of carp.



Match results are very up and down at the moment with Carp in particular being unpredictable in their feeding habits.

The water temperature changes over the past couple of weeks have certainly had an effect as fish feed with real enthusiasm one day and seem to show little interest the next.

Some good weights of Carp have been recorded despite the conditions and Steve Peacham did particularly well to win on Wednesday with 163lbs from the islands lake despite heavy and persistent rain throughout the day.

Those anglers targeting F.1`s, Crucians and Skimmers have found sport to be more consistent and Sundays Open on the Islands Lake saw the top two places filled by Mark Lidgard with 136lbs of mainly Crucian Carp caught on short pole and 6mm expander pellets from peg 51 and Steve Ellis with 114lbs of Skimmers and Crucians on paste from peg 39.

Pleasure anglers are enjoying some great sport from the North and South lakes with plenty of Carp and a few Catfish up to 20lbs in weight and the Oak Tree Pond is as prolific as ever for carp averaging around 3lbs to 8lbs.



Last week saw an incredible increase in water temperature from 14 degrees to 21 degrees in the space of four days.

There was unsurprisingly, a huge amount of spawning activity across all of the lakes as a result of this, with all of the Silverfish species involved as well as Carp.

In angling terms this leads to unpredictable sport.

Those fish which are spawning show little or no interest in feeding and the rest of the population are actively engaged in devouring as many of the eggs being produced as possible.

It can be difficult to compete with nature’s banquet during this brief period, although the associated rise in temperature means that the fish are really on the feed and as far as anglers are concerned it is a real feast or famine time of the year.

The Drennan Pairs match held on Bank Holiday Monday was more on the famine side of the equation as anglers struggled to find Carp which would feed consistently and Tony Noon topped the individual list with the only 100lbs net of the day from peg 17 on the Islands Lake.

An impressive 5 point score from the winners of the Easter Pairs Event, Carl Swetnam and Mick Shaw was far too good for the rest of the field as they romped to their second successive title.

Carl drew peg 26 on the Little Swan and his 83lbs of Carp was good enough for 3 points, whilst Mick finished 2nd on the Islands Lake from peg 15 with 74lbs of silverfish.

Whilst 40 pairs were booked on to fish, 3 pairs did not turn up on the day, or have the courtesy to ring the organisers and let them know they weren’t coming. Apologies are due to those pairs who were turned away when the list was closed at 40.

Steve Bingham had an excellent weekend, winning the Open match on Hollywood on Saturday with 157lbs of Carp from peg 2 by fishing pellets in a small banjo feeder on a day when Paul Seed came in 3rd with 290 silverfish for101lbs at the next peg.

Steve had a different kind of peg for peg battle the following day when he drew 26 on the little Swan and found an in form Simon Gale on peg 27. Carp fed really well for both men, Steve coming out on top with 263lbs to Simon`s 221lbs.

The Fishomania Qualifier, which was fished on Wednesday was a resounding success with former winner Steve Cooke getting through to the final with a superb 205lbs weight from peg 26 on Hollywood. Steve beat off the challenge from 90 other anglers in a match which produced 13 weights over 100lbs, despite some spectacular spawning activity on the day.

The Oak Tree Pond is in really good form for pleasure anglers targeting Carp at the moment. Some really good fish up to 23lbs have been landed this week although the average size is between 3lbs and 8lbs. Barnsley angler Jordan Shears had a 17.5lbs Mirror carp on his last cast of the day to add to the 40 others he had already caught from peg 45 on Sunday.



Cool north and easterly winds are keeping temperatures down and match results are still on the low side, Dave Chapman recording the biggest weight of the week with 122lbs 4 oz in the Friday open on the islands lake where he beat ken Pacey in to second place by just 8 oz.

The Syndicate Lakes are still providing members with some great sport, with carp to 28lbs and Catfish to over 40lbs landed this week.

Steve Daniels landed a 40lb Catfish from Lenny`s Lake which was a personal best English fish.

The North and South lakes are both in exceptional form for Silverfish with 6mm expander pellets for both feed and hookbaits the best option at the moment. Plenty of Carp have also been landed by anglers fishing night sessions plus the odd Catfish up to 22lbs, surface baits appear to be best during the daylight hours.




Although some decent weights have been recorded in matches in the past week, sport remains well below par as the cold weather persists.

Ian Coatham has not let the cold winds put him off employing a really positive approach with 11mm pellet on the pole however and he scored two wins on the Swan Pond with around 120lbs of Carp.

Those anglers who have done well with Silver Fish have found that fishing further out has been the order of the day and a more cautious approach with feeding has been required.

The Oak Tree pond has been as prolific as ever and quite a few double figure Carp have been landed in amongst the usual run of fish which are generally in the 2lbs to 8lbs size range.

Both of the Syndicate lakes have fished well for both Carp and Catfish.

Although there are some larger cats in Lenny`s Lake, Kev Wells landed a landmark fish from Ralph`s Pool on Sunday in the shape of a 41lbs 1oz fish which is a new record for the pond. It is thought that this is the same fish which came out at 37lbs last year, indicating a good rate of growth.


The result was almost a foregone conclusion after the draw in the Drennan Bank Holiday Pairs Event on Monday.

Previous winners Shane Blades and Rob Seward were always going to be too good to waste their combination of peg 26 on the Swan Pond and peg 10 on the Islands Lake and no one was surprised to see the pools money heading off to Grimsby after the results were called.

Shane scored 2 points with 79lbs 5oz and Rob came away with 8 points for his 52lbs. Both anglers targeting Carp on the day.

A creditable performance saw Hull pairing Tony Noon and Mike Chadwick taking second spot with 11 points and fishery regulars Kyle Hartley and Ken Pacey put in a consistent performance to take third place with 14 points.

After a week of very cold weather and a strong easterly wind on the day, weights were well below par, although most of the 58 anglers competing put over 30lbs of fish on the scales, it was hard going and the overall winner Andy Bryant needed just 93lbs to claim the individual pools.


Pairs Result

1 Shane Blades + Rob Seward 10points

2Tony Noon + Mike Chadwick 11 points

3 Kyle Hartley + Ken Pacey 14 points

4 Simon Gayle + Ian Thompson 15 points



1 Andy Byant 93-12

2 Simon Gayle 83-10

3 Sean Saunders 80-03

4 Shane Blades 79-05


The Drennan Silver Fish League came to a conclusion on Saturday on the Swan Pond and despite dropping a point on the day, Kevin Johnson finished the league on 96 points, 2 ahead of Carl Swetnam on 94.

The overall winner on the day with an impressive mixed net of Roach, Silver Bream, Skimmers, Perch and ide caught on Caster fished shallow at 6 metres was Luke Harrison with 87lbs 2oz.


1Luke Harrison Crowle 87-02

2 Carl Swetnam Rotherham 79-13

3 Kevin Johnson Messingham 74-00

4 Dave Mountford Grimsby 72-12


Final League positions




















Carl Swetnam`s eyes lit up when he drew peg 15 on Tripp Lake in the penultimate round of the Drennan Silver Fish league on Saturday and it certainly didn`t dissapoint. Despite being pestered by Carp for the first half of the match his dead maggot and groundbait approach produced a 108lbs winning weight comprising of Skimmers, Roach, Ide, F.1`s and Crucians.

Runner up Dennis Pattinson also fished maggots on peg 10 for a 90lbs mixed bag.

The final match which is on the Swan Pond next Saturday will effectively be a two horse race for the overall first place between Carl Swetnam and Kevin Johnson, both men winning their sections this week to keep the interest going right to the end of the 13 match series.

Weights have fluctuated during the week but 100lbs has been a realistic target on most matches, putting the result in anyone’s grasp as both a Carp or a Silverfish approach could produce a win.

Lenny`s Lake continues to fish well for the Syndicate members, with plenty of good sized carp and Cats reported, Scunthorpe angler Neil Graham pulled out seven Carp over the 20lbs mark, the best a 27lbs Mirror as well as a 29lbs Catfish all in the same session last week.

The Drennan Spring Festival Commences today and in keeping with the past couple of years,poor weather is forecast. Hopefully it won’t be as bad as last year when winter returned with a vengeance for the entire week. Despite this the fishing was excellent and fingers are crossed for more of the same.





Paul Seed found quality Silverfish on peg 8 in the latest round of the Drennan Silverfish Spring League on Saturday. Fishing Casters he caught some really good sized Ide and Skimmers, topped up with Roach and Perch for a winning 80lbs total.

A steady fall in temperatures after the recent summer like weather has seen lower match winning weights this week, although sport has been fairly consistent on all of the Lakes.

Ian Coatham seems to have mastered the conditions well and has been very consistent in all of the matches he has fished, including the well attended Thursday Open when he recorded the highest weight of the week with 143lbs. Ian has been fishing positively with 11mm hard pellet on the pole, finding that raising and lowering the bait constantly has encouraged Carp to take the bait.

The Syndicate members have found Lenny`s Lake to be in great form with plenty of 20lbs plus Carp landed, with a best of 28lbs so far this season. Catfish also seem to be really keen to feed and a 40lbs fish has topped a list including lots of 30lbs plus specimens.


Easter Monday pairs

The Drennan Pairs Match which was fished on Easter Monday on the Swan Pond and Islands Lake saw 80 anglers on the bank.

 A 3 degree fall in water temperature over the weekend put paid to any possibility of big weights and although Carp dominated most of the top individual places, it was an all out Silver Fish attack which secured the top two positions in the Pairs.

The Rotherham duo of Mick Shaw and Carl Swetnam claimed the honours with 9 points followed by Alan Gregory and Kevin Johnson on 11 points and in third place Steve Eyres and Ian Coatham had 14 points.

Mick Shaw was top weight on the Islands Lake from peg 31 with an excellent 81lbs of Skimmers and Roach, his partner doing enough on the Swan Pond from peg 38 with 57lbs of Silvers to gain the necessary points required for the win.


1 Mick Shaw and Carl Swetnam 9 points

2 Alan Gregory and Kevin Johnson 11 points

3 Steve Eyres and Ian Coatham 14 points

4 Steve Bingham and Simon Drayton 17 points

5 Mike Smith and Danny Hoggard 22 points



1 Dave Woddiwiss Grimsby 87-09

2 John Andrews Barnsley 85-12

3 Mick Shaw Rotherham 81-00

4 Steve Brough Scunthorpe 79-04


Good Friday Teams of Five

The Drennan Teams of Five event on Good Friday saw 70 anglers enjoy consistent sport over all of the lakes used. Although a cold wind made things a bit uncomfortable for some, fish fed reasonably well. The average catch per man was over 60lbs and weight played a decisive role in the outcome as there was a tie on points for the top places.

Individually, Ken Pacey led the way with 137lbs of Carp from peg 53 on the Islands lake, Steve Ellis came up trumps on his paste approach from peg 13 on the Swan Pond with 129lbs of carp and Steve Donaghue wasn,t too far behind with 121lbs from peg 26 on the Little Swan.

The Teams saw a tie on points between Scunthorpe Tackle and Messingham A, both with 22 points. The Messingham outfit having a 40lbs weight advantage to claim the spoils with 446lbs.

Third and Fourth places also tied on points, each with 30 and Barnsley just pipped Grimsby by less than 10lbs to take the honours.

1         Messingham A 22points (Ken Pacey, John Alderson Kyle Hartley , Kevin Johnson, Dave Toyne)

2         Scunthorpe Tackle  22 points(Steve Richardson, Graham Bontoft, Luke Harrison, Pete Riley, Wayne Easter)

3         Barnsley 30 points (Mark Bissell, Martin Day, Sean Sanders, Pete Taylor, Nick Smith)


A taste of summer saw anglers discarding winter clothing and in many cases winter methods last week.

Former Division 1 National Champion Steve Ellis is well known for raising a few eyebrows with his positive approach to match fishing and one look at the weather forecast for the weekend saw him mixing paste up for the Drennan Silverfish League match on Tripp.

Steve certainly doesn’t lack confidence in using this approach for Silverfish, indeed two years ago he had an amazing 199lbs of Skimmers in a match on the Swan Pond and he proved its worth once again on Saturday.

Drawn on peg 15 he fed micro pellets and fished paste over them, catching Skimmers, F.1`s Crucians and Ide to total 115lbs.

 Carl  Swetnam finished second by fishing maggots over groundbait for a real mixed bag of fish totalling 103lbs from peg 13 and the same method provided him with a win the following day from peg 3 on the same lake, this time with 124lbs on a day when Carp  dominated the top places.

Most of the matches last week enjoyed good turn outs as enjoyable conditions persuaded more of the warmer weather anglers on to the bank. Thursday saw 46 competitors line up on the Islands Lake for the open match which was won by Mick Crosby with78lbs of carp from peg 54.

The Easter Match fishing programme also looks to be well supported with plenty of people booked on to the Teams of Five event on Good Friday and the Bank Holiday Pairs on Monday.





Match weights are increasing rapidly as water temperatures rise and Carp are now beginning to dominate.

Peg 56 on the Swan Pond, which is one of the shallowest areas, was the hot draw last week.

 Andy Bryant won a well attended Friday Open from it with 139lbs and Steve Peacham was really pleased to pull the same peg out on Sunday. His optimism was not misplaced as he weighed a whopping 245lbs by fishing pole in the margins.  

Saturdays Drennan Silver Fish League, which was fished on the islands lake, provided some really consistent sport as the average weight per man was just over 50lbs.

Some really good Roach and Hybrids showed but the main weight boosters were Skimmers, Crucians and odd Tench.

The winner, drawn on peg 39 swapped between casters fished shallow and 6mm expander pellets over groundbait, enjoying a really good run of Skimmers late in the match.

The Opening day of the Syndicate proved to be a good one for Ryan Farnham as he netted a 24lbs Mirror Carp and a 34lb Catfish from the Party Peg on Lenny`s Lake.

Carp in the North and South Lakes are showing well on the surface and a number of double figure fish were caught on floating bread last week.  Ian Beech landed a nice 17lbs Common Carp from the South Lake, although he was actually fishing for Roach at the time.

Brian Skoyles fished the North Lake in midweek, targeting Big Perch on prawns. The species list caught solely on this bait was quite impressive, as were the size of some of the fish, including Carp, Bream, Chub, Eels and some really good Roach, unfortunately a big Perch was missing from it as they didn`t show on the day.




After a week of frosts, Easterly winds and an overnight temperature of minus 4 degrees, target weights for Saturdays Drennan Silverfish league on the Swan Pond were lower than normal. The fish obviously hadn,t read the script however and despite calm conditions and bright sunshine, fed really well all around the Lake.

The winner, drawn on peg 12, found a good mixture of quality Skimmers, Ide, Roach and Perch totalling 89lbs. Alternating between 6mm expanders over groundbait on two long lines and casters at 4 metres, fish came steadily throughout the match.

Second place went to Dennis Pattinson with an excellent 67lbs of Roach, Skimmers and Ide caught shallow on maggots from peg 6.

There was an added bonus on the day for those with an eye for wildlife as a pair of Ospreys flew around the fishery for a while as they made their way North.

The cold weather leading up to the match resulted in fewer Carp being caught than normal, but this was not the case on Tripp Lake on the following day when Steve Ellis discarded the light lines and small bait approach and fished 11mm hard pellet and paste to win comfortably with 118lbs from peg 26, Gary Hansford claiming second place with 77lbs of Carp caught shallow on pellet.




The Islands lake was in top form for Saturdays Drennan Silverfish League Match.

The average weight per man was over 45lbs and the top three individuals each came from different sections, indicating that fish were feeding well throughout the lake.

The winner on the day was Pete Riley who was drawn on peg 44 on the arm. As with the rest of the competitors, Pete had a real mixed bag of fish, his 65lbs included Skimmers, Roach, Perch, Crucians F.1`s and Tench. The main tactic on the day seemed to be to avoid the attentions of Carp which were also very active. One angler returned no less than 58, including 6 good sized specimens; he still managed 50lbs of silverfish but finished last in his 5 peg section.

It was no surprise that the following days Open Match, which was fished on the same Lake was dominated by Carp weights. Steve Bingham, drawn on peg 42 weighed a creditable 120lbs by fishing pellet and meat on the bomb.

Carp also fed well on the rest of the Lakes last week as Sheffield angler Norman Addy found out when fishing the Oak Tree Pond. Norman adopted summer tactics of fishing in the margins with Corn and Pellet, landing 54 fish averaging between 7lbs and 8lbs.



The weather was much kinder last week with a definite feel of spring about it.

Match results reflected this and weights are steadily improving.

This is probably the best time of the year for competitive matches at Messingham Sands. It is possible to win with all Silverfish weights, all Carp weights, or a mixture of both, meaning that everyone is in with a chance of making the frame.

The Drennan Silverfish Spring League was held on Tripp Lake on Saturday and saw Carl Swetnam take an excellent win with a 78lbs mixed bag of Skimmers, Roach, Crucians, F.1`s and Ide.

Fishing dead maggots over groundbait at 4 metres, he really did not know what was coming next. He managed a relatively Carp free day unlike the second placed man who landed 24 in between his 51lbs of Skimmers, Ide and F.1`s.

The following day Carl made it a double using the same tactics in the Tripp Winter League match, he topped up his Silverfish this time with half a dozen Carp to weigh in 107lbs, finishing ahead of Luke Harrison on 98lbs who also fished maggots close in on pole.  

It is noticeable that most of the Carp weights from the deeper Lakes are falling to up in the water tactics. Both Terry Holmes and Phil Deitch won matches on the Swan Pond this week with 80lbs plus weights of Carp by adopting the normal summer tactics of fishing 11mm pellet shallow on a waggler.

Pleasure anglers are also finding that surface fished baits are scoring really well on all of the day ticket Lakes.



