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Fishing in Essex

With lakes, ponds and rivers with many tributaries or even the odd reservoir with fish such as carp, perch and roach and a large coast line bordering the North Sea, you can see why Essex is the perfect county to consider when planning a relaxing and pleasurable fishing trip.

The Rivers Chelmer & Blackwater running through the town of Chelmsford are a known angler’s hotspot for their course Fishing in Essex. Although often known as 'The Canal', the Chelmer & Blackwater are for most of their length classed as canalised rivers and as such are subject to the closed season regulated by the Environment Agency, from whom a rod licence is required to fish the waterways. Species caught here include roach, bream, tench, chub, perch, pike, dace, barbell and carp to over 30 lbs.

Established in 1999, Crowsheath Angling and Breeding Farm Ltd, situated in Downham near Billericay, offer four superbly maintained and well stocked lakes.
With depths ranging from 4ft to 9ft and plenty of features, the main Specimen Lake has one island and stocks Carp and Catfish. 2009 has produced catches of Carp up to 38lbs and Catfish 74lbs plus.
The four and a half acre Course Lake is ideal for match or course fisherman and stocks plenty of Carp between three and eight pounds, but can also contain some Carp weighing around the twenty pound mark. The Course Lake is also well stocked with some smaller fish making it ideal for newcomers too.
The Canal Lake, an eighteen peg match lake, has a wide variety of fish, such as Bream, Carp, Roach, Rudd and Tench with weights of up to and in some cases more than 7 pound.
At the other end of the scale is the half acre Lagoon Lake which stocks easier to catch silver fish. This lake is ideal for children and apparently holds “a few surprises”.

If the challenge of the sea is more to your liking, you can find a wide range of charter boats offering angling trips from the many ports along the Essex coast. Professional skippers will take either individual fishermen or groups of sea anglers on all day fishing trips to fish for bass, cod, plaice, conger eels, shark and many other species of fish found around the cost of Great Britain.

Back on dry land you will find that Hanningfield Reservoir, built in the 1950s, offers some of the most picturesque Fishing in Essex. The reservoir is the second largest in Essex and when full holds approximately 26,075 million litres of water. The reservoir stocks 50,000 fish each year and the record for the biggest fish caught to date stands at 24lb 1oz and was landed by John Hammond in 1998. Hanningfield reservoir is also a great place to fish for rainbow trout, which are regularly stocked.

Situated in Weeley, Clacton on Sea, Homestead Lake Park revolves around a central coarse fishing lake stocked with good sized Carp, Perch, Tench and Roach. Tackle and bait can be purchased from their on-site shop and live maggots can be purchased from a Mag-It vending machine located at the entrance. There is also a cafe and toilet block on site.

Turn off the A12 at Kelvedon and follow the signs to Tiptree and you will discover Brookhall Lake. This 50 peg, 4 acre site situated in the beautiful Essex countryside is heavily stocked with bream, carp, tench and roach. The venues match record was recently broken in a club match with 252lb of carp to 14lb from peg 30.

So if you are considering Fishing in Essex, we think you will find our counties waterways have enough diversity to challenge anyone, from the amateur angler to club matchmen and even the “speci” boys.


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