The Hayes Farm, Merrington, Bomere Heath, Shropshire, SY4 3QH | Web: www.merringtoncarpfishery.co.uk | Tel: 07707 670408
This man-made pool, set in peaceful surroundings well back from the road, was designed with carp anglers in mind.
The nine-acre lake has a clutch of islands, various underwater undulations and 18 well-maintained swims. There’s also an on-site café serving hearty meals seven days a week. You can even have food delivered direct to your swim for a small extra fee.
A well-stocked shop offers bait and tackle, and if you really want home-from-home comforts, portable powerpacks can be rented.
There are more 200 carp present almost exclusively over 10lb. At the top of the tree are more than half a dozen 30-pounders, backed up by around 85 twenties and 120 doubles.
Merrington is a regular host of high-profile carp matches and has been fished by a lot of top names. Angling can be testing at times, but the rewards are obtainable and hectic action can ensue if you get it right.
VENUE EXPERT CARL SHARP SAYS...
Carl Sharp, manager of Angling Direct in Willenhall, has fished Merrington many times, particularly in winter.
He says: “In the colder months the fish do tend to group up around the middle in the main bowl of the lake. There’s a small depression in the centre of the lake, about 6ins to a foot deeper than the rest of the water and the fish are generally never too far away from here.
“I think a lot of people go down the route of throwing in kilos of round balls and it’s not the way. In previous years before some of the bait bans I’d use plastic baits, corn, worms and maggots, but it has changed a bit since then.
“If I was going down there in the summer I’d have one rod on a pink pop-up and the other rod on a worm. I think it’s anything but a boilie water, the carp aren’t competing with other species and they can pick and choose.
“It’s a man-made lake and when it was dug they left humps and bumps all over the place. If you can locate these and fish on the top of them where it’s 2ft or 3ft shallower than everywhere else it’s often a case of putting a bait out and waiting for a bite.”
PRICES AND FACILITIES
£15 a day
£25 for 24 hours
£5 reduction between Nov and Feb
Bait and tackle shop
Battery charging available
Two rods between March and October (three in winter)
12lb minimum line
No braided mainline
Maggots only in December
No plastic baits except zigs