Match weights were below par last week as a mixture of heavy rain and overnight frosts put a damper on things. However some really good competitions resulted with not too much to separate the leading contenders on most days.

Round 5 of The Drennan Silverfish Spring League was fished on the Islands Lake on Saturday and less than 5lbs separated the top four places.

Steve Nurse was optimistic when he drew peg four after hearing that it had produced the winner in the Wednesday Open. Armed with some useful information on what to expect, he set his stall out for Crucians and F.1`s by fishing 4mm expanders over micro pellets. Steve caught steadily apart from a poor last hour and his 91 fish were good enough to win the day with 44lbs. Sport was consistent all around the Lake and most people weighed over 20lbs of Silverfish, together with plenty of Carp which didn,t count.


Messingham Sands Syndicate Lake produced a couple of memorable winter fish last week in the shape of a 30lbs Mirror Carp for Nick Salt and 40lbs Catfish for James Gillie.

The Oak Tree pond which is renowned for its large stock of small to medium sized Carp has also been throwing up some good sized specimens, an 18lbs mirror was caught within a few days of a 19lb fish being landed.

The match fishing results have been excellent for the time of the year. Lee Harrison won the Drennan Silver fish match with 38lbs of Skimmers and Perch from peg 29 on the Swan Pond.

Kyle Hartley won the Wednesday Open on the Swan Pond with 56lbs of Silver fish, including 2 Perch over 3lbs in consecutive casts from peg 12.

Kevin Johnson won the Sunday Open on the Islands Lake from peg 2 with 61 lbs of Crucians Skimmers and Roach.

Tommy Grice topped the list on Hollywood from peg 2 with 61lbs of Carp which was an exceptional weight given the strength and direction of the wind.

Storm Doris put most of the usual competitors off on Thursday but Ernie Armitage had a well deserved win on the day from peg 10 on the Islands Lake with a 57lbs mixed bag which included 2 double figure Carp. He also claimed an extra £100 for winning from a golden peg to make attending in such atrocious conditions worthwhile.

Garry Weston topped a good list of Silver Fish only weights in the Tardis Tackle winter league from peg 12 on the Swan Pond on Sunday with 33lbs and Alex Ward won the Crowhill match on Tripp Lake, also  on Sunday, with 73lbs from peg 19.

It would appear that the strong winds and rain experienced last week did not put the fish off the feed as a slight rise in water temperature more than compensated.



Sport has improved dramatically as the week has progressed. Water temperatures have recovered dramatically after last weeks dismal weather and weights have risen accordingly.

Kyle Hartley got off to an excellent start in Saturdays Drennan silverfish league in the shape of a 2lbs Tench on his first drop in. Fishing worm and caster, he never looked back, netting Chub, Ide, some good Skimmers and plenty of quality Roach for an excellent 45lbs.

The Friday Open match on the same Lake also produced some bumper Silverfish catches; Ken Pacey recorded his third consecutive win with 69lbs on 6mm expander pellets from peg 15. Ken had 2 decent Carp, the remainder of his weight was made up with a mixture of Skimmers, Crucians and F.1`s.

Tommy Grice recorded his second ton weight in as many weeks from Tripp Lake, fishing 6mm soft pellet shallow on both occasions.

Hull Prison service had a good match on The Oak Tree Pond in the week, the winner, who was drawn on peg 40 landing 110lbs of carp and one angler weighed a fish of 19lbs.

Roach and Bream are feeding really well on the North and South lakes with some good Perch and the odd Chub also putting in an appearance.

One angler didn,t let the weather put him off spending a night session on the Big Syndicate lake and despite torrential overnight rain he managed to bank 6 Carp, including 3 over the 20lbs mark, the best a 23lbs mirror.


Grimsby,s Barry Lepley made a mockery of the bitterly cold weather on the Thursday Open which was fished on the Oak Tree Pond. Flurries of snow and a biting easterly wind during the day should have resulted in everyone struggling for bites, but Barry obviously did not read the script as he caught Carp from the off on a variety of methods to win the match with 121lbs from peg 27. Well behind in second place with 45lbs was Graham Buckley and the rest of the mere mortals did actually conform to the col weather theory and struggled to catch Carp, although there were plenty of bites for those who targeted silver fish.

Tripp Lake proved to be something of an enigma on what was probably the worst weekend to fish of the entire winter. The bitterly cold Easterly wind was accompanied by relentless sleet and rain which worsened on Sunday.

Those anglers fishing Tripp on Saturday in the Drennan Silverfish Spring League found Carp to be something of a nuisance with several anglers returning up to 30lbs of fish unweighed. This led to reasonable expectations of some decent weights on the Sunday winter league on the same venue when all species count, however only two Carp were caught in the entire match and results were poor.

Dennis Pattinson proved the worth of his loose fed maggot approach once again to win the Saturday match with 26lbs of Roach, Skimmers and F.1`s, although after 3 hours and with only 3lbs in the net he would have been reluctant to take a bet on winning anything on the day.



Carl Swetnam adopted the worm and caster approach which has proven to be so successful for catching quality Silver fish this winter in the first round of the Drennan Silverfish Spring league and his winning weight of 38lbs from peg 15 proved the decision to be justified.

Carl had a really good mixed bag of quality fish including a Perch of 3lbs 8oz, Ide to 2.5lbs, Skimmers, Roach, Crucians and an odd Tench.

Tommy Grice topped an impressive list of weights on Tripp Lake on Sunday, fishing 6mm expanders shallow accounted for a mixture of Carp and F.1`s totalling 114lbs.

Carp fed well on the islands lake on Saturday in the Goldthorpe winter league with 80lbs winning the match, the following day  the open was held on the same venue and they were few and far between however, Dennis Pattinson took advantage of this to win with 43lbs of Silverfish on loose fed maggots.



Overall Results

1 Kyle Hartley 100 points

2 Steve Richardson 93 points (weight)

3 Kevin Johnson 93 Points

4 Carl Swetnam 91points

5 G. Mumby 90 points.


An impressive and well deserved win for Scunthorpe angler Kyle Hartley in the Drennan Silverfish only winter League.

Kyle targeted quality fish throughout the series and even on the hardest of days his worm and caster approach came up trumps, scoring 10 section wins from a possible 13.

Steve Richardson did everything he needed to in order to claim second place by winning a very hard final round on the Swan Pond. Steve found some really good Perch on peg 33 to almost double the second placed man and his 28lbs winning weight gave him the necessary boost to claim second place in the league after a tie on points.

Another excellent series which produced some really good weights of fish and plenty of bites on a variety of methods and baits.


Kyle Hartley scored his second win of the series in the Drennan Silver Fish Winter League on the Swan Pond on Saturday. Drawn on peg 45 on the Swan Pond, like many he found bites hard to come by, but by targeting Perch with chopped worm and caster he caught some really good fish to head a very tight field, less than 1.5lbs separating the top four individuals, Kyle leading the way with 23lbs 13oz.

Once again a week of fluctuating temperatures has also seen results going up and down. With many of the lakes iced over for several days in a row and sudden increases in air temperatures causing the ice to melt quickly, the water temperatures in the lakes have plummeted, subsequently fish feeding activity has been predictably unpredictable.

One angler who didn,t let the wintry conditions dent his confidence in catching Carp even in the most adverse circumstances was Barnsley’s  Sean Sanders. He won the Goldthorpe Winter league on the Swan Pond last weekend with over 60lbs of Carp on bomb and meat from peg 54 and returned to repeat the performance on Wednesday, this time on peg 27.

Grimsby’s Simon Piggot also found a few sizeable fish on Sunday on the Swan Pond to win the Open with 42lbs from peg 10, this time bomb and 11mm hard pellet proving to be the recipe for success.

The most consistent angler of the week and displaying his ability to scratch a few fish out under hard conditions was Dave Mountford. Dave scored two firsts, a second and a fourth in the 4 matches he fished, although his 21-09 winning weight of Perch and Roach on Tuesday on the Swan Pond was a shared prize as John Holt had exactly the same weight of Carp at the next peg


Dennis Pattinson scored two successive wins over the Christmas Period in the Drennan Silverfish League. Dennis proved his faith in loose feeding maggots heavily on even the hardest of days to be justified when he topped the list on the Islands Lake on Christmas Eve with an eyebrow raising 25lbs of quality skimmers from the un-fancied peg 13.

 On a day when bites were at a premium he certainly went against the softly softly approach employed by the rest of the field and blasted 3 pints of maggots in through the day, eventually coming up trumps with fish to 2.5lbs.

The following week, anglers arrived at Tripp Lake to find it frozen over, but with the ice melting quickly, not a recipe for big catches. Dennis again fed over 3 pints of maggots with complete confidence and attracted some quality Roach, finishing with a winning net totalling 22lbs, although this was regarded as a low winning weight for Tripp lake, it was excellent under the conditions. A similar approach from Danny Taylor also found some cracking Roach up to 1lbs and another 20lbs plus catch for second place.


Luke Harrison switched from fishing expander pellets to maggots due to the unwanted attentions from too many Carp in the Drennan Silverfish league match on Saturday. This decision led instead to a procession of Skimmers, Perch, Roach and a bonus 4 lb Ide for a winning total of 47lbs from peg 50 on the Swan Pond. This was enough to keep league leader Kyle Hartley in second place. Kyle drew peg 29 and caught steadily from the off to finish with 40lbs of Perch and Skimmers.

Sunday`s winter league on Tripp Lake produced the tightest of finishes with the top 4 separated by just 1lbs 8 oz.

Carp and F.1`s provided the bulk of these weights and Mark Lidgard managed to take the win by just 3oz.

The North and South Lakes are fishing really well in the current settled weather., Carp anglers fishing with  boilies have been landing  up to 10 fish in a sitting.

Roach and Skimmers are feeding with abandon, with plenty of fish of both species weighing around the 1lb mark being caught as well as some good perch up to 2lbs.

Soft pellet over fishmeal groundbait is the best method for catching skimmers and Casters fished shallow for Roach will provide a bite very cast on light tackle.


Last week saw temperatures as low as minus 5 and as high as plus 15. Not surprisingly results were very up and down.

Tuesday morning was the coldest at minus 5 degrees and a few heads shook at the draw of the open match when Terry Holmes announced that he was going fish up in the water on the waggler  with hard pellet for Carp. With bites at a premium even from the huge numbers of Silver Fish in the Lake, Terry’s master plan turned out to be a stroke of genius, He hooked 8 Carp fishing just 2 feet deep in 12 feet of water, landing 6 fish for 21lbs and a match win from peg 50.

As the week progressed, temperatures rose rapidly and on Thursday 40 anglers lined up for the Open Match on The Oak Tree Pond, all with high expectations of catching at least a few carp.

Most people were not disappointed and Ian Coatham topped a good list of weights for a winter match with 104lbs of Carp on long pole and sweetcorn.

Saturday saw the Drennan Silverfish Open on the Swan Pond and once again Carp put in an appearance with anglers returning up to 16 fish each unweighed. Fortunately the disturbance did not seem to deter Silverfish from feeding and good weights were recorded around the Lake.

Paul Seed won the match on his favourite bait, Casters and included a huge 3lbs 14oz Perch in his weight of 39lbs 8oz from peg 31.



Grimsby`s Tony Hepburn got his tactics right in the latest round of the Drennan Silverfish League and scored an easy win from peg 13. His 44lbs mixed net of Roach, Crucians, Skimmers, F.1`s and Ide was almost 20lbs clear of second place. With Carp putting in an appearance in most pegs and the shallows apparently alive with them Tony switched to fishing maggots and had fewer problems than most.

Sunday`s Open on the same Lake was not surprisingly dominated by Carp and despite flat calm conditions and bright sunshine, Sean Harrison caught steadily all day from peg 34 to finish  with an excellent winter weight of 100lbs 6oz.

Carp seem to be becoming more used to the lower water temperatures and pleasure anglers have been having some surprisingly good catches from both the Oak Tree Pond and Merry`s Pool.

The North and South Lakes continue to fish really well for quality Roach and Skimmers and Carp anglers   landed quite a number of double figure fish last week.


The Drennan Silverfish League fished on the Islands Lake on a bitterly cold Saturday saw a real peg for peg battle as the top three found themselves sat on a tight shoal of Skimmers, Crucians and F.1`s. Paul Seed on peg 3 got off to a good start but slowed down as the match progressed and it was left to  Kyle Hartley and Steve Richardson to fight it out as their pegs improved as the day went on. Kyle Hartley on peg 4 walked away with the winnings, beating Steve Richardson by just 4oz with his 32-02 net.

Carp have taken something of a backseat this week as water temperatures continue to be affected by overnight frosts and those anglers targeting silverfish have more often than not walked away with the prize money and enjoyed plenty of bites in the process.

Tommy Grice made it a one two with consecutive wins on Tripp Lake at the weekend. Saturday saw him weigh 42lbs of Mainly F.1,s from peg 31, fishing 14m to 16m shallow with 6mm expander pellets and his luck and parentage were both called in to question on the Sunday winter league match when he drew the in form peg 26. Employing the same bait but fishing it on the bottom this time gave him a match winning net of Crucians, F.1`s, Skimmers and Carp, although Luke Harrison was only 2lbs behind from peg 7.




The Drennan Silverfish League was fished on Tripp Lake on Saturday and the F.1 and Crucian Carp approach, which is normally the key to winning Silverfish matches on this Lake proved fruitless for many as these species were hard to tempt on the day. Carl Swetnam quickly realised that a switch in tactics was necessary and loose fed casters on peg 32 to earn a well deserved win with 38lbs of mainly Roach.

Carp were also few and far between on the day much to the relief of the competitors, however, the following day they featured prominently in the winning nets in the Tripp Winter League event and Steve Bingham made good use of his plum draw on peg 26 to top the list with 104lbs.

Carp are also feeding well on the Oak Tree Lake as Sheffield angler Bert Thorpe discovered last week.

Fishing sweetcorn close in on the pole he had over 70lbs of fish in the first 2 hours of a pleasure fishing session on peg 46 and finished the day with well over 150lbs, including some decent sized Crucian Carp towards the end of the day.



Peg 26 on Tripp Lake has been the place to draw this week. Andy Bryant had a relatively slow start in the Friday open but he more than made up for it as Carp after Carp turned up to intercept his 8mm pellet fished at 10 metres,. his winning total of 147lbs 4oz being too much for the rest of the field.

Mark Lidgard was the fortunate angler who drew peg 26 in the Sunday Open, although this was a slightly closer affair as his mixed bag of Carp, F.1`s and Crucians totalled 67lbs finished just 11lbs clear of Dave Toyne on peg 33.

Ralph Hedley proved that his recent capture of a 29lbs Mirror Carp from The Main Syndicate Lake was no fluke, when on his next visit, he banked no less than 3 fish over 20lbs, as well as 14 other fish weighing from 10lbs to 19lbs-14oz.

 After a week which combined plenty of hard frosts interspersed with a couple of prolonged spells of heavy rain, the omens were not good for Saturdays Drennan Silverfish League match on the Islands Lake. Pre match estimates of a 15lbs target weight were considered by some to be optimistic, however the air of pessimism proved to be ill founded as the Lake was in fine form.

No less than 16 anglers exceeded the 15lbs predicted winning weight and Steve Ellis on peg 38 almost quadrupled it with an excellent 56lbs of mainly Skimmers on pole and caster. Not too far behind on peg 2 was last week’s winner Graham Mumby with a 49lbs mixed bag of Skimmers, Ide and Roach.



A run of overnight frosts last week should have put a damper on sport as water temperatures crashed to near winter levels. However, apart from a few matches, results were in general surprisingly good.

John Alderson did not have particularly high hopes when he drew peg 45 on the Swan Pond in the Friday Open, but a catch of 23 Carp on 8mm pellet on the pole at 11mm for an excellent 125lbs total comfortably saw off the rest of the field.

Sunday saw a cold Northerly wind and persistent rain making life difficult and unpleasant for those who ventured out.

The Open match which was fished on Merry`s was a victim in terms of numbers of anglers attending, however the hardy 3 who did turn up had a field day, Carp fed surprisingly well and they all weighed over 90lbs, Dave Robinson claiming the meagre spoils with 135lbs.

Tripp Lake also fished well on Sunday in the winter League, the match was pegged with comfort in mind and most anglers were able to enjoy some shelter from the conditions.

Steve Ellis had an 8lbs carp first cast to get him on his way and a late run of skimmers and F.1`s on paste helped him to a narrow win with 62lbs from peg 19 over Glenn Collins on peg 29, who caught mainly Crucian Carp on short pole.


Weights appear to have stabilized as fish have become accustomed to the lower water temperatures and some good catches of both Carp and Silverfish have been recorded this week, making for some interesting matches.

Perhaps the best example was a really close peg for peg battle between Grimsby`s Simon Gale and recent Autumn Festival winner Mark Lidgard in the Sunday Open on the Swan Pond.

Simon targeted Carp by fishing 11mm hard pellet on peg 9 and finished with 106lbs 10oz of fish from 2lbs to 12lbs in weight. Mark however, set his stall out to catch anything swimming that would eat 6mm expander pellets on peg 10 and his mixed bag of Carp, Skimmers, Ide, Crucians, Goldfish and Silver Bream proved to be just 10ozs heavier than Simon`s catch. The match also provided anglers with the opportunity to practice for the first round of the Drennan Silverfish league which commences next Saturday and some really good all Silverfish nets were recorded, most of those anglers weighing in over 40lbs.

The Open Match on Tripp Lake on Saturday also saw a close finish with Hull`s Gary Shepherd on peg 1 leading the way with 107lbs 1oz which was just 3lbs 9ozs too much for second placed Paul Mountford on peg 34.

Silver Fish sport on the North and South lakes has been really impressive with some outstanding catches of Roach and Skimmers reported. Roach up to 1.5lbs are feeding really well and anglers targeting the skimmers on baits such as sweetcorn and pellets have found it difficult to get a bait to the bottom as Roach feeding at all depths seem keen to get there first.


Although water temperatures have now fallen to single figures on the centigrade scale, fish seem to be adjusting and catches have been reasonably good.

Thursdays Open Match saw some excellent weights recorded across the Swan pond, although once again peg 26 dominated, Mick Crosby being the beneficiary on this occasion with a superb 160lbs of Carp.

Sunday saw a fairly close match on Tripp Lake, with the top 3 all weighing over 90lbs. Mark Lidgard took the top spot with a fifty fifty mixed bag of Carp and Crucians.

Nick Houghton switched to silverfish waggler tactics in the Saturday Open on the Islands Lake after failing to catch consistently on the pole and had what he described as his most enjoyable days fishing of the season so far. He weighed in with 86lbs of Skimmers, Chub, Tench and Roach, fishing 6mm expander pellets on the hook.


As autumn is fast approaching and water temperatures steadily fall, the consistently high weights of summer are now behind us and match fishing tactics change dramatically. Instead of Carp weights automatically filling the top spots, anglers now have the choice of targeting either silver fish only, Carp only, or varying their methods in a match to include both in order to achieve the necessary winning weights.

Steve Bingham is noted for his all out approach to target Carp and he has been the most consistent angler in matches this week with two wins, and two seconds, including an excellent 180lbs net from Tripp Lake. Notably weights have fallen quickest on the Islands lake which is the shallowest of all of the match waters and Kyle Hartley managed to push Steve in to second place with an all skimmer net in the Wednesday Open.

The North and South Lakes have been producing some good sized Carp up to 21lbs in weight as well as the odd Catfish, but it was the Oak Tree Pond which saw the biggest fish of the week landed in the shape of a 24lbs Mirror carp.


The North and South Lakes have produced a number of Carp over the 20lbs mark this week as well as Catfish to 23lbs and Eels to 5lbs. Anglers who have fished on a 24hour ticket have reported plenty of activity during the hours of darkness.

Anglers fishing on the Oak Tree Pond are regularly landing upwards of 50 Carp in a sitting with some good sized fish up to 18lbs reported. Margin fishing and surface tactics are proving to be hugely successful at the moment although pellets fished shallow on a waggler or pole can also be really effective.

Simon Gayle continues with his impressive run on the weekend opens, this time taking top spot on Hollywood with 75lbs of Carp on bomb and pellet. He was probably surprised to win with such a relatively low weight after his 200lbs plus bag last week, but a win is a win and he was more than happy to claim the pools money.

Dave Brookes snr had a close win on a packed out Tripp lake on the Thursday open, he finished on 134lbs, just over 2lbs clear of second placed Paul Mountford. As he was also on a golden peg, he pocketed an extra £100 for his journey home to Hull.

Although the weather has been a bit up and down of late, some really good catches can be expected in the coming weeks. Fish tend to feed well towards the end of summer as they pack on the weight and build up the reserves necessary to get through winter.



It was a case of Déjà Vu for Don Hudson on last weeks Friday Open on the Swan Pond. On this occasion he watched 27 other anglers draw before claiming the last peg in the bag which was once again number 26. There were apparently questions asked about his parentage together with the word lucky from many of the other competitors and after winning from the same peg with 207lbs just a few weeks ago, it was regarded as a foregone conclusion that a repeat performance was going to be the outcome.

Not wanting to disappoint anyone, Don upped his game slightly and finished with 214lbs, finishing 36lbs clear of second placed man Dave Chapman.

Simon Gayle also scored a double ton from the Swan Pond, fishing waggler and 11mm pellet on peg 12, Simon won the Saturday Open with 207lbs of carp to continue an excellent run of results.

Whilst Carp are currently dominating the match results some excellent backing weights of Crucian carp have been recorded and many anglers are commenting on the great sport that these fish give and with weights taken to over 200lbs in matches this year, they are definitely a viable option in many pegs.



Carp weights continue to dominate the top places in most matches at the moment.

Consistently high temperatures have brought fish right up in the water or into the margins and those anglers who have tuned in to this have been walking away with the prize money.

Chris Mack from Hull scored back to back wins on Friday and Saturday. Chris caught Carp  mainly on the drop on waggler fished pellet on peg 3 on the Islands Lake on Friday, weighing in a hefty 163lbs. The following day on Hollywood Lake, he drew peg 16 and swapped between pole shallow and waggler tight across to the far bank. 6mm and 8mm pellet were the main baits which accounted for an excellent 1`74lbs winning total.

Recently retired Don Hudson is certainly putting in the hours at the waterside now and is regularly figuring in the top spots. He won again on Wednesday with 187-14 from peg 41 on the Swan Pond.

There have been plenty of 80 to 100lbs plus weights of Roach, Perch, Skimmers and Crucians from all of the Lakes, but these have only been good for the odd minor placing in matches.



Barnsley match angler Jamie Hall fell agonisingly short of the 200lbs barrier on Saturday on Hollywood lake. Despite adding up his weights several times, the extra ounce required could not be found and he had to settle for winning the match from peg 12 with a BIG hundred only. Jamie caught on 8mm and 11mm pellet shallow on the pole at 14.5 metres

Nobby Winters did not need his weights adding up again on the same day on Tripp Lake as his 235lbs total was well above the magical figure. Nobby caught on pole and pellet from peg 35 to head a string of 100lbs plus nets.

John Holt managed back to back wins on the islands lake with 120lbs on the Wednesday Open and 114lbs on Thursday. Friday saw Jordan Mesner drawn on peg 34 on the Islands Lake in his clubs match and he made no mistake with 185lbs on bomb and waggler fished pellet. He said that he lost enough fish to have had over 250lbs but he still did enough to win on the day.


Sam Burn from Gainsborough landed a 22lbs Catfish from the South Lake in a night session at the weekend and Carp anglers had plenty of sport with fish up to 19lbs with surface baits proving to be very productive.

The Oak Tree Pond is also in really good form and some decent sized fish have been showing to both surface tactics and margin fishing with a variety of baits.


The hot weather has resulted in some bumper catches and  Carp are feeding with abandon in all of the lakes.

Dave Parker from Hull broke the match record on Tripp Lake on Saturday, catching shallow on meat, he weighed a staggering 294lbs of Carp from peg 12, Neil Yates who came in second was no doubt disappointed and surprised that his 259lbs from peg 21 wasn’t good enough to win.

A club match on the Swan Pond was won last week with 331lbs of Carp from peg 1 on waggler fished pellet.

Don Hudson followed up his recent win on the Thursday Opens with yet another 200lbs plus haul, this time peg 12 proved to be the winning peg, added to this was the fact that it was also worth an extra £100 in winnings as it was a golden peg.

The North and South lakes are producing a lot of double figure fish to surface baits at the moment and 13 year old Jacob Hill from Thurnscoe found floating bread to be too tempting a morsel to resist for a superb 20lbs 1oz Mirror carp.



Don Hudson sat back and watched 34 other anglers draw before putting his hand in the bag to claim the one remaining peg on Thursday`s Open match and it proved to be a real plum in the shape of peg 26 on the Swan Pond.

 After a shaky start on the pole, which saw him lose 3 fish in quick succession, he switched to a small feeder with 11mm pellet and caught really well for the rest of the match to record a personal best 207lbs winning weight.

Kyle Hartley continued his good run of silver fish catches to win the Wednesday Open on the Islands Lake with 108lbs of Skimmers and Crucians from peg 17, although he had quite a shock when he hooked a really good fish on 6mm expander pellet which proved to be a 3lbs 1oz Perch.

Saturdays Open Match on the Swan Pond saw the weighers put through their paces with the top 9 anglers all having over 100lbs. Simon Gayle top scoring with 188lbs from peg 3.

Catfish have suddenly begun to feed well on the Main Syndicate Lake and two 40lbs plus fish were landed last week as well as numerous other fish over the 30lbs mark.

Ron Hedley fished a 15mm Vortex Boilie which proved to be irresistible, landing a 41-03 Cat and 7 good carp and Darren Twells also seems to have found the right ingredients for success, landing 6 Cats up to 38lbs in one session and a 42-08 fish on his next visit.


There have been some exceptional weights taken in matches across the fishery in the past week.

Remarkably for the time of the year, Carp are not dominating proceedings and it has been possible to compete and even win by targeting other species such as Skimmer Bream, Crucian Carp, Tench, Perch, Ide and Roach.

G Y Hookers club had an amazing match on Tripp Lake on Sunday, eleven anglers fished from pegs 9 to 26 and recorded an average weight per man of over 140lbs. Top weight on the day with a mixture of Carp and F.1`s from peg 26 was Paul Wilkie who weighed an outstanding 244lbs, Dwaine Larder came in second on peg 18 with 213lbs of Crucians and F.1`s and Steve Burgess on peg 15 had a similar mix of fish for 190lbs.

Jim Urry had an all Crucian Carp net to win his club match on Tripp Lake on Thursday totalling 209lbs.

Kyle Hartley won the Wednesday Open on the Swan Pond with 153lbs of Skimmers and Carl Swetnam held off Gary Hansfords’ 161lbs of Carp on the Swan Pond on Saturday with 163lbs of Crucians, Perch and Skimmers.

As temperatures have stabilized and spawning activity has lessened in its intensity the fish appear to be intent feeding up to replace their body`s reserves.

Martin Chapman landed his first ever 20lbs plus Carp last week from the Syndicate Lake, but at over 25lbs he has certainly raised the bar for his future personal best fish.

Doncaster anglers, Wayne Weston and Steve Vickers also enjoyed some excellent sport on the main Syndicate Lake, including Mirror carp of 26-02 and 27-08 respectively amongst a number of other good fish landed.

The Oak Tree Pond is providing some phenomenal catches of Carp at the moment with fish to low double figures responding to a variety of baits and methods and Carp to 20lbs have been recorded from the North and South Lakes this week.


After a week of poor weather which saw water temperatures fall by 4 degrees the weekend saw excellent conditions with warm weather and a light breeze, supposedly perfect for some really good weights of fish.

Unfortunately the fish obviously hadn’t read the script. After some really good catches during the poor weather, including 3 matches won on the Swan Pond with over 200lbs, anglers were left scratching their heads over the weekend as the Carp decided not to feed properly. Although there were a reasonable number of 100lbs plus match weights recorded, most anglers were treated to the sight of lots of Carp cruising around on the surface but with no apparent interest in food.

The reason was apparent this morning however as there was some spectacular spawning activity to be seen on a number of the lakes, in particular Tripp Lake, The Oak Tree Pond and Merry,s Pool.

With more warm weather due, the fish should take care of the annual nuptials and start to feed properly again in the not too distant future.



With the second Fishomania qualifier of the season to be held at Messingham Sands this year scheduled for this Wednesday, Gainsborough angler ken Pacey can expect his phone to be red hot with anglers wanting information.

Ken had an arm aching two days last week, winning on the Swan Pond from peg 48 with 173lbs of Carp on Wednesday and followed this up with a 50 Carp catch totalling 205lbs from peg 12 on Tripp Lake on Friday.

On both occasions, Ken fished banded 8mm and 11mm hard pellet on the pole.

Saturdays Open was fished on the Oak Tree Pond due to all of the other lakes being fully booked and anticipation levels were high, especially when anglers arrived to find large numbers of carp visible around the margins. As often happens however, the expected bonanza failed to materialise and 90lbs was enough to win, with Dave Mountford just edging it by a few ounces from Luke Harrison.

Carp were also difficult to tempt on the Islands Lake on Thursday as well and the top three individuals all had Silverfish catches, with some really good Skimmers showing.

With a lot of spawning activity at the moment, with different species involved, fishing can be a bit hit and miss as fish continue to make use of the free food supply provided by their bretheren, the upside of this is that there can be some large concentrations of fish in areas where spawning has occurred and those anglers who have drawn well can enjoy the opportunity for some exceptional catches.



Match results improved as last week went on; steadily increasing temperatures have encouraged more consistent feeding activity.

Despite quite a lot of spawning activity from silver fish, which often sees Carp preoccupied with feeding on the highly nutritious supply of eggs available, there have been some tremendous catches. A club match was won at the weekend from peg 12 on Merry`s Pool with 196lbs of Carp on 11mm pellet fished shallow on the waggler. This method also contributed to the bulk of Gary Hansfords  207lbs catch of Carp up to 15lbs in weight from peg 57 on the Swan Pond on Sunday. This won the Open Match in which the top 7 all had over 100lbs and 68lbs was the lowest weight recorded.

Steve Peacham won the Friday Open on the Islands Lake with 150lbs from peg 17 by fishing pole in the margins to beat Keith Easton who was on peg 62 into second place by just over 10lbs.

The popular Thursday open on Tripp Lake, in which almost every peg was taken saw a tight finish with Stewart Buckley taking the honours on peg 25 with 104lbs, just 4lbs ahead of Tony Woods who was on peg 14.

The Oak Tree Pond is producing some terrific sport for pleasure anglers as Carp are feeding with abandon. Anglers are reporting up to 60 Carp in a sitting and with fish from a couple of pounds up to low double figures, this represents some serious weights of fish.

There have been some good sized fish from the North and South Lakes which have both seen Carp  to 19lbs landed, with plenty of fish falling to surface baits as well as boilies fished on the bomb.  



At long last summer weather has put in an appearance and the increase in water temperatures has given a taste of what is to come.

The highlight of the week was Carl Swetnam breaking the Match record for Hollywood Lake with 229lbs of Carp from peg 30 on Sunday, this topped a string of good weights on the day. Carl fished long pole shallow with 11mm pellet and in the margins with sweetcorn, catching Carp of all sizes steadily throughout the day.

Dave Mountford finished in top spot by a comfortable margin in the Silverfish only Spring League, Dave ended on 95 points, 6 ahead of Danny Taylor and Carl Swetnam who tied on 89 points.

The final match in the series was fished on the Islands Lake and was won by Kevin Johnson with 89lbs of Skimmers, Roach and Tench from peg 24, alternating between Caster shallow and 6mm expander pellet over groundbait. Steve Ellis was not too far behind with an 86lbs all Skimmer catch from peg 43 taken on his trademark paste over groundbait.

Josh Brown from Goole put together 138 lbs of Carp from peg 17 on Islands lake to win the Sunday Open, pushing Grimsby`s Steve Peacham into second with 124lbs from peg 8.

The Day Ticket lakes are all in great form, with the Oak Tree Pond in particular producing some spectacular catches. Without a doubt the best method at the moment is to fish 8 or 11 mm pellet shallow on the pole, constant feeding being the key to success.

The recent introduction of 24 hour permits on the North and South Lake has started well, with 2 Doncaster anglers sharing a 31 Carp catch in one night session, including fish to 18lbs from the North Lake. Owston Ferry angler Rick Palmer was also pleased with an 18lbs Mirror from the South Lake on his first night session on the lakes.


Many of the 160 competitors in the Fishomania qualifier on Saturday found the going hard as a cold Northerly wind put fish off the feed on many of the Lakes. Those who drew in the sheltered areas on Tripp, Merry`s and the Oak Tree pond enjoyed reasonably good sport however and the top 5 anglers all broke the 100lb barrier.

Barnsley`s Les Marshall came out on top from peg 25 on Tripp with 151lbs of carp to claim the prized ticket for the finals of this prestigious competition.

The Oak Tree pond claimed the next three positions, second place went to Steve Rothery with123lbs from peg 23, Mark Rodgers  had 117lbs from peg 27, Mark Stainsby had 106lbs from peg 45 and Grimsby`s Shane Blades came in 5th on Merry`s peg 1 with 103lbs.

The Fishery holds another qualifier for this event in a months time, hopefully the elements will be kinder and tee shirts will replace the winter clothing needed on this occasion.

The Cold weather doesn`t appear to have put the fish off the feed in the Syndicate lakes, there have been quite a number of 20lbs plus carp caught as well as a surprising number of catfish up to 37lbs this week.

Ralph Hedley had 7 carp on his first night of a 2 day session, the best weighing 25lbs, the following night he improved on this by banking a 35lbs catfish and a 27lbs mirror carp.

Michael Beecher also landed a 27lbs Carp and James Bartram had a 22lbs carp and a 30lbs catfish in the one night session.

Fifteen year old Ryan Farnham from Scunthorpe landed an 18lbs mirror from the North Day Ticket Lake which has also produced quite a number of other double figure fish this week.



Match weights have steadily been improving over recent weeks with more and more winning weights over the 100lbs mark recorded. Last weekend however proved to be a bit of a shocker for most as water temperatures took a nosedive from 11 degrees C on Friday to 8 degrees C on Sunday morning.

 After a couple of days of significant rainfall which has brought all of the lakes up to their maximum levels followed by snow and hail on Saturday and  a really heavy frost on Sunday morning, it was no surprise to see match weights crash and 50 to 60lbs was a good target to make the frame at the weekend.

Prior to this, sport was definitely on the up, Keith Easton won the Friday Open on the Islands Lake with 120lbs of Carp from peg 56, Kyle Hartley had an excellent net of Skimmers, Crucians and Tench totalling 83lbs to win from peg 24 on Wednesday, Karl Maddinson won on Tuesday on Tripp with 108lbs of good sized Carp from the margins on peg 25 on Tripp Lake and Danny Taylor had a brilliant 105lbs of Skimmers, Crucians F.1`s and Ide to win the Saturday Silverfish Open on Tripp from peg 15.

Next Saturday sees the Fishery hosting a 160 peg Fishomania qualifier which will be held over all of the match lakes and also the Oak Tree Pond, which has twice produced the winner in the past.

 The North and South Lakes will be reserved for pleasure anglers.



Match anglers are finding that tactics which are the norm in summer are now beginning to work as all species of fish are becoming more active. Fishing up in the water and close in are now becoming viable options.

After winning an Open on the Swan Pond last week with 90lbs of Skimmers, Paul Hewitt was hoping for a repeat performance when he drew peg 43 on the high bank on Tuesdays open.

 After initially feeding his pole swim, he decided to have a quick try up in the water on 11mm pellet on the waggler. There have been innumerable carp rolling all over the surface of the lake for the past couple of weeks, with no apparent interest in feeding and Paul was surprised when he caught a 5lb fish on his first cast. He then caught steadily through the day to win with 92lbs, never getting an opportunity to try for the skimmers he had come to fish for. Luke Conlan won the following day with 97lbs from peg 52, again on 11mm pellet but this time fished on the straight lead.

Carl Swetnam, who is no stranger to big weights of silverfish had a cracking weekend; ignoring the long pole tactics which have dominated the Swan Pond silverfish matches recently, he opted to loose feed casters close in on peg 38 and caught a terrific mixed bag of Roach, Skimmers, Tench, Crucians, Ide and Perch to weigh 57lbs. This was good enough for second place, just 3lbs behind the winner Dave Mountford who fished pellet long on peg 13 to catch mainly Skimmers.

After producing such a good weight on the Swan Pond, Carl decided that the same method would be a worthwhile first line of attack on Tripp Lake on Sunday. Drawn on peg 15, he hooked a Carp on his first cast which promptly disappeared into the reedbeds along with his rig, never to be seen again.

After re tackling, he started again and never looked back. Alternating between loose fed casters at 3m and soft pellet at 4 m, he kept a procession of small F.1`s, Crucians, Ide and Skimmers interested for the rest of the match. His total weight of143lbs was nearly 30lbs clear of Luke Harrison who had an excellent last couple of hours of his match on peg 35, taking Carp almost every cast from the margins.



As water temperatures increased as the last week progressed catches improved correspondingly.

The Islands Lake in particular has really come alive. Dave Rawcliffe topped the list in the Silverfish Open on Saturday with an excellent 80lbs of Skimmers on 6mm expanders fished on the waggler on peg 8. He also returned 15 Carp which would have taken his weight to well over 100lbs had they counted. The average weight per man on this match was 49lbs.

Ken Pacey scored wins on the Islands Lake on both the Friday and Sunday Opens with 97lbs and 107lbs respectively, catching a mixture of carp and Silverfish on both occasions.

Paul Hewitt won the Wednesday Open on the Swan Pond with an excellent 91lbs of Skimmers.

Merry`s Pool provided some good sport on the Open match on Saturday, with plenty of 1lb to 4lb Carp feeding, Craig Williams claimed the top spot with 93lbs on waggler fished pellet from peg 9.

The Oak Tree Pond seems to have exploded with Carp this week and anglers have been landing up to 50 fish in a sitting weighing from a couple of pounds up to low double figures. Margin fishing with the pole has been the most productive method, although positive baits such as 8mm hard pellet, luncheon meat or corn are necessary in order to avoid the attentions of the silver fish.


The Syndicate lakes opened for the new season at the weekend and some good fish have been caught already. A surprising number of Catfish have been feeding, with several weighing over 30lbs caught already.

Garry Hirst from Doncaster had a really good first session, landing several Catfish up to 34lbs and Carp up ro 24lbs.

Chris Hodge from Scunthorpe managed to beat his personal best with his first fish of the season which was a 22lbs Mirror carp.


Carp dominated the individual places in the Good Friday Teams of Five and with two team members in the top, Grimsby comprehensively won this event on 16 points with plenty to spare. Dave Mountford won his section from peg 26 on the Swan Pond with 126lbs, lee Harrison was second in his section from peg 26 on Tripp Lake with 114lbs, Dave Rawcliffe was second in his section from peg 45 on the Islands Lake with 80lbs of Skimmers on waggler fished pellet, describing it as his best ever days fishing, Dennis Pattinson was second in his section on the Swan pond from peg 55 with 53lbs of Roach and Paul Seed did well on the Islands Lake with 28lbs of Roach from the unfancied peg 1.

Top individual on the day was Andy Bryant with 129lbs from peg 63 on the Islands Lake, which helped his Chippas` Nomads team into second place with 31 points, Ian Grimshaws team made up the top 3 with 32 points.

Individuals (75 anglers fished)

1 Andy Bryant Grimsby 129-14

2 Dave Mountford Grimsby 126-14

3 Craig Jones Barnsley 115-03

4 Lee Harrison Grimsby 114-11


Teams (15 teams fished)

1 Grimsby 16pts

2 Chippas Nomads 31 pts

3 Grimshaws 32pts



Storm Katie made things really unpleasant for most of the 66 anglers fishing today’s pairs match on the Swan Pond and Islands Lake and unsurprisingly weights were well down on Fridays five man team event.

Jamie Green and Paul Seed had an easy win with a 7 point total. Jamie had an excellent 42lbs of Skimmers from peg 12 on the Swan Pond for 4 points, while his partner caught 46lbs of carp from peg 56 on the Islands Lake, finishing 3rd in the section, both anglers bemoaning the fact that the conditions prevented them catching much bigger weights.

Second place went to Simon Drayton and Steve Bingham with 11points and in third place with 12 points were Mike Smith and Danny Hoggard.

The individual winner, Kevin Johnson, made the most of his sheltered peg 26 on the Swan Pond, landing 2 Carp and around 65lbs of Skimmers on 4mm expander pellet over groundbait at 8m for a 72lbs total weight.

Steve Bingham in second place was the best on the Islands Lake with 52lbs of Carp from peg 4, catching all of his fish on meat over pellet.

Pairs (33 pairs fished)

1 Jamie Green  +  Paul Seed 7 pts

2 Simon Drayton + Steve Bingham 11 pts

3 Mike Smith + Danny Hoggard 12 pts


4 Steve Burns + Mark Lidgard 16 pts

5 Kevin Johnson + Alan Gregory 20pts 92-14

6 Steve Richardson + Pete Riley 20 pts 64-14


Individuals (66 anglers fished)

1 Kevin Johnson Messingham 72-12

2 Steve Bingham Upton 52-12

3 Steve Deans Grimsby 51-12

4 Paul Seed Grimsby 46-04



Skimmers dominated the Silverfish Open on the Islands Lake on Saturday; fish from 8ozs to 3lbs which have been conspicuous by their absence all through winter have suddenly begun to feed.

Dave Mountford enjoyed an excellent day on the waggler, fishing 6mm expander pellets on peg 46, he included Roach to 1lb 6oz, a few Crucians and Tench as well as a really good stamp of Skimmer Bream to total 53lbs, this was just 5lbs in front of Pete Riley who fished pole and pellet on peg 56.

Most anglers caught a few Carp during the day but two anglers who were drawn in the 20`s both had over 40 fish from 6oz to 5lbs, non of which counted, much to their frustration but to the amusement of the rest of the field.

Wednesday was a different matter for Alan Gregory as he enjoyed a procession of small carp on a day when they did count and totalled over 60lbs from peg 63; Alan fished 6mm expanders on the pole.

Tripp Lake is still fishing well for F.1`s and Carp and Carl Swetnam just managed to pip Simon Gayle by ounces for first place on Sunday with 74lbs, which included a late run of Skimmers to boost his net of F.1`s, Simon catching mainly Carp in the margins from peg 3.

This was the final match in the winter series on Tripp Lake, Tommy Grice won the league overall, Carl Swetnam second, Nick Houghton third and Dave Toyne fourth.

A few days of sunshine last week saw an amazing number of Carp basking in the sheltered, sunny areas of most of the lakes; hopefully the upward trend in water temperatures will continue and increase their feeding activity in time for the Easter match programme.

The North Day Ticket Lake is in excellent form for all species, including Carp, Barbel, Roach, Perch and Skimmers, many of which are feeding well up in the water.

Merry,s Pool is fishing well for carp, although they appear to be concentrated in the area between pegs 1 -2 and 9-11.


Sport remains patchy as variable weather conditions play their part. Last weeks heavy rain saw water levels rise on all of the Lakes, resulting in unpredictable feeding activity in most species.

Despite this, there were some good match weights recorded and as temperatures increase, more consistency can be expected.

Hollywood Lake provided plenty of entertainment in the Sunday Open Match, which was won by Tommy Grice with 96lbs of carp on 6mm soft pellet fished at 16m on the pole from peg 4; second place went to Gary Hansford on peg 30 with 88lbs of Carp on bomb and pellet.

It was difficult to decide who was the biggest liar of the two when it came to weigh in at the end, both dramatically underestimating the number of fish they had caught during the match.

 There were also plenty of side bets and judging from the banter, winning a pound from the neighbouring angler and gaining the bragging rights for the day seemed to be more important than winning the actual match in most cases.

Most of the fish were caught in the first half of the match and some really good weights were on the cards, as the weather conditions improved however, bright sunshine and flat conditions made a welcome change for those fishing, but had the effect of putting the fish off the feed. This pattern was apparent on all of the lakes on the day.


Merry`s Pool continues to produce good nets of carp, Dave Overs top scoring on Saturday with 92lbs and the Islands Lake produced a 109lbs winning weight in Goldthorpes Spring League on the same day.


Saturdays Silverfish league was a tight affair, Danny Taylor pipped Dave Mountford by just 3oz with his 26lbs 3oz and the top 10 were separated by less than 6lbs. Hemp and Caster proved to be the best bait combination as Silver Bream fro 2oz to 8oz dominated the catches. Keith Easton did well to manage 20lbs on peg 18 as he was pestered by Carp from start to finish.

The Syndicate season ended on a high note with the capture of 28lbs Mirror Carp from the main Lake as well as an early 33lbs Catfish, The Small Lake also saw plenty of action with fish to 18.5lbs landed.





Tripp Lake continues to produce some really good weights, although peg 32 seems to be the peg to draw at the moment in order to win.

 After drawing 32 on a sparsely attended match on Friday, Paul Hewitt was optimistic about catching a few fish in spite of the fact that it was snowing and blowing.

He knew that the previous Sunday Open had been won from the same spot and adopted the same tactics as the winner of that match, i.e. fishing shallow with 6mm expander pellets. He caught steadily all day, amassing an excellent 79lbs mixed net of F.1`s, Skimmers Cucians and Goldfish, although he recounted that shipping a pole back with a coating of snow on it every few minutes wasn,t an experience he wished to repeat in the near future.

Sunday saw a similar result; the match was won again from the same peg, this time with with 71lbs of fish caught shallow on 6mm expander pellets fished at 14M in much more pleasant conditions.


Kyle Hartley fished the Islands lake Open on Wednseday in order to practice for the following Saturdays Silverfish Match. Drawn on peg 8 he had a really enjoyable day, catching a mixture of species, including Roach, Perch, Ide, Skimmers, F.1`s, Crucians, and Hybrids on worm and caster to total an excellent 46lbs.

Feeling confident that the method would produce plenty of bites from Silverfish on Saturday, he was somewhat taken aback to find himself catching Carp after Carp for the first hour of the match from his peg 33 draw, including 10  in 10 casts at one point.

 He persevered however and when they had thinned out, he found a shoal of F.1`s and Crucians were also resident in the peg and went on to win with 32lbs;, Second placed Danny Taylor had a similar tale of woe at the next peg, although the small Carp (which didn`t count), proved to be more persistent in his case and he put together most of his weight in the latter stages of the match by changing to fishing shallow for Roach to total 24lbs.

Hollywood Lake improved dramatically overnight at the weekend, Don Hudson won on Saturday with a mixed bag of Carp and Ide totalling 37lbs, (claiming the golden peg money in the process) and most of the anglers struggled for bites, the following day however 80lbs won a club match, with reasonable back up weights taken.



Although there were frosty nights aplenty and some fairly cold days last week, Carp fed well on most of the lakes.

Stewart Buckley had the best weight of the week in the RAOB club match on Merry’s Pool.

Stewart drew peg 9 and opted to fish shallow on the waggler with 8mm and 11mm hard pellet, catching Carp steadily all match, he put together an excellent total of 119lbs.

Another club match was also won on Merry`s with over 80lbs at the weekend and included some good back up weights.

The Islands Lake Carp also seem to be keen to feed and again summer tactics have won two matches this week,

Both Gary Steed from Hull and Scunthorpe’s Don Hudson winning their respective matches with good sized Carp caught on the pole by fishing in the margins.

Gary drew peg2 on Wednesday and top scored with 52lbs despite losing a number of good fish in the reed beds. There was certainly an awful lot of cursing to be heard in the vicinity of the peg and a swear box was suggested for his next visit.

Don drew peg 8 and included a couple of double figure fish in his 67lbs total, landing all of the fish he hooked and no swear box was required.

Paul Seed led the way in the Silver fish open on Tripp Lake on Saturday with 39lbs of Skimmers, Crucians and F.1`s on 6mm expander pellets fished at 12mtres on the pole from peg 3.

Unluckily for Paul, he also won the Golden peg, but as it had been won the previous week the pot was more or less empty.

The following day saw Tommy Grice winning from peg 33 on Tripp with a 68lbs mixed bag of Carp, F.1`s and Skimmers, all caught shallow on 6mm expander pellets at 14m.



If ever an angler deserved a reward for perseverance it was Mick Waller from Scotter.

 Last week he planned a three day session on the main syndicate lake, but when he woke up after the first night session he found that half of the Lake was covered by ice and both of his rods were frozen in.

This would have persuaded most anglers that a homeward journey was the best policy, but undeterred, Mick simply moved around the Lake to an area which was free of ice and proceeded to justify his optimism by landing four Carp weighing between 10lbs and 22lbs 8oz.

Ray Lambert also banked a 23lbs 8oz Carp on the same day, indicating that the fish were still feeding despite the cold weather.

Water temperatures actually fell to 2.5 degrees centigrade last week, which is the lowest for around two years; this was a result of three days of freezing up overnight and thawing in the daytime.

Not surprisingly sport was a bit patchy, although those anglers who found a concentration of fish enjoyed some good sport.

Paul Hewitt proved that his careful feeding approach was the answer on Tripp Lake, winning on both Tuesday and Friday with around 40lbs of fish each time.

Dave Rawcliffe enjoyed a good win in Saturdays Silverfish Open on the Swan Pond, Dave had a 24lbs mixed bag of fish from peg 52 and with an added bonus of being on the Golden peg.

Second placed Steve Nurse finished less than 1 lb behind and was over the moon when he landed a 3lbs plus Perch from peg 26, but he looked on in amazement as Steve Richardson went one better at the next peg with a 3lbs 12oz specimen later on in the match.  

The ever consistent Oak Tree Pond provided some good sport for Richie Elliot in the Thursday Open. Richie fished a small feeder at 25metres with pellet and corn, putting together a good net of Carp totalling 74lbs. A really cold night followed however and the following day bites were hard earned, Martin Young needing just 34lbs to win his clubs match, catching Carp to 4lbs on popped up boilies.





Freezing cold conditions at the weekend, including a very cold North East wind did not deter 75 years old Alan Clemence. Alan drew peg 10 on the Islands Lake in the penultimate match of the Goldthorpe winter league series. With expectations fairly low due to the temperatures, Alan was pleased to get off to a good start with an early Carp on bomb and pellet and was even more pleased at the end of the match when he weighed in 109lbs, a cracking effort under the circumstances. Match organiser Russ Fowler came in second on peg 2 with another good net of Carp totalling 79lbs.

A shoal of good sized Perch seem to have taken up residence in peg 41 on the Swan Pond; after producing last weeks run away winner in the first round of the Silverfish League, this week saw a repeat result. Barnsley`s Lee Harrison was pleased and optimistic when he drew the peg and made no mistakes on a hard day to total 20lbs 7oz, Graham Mumby was unlucky however to take second place on the day from peg 12 as a 2.5lbs perch which came off at the net could have swung things his way, as it was he finished less than a pound adrift of Lee.

Sunday saw a close finish on Tripp Lake as Nick Houghton just managed to hold off Luke Harrison at the next peg, Nick,s  69lbs of Crucians, Skimmers and F.1`s was 2lbs too much for Luke who included 12 Carp in his net of fish.

Tim Chapman won the Wednesday Open on the Islands Lake with a 48lbs catch consisting of mainly small Carp and Skimmers, Tim fished dead maggots on a small method feeder to top some reasonable weight. The bitterly cold weather had certainly changed things by Sunday however and most people in the Open Match found bites hard to come by, Andy Clough winning from peg 62 with just 9lbs.


Tom Bartram had a surprise on the South Day Ticket Pond this week in the shape of a 17lbs Catfish, Tom was targeting Carp when the fish took his ledgered Boilie. Another unseasonal Cat was also landed from the Syndicate Lake at the weekend by John Walker, this fish was a hefty 34 pounder, again falling to ledgered boilie.

Plenty of Carp seem to be feeding on Merry`s Pool, a lot of fish have been caught by anglers fishing pellts shallow on the waggler, which appears to be the most productive tactic at the moment.


Mild weather has resulted in an upward trend in water temperatures, resulting in plenty of Carp activity.

Don Hudson really made the most of this, enjoying two first paces and a runner up spot in three consecutive matches.

He began with an 87lbs net of Carp on the Oak Tree Pond on Thursday and although this was good enough for second place, it was well adrift of the 125lbs winning weight taken by Dennis Moore.

Both anglers fished Corn and pellet on the pole, topping a string of good weights on the day.

Friday saw Don take his first ever win on Tripp Lake, this time he fished waggler up in the water with 11mm hard pellet, landing 59lbs of Carp, and on Saturday, he fished a small feeder, again with 11mm pellet, this time on peg 9 on Merry,s Pool where he led the way with 81lbs.

Kyle Hartley got off to a good start in the first round of the Silver fish league, on a day when drawing a sheltered peg was paramount, with 40mph winds making life difficult; Kyle did not waste peg 41 on the Swan Pond, he put together an impressive  28lbs net of mainly Perch on worm and caster. Second place proved to be a close call with just 7 oz separating the next 3 anglers. Mick Wills on peg 20 got the nod, again with plenty of quality Perch on worm fished over caster. As always, Steve Ellis fished a positive match, his Lobworm approach enticing Perch and Skimmers to 2lbs in weight, finishing on 22lbs 7oz, just 2 oz adrift of Mick Wills.

Carl Swetnam had a good win on Tripp on Sunday, fishing shallow with 6mm expander pellets on peg 30, he caught steadily throughout the match, taking F.1’s, Crucians and Skimmers to total 82lbs, the same method claiming the top 3 places.



The Silverfish only Winter League went down to the wire in the final match on Saturday. Fished in cold, wet and windy conditions; the competitors enjoyed the fishing nonetheless, with Skimmers, Roach and Silver Bream providing a bite a cast.

Winner on the day was Dave Mountford with 31lbs of mainly Silver Bream on caster from peg 3.

Overall League winner, Steve Richardson from Scunthorpe failed to improve on his overall points tally, leaving Kyle Hartley, who was second in his section from peg 12 to close the gap and finish equal with Steve on 94. Fortunately for Steve, he had a superior weight advantage, albeit only by 4lbs over the series, both anglers averaging over 20lbs per match.

The average weight per man on the day was around 20lbs, although Carp, which didn’t count seemed as keen to feed as the Silverfish, some areas appeared to be black with these fish, one angler returning 38, weighing from 6oz to 5lbs.

The Silverfish only Spring League commences on Saturday Feb 6th, with the first match on the Swan Pond. Again this is a 13 match series, with the best 10 section results counting.

Tripp Lake seems to be providing the biggest match weights this winter as F.1 and Carp provide hefty, weight building fish for those anglers who sort out the successful tactics.

One man who scores consistently is Tommy Grice and he dominated Sundays Open with an excellent 101lbs from peg 4. Fishing 6mm expanders shallow at 14-16 metres, he had around a dozen Carp to 4lbs, with the bulk of the weight being F.1’s.

Whereas in most places the art of catching F.1’s in winter is to feed frugally and fish for bites, the key to success on Tripp Lake is to fish and feed positively in order to avoid bites from the smaller fish such as Roach, Skimmers and Crucians enabling the angler to target the bigger weight makers. Fishing 6mm expander pellets shallow has been the dominant winter method for a couple of years on Tripp Lake, with Tommy feeding 2 bags to keep the fish interested on Sunday.



With the lakes frozen over all week, ice breaking equipment was in use prior to all of the mid week matches. Despite this, most anglers managed to find plenty of bites from silverfish and weights of Roach, Perch and Skimmers were reasonable under the conditions.

As the ice had melted by the weekend and temperatures were on the rise, expectations were higher for some better sport and the deeper Lakes certainly didn’t disappoint.

Luke Harrison found plenty of Carp and F.1’s feeding in the top two to three feet of his twelve foot deep peg on Tripp on Sunday. Feeding and fishing 6mm expander pellets shallow he put together an impressive 106lbs winning weight.

Don Hudson also enjoyed some good sport with Carp to win the Saturday Open on Merry’s Pool.

After catching Skimmers on the Pole early in the match, he switched to a bomb and pellet approach and was in to Carp straight away, his 65lbs net pushing Keith McNee with 41lbs in to second place.

Dave Mountford scored an easy win in the penultimate round of the Silverfish Only Winter League on the Swan Pond.

Dave made full use of his favoured draw on peg 14 and with Perch up to 3lbs in his net plus quality Crucians Goldfish and F.1’s, he was a clear winner with 32lbs.

Steve Richardson had 20lbs in second place and has made a move forward in the league; he is now 2 points clear of Kyle Hartley with just one match to go.

The next Silverfish league begins on Saturday February 6th.


As expected sport took a hit this week as water temperatures plummeted.

Under these conditions fish tend to shoal up tightly, as safety in numbers overtakes the feeding instinct and those anglers who sat on the right pegs enjoyed reasonably good sport while those less fortunate tended to struggle.

Experienced Carp angler Lee Martin from Hull certainly found a good concentration of Carp on the Oak Tree at the weekend. Arriving on a cold crisp day on Saturday, he fished on the pole with sweet corn and enjoyed a 20 fish catch to such an extent that he returned at first light the following day. After breaking the ice, he was soon in to fish again and felt that they were even keener to feed than they had been the previous day when the Lake wasn’t frozen, landing over 20 fish up to 14lbs in weight.

Another angler who exploited his good fortune to the full was Keith Easton who won the Tuesday open on Tripp Lake with an excellent 80lbs of Carp from peg 14.

The worst day of the week weather wise was on Thursday, when strong winds and freezing conditions led to a few tackle breakages and some very numb fingers. The few anglers who had ventured out to fish the Open on Tripp Lake mainly called it a day well before the end of the match and it was a case of “Last Man Standing”. Stewart Buckley saw off the opposition literally and as he was the only one remaining on the bank with an hour to go, he called for a weigher and went home with some well deserved prize money for his 5lbs catch.

Dennis Pattinson scored yet another win in the Silverfish Open on Tripp Lake on Saturday. Once again he fished maggots for a mixed bag of fish to lead the field, which included five times world champion Alan Scotthorne, Dennis topping the list with 28lbs.

Unfortunately, work commitments have prevented Dennis from fishing enough of the events to have a realistic chance in the league and with two matches left it is tight at the top, Kyle Hartley and Steve Richardson sharing the lead on 91 points.


Falling water temperatures saw a predictable decline in results as last week progressed and with a the weather forecast suggesting that more cold weather is imminent, sport will probably  remain patchy for a while until the fish become acclimatised  to the lower temperatures, which are realistically closer to what would be normal for early January.  

After some really good Silverfish weights in the week, it came as something of a shock to anglers competing in the Silverfish league on the Swan Pond on Saturday to find themselves struggling for bites. Oddly enough the top two anglers both caught quality fish on chopped worm and caster which suggested that it was a better tactic to wait for a bite from a bigger fish on the day rather than try to catch anything that came along.

Some really good Perch up to 2lbs were caught and both the winner, Kyle Hartley with 28lbs and second placed Steve Ellis with 21lbs included a few good specimens to top up their nets of Skimmers and Roach.

Stewart Buckley seems to have unlocked the secret of how to catch Carp from the Swan Pond in winter. After landing the odd big fish in most matches recently, he decided to set his stall out for them in the Tuesday Open. Fishing peg 8 on the pole he landed a number of decent fish to total 70lbs and take an easy win.

Tripp Lake seems to be bomb proof as far as winter fishing is concerned and with plenty of F.1’s, Crucians Goldfish and Skimmers feeding, the weights remain good. Nick Houghton caught 52lbs on 6mm expander pellets from peg 30 on Sunday, to lead a close match in which the top 8 were separated by less than 10lbs.

Chris Mack won the Friday Open on Tripp with 80lbs of fish caught shallow and Paul Hewitt came in second with 56lbs.


Although the weather over the Christmas period was on the wet and windy side, locally we fared better than most other areas of the country and anglers enjoyed some reasonably good sport.

Carp anglers, both match and pleasure, found plenty of fish feeding in certain areas.

Jimmy Hubbard and Sam Bingham landed 10 Carp between them from the main Syndicate lake, including 2 over 20lbs in weight on Christmas Eve and a 27 lbs fish was also caught just before Christmas

Steve Eyres topped the match weights with 92lbs from peg 55 on the Swan Pond.

 Luke Harrison didn,t let the awful weather conditions deter him on Sunday on Tripp Lake, putting 77lbs of Carp in the net to head off Carl Sweatnam who caught mainly f.1’s shallow, trailing Luke by just 3lbs.

Dennis Pattinson continued his good form to win a very close Silverfish league event on Tripp Lake, He just managed to beat Jamie Green at the next peg in to second place by exactly 1lb, Dennis had a mixture of Roach, Skimmers and Crucians, whilst the unlucky Jamie targeted Crucian Carp.

For those anglers preferring to keep busy rather than sitting it out for larger specimens, the Silverfish sport has been exceptionally good. The word has been spreading about the quality of the Roach and Skimmer fishing on both the North and South Lakes and anglers have been travelling from far afield to sample the sport on offer and most have been exceptionally pleased with what they found.

As well as good sized Roach and Skimmers, odd Barbel to 6lbs have shown, odd Chub  and some good Perch to over 2.5lbs.

Merry,s continues to offer plenty of bites on small baits from Crucians, Skimmers and f.1’s whilst Carp anglers have found 8-11mm pellets to be the best option for fish from 3-10 lbs.



The unseasonably mild weather saw a slight rise in water temperature last week and the fish responded as expected with an increase in feeding activity.

Carp were active in all of the lakes.

Jamie Whiteley landing 114lbs to win the Friday Open on Tripp. Jamie employed margin fishing tactics on the pole, this is a method more normally used in the summer months but certainly resulted in plenty of bites from fish actively looking for food.

Scunthorpe anglers James Cross and Richard Short landed 15 Carp between them from the South Day Ticket Lake, the largest, a 21lbs 3oz Common carp falling to James.

The Syndicate Lakes have also been in great form for this time of the year with plenty of Carp showing and even a 37lbs Catfish which fell to James Ghillie who has had an excellent year on the Lakes.

Steve Richardson led the way in Saturdays Silverfish Open, drawn on peg 33 on the Swan Pond, he alternated between soft pellet and caster for a mixed bag of Roach, Perch, Skimmers and Crucians totalling 44lbs. This was just 2lbs in front of Steve Ellis who found plenty of quality fish of all species using his trademark lobworm tactics.

Tommy Grice is in consistent form on Tripp Lake at the moment and 6mm expander pellets fished shallow on long pole is certainly sorting out plenty of quality F.1’s, Skimmers, Crucians and Carp for him. He is rarely out of the frame and enjoyed his win on Sunday with an excellent 78lbs net from peg 6.




The Preston Pole Pairs event held across the Lakes on Saturday was blighted by poor weather conditions. Anglers who had travelled the length and breadth of the country to compete in the third round of this 4 match series were faced with strong winds relentless rain and a sudden temperature drop.

Although the fishing suffered, plenty of fish were caught and most of the 5 peg sections proved to be fair and were won with decent weights, Roach and Skimmers being the main target species on the day.

Adam Wakelin was fortunate enough to draw on peg 6 on the South Day Ticket Lake. This was a peg he had practised on the day before, catching lots of really good Roach to over 1lb in weight. However, as is often the case, the fishing on match day proved to be completely different. Very few Roach fed in Adams peg, but this was because a shoal of Skimmers had taken up residence and he quickly changed tactics, landing 46lbs to win the Lake and the match. Adams partner Des Shipp, another giant of the match fishing world, finished second in his section on Tripp Lake with 20lbs of mainly Roach. With other pairs also finishing on 3 points it was down to weight to decide and they ran out easy winners.

Those anglers who had practised for the event seemed to be very impressed with the fishing on offer and in particular the size of the Lakes, Des Shipp jokingly putting in a request for the fishery to be moved 150 miles south.

The Silverfish match which was held on the same day was fished on the Oak Tree Pond and Dave Mountford scored an easy win with 25lbs of Silver Bream, fishing maggot and caster over hemp.

The midweek open matches fared reasonably well and with some top class anglers practising for the Saturdays match, the pressure was on.

Brian Tuck had an excellent 72lbs  bag of Carp  to win on Merry’s on Tuesday, Ken Pacey also had mainly Carp in his 63lbs catch to win the Thursday Open on the Swan Pond and Kyle Hartley earned a real feather in his cap by winning The Swan Pond Open on Friday with 37lbs in a match including 3 of the current England team.

Some decent sized Carp have been landed from the North and South Lakes; James Bartram caught 15 in 3 short sessions last week, including fish of 16lbs and 17lbs 9ozs.



Strong winds were an influence last week, but brought in some relatively mild air, water temperatures rose slightly and fish fed well.

Noticeably, the shallow areas of many of the lakes produced good weights on most days.

 Brigg angler Mark Lidgard made the most of two good draws on the shallows at Tripp. He won the Thursday Open with a hefty 96lbs from peg 14, this included 4 Carp and around 75lbs of Crucians and F’1, s. He was obviously delighted to draw close by on peg 12 on the following Sunday and made no mistake with a similar net totalling 74lbs, all of the backing weights coming from adjacent pegs.

The Silver Fish only match on Saturday, which was fished on the Swan Pond, was attended by some of the countries top anglers, including 5 times World Champion Alan Scotthorne, Frances Didier Delannoy, who was World Champion in 2013 and a number of other top names who were practising for next weekends Preston Pairs Pole Fishing Championships which is to be held at Messingham Sands.

With extremely strong winds a factor, sheltered areas were chosen for the pegging out where possible and Barnsleys’ James Dent made the most of his draw on peg 54. James fished brilliantly in the conditions to take a 37lbs mixed bag on long pole in 5 feet of water. Runner up in the new bit on peg 32 was Didier Delannoy who had a good net of small Skimmers totalling 33lbs. Danny Taylor and Paul Seed were third and fourth respectively, with Paul doing really well to earn his 25lbs net of fish from the most exposed peg on the lake on the day.

After seeing some of the underwater footage posted on the fisherys’ facebook page, showing Roach feeding on the day ticket lakes, Jim Urry decided to see if he could persuade some on to the bank and an excellent day on pole fished caster included 4 fish over 1.5lbs in weight as well as a lot of other really good stamp fish.

Next Saturdays Pole Pairs Championships will be held on The Swan Pond, Islands Lake, Tripp Lake, Merry,s Pool and The South Day Ticket Lake.

Pleasure anglers will have pegs available on the North Day Ticket Lake and on part of The Oak Tree Pond.


Dennis Pattinson continued his impressive run of results by winning the last round of the Silverfish series with an excellent 37lbs of mainly Roach from peg 43 on the Islands Lake on Saturday.

After heavy overnight rain followed by an early morning frost, expectations were low for the chances of a decent match, but Roach and Perch fed well with fish to 1.5lbs of both species caught. There were even problems with Carp in some areas and overall it was an excellent match.

Grimsby’s “Big Den” was over 7lbs clear of Nick Houghton from Hull, although the result would have been a bit tighter but for a shoal of small Carp which kept Nick busy landing and returning fish which did not count. Both anglers caught mainly on pole and maggot, but third place went to Paul Seed on waggler and caster with 26lbs from peg 3.

Sunday was more a case of being in survival mode rather than actually fishing and those anglers who drew in sheltered areas had a massive advantage over those who were exposed to the exceptionally strong winds brought in by Storm Clodagh.

Broken pole sections were commonplace and on some matches, it was nearly a case of last man standing taking the prize money.

Even the relatively sheltered Tripp Lake endured a real tempest when the wind came in from the west and the normal tactics of fishing long pole went out of the window for everyone apart from those on the shallows who had a back wind.

Tommy Grice made the most of peg 13 to win with a 55lbs catch of F.1’s and crucians, fishing at 14m with soft pellet.

Carp are still feeding, although as expected at this time of the year sport is not exactly hectic, nonetheless a winter Carp capture is very rewarding in itself and the South Lake has produced some good fish up to mid double figures for those anglers prepared to brave the weather.

Silverfish fishing on the North and South Lakes is exceptionally good with soft pellet over groundbait the best approach for Skimmers and chopped worm and caster for Roach, Perch and Hybrids.



Winter arrived in a hurry at the weekend and water temperatures, which normally decrease gradually at this time of the year, plummeted.

Even the larger deeper lakes such as the Swan Pond experienced a drop of 5 degrees centigrade in the space of three days.

Catches normally suffer badly for a period of time until the fish become acclimatised to the new temperature regime, they also tend to shoal up and concentrate in the deeper areas of water.

One angler who hasn’t let the cold weather put him off is Grimsby,s Dennis Pattinson.

Dennis followed up last weeks win in the Silverfish league, when he had a 30lbs mixed bag of fish, with a victory on Wednesday, again on the Swan Pond, this time with 39lbs of Roach and just to prove that his maggot fishing approach works on other lakes as well, he top scored in the Sunday open on the Islands Lake with 21lbs of silver fish from peg 31.

Steve Richardson chopped and changed between caster and pellet to win on Saturday in the Silverfish League Open with 28lbs. Steve drew on peg 31 and topped a list of surprisingly good weights considering the conditions.

Tripp Lake continues to shine for all species, Keith Easton won on Friday with a 62lbs mixed net of Carp, Crucians and f.1,s from peg 14, Tommy Grice top scored in the Sunday Open with a similar mixed bag and a weight of 64lb, whilst Paul Hewitt found mainly Carp on peg 14 to win on Saturday with 47lbs.

The Syndicate Lakes continue to produce some good Carp and the odd Catfish, Pontefract angler John Walker landing a 30lbs Cat last week.

Some decent sized Carp have been caught from the North and South ponds with a surprising amount of surface activity in the afternoons.

Terry Holmes from Ulceby enjoyed a 40lbs catch of Roach to over 1lb and Skimmer Bream from 4oz to 2lbs on the North Day Ticket Lake last week, Terry fished at 6m on the pole, with 6mm soft pellet over fish meal groundbait.



Dennis Pattinson won the latest leg of the Silverfish League with an excellent mixed bag of Roach, Perch Crucians and Silver Bream from peg 41 on the Swan Pond. Dennis loosefed maggots at 12 m, making the most of the shelter afforded by the high bank behind him, on a weekend when strong winds made life difficult for all. Kyle Hartley on peg 52 finished second with another mixed bag of fish on pole fished casters totalling 29lbs.

Keith Easton topped up an early burst of 4 Carp with Crucians Perch and odd Skimmers to win the Wednesday Open on the Swan Pond with 56 lbs, on a day when Crucian Carp made up the bulk of the weights, the huge shoals of Skimmers which have dominated catches recently being noticeable by their absence.

Steve Ellis continues to get some really good results with his unorthodox approach to autumn and winter match fishing.

With most anglers scaling down in hook sizes and reaching for scratching baits such as maggots casters and pinkies, former division 1 national champion Steve, attacks his peg with what would be considered a positive approach even in summer.

On Saturday he came third in the Silverfish League on the Swan Pond, with 26lbs, the bulk of his weight coming on either a full or half of a lobworm fished on a size 12 hook and with Perch up to 2lbs falling to this bait, he certainly sorted out the better fish.

Sunday saw him drawn on peg 3 on Tripp Lake and this time it was an all out paste attack. Whilst he had a few Carp, the bulk of his winning 77lbs weight was comprised of quality Skimmers, Crucians and f.1’s.


Pontefract angler Harold Mason made the trip down the M62 well worthwhile last week; fishing on the Big Syndicate Pond he landed a superb 29lbs 4oz mirror carp, which is a new lake record. Scunthorpe angler James Gillie caught a 27lbs mirror and plenty of other carp and catfish have been landed by the members, suggesting that the fish are making the most of the mild weather to feed up before the onset of winter.

Carp also continue to feed well across the rest of the fishery, particularly in the North and South Lakes and the Oak Tree Pond. Plenty of double figure fish have been landed by anglers fishing large baits such as boilies and meat, but it is not surprising at this time of the year to hear of anglers fishing small baits for silver fish also hooking in to plenty of carp, providing some serious testing of their light tackle.

Scunthorpe anglers Dave Shute and Dennis Moss decided on a traditional days Roach fishing on the North Day Ticket Pond last week and approached it with Hemp and Tares. Whilst this bait combination normally involves a slow start, both anglers found quality Roach up to 1lbs queuing up to feed right from the off.

The second leg of the Silverfish winter league was fished on the Islands Lake  on Saturday and Hull angler Tony Noon topped the list with just short of 30lbs of Skimmer Bream on waggler fished soft pellet.

Tripp fished well for both Saturday and Sunday’s Opens.

Hull’s Steve Peacham won from peg 21 on Saturday with 78lbs of Carp and Gainsborough’s Dave Toyne topped the list on Sunday with 73lbs from peg 13.

Kyle Hartley won the Wednesday Open on the Swan Pond with 63lbs of Perch, Roach and Skimmers on pole fished caster, he was slightly disappointed at the end however after losing a huge Perch after playing it for quite a while on light gear, the fish eventually disappearing under some overhanging branches.



Former Silver Fish League winner Paul Seed got off to a great start in the first match of the 2015 series with a victory on Tripp Lake.

This is the first time this venue has been included in the event and many anglers were scratching their heads as to how to avoid Carp which not only did not count but fed with a vengeance, several anglers hooking in excess of 20 of these fish whilst trying to put Crucians, Skimmers f.1’s and Roach into the net.

Paul had a close call though as his 80lb mixed net was only 1lb clear of Craig Williams who fished shallow for f.1’s.

Despite the problems with Carp, the average weight per angler was just over 50lbs per man.

Bizarrely, the following day on the Sunday winter league on the same venue Carp refused to feed, only featuring in the winners net, Nick Houghton finding 92lbs from peg 29, the remainder of the field settling for mixed bags of silver fish to make the frame.

Last weeks mild weather encouraged some unseasonal catches on the Syndicate Lakes in the shape of some unexpected Catfish, one angler landing two fish in the low twenties, Darren Wright was also pleased with his capture of a 23lbs Mirror Carp taken in a short morning session.

The North and South Day Ticket Lakes are in amazing form for Silver Fish, one angler, who fished a short session to set up some pole rigs reported catching around 20lbs of Skimmers weighing from 6ozs to 2lbs in less than an hour on soft 6mm pellet over groundbait.



Carp continue to dominate match results, Barnsley matchman Geoff Wilde took the top spot on the Islands Lake in the Saturday Open with 84lbs of Carp on bomb and pellet from peg 39 to comfortably head off a string of 40lbs plus silverfish weights.

The anglers competing in Swan Pond Open match on Sunday found that hard pellet fished on the bottom at between 11mm and 13mm out was the most effective method, but with quite a number of double figure fish caught, pole tackle was often tested to its limits. Tommy Grice topped the list with 124lbs.

Tripp Lake remains in excellent form for all species, although those anglers who include a few Carp in the mixed nets of Crucians, F.1,s, and Skimmers are tending to walk away with the prize money: Gainsborough’s Ken Pacey had a fantastic start in the Thursday open on Tripp Lake, putting around 40lbs of Silver fish into the keepnet in the first 2 hours, by fishing paste in the margins. When things slowed down he switched to fishing hard pellet to land Carp to 10lbs for a convincing win with 93lbs, almost 30lbs clear of Stewart Buckley who had an all Crucian catch on soft pellet.

With the clocks having now been adjusted by one hour, starting and finishing times for matches have changed, these can be found on the Events page at www. messinghamsands.co.uk.



Messingham Sands has been selected to host 2 Fishomania qualifiying events in 2016.

The revamped format will see 32 qualifiers nationwide and a £50,000 prize for the eventual winner.

The events, which are run by the Angling Trust in partnership with Barry Hearn’s Matchroom Sport will see 160 of the country’s best match anglers battling it out at Messingham in front of Sky TV’s cameras for the single winner’s prized entry to the final.

 The dates are Saturday 23rd April and Wednesday 25th of May.

Entrants can apply via the Angling Trust web site and selection is decided by a lottery system.

The syndicate Lakes continue to produce some good sized fish; Doncaster’s Ray Lambert included a 23lbs 7 oz Mirror Carp last week in a 6 fish haul, this fish was  at the time was a new personal best for him; it didn,t last for long however as he made  a return visit a few days later and banked an even bigger fish at 24lbs.

The North and South Lakes are also in good form for Carp and Silver fish; Scunthorpe angler Tim Huwish recently landed a Common Carp of 18lbs from the North Lake and returned with his friend Tom Brasier to share a 22 fish catch of Carp weighing between 8lbs and 15lbs.

Although match winning weights are steadily declining towards winter levels, Hull’s Nick Houghton, who has been in fine form recently, didn,t let the trend influence him as he won the Saturday Open on Tripp lake with 162lbs of Carp on 8mm hard pellet from peg 19, topping a list of excellent weights on the day.

Alan Gregory won the Wednesday Open on the same water with 68lbs of Crucian Carp, enjoying plenty of bites all day on 4mm soft pellet.



Autumn is now upon us and steadily falling water temperatures associated with this time of the year see significant changes in fish feeding patterns. Smaller baits become more successful, relative to the fish species being targeted and the amount of bait required for each session reduces in line with all species of fish’s decreasing daily requirements.

Feeding periods become shorter and sport is usually better later in the day at this time of the year when water temperatures at their highest.

Mild nights can lead to some really good catches; conversely, an overnight frost can result in sport being very slow the following morning.

There have still been a number of 100lbs plus match weights this week, the best being from Grimsby’s Tim Chapman who won the Friday Open with 131lbs of Carp from peg 2 on the Islands Lake and 126lbs from Doncaster angler Tommy Grice who won the Sunday open from peg 8 on Tripp Lake.

On days when Carp have been less interested in feeding, some close match results have resulted with good sized Skimmer Bream featuring in 40lbs to 60lbs catches..

Thursdays Open match prize money, together with an extra £100 from the Golden Peg Kitty looked to be heading towards Gainsborough angler Ken Pacey’s pocket. Ken was enjoying a terrific day catching Skimmers from peg 7 on the Swan Pond, finishing with an impressive 58lbs total, but it was Upton’s Keith Palmer who managed to save the golden peg prize money for another day. He made a late switch to fishing 11mm pellet on the pole on peg 49 and had a timely run of Carp to take top spot with 71lbs.

The North and South Day Ticket Lakes have seen some good sized Carp caught this week with plenty of double figure fish up to 18lbs. Silver fish anglers have also fared well, Roach and Skimmers are showing a preference for maggots, casters and soft pellets.



Although Carp activity is slowing down in line with falling water temperatures, some good sized fish are still being caught.

Wakefield angler Andy Shimeld landed an excellent Mirror Carp weighing 28lbs 2oz this week from the main Syndicate Lake and a surprise 20lbs 8oz Mirror was caught from the Oak Tree Pond where large catches of 2lbs to 12lbs Carp are the norm, rather than large sized individual fish.

The match lakes are still producing some really good winning weights but there is certainly a lack of consistency at the moment. Last weeks sunny days saw more fish cruising around close to the surface than actually feeding.

What was really noticeable were the numbers of Carp feeding on discarded bait in the margins of the lakes not long after matches had finished. This would suggest that the fish are still feeding well but without any urgency at the moment, preferring to wait for less risky free offerings.

Silverfish weights are certainly more consistent and the time of the year is approaching when a variety of approaches involving both Carp and Silverfish will be needed to claim the top places in competitions.


Sawn Pond and Islands Lake 38 fished.

A sudden drop in water temperatures just before the start of the festival meant that the big weights of Carp taken in recent matches did not materialise.

With only three one hundred pound plus catches recorded over the week, it meant that those anglers who targeted both silverfish and carp dominated the festival.

The major benefit of the downturn in Carp weights was that going in to the last day, any one of ten anglers could have won overall.

Section points were tight all the way through the week with no runaway winning weights and the open draw on the final match saw a really exciting finish.

Scunthorpe angler Jack Turner, who has been in close contention in previous festivals claimed the £1,000 first prize with 11 points, just edging out Steve Ellis and Gary Hansford who were a point behind, Steve taking the £600 for second  place overall on weight.

One surprise came in the shape of 3lbs 8oz Perch caught on the Islands Lake. The surprise not being the size of the fish, but the fact that it was caught on groundbait paste.

Overall Result

1 Jack Turner Scunthorpe 11 points

2 Steve Ellis Scunthorpe 12 points (351 lbs 14 oz)

3 Gary Hansford Grimsby 12 points (257 lbs 5 oz)

4 James Stones Barnsley 14 points

5 Steve Leng Barnsley 15 points


Daily winners

Day 1 Steve Ellis Scunthorpe 121-15

Day 2 Ian Grimshaw Barnsley 92-08

Day 3 Steve Ellis Scunthorpe 84-14

Day 4 Ian Thompson Grimsby 110-14

Day 5 Andy Chipchase Barnsley 82-01


The Syndicate Lakes have fished well over the past week; several carp over the 20lbs mark have been landed as well as some good sized Catfish.

James Gillie saw some decent sized fish moving on the shallows on the Small Lake and decided to try stalking the fish. Despite having to battle through some fairly heavy undergrowth he was rewarded with a 19.5lbs mirror Carp and a return to the main syndicate lake the following day produced a 35lbs Catfish.

Goldthorpe match group are regulars to the fishery during the winter and spring months but only occasionally fit summer matches at Messingham Sands into their busy programme. Mick Humphries will certainly be keen for further visits however after winning on the Swan Pond on Saturday with an excellent 207lbs.

 Mick drew peg 35 on the golf course bank and with a warm easterly wind blowing into that area plenty of Carp were in residence. 8mm and 11mm pellet fished on waggler and bomb proving to be the main methods.

 Three days earlier and with the wind blowing in the opposite direction, the bulk of the Lakes Carp were settled into the shallows and the top three had a real ding dong battle.

Scunthorpe angler John Alderson came out ahead of Hull’s Danny Elm and Bawtry’s Nobby Winters. John had 191lbs from peg 57; Nobby was on peg 52 and weighed 171lbs and Danny found 163lbs of Carp from peg 54.

Tripp Lake also provided some spectacular sport on Saturday and Brigg’s Mark Lidgard  led a list of big weights to win the open match with 179lbs, closely followed by Steve Ellis on 173lbs.


Catches on all of the lakes remain at a very high level with most species of fish feeding really well.

Merry’s Pool is proving to be very popular with both pleasure anglers and those participating in competitions. Match weights of both Carp and Silverfish have been consistently good and 150lbs plus catches have not been unusual.

The South Lake continues to fish well, with plenty of double figure Carp and Catfish up to 20lbs this week, mainly falling to boilies or floating baits.

Tripp Lake has been in really good form all through the summer and over 100lbs have been needed to win all of the matches on the lake this week. Carl Swetnam topped the Saturday Open with a sensational 209 lbs mixed bag which included 6 Carp up to 8lbs, some really good Skimmers, Ide Roach and Crucians. Carl caught all of his fish just 18 inches deep at 4 metres on worm and caster on a very light float. Paul Seed adopted similar tactics at the next peg but failed to find any bonus Carp, his 176lbs consisting mainly of Skimmers and Crucians. No less than 8 weights over 130lbs were recorded in this match.

Saturday saw many of the same faces on the Swan Pond Open where Carp were the main target this time. Tommy Grice from Doncaster had a great start on peg 3, taking 8 good sized fish on pellet fished shallow on the pole in the first 90 minutes. However, Grimsby’s Gary Hansford  managed to overcome a slow start to win the battle by 12 lbs  from the next peg with a total of 166lbs 3ozs, The deciding factor was a huge 23lbs 9ozs Mirror Carp which he caught on sweetcorn close in on the pole.

Kyle Hartley continued his consistent form in the Wednesday Opens matches to win on the Islands Lake this week with 115lbs from peg 27. Kyle included just 2 Carp in this net which was mainly Skimmers caught on 6mm soft pellet over groundbait. Less than 7lbs separated the top 4 weights in this match.


Gainsborough angler Ken Pacey, who is a regular at Messingham Sands, has found that a positive approach is paying dividends at the moment. Ken scored back to back wins in the Wednesday and Thursday opens, both of which had over 30 anglers taking part.

His first win came from peg 56 on the Swan pond where he caught Carp on both pole and waggler, feeding constantly with 11mm hard pellet. His 133lbs total beating Kyle Hartley’s 104lbs of silverfish into second place. The following day saw Ken on peg 1 on Tripp Lake, where similar tactics produced a 114lbs bag of Carp.

Constant and fairly heavy feeding remains the key to success at this time of the year and many visiting match anglers tend to come unstuck by not introducing enough bait to hold the fish in their peg.

This was all too obvious last weekend when the Swan Pond hosted a club match and an open on the same day. The anglers competing in the club match didn,t appear to be loose feeding very much at all and a weight of around 50lbs top scored. In comparison the venue regulars on the open match were feeding heavily in order to draw feeding fish into their pegs and recorded no less than five 100lbs plus weights and a lowest weight of 66lbs.

Rotherhams Carl Swetnam is certainly not shy when it comes to feeding and he almost matched Ken Pacey,s back to back wins when fishing in the Saturday and Sunday Opens.

Carl targeted Skimmers and Crucians on Merry’s Pool on Saturday and comfortably outscored those anglers who fished for Carp, finishing almost 30lbs clear on 129lbs.

It was left to Nigel Lowry to halt his progress in the Sunday Open on Hollywood, Nigel drew peg 2 and despite losing 14 Carp on pole fished meat and pellet, his 106lbs 7oz was just 11oz too much for Carl who fished a small method feeder tight across on peg 20.

Surface and margin fished baits are producing the best results on all of the day ticket lakes, although Leeds angler Andrew Tinsdale broke the trend when fishing boilies on the South Day Ticket pond. Andrew enjoyed some really hectic sport, landing over 20 Carp, mainly double figure fish with the biggest a hefty 23lbs Mirror Carp.


Although water temperatures are below those to be expected at this time of the year, settled conditions are encouraging fish to feed well and with warmer weather forecast in the short term, things are looking even more promising.

The Oak Tree Pond has been in excellent form, with anglers landing up to 60 Carp per sitting in the 1lbs to 12lbs size range on a variety of baits and tactics.

The South day Ticket Lake has seen fewer Carp caught per session but with a bigger average size. Kirton Lindsey angler Joe Watson landed 6 fish, all of which were double figures, up to 18lbs in weight.

Catfish seem to be on the feed at the moment in the South Lake as well, specimens of 39lbs and 43lbs have been landed recently, as well as a number around the 20lbs mark. The 47lbs fish which came out 2 years ago will presumably have significantly increased in weight and hopefully will put in an appearance this season.

On the match fishing front some really good weights have been recorded, with Hull’s Gary Steed topping a strong list. His 207lbs net of Carp caught on 11mm pellet fished shallow on the waggler from peg 54 on the Islands Lake won the Wednesday open match in style.This match also saw a dead heat on 107lbs 10 oz between a terrific net of skimmers from peg 45 by Kyle Hartley and Graham Greendales net of waggler caught Carp from peg 10.

Steve Ellis proved the effectiveness of his paste fishing approach once again in the Saturday Open, peg 12 on the Swan Pond provided a bite a cast on some very large pieces of his favourite concoction fished over a bed of micro pellets. Steve had 13 Carp and around 80lbs of Skimmer Bream, Crucian Carp and a 3.5lbs Ide to take his total up to 186lbs. Second placed Don Hudson fished 11mm hard pellet in the margins for an all Carp net of 180lbs, which was just 4lbs ahead of Paul Seed on peg 57.

What is noticeable is that those anglers with a tendency to feed heavily are the ones achieving the most success. Steve Ellis commented that he didn’t think it possible to overfeed at the moment and his results are bearing up his theory.


Scunthorpe angler James Cross was enjoying an afternoon on the small syndicate lake at the weekend; fishing boilies across to the shallows, he had already landed 8 double figure Carp when he hooked into something big. After a lengthy battle he did really well to land a Catfish weighing just over 40lbs. The fish which is a new record for this particular lake left James shaking after the capture and beats his personal best Catfish, which came just a few weeks ago from the main syndicate lake by over 5lbs.

Bradford angler Carl Armston did not let the persistent rain which made Sunday something of a wash out deter him. After his lengthy journey he chose to fish the South Day Ticket Lake and landed over 100 fish which included 25 Carp up to 18lbs in weight. Surprisingly, he caught quite a few of his Carp on floating bread, not usually the most successful approach in rainy conditions.

The match lakes have been in tremendous form with weights of both Carp and silver fish exceeding the magical 100lbs barrier being taken in both club and open matches on most days.

Tripp Lake was in spectacular form for the Friday afternoon Open Match, with no less than 9 weights over 100lbs and a massive winning bag for Scunthorpe angler Andy Arrowsmith of 207lbs 4oz.

Andy fished pellet and meat on the pole on peg 13, catching Carp from 2lbs up to 12lbs steadily through the day.

The following day saw Rotherham ace Carl Swetnam fishing his trademark worm and caster combination to deadly effect in the Saturday open on the Swan Pond. Carl landed a mixture of silver fish including skimmers, roach, perch, silver bream, ide, crucians and tench. At times the fish were really coming close and were high up in the water as his regular feeding kept them interested and a hefty 136lbs 11oz winning weight was the end product.

Alan Dawes from Grimsby enjoyed a good and popular win in the Thursday Open on the Islands Lake. Drawn on peg 43 he caught Carp on bomb and pellet, a method he is not particularly familiar with, but after a bit of coaching from Ken Pacey, showed that he can adapt to a new approach; not only did his 90lbs 11oz weight of Carp prove enough to beat the other32 competitors, but it also claimed an extra £100 for the golden peg and quite a few £1 side bets from his travelling companions, who still managed a big cheer when the results were announced.





Last weeks hot weather resulted in some quite spectacular spawning activity across the Lakes.

Carp, which require higher water temperatures to spawn than other coarse fish species such as Roach, Perch and Bream have been held back for much longer than usual this year and certainly made up for lost time. Fish which would normally shy away from any bankside activity spend a few hours apparently oblivious to anything else other than producing the next generation. This is an opportunity to see fish close up in the weed beds and in the margins of the lakes. It is always an impressive sight and always surprising to see the numbers of fish involved in this annual phenomenon.

There was no surprise when the fish switched from breeding to feeding and the results from the Islands Lake testified this.

Ken Pacey drew peg 4 on the Wednesday Open and found fish queuing up to intercept his waggler fished 11mm pellet. The Gainsborough match man had 31 fish, despite a quiet last hour and finished just 2lbs short of a double ton with 198lbs 7oz.

Last weeks winner of the Thursday Open, Dave Chapman from Doncaster made it a double with an outstanding 233lbs of Carp on 11mm pellet fished on the bomb from peg 2 on the Islands Lake in this weeks match. Dave caught steadily all through, with fish from 2lbs up to low double figures included in his catch.

The Oak Tree is producing some exceptional sport with carp from a couple of pounds up to 16lbs feeding really well on most baits. Surface fishing is always effective at this time of the year as are baits fished close in to the rush beds.



As summer finally seems to have arrived fish feeding activity is becoming more consistent.

Methods which usually prove to be the most productive at higher temperatures are now coming into their own as fish look to spend their time in the warmest areas of a lake. Carp in particular are now feeding confidently in the top few feet of water and in the margins.

 Whenever a warm wind is blowing across a lake, they will also congregate in the areas into which the warm surface waters are being pushed and this has the potential to lead to some really big weights.

Goole’s John Holt, who has enjoyed a good run of results recently, found himself drawn on peg 2 on the Swan Pond in Friday’s Open Match and with just such a warm breeze blowing towards him he made the most of the conditions. Fishing 11mm hard pellet into the shallows and on top of a sand bar, he caught Carp steadily all day for an excellent 152lbs.

Don Hudson also found the wind blowing down to the end of Hollywood Lake where he had drawn in the Sunday Open and he made no mistake with 129lbs of Carp and Ide on pellet fished on a method feeder tight to the far bank.

Merry,s Pool fished well in the Saturday Open with four 100lbs plus weights.

Tony Noon from Hull took the top spot with 137lbs of Carp on 6mm pellet fished shallow on the pole, Steve Burns from Grimsby was second using the same technique for 126lbs and Hulls’ Glen Collins had 106lbs of mainly Skimmers and Crucians on chopped worm and caster.

Dave Chapman also scored a good win on the Swan Pond on Thursday with 129-09 of Carp on 11mm pellet fished shallow on the waggler, Dave was doubly pleased with the result as he was drawn on a golden peg and added an extra £100 to his prize money.

This week’s hot weather should see the last of the spawning activity for the year; many species such as Carp, Crucians and Tench have been held back by the low water temperatures so far and should respond rapidly to the sudden increase, this normally results in good sport once they have finished eating all of the banquet of eggs on offer around the weed beds and willow roots.


Scunthorpe match angler Steve Ellis came very close to achieving a remarkable double last weekend. Following his 199lbs match win on the Swan Pond on the Saturday, which included 150lbs of Skimmer Bream and 6 Carp on pole fished paste, he moved on to Hollywood Lake on the Sunday and won again , this time with 191lbs of Carp on pole fished luncheon meat.

On both occasions he lost enough fish to have easily beaten the 200lbs barrier. To record back to back double tons in matches on different Lakes would have been something special and he has promised to try harder in future. He also remarked that he needed to get back to work for a rest.

Huddersfield angler Mark Walton drew peg 56 on the Swan Pond on Sunday and found that he couldn,t get through the Perch on maggots or casters. A switch to 11mm hard pellet on the pole certainly cured this problem and a run of Carp to 14lbs gave him his first ever 100lbs plus match weight.

Despite losing a number of good sized specimens, his 114lbs was enough to win the match.

Sport in general remains up and down as fish which are on the point of spawning are being held back by low water temperatures. Whilst this situation exists, feeding spells are very unpredictable.

Gainsborough  angler Neil Vernon enjoyed a match on the Islands Lake when the Carp were in a real feeding mood and led the way with 150lbs of fish from peg 8, second placed man in this match, Dave Chapman from Doncaster also had over 100lbs, although his catch was dominated by Tench.

Brigg angler Mark Lidgard enjoyed two wins on Tripp Lake last week with 139lbs and 110lbs, he drew peg 13 on both occasions, catching carp on pole fished pellet and luncheon meat.



Anglers targeting Carp are experiencing mixed fortunes as water temperatures fluctuate daily by as much as 5 degrees centigrade.

Those lucky enough to time their sessions to coincide with an increase in temperatures have enjoyed some red letter days, whilst a downward change has seen Carp reluctant to feed.

One angler certainly timed his visit to the Oak Tree Pond with perfection as he landed an incredible 145 Carp from 1lb up to low double figures, with other people also reporting some really hectic sport.

The syndicate lakes have been fairly slow over the past week although the size of the fish caught has made things worthwhile. There have been quite a number of 20lbs plus Carp landed, the best a 28lbs Mirror which fell to Scunthorpe angler, James Gillie.

 Catfish from low double figures up to 37lbs have also been active and fishery bailiff Kyle Hartley found himself almost bowled over by a large specimen as he was in the water clearing weed.

Hollywood Lake saw the Lake match record increased to 205lbs during a recent club match, but the fluctuation in catches was apparent in the following match when 69lbs topped the list and yet 2 days later several 100lbs plus nets were recorded and most of the competitors had over 50lbs.

Silver fish sport remains sensational on all of the match and pleasure Lakes.

Carl Swetnam must have thought that his 140lbs of Skimmers and Perch, which were caught from peg 47 on the Swan Pond on chopped worm and caster would have been enough to win the Saturday Open, but he reckoned without the effectiveness of Steve Ellis’s paste fishing prowess. Steve fished on peg 12 and weighed a staggering 199lbs which included 6 Carp and around 150lbs of big Skimmers.



Low temperatures don’t appear to be affecting the appetites of most species of fish at the moment and some memorable catches have been made this week.

The First 200lbs plus match weight was recorded on Saturday in the penultimate round of the Goldthorpe Spring League on the Swan Pond.

Gary Stones drew peg 10 and after landing 4 carp on the waggler he decided that conditions were too windy to fish this method effectively, switching to 11m hard pellet on a straight lead proved to be the answer as Carp after Carp made their way into the landing net. His total of 201lbs was 50lbs clear of Russ Fowler on peg 48. Russ caught the majority of his fish on pole fished pellet.

Keith Garner from Bradford also fished pellet on the pole in the Friday open and came out on top of a real struggle with a 20lbs plus mirror Carp.

The Syndicate Lakes are in really good form with plenty of Catfish to over 30lbs and Carp to over 20lbs landed.

Doncaster angler Andy Penn had a memorable double from the Main Syndicate Lake in the form of a 27lbs Mirror Carp and a 45lbs Catfish in the same session. The Catfish had no less than 6 sets of hooks in its mouth from previous encounters.

Graham Buckley enjoyed a terrific day on Merry’s Pool in the week. He landed 35 Carp on pellet fished waggler, including 2 fish over 15lbs and 7 on pole fished meat in the margins.

Although Carp weights are increasing all of the time in matches, those anglers who choose to target  silver fish are far from being out of the picture. Some tremendous catches of Skimmers, Perch and Crucians have been recorded, including Kyle Hartley’s 123lbs from peg 8 on the Swan Pond. Kyle fished casters up in the water on a light pole rig and 4mm soft pellet over groundbait on the bottom: Mark Deans led the way in this match with 158lbs of Carp on 11mm pellet fished up in the water on a waggler.



Some excellent catches have been recorded this week in spite of the changeable weather.

The Islands Lake produced a close finish in the Friday Open. Paul Hewitt found Carp feeding well on 11mm pellet fished up in the water on the waggler on peg 4 and his 138lbs was 6lbs too good for the recent winner of the Milo Festival at Whiteacres, Colmic sponsored Jamie Wilde.

There were good weights from all around the lake, with almost everyone having over 50lbs.

 Sunday saw Rotherham’s Carl Swetnam drawn on peg 13 on the Swan Pond. His chopped worm and caster approach at 3metres was working well for the first half of the match as a procession of small Perch, decent Skimmers and the odd small Tench saw their way into his keepnet, but around the halfway point in the match a shoal of good sized Perch, many around the 1lb mark turned up and fed with abandon. Carl finished the match with an excellent 127bs, which was comfortably ahead of Steve Ellis who had 98lbs of Carp shallow on the waggler and Pellet.

The Day Ticket Lakes are all in excellent form, especially the Oak Tree Pond which is regularly producing 200lbs plus catches of Carp with fish from a couple of pounds up to low double figures falling to a variety of methods.

Larger Carp up to 18lbs in weight have been landed from the North and South Day Ticket Lakes and Silver Fish sport has been of a really high standard on these waters.

The Catfish in the Syndicate Lakes appear to be on a feeding spree at the moment, with numerous fish up to 30lbs reported and tales of much bigger fish hooked and lost. Carp up to 20lbs have also been caught and the anticipated warm weather should see even better sport to come.



The inaugural Spring Festival proved to be a resounding success. The twenty anglers competing weighed in a colossal 6,600lbs of fish over the 5 days, giving an average weight per day of 66lbs per man.

With carp and Silverfish feeding well, everyone was in with a chance whichever tactics they chose, but an all Silverfish approach saw Kevin Johnson finish just ahead in a very tight finish.

The winners catch breakdown was, between, 200 and 350 fish each day, mainly on chopped worm and caster and 4mm soft pellet over groundbait.

 Day 1, 113lbs of Skimmers and Crucians, peg 5 Swan Pond.

 Day 2 92lbs Skimmers, Roach and Perch, peg 10 Islands Lake

Day 3 58lbs of mainly Roach Tripp Lake peg 13

Day 4 84lbs Perch and Skimmers Swan Pond peg 50

Day 5 105 lbs Skimmers Crucians and Tench peg 24 Islands Lake

Gary Hansford (Grimsby) was 2nd with an all out Carp approach, mainly on 11mm Hard pellet fished shallow on waggler, his total weight was 497lbs with 8 points, tying with Steve Ellis (Scunthorpe), also on 8 points, Steve had a mixed catch of Carp and Silvers for 457lbs and Jack Turner (Scunthorpe), who was really unlucky not to win overall, having a poor final day, had 9 points and 511lbs of Carp for the week.

The Pairs match on Bank Holiday Monday saw a bit of a downturn in the consistency of the fishing following a day of really heavy rain. The individual winner on the day however had a really good catch of Carp from peg 52 on the Swan Pond. Danny Challener from Rotherham fished 11mm pellet on long pole to weigh in 177lbs 13oz, which was only 4lbs ahead of second placed Tommy Grice from Doncaster, Tommy caught up in the water on pellet at 16mtres on peg 29 on the Swan Pond.

Danny was well supported by his partner on the Islands Lake. Steve Lowther had 65lbs of silverfish on peg 43 for 4th on the Lake and their 5 points total was enough to take the win, just a single point ahead of local pairing Kyle Hartley and Ken Pacey.

K.JOHNSON 1 1 2 2 1 7 453-04
G.HANSFORD 1 2 2 2 1 8 497-01
S.ELLIS 2 1 3 1 1 8 457-15
J.TURNER 3 1 1 1 3 9 511-04
D.HUDSON 1 5 1 1 1 9 430-15
S.DRAYTON 3 2 1 2 3 11 343-05
G.ROBINSON 3 2 3 2 3 13 278-15
S.BINGHAM 5 2 1 3 3 14 322-13
J. HIBBERD 2 3 3 4 2 14 392-15
S. HOLBROOKE 4 3 4 1 2 14 319-08
S.BURNS 1 3 5 3 5 17 272-04
G.COLLINS 4 4 4 4 2 18 305-07
R.WHILEY 2 4 5 4 2 18 238-12
I.COATHAM 5 1 5 3 4 18 227-04
M.LIDGARD 4 5 2 3 5 19 345-08
S.TROWER 4 3 2 5 5 19 220-15
A. BRYANT 3 4 4 4 5 20 236-15
I.THOMPSON 5 4 3 5 4 21 324-13
T. GRIFFITHS 2 5 5 5 4 21 219-10
S.LENG 5 5 4 5 4 23 230-13

Day 5

1 Gary Hansford Swan Pond, peg 41, 153-09, Carp shallow on waggler and pellet.

2 Don Hudson, Swan Pond, peg 7, 117-10 Carp on bomb and 11mm pellet

3 Jonathan Hibbard, Swan Pond peg 50,113-04 Carp on bomb and 11mm Pellet.

4 Kevin Johnson, Islands Lake peg 24,105-03, Skimmers, Perch, Crucians and Tench on caster and soft pellet.

Section winners, Don Hudson, Steve Ellis, Kevin Johnson, Gary Hansford.

Day 4

1 Steve Ellis peg 12 Swan Pond, 122-14, Carp shallow on pellet on waggler

2 Don Hudson peg 48 Islands Lake, Carp on Bomb and Pellet

3 Sean Holbrook, peg 54 Swan Pond 86-06 Carp on method feeder

4 Kevin Johnson peg 50 Swan Pond 84-03, Perch Skimmers and Crucians, caster and soft pellet on pole

Section winners, Steve Ellis, Sean Holbrook, Jack Turner, Don Hudson.

Day 3

1 Jack Turner Tripp peg 26 137-7

2 Mark Lidgard Tripp peg 25 130-02

3 Don Hudson Tripp  peg 34 76-01

4 Steve Bingham  Tripp peg 10  72-04

Section Winners Jack Turner, Don Hudson, Steve Bingham, Simon Drayton.


day 2

1 Jack Turner Swan Pond peg 3 127-01 Carp on pellet fished on bomb and waggler.

2 Kevin Johnson Islands peg 10 92-13, skimmers Roach and Crucians on pole and 4mm soft pellet

3 Gary Hansford Swan Pond peg 10, 86-08, Carp on pellet fished on bomb and waggler.

4 Ian Coatham Swan Pond peg 52,83-08, Carp on bomb and pellet. skimmers on pole and pellet

Section winners

Ian Coatham, Jack Turner, Kevin Johnson, Steve Ellis.

 day 1


1 Gary Hansford Islands peg 24,  128-00 Carp on waggler and 8mm hard pellet

2 Kevin Johnson Swan peg 5, 113-06 Skimmers, Perch and Crucians, pole and 4mm soft pellet

3 Steve Burns Swan peg 48, 108-12 Carp up in the water 8mm pellet on waggler

4 Steve Ellis Swan peg 41, 107-06 Carp up in the water 8mm pellet on waggler

Section winners, Gary Hansford, Steve Burns, Kevin Johnson, Don Hudson.



The Sky Sports’ Fishomania qualifier held at Messingham Sands on Saturday saw an exciting peg for peg battle on the Oak Tree Pond between former winner of the event and 5 times finalist Steve Cooke who was drawn on peg 3 and Peterborough matchman Steve Freeman on peg 2.

Both anglers fished pellets up in the water at 12 to 13 metres and were in to Carp straight from the off. As the match progressed, spectators felt that the result was going to be close but at the weigh in, over 30lbs separated the pair with Freeman taking the coveted place in the final with 169lbs.

This is a unique event; with 16 qualifiers held at the top fisheries around the country over the summer. More than 350 anglers applied to fish the Messingham event and 160 were selected by a random draw process. These 160 anglers then competed on the day for the one place in the final which was up for grabs.

The 16 winners of the qualifiers will line up at Staffordshire’s Cudmore Fishery in July and battle it out for the £30,000 first prise.

Unlike many match fishing competitions, this is a winner take all event from start to finish and those taking part, many of whom travel hundreds of miles to fish, are obliged to go all out for the top spot.

For many, the excitement of the build up to the match and the high levels of optimism at the draw are about as good as it gets. With some really good anglers competing in each match, it quickly becomes apparent who is going to feature in the battle for the coveted ticket for the final and many are left to fight it out for the scraps of a 10 peg section win.

This match was fished in bright sunshine, with a bitterly cold east wind blowing and many anglers were left shivering from the start. It was noticeable that the larger Lakes, Swan, Islands and Hollywood were most affected by the temperature drop and it was left to those anglers on the sheltered waters, Oak Tree, Merry,s and Tripp, all of which produced 100lbs plus weights, to enjoy the best of the action.

Aside from the top two, a brilliant scrap took place on Merry,s Pool, where last years Fish o Mania champion, Andy Geldart, fishing pellet up in the water on the waggler on peg 1, caught small Carp Carp steadily throughout the 5 hours of the match to total 111lbs 9 oz. Further up the bank, Nick Speed opted to target any species interested in his luncheon meat hookbait, which he presented up in the water on the pole and a mixture of Skimmers, Crucians and Ide, topped up with half a dozen Carp, saw him equal Andy,s weight for a dead heat. Fortunately for the organisers, the overall result was decided elsewhere as this would have created a unique situation of having two first placed anglers in one qualifier.



Bank Holiday Monday Pairs

Swan and Islands, 74 fished



1 Carl Braithwaite & Paddy Bollans Grimsby 10 pts 99lbs 01oz

2 Shane Blades & Rob Seward Grimsby 10pts 89-07

3 Kyle Hartley & Ken Pacey Messingham 11pts

4 John Holt & steve Hoyle 15 pts



1 Carl Swetnam Rotherham 91-15

2 Richie Elliot Hull 79-06

2 Steve Bingham Upton 73-06

4 Carl Braithwaite Grimsby 63-02


The Individual winner of the pairs competition, Carl Swetnam enjoyed an eventful match. Fishing close in on the pole with chopped worm and casters, his Skimmer fishing was interrupted on 6 occasions by Carp, the biggest, estimated at around 18 lbs found itself in the landing net within a few seconds as Carl made the most of the fact that the fish surfaced close to the bank immediately on being hooked. This fish was followed by a 12 pounder the next drop in.

There was a tie on points for first place, with two pairs on 10 points each, weight decided the outcome and Grimsby duo , Paddy Bollans and Carl Braithwaite took the honours


Fishing in general has improved all week as warm weather has boosted the fish’s appetites.

The Syndicate Lakes have got off to a real flier this year.

Thorne angler Andy Penn landed his first ever Catfish on a popped up boilie, the fish weighed a hefty 38lbs and tops a string of other 30lbs plus fish to come from the main Lake.

Carl Moore from Wath upon Dearne enjoyed a really good session over the weekend, he fished hybrid boilies and landed a total of 18 Carp, the best two fish being a mirror of 24-03 and a common of 22-01 the smallest weighed over 15lbs and a 20lbs 4 oz Catfish added a bit of variety.


The Silverfish only match was held on the Swan Pond on Saturday. League leader Neil Vessey drew peg 26 on the small Swan and second placed Kevin Johnson was next door on 27. Both anglers set off on soft pellet at 4metres and were soon in to a fish a cast, mainly small skimmers with the occasional Ide and Crucian Carp. At the weigh in, Kevin had 410 fish for 83lbs 12oz, whilst Neil, who switched to fishing casters at 3metres and was catching up quickly towards the end, finished on 78-09.

Both anglers were plagued by Carp and would have had well over the 100lbs mark each, had they counted.

With the Sky Sports Fishomania event due to be held at Messingham Sands on Saturday 18th of April, competitors may find that a mixed approach of targeting Silverfish and Carp could be the key to success.

Josh Brown showed the potential of Hollywood Lake to provide the winner on the Tuesday Open, landing 120lbs of Carp by fishing 8mm hard pellet shallow on the pole.

Pleasure anglers should note that the Oak Tree Pond will be in use for the Fishomania match but that the North and South Lakes will remain open for day tickets.




Anglers have enjoyed a real upturn in sport this week as water temperatures continue to rise.

The Islands Lake remains the pick of the match waters with some excellent catches, Barnsley angler Sean Sanders, a regular at the fishery, found the resident Carp in a mood for feeding on peg 10 in the Goldthorpe Spring league event on Saturday. Hard 11mm pellet accounted for a procession of fish from 2lbs up to 10lbs and his outstanding 182lbs winning net was almost double that of Jeff Swindles who finished on 95lbs from peg 35.

The previous day, Gainsborough angler Ken Pacey finished just a few ounces short of his first 100lbs catch of the year, fishing with 8mm pellet on the pole, close to the reeds on peg 62.

Some really good silverfish catches have also been recorded in matches on the Islands Lake, 60lbs plus weights of Skimmers, Roach, Tench, Ide and Crucians, providing some tremendous sport.

Neil Vessey found Skimmer Bream feeding well on 4mm soft pellet on the pole on peg 36 on the Swan Pond on Saturday and his 74lbs winning weight proved to be well in front of the second placed 46lbs of Keith Easton in the latest leg of the Silverfish only series, the section win putting him 1 point ahead in the league.

Pleasure anglers have enjoyed similarly hectic sport on all of the day ticket lakes. Merry,s Pool has been particularly good for mixed bags of fish. Some stunning Ide up to 4lbs in weight have been caught up in the water as well as plenty of Carp, Skimmers Tench and Crucians on a variety of baits and methods.



The Islands Lake, which is shallower than most of the other lakes on the fishery, tends to warm up the quickest in spring and Saturdays Silver Fish only match certainly saw the effects of this. Skimmer Bream fed with some enthusiasm and those anglers who targeted these fish certainly reaped the rewards, Neil Vessey found that casters fished at 3 metres proved to be the best approach in his peg 27 draw and kept fish coming all day to record an excellent 56lbs winning weight. With just 6lbs separating the top 5 anglers and a lowest weight in the match of 22lbs, this was one to remember.

Some really good Perch have been caught in matches this week, with many over 2lbs and quite a few approaching the 3lb mark, but it was Steve Ellis who landed the biggest of the season. Steve was drawn on peg 54 on Islands in the Silverfish match and his single caster tempted a huge 3lbs 12oz specimen.

A memorial match for Brigg Matchman Stuart Hewson was held on Sunday on the Swan Pond and a good turnout of over 30 anglers enjoyed the sport.

Mark Lidgard won the day with 75lbs of Carp on the pole from peg 48, and with plenty of weights of Skimmers and Perch from  30lbs to 57lbs, most people were kept busy in the sunshine.

Scunthorpe angler Graham Mumby decided to try out a new feeder rod on the North day Ticket Pond last week and was certainly pleased with the result. Fishing a small groundbait feeder with worm and caster he netted 35 skimmer bream from 1 lb to 2.5 lbs in weight.

Carp anglers have also been successful on both the North and South Lakes with quite a few double figure fish up to 18lbs landed this week.

Carp are really active on the Oak Tree Pond at the moment and fishing shallow or in the margins are very effective methods for fish from a couple of pounds up to 15lbs.  



The final match in the Tripp Lake winter league provided a cliff hanging finish. Grimsby angler Gary Hansford went into the match just one point ahead of Hull’s Nick Houghton and the pair managed to draw next to each other on pegs 26 and 27.

Nick took full advantage of the better peg, 26, finishing with 74lbs to Gary’s 35lbs. This meant that the pair tied on points and Nick took the title with a superior weight advantage. His total weight over the 20 match series was 711lbs, giving him an impressive average of over 35lbs per match. This is testament to the quality of fishing on this venue during the winter months when many days saw the competitors breaking ice in order to fish.

The winner on the day had a mixed bag of Carp, F.1’s, Skimmers, Ide and Crucians totalling 93lbs and the average weight per man on the day was 65lbs.

With all of the other Lakes in use for matches, Saturdays Silverfish League match was held on the Oak Tree Pond and produced the expected Silverfish bonanza. Grimsby angler Keith Easton won the day with a brilliant 57lbs of Silver Bream and Skimmers. Fishing maggots over hemp he had around 400 fish for this excellent weight. All of the competitors on the day found Carp to be a nuisance with as many as 12 unwanted specimens landed per angler and many more hooked and lost on light tackle. This gives a good indicator to those pleasure anglers targeting this species that small baits are the order of the day at the moment.



Water temperatures have remained at 2 to 4 degrees centigrade throughout the winter but after a few days of milder weather and frost free nights, they have finally begun to increase.

The effects on fish feeding activity can be quite dramatic and some red letter days for anglers can be expected.

As the fish display an increase in appetite, they are far more likely to move closer to the bank and match anglers in particular will find that short range fishing will become more productive than it is during the cold weather.

Steve Ellis had a taster of this effect on Tripp Lake in the Sunday Open. Drawn on peg 32, Steve set off on single caster over loose feed at 3 metres and never looked back, an excellent mixed bag of Skimmers, Crucians, F.1,s and Ide totalling 70lbs 8oz giving him the win.

Don Hudson enjoyed a double victory at the weekend. He scored a popular win in the Silverfish Open on the Islands Lake on Saturday with 29lbs of Skimmer Bream on the feeder from peg 8 and made the most of his peg 26 draw on the Swan Pond on Sunday to take 66lbs of Carp.

Don has been lucky enough to get a ticket for Sky Television’s Fishomania qualifier which will be held at Messingham Sands on Saturday April 18th and will be hoping that his good fortune holds out.   

Sean Johnson decided to have a few hours Perch fishing on the small syndicate pond at the weekend. A similar visit around this time last year saw him catch some really good fish to over 2lbs in weight and his confidence was more than justified as he caught several over the 2lb mark topped by an excellent 3lbs 3oz fish, all on double red maggot fished close to a reed bed.

Merry,s Pool has begun to fish well as temperatures are increasing, with some really good Ide caught, although most of the fish are in the 12oz to 1.5lbs size range, individual fish up to 4lbs in weight have been landed. Crucians, Skimmers, Tench and Carp have also featured well in anglers’ catches, although it has been noticeable that light tackle and small baits are the most productive tactics.


Despite water temperatures remaining very low, a surprising number of fish can be caught by adopting shallow fishing tactics at the moment. This has been most apparent on the Tripp Lake this winter where match weights of up to 90lbs of F.1,s, large Skimmers, many around 2lbs to 3lbs, Roach, Crucians and Carp have been recorded by fishing just 2 to 3 feet deep in 14 feet of water.

Grimsby angler Gary Hansford recorded two wins on the Tripp Lake last week by fishing pellets on the pole up in the water and with 50-60lb weights in both matches it was fairly busy fishing.

The North and South Day ticket lakes are renowned for the excellent Roach and Skimmer fishing and one of the most productive methods is to catch shallow on casters, even in the depths of winter.

One thing that has been noticeable over the past couple of weeks is that anglers targeting Silverfish on small baits and light tackle have been catching far more Carp unintentionally than those anglers who have actually set out to catch them on more traditionally strong tackle and larger offerings.

This would suggest that although the Carp are willing to feed, they are adopting a fairly cautious approach as to what they eat.




After a couple of weeks during which all of the Lakes were more often than not frozen over, milder weather has arrived, the ice has melted and normal service has now been resumed.

Match anglers in particular continued to venture out during the cold period and many developed some impressive ice breaking skills. The evolution of ice breaking equipment has certainly progressed from the good old house brick tied to a rope to breakers of various weights and designs, all with a particular purpose and thickness of ice in mind. It has certainly been no mean feet to clear ice out as far as 16metres in some cases and it was something of a relief to simply arrive at the bank, tackle up and begin fishing at the weekend without breaking into a sweat.

The Saturday Silver Fish Open was fished on the ever prolific Oak Tree Pond as the original venue, the Islands Lake was still iced over as late as Friday afternoon.

Scunthorpe angler and match organiser Steve Ellis obviously forgot about the Silver Fish only aspect to the match as he landed 17 Carp up to 10lbs in weight, none of which counted.

There was a really close finish to the event with less than 3lbs separating the top 4. The eventual winner targeted the better stamp of Silver Bream by fishing Tares over Hemp to finish with 165 fish for 26lbs 8oz, the second placed angler had around 250 fish for 25lbs 8oz on maggots and Casters.

The South Lake has been popular with Day Ticket anglers as some really good Roach and Skimmer catches have been taken and quality Roach up to 1.5lbs in weight have fallen to maggots and casters. The Skimmers which range from 8oz up to 2lbs have been feeding well on soft pellet over groundbait fished on pole tackle in the deep water.



Grimsby’s Dave Mountford wrapped up the Silver Fish only winter league with a section win on the Swan Pond at the weekend to give himself a maximum 100 points and an emphatic victory, second placed Carl Sweatnam from Rotherham finishing 6 points behind.

Dave’s impressive run saw him scoring maximum section points on the Swan Pond, Islands Lake and the Oak Tree Pond, the highlights being 58 lbs and 60 pounds nets of Skimmers from the Swan Pond in November, although Dave also top scored in his sections on some really cold days when bites were relatively hard to come by.

This was a really good all round performance over the 13 matches for a well deserved win.

Steve Ellis decided to approach his favourable draw, peg 33 on the Tripp Lake on the Sunday Open as though it was a summer match. A really positive approach saw him put 3 Carp into his net for around 18lbs on pole fished paste in the first twenty minutes of the match, leaving everyone else playing catch up.

He managed to tempt fish steadily through the day to score a comfortable win with 69lbs, this was over 20lbs clear of Gary Hansford who had a mixed bag of Carp, Crucians and F.1’s on pellet.

Another angler who found Carp willing to feed, despite freezing cold conditions was Grimsby’s Jamie Whitley. Jamie drew on the Hawthorn hedge in the Friday Open on the Oak Tree Pond and caught Carp from the off on sweetcorn and pellet, finishing with a huge winter weight of 125lbs.



A combination of strong winds and very low temperatures chilled water temperatures to below the levels that they would have been had the lakes frozen over. This had a noticeable effect on sport and the fishing became harder and harder as the week progressed, culminating in a very tough weekend for both match and pleasure anglers.

The Silverfish open which was run on the normally reliable Oak Tree Pond proved to be hard going with only a very small stamp of fish showing any interest in feeding. Hull angler Rob Chaffer finished a clear winner with 15lbs of skimmers.

Tripp Lake showed better form and the deep water proved to be beneficial as Crucians F.1’s and Roach fed reasonably well, Mark Lidgard winning the Sunday Open with 35lbs and Pete Maddison leading the way on Saturday with 45lbs.



Strong winds have made life difficult for anglers this week and finding a sheltered area has been paramount. Despite this the relatively mild weather has encouraged fish to feed and catches have been reasonably good for the time of the year.

The Carp in the Oak Tree pond have been particularly keen to feed and a club match at the weekend produced a string of good weights up to 80lbs. Sweetcorn fished on the pole has been the most successful method with fish from a couple of pounds up to low double figures.

The Saturday Silverfish match on the Swan Pond produced one of its closest ever results with the top 3 all finishing within 1lb of each other, the winner having a huge 2lbs 13oz Perch to thank.

Whilst this fish was caught on single maggot, owing a lot to luck, third placed Steve Ellis set his stall out to catch some big stripeys right from the off and his lobworm attack almost paid off with a number of fish to over 2lbs in his net at the end of the match, he fell just one fish short in the end.

With just two matches to go, Grimsby’s Dave Mountford has an unassailable lead although there are a group of anglers able to make the runner up spot.

The second Silverfish only league begins in three weeks, running into early May and normally produces some exceptional sport as temperatures warm up.



Sport has been very up and down over the Christmas and New Year holiday period as temperatures have varied between minus 5 and plus 12 degrees centigrade.

The Oak Tree Pond has provided the most consistent sport for anglers targeting Carp with plenty of fish from a few pounds up to low double figures caught.

 A group of anglers from Sheffield found that tactics normally employed in summer such as fishing Sweetcorn in the margins were extremely effective on one of the milder days, catching Carp throughout the day, with plenty of fish up to 8lbs in weight.

The North and South Lakes are in exceptional form for Roach and Skimmers and 40lbs to 50lbs catches have been taken on both casters and soft pellet fished on the pole.

Winter often throws up some surprise catches as fish tend to shoal up in certain areas, providing plenty of bites on surprisingly cold days, but Sundays Open match on Tripp Lake was off the scale of expectations for Crowle angler Luke Harrison.

The Lake was frozen over after overnight temperatures fell to -5 degrees and never climbed much above freezing all day.

 On arrival, all of the competitors went to work with ropes, weights and chains to clear enough of an area through the ice to begin fishing.

After all of the disturbance and with such low temperatures, the anticipated winning weights were not expected to be too high, but it quickly became apparent to Luke that his swim was full of hungry Crucian Carp and F1’s.

 Not only were they feeding well, but they were also very high up in the water. Fishing 4mm soft pellet just 2 feet deep in his 12 feet deep swim and presenting his bait alongside the edge of the ice, he was able to catch all day for a magnificent 92lbs winning weight.


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